Sue Chetwin

Sue Chetwin’s Consumer rort

e22e23Consumer Magazine has been one of our flagship institutions for generations.  Need a new heat pump?  What about a fridge?  What is the best phone company?

Our parents as their parents before them turned to the independent and comprehensive advice found in Consumer Magazine.

In the past, at least, you wouldn’t have expected Consumer Magazine to favour one product or service over another based on how much that company paid Consumer in cold hard cash.

But that has changed.  Come with me as I take you on a tour of damning evidence.

Internet providers are doing a worse job with customers more likely to be dissatisfied, according to an annual survey by Consumer NZ.

It said satisfaction in their overall services had dropped 6 percentage points to 68 per cent over the past year, based on a poll of more than 10,000 of its members.

Vodafone and Spark had “a long way to go” before their customers felt satisfied with their services, it said.

Consumer NZ said the feedback showed an overall decline in perceptions of network reliability, but Spark spokeswoman Lucy Fullarton said that did not marry with independent reports from the likes of Wellington testing company TrueNet which indicated Spark’s network was “stacking up really well”.

Spark would nevertheless study the report and was always looking to improve its services, she said.

Vodafone spokesman Brad Pogson said it had invested significantly in its fixed and mobile networks over the past year and in January TrueNet had said its cable customers had the best webpage download times.

2degrees was the “standout” mobile network provider, Consumer NZ said.

Consumer NZ chief executive Sue Chetwin confirmed the company had paid about $20,000 to become accredited as a “Consumer Trusted” business but said that could have “absolutely no influence whatsoever” on its survey findings.

Do you believe Sue?   Read more »

The truth about the Coalition for Fair Internet Pricing

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Earlier today, I blogged about how Matthew Hooton, Paul Brislen, Vodafone and a host of vested interests have duped Kiwi households out of hundreds of millions of dollars.

Essentially, the Labour-leaning Coalition for Fair Internet Pricing conned media into thinking their campaign was about going into bat for Kiwi households. But it is actually about lining the pockets of greedy telcos like Vodafone, Orcon, Slingshot and their mates.

I want to refer people to the Coalition’s original press release when it launched its campaign.

Now that media have finally wised up to what I have been saying, I have made some changes to the Coalition’s press release to more accurately reflect its true position.

Broad Coalition Says Yes To $600 Million Windfall for Telcos

A coalition of Kiwi companies, industry associations and consumer advocate groups has today announced proposals to introduce what economists Covec say is a new windfall of at least $600 million for telcos such as Vodafone, Orcon, Slingshot and Telecom.

In a discussion document issued last month, Communications & IT Minister Amy Adams proposed to provide certainty for both the industry and Kiwi households by overruling a crazy determination by the Commerce Commission that would see Chorus stripped off hundreds of millions of dollars it planned it use for the rollout of ultra-fast broadband.   Read more »

Chorus – PM credibility at stake

In December last yearin September of this year, and most recently on November 6, John Key came out and said he would intervene and overrule the Commerce Commission methodology that has dramatically impacted on Chorus and the taxpayer funded fibre rollout.

Now, Amy Adams is perfectly capable of caving in to a crazy blowfish like Sue Chetwin thanks to a few press releases (and several of her colleagues expect no less), but it’s a completely different ballgame when its the Prime Minister’s reputation at stake.

You see, with Key making his comments on Chorus as he did, he made price sensitive statements that impacted on the investor environment regarding Chorus. When the PM said he’ll move to fix a bad decision impacting on New Zealand, he was believed. Overseas funds, as illustrated by the Australian fund in the media today, have indicated that they expect the PM and the Government to honour its word and intervene in order to prevent a brutal regulatory cut on the company that is tasked with rolling out the lions share of the government’s flagship policy.  Read more »

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Will the Chorus chaos end some careers?

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National MPs and their Beehive spinners are working overtime to limit the potential damage from a possible capitulation to the Coalition for Fair Pricing over Chorus’ network charges. The Coalition, as many will know, it a motley group of Iwi, ISPs, and consumer groups, lead by the mad Sue Chetwin of Consumer NZ, Paul Brislen of TUANZ, and Matthew Hooton, the lobbyist.

Ministers, who initially stood firm against a poor Commerce Commission that threatened their expensive fibre policy, are now looking for some kind of quiet backroom deal to keep the Coalition happy, but without wrecking Chorus as a business (just maiming it badly instead).

But the consequences of such a decision could impact heavily on a number of National Ministers.

First in the firing line is Amy Adams, who is really disappointing as Communications and IT Minister. If Adams is bested by Sue Chetwin (who has a reputation for being a shrill dimwitted woman), Adams will be effectively hitting the pause button on her career. Existing and potential ministers are horrified at the derailing of cabinet policy but will be privately joyous at Adams’ slip-up given her big-noting to some caucus members. It won’t have escaped the attention of National’s caucus that if she can’t make a clear argument why a small copper pricing drop and faster migration to fibre is better for New Zealand than a big copper price cut and fibre rollout failure, then she probably couldn’t hack it in the front row of cabinet let alone lead it.   Read more »

Fredo Frog now a target for Health Troughers

image001Readers will have noticed my disdain for troughers. Readers will also have followed how so-called public health researchers troughers funded by Tony Ryall’s Ministry of Health, have lost interest in tobacco and are now focusing on obesity.

The same play book once used against tobacco is now being rolled out against food manufacturers.

Troughers are a cunning lot. They’re now using Sue Chetwin – that hired mouthpiece for the anti government Copper Tax campaign, as a call bearer to stop children seeing cartoon characters.

Chetwin’s Consumer NZ has been put up as an ‘independent’ third party to call for controls on marketing gimmicks on food packaging saying scary things like;

if companies rope them in young, they’ll be hooked for life

And

American researchers have found children preferred the taste of McDonald’s branded food over that in plain packaging

Oh FFS, here we go again. The same lines were used against Big Tobacco. BS you say. Won’t happen here? Big Tobacco used to say that too.

Here’s a quote from Super Trougher Boyd Swinburn

It’s a huge battle akin to the battle with tobacco over plain packaging and no one would have believed that was possible even a few years ago.

Otago University is making quite a name for itself as Trougher Central. While not in the same league as Super Trougher Extraordinaire Prof Boyd Swinburn,  Otago health researcher Trougher Louise Signal is staking a claim on the obesity trough, tucking into more than half a million dollars thanks to the golden tap that is the Health Research Council of New Zealand.

While Ryall is facing off these calls, the Green Taliban will throw more millions at these troughers. For Big Food it’s now not a matter of if these things will happen, it’s when.

Telcos sting consumers with an internet tax

Matthew Hooton and his band of lefty loonies are trying to spin their “copper tax” campaign, but Hooton’s reputation is in tatters. His campaign has failed miserably and his ego has taken a battering.

Word around town is that he is blaming Sue Chetwin from Consumers NZ  for his campaign’s failure. Apparently he reckons Chetwin is crap at running his lines in the media and he is thinking of giving her a red card. It’s always someone  else’s fault eh, Matthew!

Today there has been another interesting turn of events.

Orcon and Krim DotCon have launched a campaign to scrap data caps on internet usage.

As much as I loathe Crim Dot Com, he raises an interesting point in the TV advertisement for Orcon:

“Bullying corporations are restricting your internet data just to make more profits.”  Read more »