Things That I Hope Die A Painful Death in 2012

It’s the start of 2012, and I think we need to embrace the new dawn, and kill off some old shit things from the past. Things like:

Envelopes where you have to lick them.

Horrible. Unhygienic. Unnecessary.
There’s just no need for it. Not even on birthday/Christmas cards. Modern¬†self-seal envelopes work just fine. Get with it, Hallmark.

Shops that sell greeting cards, who do not sell fucking stamps!

Why?! I obviously don’t have any stamps, because apart from greeting cards, what other letters do I ever send by post? What does any (non-business) send by post these days (excluding parcels which need to be taken to the Post Office and weighed anyway)?

Takeaways who only accept cash.

Pretty much every shop in the world takes debit/credit cards now, except you.

Cards are more convenient for everyone involved. The buyer doesn’t have to carry cash, the shop doesn’t have to handle it. Your minimum wage staff won’t steal money from the till or give the wrong change, and you don’t have to worry about getting robbed while walking your enormous takings to the bank, nor mess about with as many different floats.

Just add a few pence to the cost of every dish/side, and you’ve covered the additional cost of taking debit cards. It isn’t difficult.
I WILL pay slightly more, for the benefit of not having to drive to a cashpoint before I go and collect my food, every time.

Telephone directory enquiries.

When was the last time you used it? And why? Every homeowner is ex-directory, and even businesses without websites who don’t even use computers (e.g. small independent garages), are still on local listing websites.

If there’s a business who you can’t find by Googling their name, and the street they’re in, then they don’t deserve to be found.

MMS Messaging.

30p to send a highly-compressed photo, when most mobile phones (even non-smartphones) have been able to send email, for at least the last 3-4 years.

When the iPhone was released without any MMS support, I had hoped that it would die out – but people moaned about it not being available, and got it added on during a later software update. I have no idea who is still using it, given every current phone has access to email, Twitter and Facebook for sharing pictures with other people, which even without a mobile data plan from your phone network, is still cheaper than sending it by MMS.

Companies who withhold their number on every call.

You miss a call on your mobile, and have absolutely no idea who it was. There’s no legitimate reason for hiding your number when calling out, so I assume if I have a call from a withheld number, you’re either some arsehole like a scammer or an accident claims company, or someone else trying to sell me something I don’t want. Why else wouldn’t you want people to know who you were?

A lot of recruitment companies withhold their number, and while on the one hand they might say how you wouldn’t want your employer to know you’re looking for another job, why would your employer see your mobile phone missed call list? And if you’ve given your work mobile or direct-dial number to an agency, then you deserve to get found out.

I’ve got it into my head that a lot of the timewasting agencies (and you know who you are) withhold their number so they can say “I’ll pass your CV onto our client and email you the job spec” and when they don’t email you anything, you have no easy way of contacting them. Even if you can find the company name, and remember the name of the person who called you, you might well find they’re mysteriously always on the other line, or at lunch and will call you back (which they don’t, obviously).

Even the companies who have numbers you can’t phone back, that have recorded messages saying who they were and why they were calling, is better than just… nothing.

Digital zoom.

Either put proper optical zoom on the camera, or don’t – but stop pretending that digital zoom is a real feature.
Or try marketing it as what it is – the ability to crop pictures down in size, if you’re too lazy to do it on a computer later.

I imagine I may well update/add to this list.

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