E-tales: Would you trust a mad monk?


Telecom wayyyy late to Olympics’ party

It’s been an interesting week for E-tales’ editor, who keeps hearing from Telecom’s rivals that they’re selling well because they emphasise customer service and Telecom doesn’t — at least not for smaller customers, ie those who aren’t a large corporate. Well, E-tales got proof positive of slackness in this department when Telecom’s August residential customer newsletter, advertising free Olympics action on the mobile, arrived on August 29.

The two-week Olympics started on the 8th, so the bonus viewing service — of 20 video-clips a day featuring Kiwi athletes in action — obviously didn’t get much traction as, well, people didn’t know about it. No medals for Telecom’s service then.

Would you trust a mad monk?

The week stayed interesting with a trip to the Tuanz II conference, which featured a spirited face-off between next-term government wannabe telco ministers David Cunliffe and Maurice Williamson.

The relaxed incumbent, Cunliffe, said he hadn’t prepared a speech and did an off-the-cuff job, while Williamson raced through a veritable banquet of information in an “I-definitely-wannabe-the-next-minister” mini-presentation.

This was somewhat marred by his reference to himself as a “right-wing mad monk”, however. E-tales knows this is a reference to prominent Thatcherite British Conservative cabinet minister Keith Joseph, who was dubbed “the mad monk”, but since his day we’ve had the mad albino monk of The Da Vinci Code movie fame. Lucky our Maurice isn’t a blond.

Not such a big deal

A media release arrived in an e-taler’s inbox last week, and the first four words of the headline — “Infosys to acquire Axon” — got him rather excited.

After all, for a huge Indian outsourcer to buy a New Zealand IT company like Axon is a big deal.

However, on reading the headline in full — “Infosys to acquire Axon as Indian services companies expand in Europe” — he realised the Axon in question wasn’t the Kiwi one, but rather a British SAP specialist with the same name.

We hope the deal between Infosys and the UK Axon doesn’t cause any confusion for the local Axon.

P-ed off!

An email listing seriously dumb-ass support calls — sent to us by a Computerworld subscriber — gave us a laugh here at E-tales. Here’s a sample:

Tech support: “Okay Colin, let’s press the control and escape keys at the same time. That brings up a task list in the middle of the screen. Now type the letter ‘P’ to bring up the Program Manager.”

Customer: “I don’t have a P.”

Tech support: “On your keyboard, Colin.”

Customer: “What do you mean?”

Tech support: “‘P’.....on your keyboard, Colin.”

Customer: “I’M NOT GOING TO DO THAT!!”

Digital Cavity 1.5

Another one of our e-talers had rather a disappointing week. Having gotten an early (tree) copy of the government’s latest planning missive — Digital Strategy 2.0 — he got all proactive and went online, hungry for exponential engagement in the vision of living convergently digital (sorry, this inflated prose gets to you after a while, he tells us).

Anyway, he turned impatiently to the interactive read-write web, hoping for a searchable copy, so he could maximise his bandwidth and productivity by efficiently navigating the resource’s infrastructure (whoooa there, boy). But really… he wanted to look for some key words he thought ought to be in the doc which he had perhaps overlooked.

However, more than five hours after its official launch, the new DigiStrat was nowhere to be seen — see image below.

Twenty minutes later, a web document appeared — but it was only the draft version that’s been there for four months.

Our e-taler had expected the prompt recycling implied by a “cradle-to-cradle design and production philosophy” [DigiStrat 2.0 (tree version), p. 22].

Clearly, the sustainable reincarnation from cradle 1.0 to cradle 2.0 (www.digitalstrategy.govt.nz) was going through a grave phase.

However, Version 2.0 was there next day.

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