Monday, August 01, 2005

Unfair winds

There were a bunch of shocked people standing in front of their wrecked community. The emergency services were doing well, and there had, mercifully, been no loss of life.

The fragrant reporter who had been wafted in to tell us they were in shock and share their pain was not asking how it felt ('great, moy ‘ouse is a pile of rooble') but actually posing some halfway-sensible questions for once. The council guy seemed refreshingly concerned. The government guy seemed equally concerned, but mainly about his suit, Specsavers no-rims (should have gone to a store that's not for people who sneer), bouffant, derriere and hence not saying anything (though not necessarily in that order).

Especially he did not seem to be saying anything that might actually commit to helping those who had just suffered a major disaster, which may or may not have been as a result of a bit of climate changing in an unexpected manner.

Is it just me, but if this was a Birmingham not in... (somewhere not the USA, but unlike them not expected to deal with its own mess), but good old Brum, just up the road in what I now learn the is UK equivalent of Tornado Alley (I thought I saw Helen Hunt in the pub), would we not already have a set of pearlies atop a pinstripe or bob atop a brooched scarf vowing to send aid?

There you go Emma; a short blog!

Ignorance is bliss

I have a problem. Or rather, has a problem.

First the good news. Even before we launch to the public, we are getting a steady stream of people who find out about us, or stumble across us, and get interested enough in what they see to register. Or at least try to. A percentage express the desire, but there are those who do not complete. The process we use is in common use on the net, and uncomplicated.

All we ask is a name, email and first block of postcode. Then.. send! For reasons of security and personal protection this is immediately replied to with a simple link, clicking on which automatically completes the registration. But we do get some who do not, and we do every so often write personally to remind them and ask if we can help in case of problems.

There are a few possible reasons for them not confirming:

* they didn't receive the confirmation email to activate your account (and we know ISPs like AOL have firewalls that can cause problems)

* they forgot to activate their account, hence our reminder!

* they entered an invalid email address (twice), in which case they were really having a bad day and are lost in the e-ther

..or, sniff, they changed their mind about registering. Fair 'nuff.

There could of course be countless reasons why someone may find out about us, surf enough to get interested, sign up but subsequently decide not to have access to a FREE environmental information resource such as ours and, when personally contacted and reminded in case of error, decline.

But a council waste minimisation officer and a schools environmental education officer?

Now... THAT baffles me.

At least they won't be reading this blog