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Archive for the ‘Gripes’ Category

What Parliament Thinks of your Right to Internet Access

The Digital Economy Bill

Please Read This

Here is a list of MPs to harrass – the ones one the LEFT voted FOR the Bill, the ones on the right voted against the bill, the rest didn’t turn up. Ask them what about the small businesses who own hotels, cafes etc, are they responsible for what their GUESTS do on their connections? If you were in that position would you simply GIVE UP and close the connection? This bill is a DISASTER for the UK

The Digital Economy Bill – or how to screw up free WiFi

The bill is an attempt by the government to crack down on internet copyright infringement, not a bad idea in itself, but as usual with this government, it is the implementation that’s totally screwed. By attempting to place the burden on the provider, the bill, which went through the house of Lords this week and looks set to fly unless someone DOES something,  is likely to affect, Internet Cafe, Hotels, service providers, trains and the PUBLIC.

Anyone offering WIFI access – how about the COUNTLESS FON USERS !!???!!

The bill could also affect any small business that allows for home working… the list goes on and on and on…  apart from anything else, why on EARTH should any hotel, faced with the possibility of having to police the use of their WIFI – which is WAY beyond the technical or managerial skills of your average hotel, why should they BOTHER to continue to offer free WIFI.

We’re still living in the DARK ages in the UK and this bill is about to make it a LOT WORSE. What about the free WIFI on TRAINS??!!??

If ever there was an example of the government trying to turn us all into willing participants in a POLICE STATE you are now looking at it!!!  

You may find these links useful…

http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2010/apr/08/internet-piracy-bill

http://www.fsb.org.uk/policy/assets/0310%20digital%20economy%20bill%20briefing.pdf

http://www.openrightsgroup.org/

http://computingblogs.typepad.com/peter_scargill/

and to gripe to your MP

http://www.38degrees.org.uk/page/speakout/extremeinternetl

When 24-hour is not 24-hour

At Tescos of course!

I got up somewhat after 3am this morning to take Maureen to the airport – she’s off to see her folks. On leaving Newcastle airport and aware that I’ve a quiet Easter weekend coming up I thought I’d take a trip to the supermarket.

So at 5am I popped into Tescos in Hexham. Figured I’d get everything I needed for the next 4 days – and a spot of wine for TV dinner tonight.

Got to the automated checkout and started firing items at it… SORRY said the machine, can’t sell you wine!! Well, last time I checked I was WAY past 18 years old… so I asked the attendant. It turns out that Tynedale council refused to let them have a 24-hour alcohol licence – and so they can only sell alcohol from 6am.

What kind of stupid-ass policy is THAT?? Does it help small shops? NO because they’re all closed at that time of the morning. Does it help the environment? FAR FROM IT because I now have to take ANOTHER trip from my village to the supermarket JUST to get the wine… who’s BRILLIANT idea was that. Half an hour after I left the store it would have been ok to sell me the wine!

Don’t you get sick of so many stupid regulations dreamed up by so many stupid people!

Feed the Poor

According to the press “Internet access remains an unaffordable option for many in the Commonwealth, leaving them unable to reap the benefits of the web, according to the Queen”

The Queen has said that the Internet remains unaffordable for too many people in the Commonwealth.

For HEAVENS SAKE – what with our misguided government wanting to give computers (at cost to taxpayers) to every NON-taxpayer, even though many DON’T ACTUALLY WANT to use the Internet and now we have the QUEEN wanting to help the rest of the commonwealth.

We’re in the middle of the worst recession in living memory, businesses are going bust left-right and centre and we want to make sure everyone has the Internet forced down their throat… why stop at the commonwealth, why now just TAX US TO DEATH so the whole WORLD can have a computer courtesy of the BRITS- then there’ll be even MORE people trying to HACK it to bits in their spare time!

Apparently of those people who don’t currently use the Internet, 71 per cent thought that they should have the right to access it.

Well, they WOULD, WOULDN’T they. I don’t have an APPLE TABLET and I WANT ONE so maybe some other shmuck should buy me one – that’s sounds good to me – does it sound good to you?

As someone interested in technology, by that way of thinking I should have a RIGHT to get all the latest gadgets for FREE, paid for by the government no matter what the cost to taxpayers.

Give me a break.

Nothing like a meeting-fest

Sometimes I wonder about people who organise meetings…. for my sins this week I’m in a meeting in Selsdon Park in Croydon… so that’s a car to Newcastle, a train to Kings Cross, an underground to Victoria, a train to Croydon and a taxi to the venue…. 21st century organisation! And no, video conferencing would not do because the people herein like to see the whites of your eyes and the connectivity is absolutely awful anyway!

The room connection works for half an hour then you have to reconnect – and it’s deliberately restricted to encourage you to pay £12 a day.  I thought people had given up on this daylight robbery.

2 days of this then I get a Sunday off – wheeeeeeeeeeeee before starting all over again this time in another easy access venue – Nottingham!

The sooner petrol gets to £5 a litre, FORCING people to rethink this stuff – the better.

Still, the GOOD news is that the property in Bellingham gets nearer to completion by the second… ceilings are dry and as I write this in my hotel room in the middle of no-where, Maureen should be putting the first coat of paint up…

What happened to Global Warming

We were talking about Global warming….

Christmas 2009 – United Kingdom

  • Scotland sees temperatures of –16C
  • Heavy snow warning Eastern Wales to see 10” OR MORE of snow
  • Incoming flights cancelled
  • Northern Ireland – water off due to freezing
  • Northeast of England – freezing, bitter cold rock-solid ICE

Warming, my BACKSIDE!!  Can we have some please!!!

 

Terror on Flight 253 – When will we learn?

As we sit in the UK enjoying our traditional Christmas festivities, over in the USA once again someone is trying to blow planes up. Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab fastened explosive powder to his leg and tried to set of an explosion using a syringe aboard Northwest Airlines Flight 253. Fortunately he failed thanks to incompetence and the bravery of quick-thinking passengers.

Sadly, once again freedom suffers as airlines tighten up security, which means ONCE again because of a particular subsector of religious fruit and nut cases, all of us are to have delays increased and any shred of the “thrill” of flying removed, not to mention the renewed fear of something happening on OUR flight. Not THAT big a deal until you multiply it by the untold millions to whom this applies – and yet we have no say in his punishment!!

I cannot for the LIFE of me understand why they are treating this man in hospital!! Why on earth didn’t they leave him to the press and perhaps the passengers instead of saying to terrorists the world over “don’t worry, if you happen to strap explosives to yourself and have an accident, we’ll look after you in hospital”.

If someone has no regard for their life or the lives of others why on EARTH should we care if they suffer? Apparently he was TOLD to do this. Well here’s a simple solution – provide all the passengers waiting to board planes with a nail each and get a religious leader to come up and tell them to stick the pin in themselves-  and those who do – shoot them on the spot!

British Rail Broadband

On the London to Edinburgh line today, this is the BEST I could get checking the broadband speed….. that’s when it worked AT ALL.. Note the ping time of nearly 1/4 second and the almost non-existent upload speed. 2 commercial companies and now the government and they STILL can’t get this right… Facebook says we’re in an “unknown location” and Google thinks we’re somewhere in Europe!

Rubbish broadband with British Rail

Progress on the Rails

Shiny new stiles at Newcastle Central Station

As you can see by the photo on the right, Newcastle Central Station now has itself a shiny new set of people control booths. Apparently the idea behind this is to keep scruffs without tickets away from the trains. It certainly can’t be to stop them boarding trains without tickets as they pester the life out of people every single time I get on the train for their tickets.

Unless there’s a more sinister background to this?  Reducing staff levels on the trains? Allowing them to employ hapless, untrained kids without fear of them being attacked by ruthless, ticketless passengers perhaps?

Crappy old lounge at Newcastle Central StationThe problem with all of this is priorities… clearly the rail authorities feel that this is where they want to spend their money. The fact that when waiting in Newcastle station you generally end up freezing your PARTS OFF unless you happen to have an open first class ticket (they don’t let the unwashed riff-raff with discounted tickets into the first class lounge, the only place that is even remotely warm in the station apart from Burger King. The only other place is the excuse for a lounge you see on the right, a few plate glass windows and a large sign that says “no eating, drinking or smoking” -  I’m surprised they don’t add “or having sex or breathing”

So they COULD have spent the money on a decent “second class” lounge for us commoners, OR they could have spent the money on a TOILET (the attached pub doesn’t take kindly to non-customers using their facilities) – or HEY – Packet of mini-cheddars destined for jamming behind a sign somewhere at Newcastle Central Stationhere’s a thought – how about some BINS!!!  Having encouraged us to buy food and drinks, once out of the shop we’re faced with a total absence of anywhere to put our rubbish… leading most of us – and I include myself as a matter of principle, to find little nooks and crannies to shove our empty packaging. Hey – if they don’t like it – give us some bins!

Still at least now we won’t have to suffer the INDIGNITY of standing next to someone who doesn’t have a ticket.  That’ll be a relief then.

The future is Grim – the future is ORANGE

They’re at it again…. the incompetents at Orange have well and truly surpassed previous levels of ineptitude this time.

I’ve just been told we’ve not had an Orange bill recently and I remembered I’d had something from them recently in email. I looked up the email and sure enough – get your bill online… so I tried – it wanted an email and password.   I’ve never used this before so I rang them up. Wrong department.

The right department then told me I had to go online – to get my bill. I said I had no password. They said register.. to register you have to receive a text message to your mobile and answer 2 questions you set when you signed up. I signed up YEARS ago and my mobile doesn’t work at home.

I range back and went through the usual raft of automated messages – at 14.4p per minute cost to me of course – I’m currently running at just over £1. All through this AS USUAL “we are currently very busy” – which in English means “we don’t employ enough staff because WE DON’T CARE!”   In the meantime I managed to find a message that told me I could ask for printed invoices – at £3 each!!! But I could only get these by going online – which of course I can’t do because I don’t have my password..

What a complete bunch of asses…… I’ve had to resort to writing them a letter!