2Degree backlash starting to gain momentum [UPDATED]



Oh dear… ?I did warn them. ?The same happened to Pak ‘n Save.

Why do companies cave in to the lefty loon pressure groups?


Dear Sir


I might only be extremely ?small fry? to you, not really worth worrying about, as we only have four mobiles in our home, all with 2 Degrees. But I was quite astonished when I first learned of your ?executive decision? to withdraw your advertising from the Whale Oil blog site and, as the afternoon unfolded, my astonishment turned to anger and feelings of utter disdain for your ?decision?. To think that a nationally-established company, whose existence is predicated on battling the two behemoths in the sphere of telecommunications, and that appeals to those of us who want to have a real choice apart from the ?big conglomerates, responds to outright threats in such a short-sighted and weak-willed ?way, is a complete disgrace.


You are pandering to those who use bullying tactics to achieve their aims, and probably feel that your decision is in accord with what ?the majority? feel is right and proper, given the welter of rhetoric and propaganda (however misinformed and inaccurate it might be) that has recently ?been waged against Whale Oil. I have also seen the utterly inadequate response that you have provided to those that have already had the opportunity to complain. It is a ?non-response?, attempting to appease those who have been insulted and, at the same time, seeking to declare a ?neutral? position which, given what had occurred before that pathetic attempt at an explanation was hastily compiled and issued.


Even if you decide to acknowledge this complaint, please do not insult me further by sending me that formulaic and contemptible ?auto-response?.


I shall be taking immediate steps to transfer my family?s business back to Vodafone ? I left them in the hope that my modicum of support for 2 Degrees might be replicated many, many times over by people in a similar situation, so that the two dominant players might have some true competition. But your actions today, in removing your advertising from the Whale Oil site, have left me both bewildered and disgusted and have shown me that, as a company, you really don?t have the necessary fortitude and resolve to deserve my support any longer.


Yours truly




A recent reply from 2Degrees

Hi Richard,

Thanks for your email, which our CEO Stewart Sherriff asked me to respond to.

Like a lot of companies, we target our advertising via key media such as TV, Radio and print. When it comes to the web our ads automatically appear on highly viewed sites. We don?t actively decide to sponsor political blog sites – our ads simply appear in the places people visit.

That should be the end of all responses. ?But since you didn’t do that and painted yourself in a corner, now you’re having to waffle on like this:

We had been receiving complaints from our customers about our advertising appearing on a number of political blog sites ? not just Whaleoil ? and took the decision to remove advertising from all such sites until after the election. The decision was ?based on customer feedback, not the urging of any blogger.

Yeah right. ?Please note the tweet at the top of this article Mat. ?That’s a blogger complaining. ?A blogger on The Daily Blog. ?Of course, not disclosed, but there you go. ?Your company is a victim of a targeted campaign.

Customers had not emailed us to express concern about mainstream media sites and our experience is that people see a news website as quite different to a political blog site.

Our decision not to advertise on any political blog sites reflects the fact that we don?t have a company position on politics.

The fact that our decision has been misrepresented by some bloggers reinforces our decision to not advertise on these sites.

Fair call.

Please allow us to continue to “misrepresent” your decision then.



Mathew Bolland
Director of Corporate Affairs & Wholesale
Two Degrees Mobile Limited

Yes Mat, the thing is, nothing went wrong until the lefty blogs tricked?you?into taking a stand. ?When you did, and we complained about it, you realised you stuffed up big.

The lefty loons are damaging your business this way.


This blog will now continuously remind its audience that you didn’t own the mistake, and instead are trying to weasel your way out of it.

The really stupid thing here is that the damage to us is essentially NIL. ? The damage to the loony left complainers from The Daily Blog and The Standard is essentially NIL.

Your PR people are idiots.


This is the appropriate answer to ANY pressure group:

“Our company advertises where our customers are. ?We take no specific notice as to which news channel, which newspaper or which Internet web site out advertisements appear on.”

You see Mat, essentially, any radio station, any TV station, any newspaper or any web site, will eventually publish something that upsets someone.

Good luck cancelling your advertising on that basis.

I won’t follow down the path of the activists at The Daily Blog, but just?imagine what it would be like if I called on my quarter of a million readers to start complaining about a specific radio host, or TV programme, or a columnist that shares its broadcasting space with 2Degrees. ?Can you not see the idiocy of this?

Your only bit of good luck is that I don’t play the same games as the loony left.

That said – this is out in the open, and readers will make decisions based on what they’ve seen your company do in public.