NZ Post looks like it has no option but to move further into the area
of electronic messaging if it's to turn around a recent switch from
profit to loss.
Clearly the popularity and low-cost of email, combined with the good
old fax machine, have thrashed the market for regular snail-mail.
Even online banking and bill-paying must be ready to cut deeply into
the need to use regular postal services in the future so with this
in mind, and in the face of increasingly stiff competition, NZ Post has
taken a 20 percent stake in MessageMedia.
Have Your Say
No Comments Yet -- send me yours and fill this space!
I guess it's good to see NZ Post operating as a regular corporate citizen
though -- especially when you consider that it's not beyond the realms
of possibility that a crazy government could decide to implement a
maditory e-stamp that charged a tiny tax for each email sent.
Oh good grief -- what have I done? Given Jim Anderton another idea
for funding his tee-shirt factories?
Spamming Doesn't Work -- The Proof
On Monday The NZ Herald (print edition) carried an advertisement offering
to sell you a list of email addresses that could be used for the purposes
of "direct marketing" over the internet.
Yes, you too can reach a market of over 63 million internet users if you
cough up over $200 for this list of names. Imagine if just one percent
of them responded and purchased an item worth $5 -- hell -- that's more money
than you can fit in the pockets of a pair of purple polyester pants eh?
According to David Russell of the Consumers Institute, the email address
given as a contact has, in the past, been used by a well known business-person
of dubious repute. So dubious in fact that he's been given a lifetime ban
from ever conducting business in at least one Australian state.
Unfortunately for those stupid enough to believe what's printed in the ad,
there is no mention of the fact that spamming is one of the Net's cardinal
sins and almost always results in instant cancellation of a spammer's account
(although some ISPs are a bit namby-pamby and offer all new customers a
"get out of jail free" card that lets them get away with a warning on their
first attempt. I believe in a zero tollerance policy myself -- after all,
anyone buying a product or service has a responsibility to read the contract
(which contains the terms of service that expressely forbid spamming) and
if, after reading that contract they then go ahead and breach the terms
of service then why should they get a second chance?
However, my question to the advertiser would have to be -- if spamming is so
damned effective -- why waste your money on a paid advertisement in a newspaper?
Helen Is A Limelighter!
Now that NZ's Olympic medal count has soared to the grand total of just
four (mostly bronze), our beloved PM Helen Clarke has decided that it
might just be worth investing some money in fostering our athletes -- so
as to do better next time.
She notes that Australia pay their olympic athletes quite a reasonable
stipend (some $40K per year) from the public purse -- so may be we
could do the same -- in the name of national pride.
I guess this will go along nicely with the extra $120m in taxpayer's money she
recently gave to the Arts for no apparent reason other than to raise her
own standing in that little social circle.
Excuse me Ms Clark? If it's good enough to contemplate following Australia's
lead in such "luxuries" as funding the sports/recreational activities of
individual citizens so that we can all get a good dose of the warm fuzzies
once every four years -- don't you think you could actually follow the lead
of just about every other developed nation and encourage rather than
penalise investment in the R&D activities so crucial to our future prosperity
in a new economy soundly based on intellectual property, good ideas and
You have to worry about a government that thinks the solution to all the
country's problems is to simply give people cash. Of course you can only
do that when you've got your hand in their wallets taking an increasingly
large chunk of their pay each fortnight or month and telling them that
the harder you try, the harder you work, the more we're going to take
But hey -- at least we'll have pretty pictures on the walls of our art galleries
and the damage done by a politically over-correct system that encourages
children and workers not aspire to excellence but settle for mediocrity might
be slightly offset in the area of sport.
Maybe Ms Clark ought to read
from the Sydney Morning Herald before she starts throwing taxpayer's money
at our athletes.
As always, your feedback is welcomed.