* Posts by Ruana

22 publicly visible posts • joined 15 Jun 2007

Startup CEO Chahal fired for domestic violence incident


Re: Good riddance

Your comment is entirely correct but also seems to me to be beside the point. The criminal proceedings are done with and we are discussing the court of public opinon. The fact that the defence, not the prosecution, was the side that got the video excluded suggests it's incriminating; and if it can truly be interpreted as him hitting her 117 times, then that further suggests it shows a prolonged and savage attack. So it's not admissible as legal evidence - that doesn't mean we're all obliged to ignore its existence.

Make Isle of Man drugs paradise, says Jagger



Did he just imply that the Isle of Man is in England?

If so, there are a few nationalists who I think would like a word...

City Police still using Terror Act to bother photographers


It's there

There's a clarification in the comments on the linked article; it was 'sheepishly' returned when he reminded them they still had it.

Judge de-ASBOes yoof's low-slung kecks


Doubt it

According to Snopes, you've got it precisely the wrong way around. It's about ill-fitting prison clothes, not sex.

Overzealous Orange cuts off customer, still bills


Well rid of them

Sounds like I got off lightly. Apropos of (as far as I've ever figured out) absolutely nothing, I found an extra charge for some photo-message-related service on my bill - my phone lacked a camera and had a basic monochrome screen. Called them - they promised to remove the charge and refund the money. Next month - charge still there. Tried emailing them and was left wondering why they gave out a contact address when the people on the other end were apparently not empowered to do anything at all except say sorry and tell me to phone to sort it out.

Thankfully the next call actually worked, although I didn't see how the refund added up (to my detriment, of course) and the promised written apology never materialised. Didn't bother chasing as I'd already decided to ditch them when my contract was up, and did.

And whilst not directly Orange's fault, the idiot company they'd charged with handling their handset upgrades was still calling me, regular as clockwork, at renewal time up to three years later...

Definitely not going back.

Libel reform campaigners seek £10k damages cap


In favour, on the whole

Libel law is never going to be perfect or even close to. Yes, it would be awful to be libelled and have to prove a negative in order to get justice. But I prefer that possibility to the current situation. There's a reason for point 4 - the rich and powerful around the world know that British libel laws can be used to bludgeon their critics into silence. The truth or otherwise of said critics' claims doesn't matter next to the cost of fighting a court case which, due to our screwed-up burden of proof, the defendant is likely to lose.

Pressure group aghast at Hillingdon ID card scheme


Council Tax

I wonder whether objectors could get away with deducting from their council tax the money that goes towards the services they're no longer permitted to use? I'm sure that would get somebody's attention!

Software generated attendance letter about dead pupil


Does the bar look a bit lower these days?

The school can thank British Gas for making it appear laudable that they took responsibility and apologised rather than just blaming the computer...

VbyV password reset is childishly simple


Oh no, it's VERY secure!

I mean, if it would lock out a legitimate user, obviously it'll get all the fraudsters!

I still haven't figured out what the hell was going on last weekend, but as I was thinking of cancelling the card anyway, it doesn't matter. Apparently I can't remember my own birthday...

US judge says University can ignore Christian course credits

Dead Vulture

@ Jonathan Adams

I see where Gordon is coming from, and I agree. What, exactly, do you think is 'irrational' about not wishing to compromise with a worldview which is inherently not evidence-based? Is it so unreasonable of me to be bothered about the fact that, in the 21st century, many of the UK's decision makers pay at least lip service to the arbitrary rules set out in a collection of ancient books?

Brits favour ASBOs for unruly mobile users


'Music' on buses

"...late-night metropolitan buses..."

I wish, I wish, I wish I had to put up with that crap only on the rare occasions when I'm headed home late! I quite possibly still wouldn't own an mp3 player if it weren't for the persistent blighting of my bus journeys - at any hours - with the tinny blarings of selfish idiots' 'music' from the back.

Shrieking babies are annoying, but sometimes parents need to travel and we all know there's no 'Mute' button. Far more irritating is the behaviour of mobile users who don't care that the bus is not their front room, and their fellow passengers possibly don't wish to be subjected to their taste in music or to one end of a loud, lengthy and often expletive-strewn conversation.

Intolerant towards those who don't show basic consideration for others? Count me in!

'Bullying' Aussie high school stops fingerprinting kids

Paris Hilton

I'm a bit sceptical

OK, so the only information actually stored is a string of numbers. But the system must have some way of knowing that a particular fingerprint relates to that particular string. Is it really warranted for the pushers to so confidently insist that it's impossible to re-create the prints from the numbers?

Paris, in case I've just made a bimbo of myself...

Human rights group pleads for condemned Saudi 'witch'



Yeah, yeah. You need more straw there?


@ Muslims?

Erm, as a matter of fact I *do* blame Waco and abortion clinic bombings on Christianity - at least in part. Oh, that's not 'true' Christianity? Well, they say they're going on the Bible, same as all the others who profess themselves Christian - and short of a personal appearance by Jesus, we can't really know who's right.

So many Muslims think it's ridiculous too? Great, good for them. I never doubted it. But it doesn't necessarily follow that Islam is entirely blameless for what this poor women's going through.

Christianity, Islam, religion in general - the basic problem is the same; the glorification of irrationality. The idea that it's somehow *virtuous* to believe utterly in something for which there is not a shred of proof. It's high time humanity grew the hell up and stopped running its life according to the whims of its various imaginary friends.

Armed police swoop on MP3-packing mechanic


@Reality Sucks

Yes, I know that there is a lot of gun crime in Birmingham, and I'm quite sure that I've unknowingly been in the vicinity of people who were carrying weapons. Furthermore, I would say that my state of blessed innocence in the matter has a lot to do with the work of the thin blue line. I have no beef with the action the police took in this matter, up until the point at which they found there was no gun but took the man's biometrics anyway. (And even that I'd be a lot less unhappy about if it weren't so fiendishly difficult to get back off the database once on it. In my opinion, that decision shouldn't be in the hands of the police - it should be routine to destroy the information if its owner has never been convicted of a crime, and requests that it be done.)

What I was objecting to was Iain's implication that the Birmingham area was a lawless wasteland, as it seemed to be tied to his overly sanguine attitude to the database.



"Coming from the Birmingham area..."

I've lived in Birmingham for over ten years and never once seen a gun on its streets, or even a knife. If there are armed gangs 'running amok', they don't do it in any of the areas I frequent. Granted, it's a big city, but to read your post one would think the whole place is a crime-ridden danger zone!

I'm not nit-picking - this stuff matters. If people's fear of crime is overly inflated, that's a powerful weapon in the hands of the control freaks.

And I've got no intention of ever committing a crime either - but I still don't want my details on that database. It seems the platitude 'If you've nothing to hide you've nothing to fear' just can't be sufficiently debunked for some people...

Spyware another weapon for domestic abuse



Sadly, though, spouse abusers often don't fit the 'brain dead' stereotype.

Facebook 'friend request' lands UK man in jail



"You never know, she could be the psychotic one, some strands of the female species are quite delusional at times."

Some strands of the *human* species are quite delusional at times. Try not to sound quite such a Neanderthal.

Online car tax saves planet from carbon hell


Excellent questions

I always travel to the Post Office by bus or on foot. So, whilst undeniably more convenient, my licensing online this year saved a grand total of no carbon dioxide whatsoever. Indeed, given that I had to run my computer to do it, and there was undoubtedly some power-sucking hardware on the other end to make it all possible...

Shaky assumptions = statistics which are a load of hot air.

Orange strong-arming ex-customers for imagined debts


Better check my credit rating...

Orange has changed. After a lengthy period of more than satisfactory service, they pretty much blew all my accumulated goodwill last year, over a single incident in which they started charging me for a new service without authorisation. That in itself I could have lived with - accidents happen. What got my goat was a combination of factors including lengthy hold times, failure to cancel and refund the first time I asked, complete unhelpfulness when I tried to bypass the hold 'music' by contacting them via e-mail, a faulty web interface, the needless beauraucracy required to escalate the call beyond the front-line reps and finally the non-appearance of the apology in writing which I was moved to require of them before it was all over.

It all added up to an impression of utter contempt for me as a customer and I jumped ship for Virgin Mobile the moment my contract ended. So far, they've been a massive improvement.

Catherine Tate to accompany Doctor Who



The character set my teeth on edge, and I didn't find Tate's show at all amusing the one time I watched it. Worse, RTD will probably try to do funny things with her, and his sense of humour is just juvenile.

I guess I'm a glutton for punishment...

Fancy an earful? Click here for tech support



Rufus was completely out of line - and would have been even if there had been a 36-point, garishly coloured, animated - and properly-working - 'Download' link right at the top of the page. He should be ashamed of himself, and so should the people who have commented to support him. Anyone who works in a customer-facing role will get the occasional (or more than occasional) person who misses the obvious and ends up asking what seems to us like a stupid question, but it's our obligation not to fly off the handle at them, and not just because we want to keep our jobs. It's about compassion, too.

Yes, compassion. I'm quite sure that most people, when they get politely pointed at something they really should have seen for themselves, feel rather foolish anyway - and foolish in inverse proportion to how polite their inital query was. There's no need whatsoever to rub their noses in it.

Well, not unless they *then* go on to be jerks about it.