Saturday, 26 September 2009

Sainsbury's Direct Saver "Improvements"

Just had a letter from Sainsbury's Direct Saver dated September 2009, that starts with the hopeful “We are making improvements to your Sainsbury savings account...” The letter details various pending system changes including a new phone number and address and requirement to change password.

I also note on page 24 of the 25 page booklet that one of the “Improvments” is to reduce the interest rates from aprox 0.4 % down to to 0.1 % for all balances. I am not sure what kind of Improvement that is.

The cheerful letter ends with "we hope you enjoy the improvements to our service."

Another slippery financial institution exposed.


Tuesday, 15 September 2009

American Express Spam - Anatomy of perverse marketing

American Express Spam and yet they pretend not to.

I had this email ...

From: American Express
Date: 15 September 2009 07:32:08 BST
To: xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: A recommendation from your friend

Advert pushing credit cards and BA Miles with links directly back to AMEX servers for the images and links
... snip

Using links to images with URL tracking like
href="$NQN.AQB6Dpx0/amex4?MGM_URN=AAAAEgwfEhMeAg==" target="_blank" img name="bacc_mgmee_r3_c4"

Some headers:
Delivery-date: Tue, 15 Sep 2009 07:32:13 +0100
Received: from ([])
by with esmtp (Exim 4.69)
(envelope-from )
id 1MnRaG-000DGI-To
for; Tue, 15 Sep 2009 07:32:13 +0100
-Trace: 1261959694/$ACCEPTED/UNKNOWNLIST/
X-SBRS: 4.5

The email address that this spam was sent to is technical posting address and has no personal correspondence. This was not a referral this is just mailing list spam.

The domain name is freshly registered "Registered on: 06-Sep-2009" there is no web site or referral business there.
Notes as well that this "Registrant type: UK Individual" just so happens to have a PoBox address.

To put a cherry on top you can see using Google that Amex have paid for adverts to be served when you search for the return address.

Another deceiving financial Institution.


Thursday, 3 September 2009

Wot more money for ipod touch software update ?

I just bought a brand new Ipod touch. It cost a lot of money - but is shinny+lovely.

Now when I plug it in iTunes want another £7 to update software to Version 3. This is is not fair because
* I bought the latest and did not get the latest incarnation of the iPod Touch.
* You are not warned when buying the Ipod that you may have to pay for upgrade right away.
* Apple runs the "up to date" program for Mac buyers when this happen on computers ie comes with Leopard but Snow Leopard has been released.
* This is like the dismal ( batteries not included ) sticker on a new toy.
* This would be easy to fix. Register an ipod Touch from serial number x onwards and get a iTunes voucher for cost of upgrade. This would also hook people in to iTunes store that is the partial aim of upgrade.

Go on Apple do the right thing, don't annoy folks that just spent 200+GBP plus on a toy by nickel+dime for a software update.