One random customer’s fight against British Telecom

(UPDATED: 23 May 2016)

This is a bit of an experiment. A consumer journal, if you will.

Over the past few years we’ve had some astonishingly bad service from British Telecom. If you’ve ever been a BT customer then you’ll know the score: Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong, and you’ll never get to the end of the ever-expanding list of complaints hoops that you have to jump through.

BT’s customer service policy is quite transparent: Exhaust the customer so they give up.

It’s effective. We’re owed thousands of pounds for downtime and loss of business, but we’ve given up trying to get the money. It’s never going to happen. We’re owed £375 in erroneous charges for engineer visits. We’ll never get that money back. One time BT just randomly charged us £70 for a router. We’ll never see that money again.

But there’s something different about the latest thing that’s gone wrong…

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Rip-off retailers SELLING free Star Wars expansion

If you’re playing Star Wars Battlefront, and loving it as much as I am, then no doubt you’re looking forward to the free Battle of Jakku expansion that’s coming out on 8 December. And if, like me, you pre-ordered the base game, then you should be getting the expansion a week early.

Be warned, though, that some retailers have different ideas, and have been holding back the early access codes that should have been sent out with pre-orders. And worse, they’re now selling those codes.

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The routine photo that made me re-examine my ethics, and made me a better journalist

I’ve always been fairly set in my ways with journalism ethics. I’m a bit of a purist and don’t really believe in any grey areas. Whether it’s written or photographic journalism, you just tell the truth. Don’t mislead. Don’t embellish. Don’t hide relevant facts. I’m not saying my journalism is always perfect, but my ethics always are. At least, that’s what I thought…

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Lion killer Walter Palmer, the most hated man in the world right now, would be welcome in parts of Scotland.

It was about four years ago, winter, first day of snowfall, and I was out doing weather photos near Laggan in the Cairngorm national park. I’d ventured off the main roads and out in to the more remote areas, along the old General Wade military route to Fort Augustus. For anyone who isn’t familiar with the area, this is what you might call “proper Scotland”, the most beautiful countryside in the world.

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Fergus the orphan reindeer

A couple of weeks ago I got to photograph a baby reindeer that is being hand-reared by staff at the Cairngorm Reindeer Centre in Aviemore.

Fergus was born on the 9th of June and his mum died when he was just 10 days old, so staff at the reindeer centre took the unusual step of bottle-feeding him.

At first the young reindeer was being cared for by staff member Abigail Saunders in her home, but now Fergus is living at the reindeer centre and other members of staff are taking turns to bottle-feed the orphan calf.

The ‘herders’, as staff at the reindeer centre are known, hope that soon they’ll be able to take Fergus up to the rest of the reindeer herd on Cairngorm Mountain. He will spend his days there before coming back down to the reindeer centre at night. By late summer he should be able to stay up the mountain with the rest of the herd.

The lady in the photos is Andi Probert, one of the reindeer herders.

Orphan reindeer being hand-reared 04 of 25

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