/ Food & Drink, Money, Technology

This week in comments – Pingit, toast and downloads

Should we have the right to bequeath downloads? Is there a toaster that can make the perfect slice? Would you like to ping money through your smartphone? You’ve been ranting about these topics and more.

Barclays’ Pingit

Are you interested in Barclays’ new app that lets you ping money to your mates on your phone? William isn’t:

‘I for one won’t be using it (being organised has its advantages) and will eagerly await the first news story of how people mysteriously lose up to £300 a time all because banks and phone companies have no idea of what security is.’

Burnt, patchy, underdone: the quest for a decent slice of toast

All your comments about toast got me peckish this week. ArgonautoftheSeas comments about the difficulties of creating the perfect slice:

‘The late Hollywood heartthrob and movie star Stewart Granger always brought his own toaster when having breakfast in his hotel room. Toasting to the precise level you want on your automatic toaster is easier said than done, I find use of a grill pan helpful in that regard.’

Finding a toaster that browns bread just right is such a pain for commenter Richard that he’s come up with a novel solution:

‘I solved this problem for me – I hate over- and under-cooked toast and dislike butter – so I stopped eating toast.’

Part-time commuters need flexible rail tickets

There was lots of support for the Campaign for Better Transport’s flexible rail tickets, with Simon saying:

‘Could not agree with this more, it is a travesty that those of us who do not use our season tickets for seven full days have to pay as much as someone who does. The only benefit to part-time commuting is one gets subjected to fewer days of poor service!’

iPass away – do my digital downloads die with me?

Richard Parris’ Conversation on the right to bequeath downloads resulted in this response from a member of iTunes’ customer support:

‘We transfer account ownership (and all the content access rights that are attached to that account) in the event that the original account holder passes away. As with most property transfers in this situation, we require proof that the account holder is deceased and that the person making the request has the legal right to the deceased’s property.

‘While it’s true that modern DRM law means you don’t “own” the digital content you pay for, the same is true of the media contained on physical media – you own the physical media, and limited usage rights to the content therein. iTunes Store accounts work pretty much the same way; you don’t own full rights to the songs you buy, but you own the account itself.’

But Martin Houston still thinks we need an official legal right to bequeath digital goods:

‘It may well be that the iTunes store policy at present is to allow accounts to be transferred that policy could change and if we are left with no legal backing a lot of a persons supposed ‘assets’ if they are DRM protected or otherwise only exist on-line could die with them. This is an outrage against natural justice. We need a clear legal right of ownership that can be passed from person to person.’

Are you holidaying as usual this year?

Captain America explained how and why they were changing their holiday plans this year:

‘Our plans are different this year. Instead of two to three trips to far away lands we’re having one cheapo holiday abroad plus a few short breaks in the UK with friends.

‘However, our decision to cut costs and stay closer to home is due to personal circumstances (like the recent arrival of small children), rather than the state of the global economy or government advice. This will be the cheapest holiday I’ll have been on for about 20 years….. If the kids weren’t part of the equation I would be off to Australia, Nepal, Cuba or Thailand without a second thought!’

Banning term-time holidays – is it really necessary?

Our comment of the week goes to Em, who doesn’t think term-time holidays should be banned:

‘It’s not acceptable to take a child out of school, simply to save money on an off-season package holiday that is available at other times of the year, albeit at an inflated price.

‘If the reason for the absence is purely economic, how is that different from a farmer’s child taking time off school to help out during the busy harvest season, or keeping the child at home to save cash on bus fares?

‘But there are rare circumstances where a child could benefit from a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that falls during term time, and maybe warrants permission to be off school. Perhaps a parent is travelling on business to a foreign culture that isn’t a typical holiday destination and the family can go as well.

‘It needs to be at the discretion of the head teacher and not a blanket ban.’

Comments have been edited due to length, so make sure to read them in full on their relevant Convos (by clicking on the red title link).

Sonya Conlin says:
24 February 2012

I would definitely make use of this service it would save me having to get account and sort numbers each and every time I wanted to give my kids or their kids money for presents I usually put it in with a card but the mail has got so unreliable and I have had two items go recently. I am already a Barclays customer so yes please .

Barclays Pingit…..I agree with William. I also have an account with Barclays but I would need a great deal of assurance regarding the security of using such a service. If I misplaced my IPhone or had it stolen, how easy would it be for a stranger to transfer money from my bank account to theirs or their friends? Not sure if this is necessarily the way to go. I will wait and see.

Patrick, my Concise Oxford Dictionary print edition
confirms ‘heartthrob’ is spelt the way I did in my post
as one word, not two re Stewart Granger.

SaraLou, don’t worry too much, this tried and tested
technology has been around for close to the very/best
part of twenty years, to the extent you have been deemed
NOT negligent, you cd expect to look to your bank
to reimburse you in full as to any loss and damage you
may have sustained.

System is as secure as internet banking by all

Angela says:
25 February 2012

I would most certainly use this service. It would get rid of the need for cheques (as long as you have got a mobile of course!) The other week I had some carpets cleaned and I offered to pay the money direct into his account if he gave me his bank details. He preferred a cheque, which is daft as by bank transfer he has the money in minutes rather than days; plus there is the risk of bounced cheques. Like anything there is a risk of fraud, the banks loose millions to fraud every year and I can’t see them implementing something which is a bigger risk than current processes, that’s daft too.