You will have seen our report on the Kiddu Lane 123 children’s car seat yesterday, where a large safety concern was highlighted. A lot of you were worried and angry by it, even if Kiddu weren’t – they initially said they’d send us a report, and then decided that they couldn’t be bothered.
Well, the baby seat has now been removed from sale by Tesco and Asda, and Kiddu themselves have finally decided to pull the seat and have sent it off for independent testing, according to The Mirror.
Asda said: “We have removed this car seat from sale as a precautionary measure while our supplier conducts their investigation.” Tesco added: “We are investigating the concerns raised with Kiddu as a matter of urgency and have removed the product from sale as a precautionary measure.”
Kiddu finally spoke about the item and said: “Product safety is our top priority and we are taking this matter very seriously.”
“We have already conducted our own tests on our car seat buckles, which have indicated no fault to date. However, we have also requested that independent tests are carried out by the premier UK test authority as a matter of urgency.”
“In the meantime, we have made the decision to temporarily withdraw the Kiddu Lane car seat from sale until the tests are complete.”
“We would like to reassure families with a Kiddu Lane car seat that the seat has been subjected to rigorous testing and has been approved to the current European Child Safety Standard ECE R 44/04 and by the Vehicle Certification Authority (VCA) in the UK.”
“However, should anyone feel concerned they can call our dedicated helpline on 0161-702-5061.”
If you missed the video from the initial report, here it is.
As you have probably heard by now, O2 had a bit of a problem on Bank Holiday Monday, with thousands of customers losing all signal for up to eight whole hours. It’s just too painful to imagine. But to rub salt in the wound of already irate customers, O2 have announced that customers will not be getting a blanket compensation payment, but that anyone looking for redress will have to apply to the telecom company who will look at claims on a “case by case basis”.
After a previous outage, in 2012, pay-as-you-go customers were given a 10% boost to their next top-up and every customer was given a £10 voucher. This time, however, O2 says that even pay monthly customers will have to make a claim directly to O2. The difference, according to O2 is that the previous outage (which affected 7 million customers and took 20 hours to fix) was “quite exceptional” and that the same or similar compensation would not be offered again.
So far, the mobile service provider has no idea why this latest outage happened but said service had returned to normal by 11.35pm. A spokesman said: “This [outage] was on nowhere near the same scale, so we will only be offering compensation on a case-by-case basis.
“We will now begin a full investigation to understand the cause, and apologise for the inconvenience caused.”
However, just because there is no blanket compensation doesn’t mean that you can’t make a claim. O2 already has rules on customers who suffer from mobile phone “blackspots” where they regularly lose signal. However, it is quite (deliberately) difficult to actually get compensation under this scheme as monthly customers have to prove they have suffered intermittent signal and internet for three months, as well as showing they had lost signal or internet connection seven times in a given day – the “seven times” rule. O2 have so far refused to confirm if customers affected by yesterday’s blackout would need to adhere to the “seven times” rule, or whether they would be given a payout equal to one day’s contract fee.
Frustrated O2 users took to Twitter to ponder at what point the network is in breach of its contractual obligation to provide customers with a mobile telecommunications.service. We think providing no service is fairly clearly not providing a mobile telecommunications service
So what can you do? Well, you can try taking O2 to regulator Ofcom, who say that you may be entitled to compensation “if you believe you’ve been poorly treated by your phone company.” Let’s see if O2 decide to address their disgruntled customers before facing several thousand Ofcom complaints…
We all know that trains can be a royal pain in the hole, but one is coming under intense scrutiny after being accused of having ‘flea infested seats’.
Greater Anglia are coughing up £30 million to fix problems after furious customers complained about the state of the trains that connect London to the south-east of England.
A Twitter page called @Delayed_Again deals with commuters’ complaints about the service, and shares a wide range of negative views. Ian Edwards, who runs the account, told the Mirror that the train carriages are like ‘filthy skips’. He added: ”The carriages have not had a proper clean since the Olympics in 2012. During the Olympics the trains ran brilliantly and were really clean, but it just hasn’t carried on.”
“We’ve got photos of people with flea bites from the seats and the dust that comes up. The toilets are an absolute disgrace – they’re always blocked. I expect a reliably run, air conditioned, clean train and I get none of the above. Instead, I’ve got a 1980s skip that is falling to pieces without air conditioning.”
As you can see from the pictures, the carriages look like they’re in a state of disrepair and could do with more than just a clean.
Abellio Greater Anglia defended themselves by saying that they’ve invested more than £30 million to upgrade their service, including 40 extra cleaners.
A spokesman for Abellio Greater Anglia said: “We are investing more than £30m to improve our train fleet, customer service and train performance and cleanliness. We have recently recruited 40 extra cleaners to bring our train presentation staff to 300 across our company.”
“We have increased the frequency of deep cleans and undertaken more extensive cleaning on trains throughout the day. Our train cleaners are working very hard to improve standards and we welcome customers’ co-operation to keep our trains clean and tidy.”
There’s a spate of cases where Android users are finding that ransomware has been posing as a warning from the FBI, to frighten you off from looking at dirty stuff online. These come via spam emails, and there’s been 15,000 cases thus far, which are very convincing.
If you end up activating one of them, the ransomware demands $500 from you to restore access, which is a kick in the gusset. Of course, UK Android users should be wary of anything that comes from the FBI, because why would they be bothering with Steve from Cleethorpes or whatever.
It gets worse – if you try to independently unlock your devices, the amount goes up to $1,500.
This particular malware pretends to be an update from Adobe Flash Player and when you press ‘OK’ to continue, you see an FBI warning which you can’t navigate away from. It tells you that you’ve been breaking the law by visiting pornographic websites and, in a clever (but nasty) move, the scammers include screenshots of what they claim to be your browsing history. Then, it claims to have screenshots of your face and says that they know your location.
Basically, the malware doesn’t actually encrypt the contents of your phone, but instead, makes your device’s home screen button and back buttons completely inoperable. Turning your phone on and off won’t help either. It really is a nasty piece of work, but you can attempt a reboot in safe mode.
How to start your Android device in Safe Mode
- Ensure that your device’s screen is on and then press and hold the power button.
- In the dialogue box that opens, touch and hold ‘power off’.
- Touch ‘OK’ when you see ‘Reboot to safe mode’ box.
- Your device will start up in safe mode.
Also, to be safe, it is worth having your antivirus software on the go. If you don’t have antivirus software installed on your Android device, here are the best apps to download.
Apple users have been able to enjoy live-streaming app, Periscope, for a couple of months and now, Android-havers can get in on the action too. Not that anyone is really using the apps and knows what they can share with the world through it… but there you go.
Anyway, the Android version is pretty much identical to the iOS counterpart, but with a few minor tweaks. Either way, Periscope is now out and about and has caught up with its rival, Meerkat. The main difference is the method in which you broadcast. iOS uses a central tab, while the Android users have a floating button at the bottom right, which is in-line with the Google’s Material Design mantra.
The Android version also gives more control over the app, as you can control push notifications. That means, when someone follows you back, shares a broadcast or whatever, you can get in the settings and control how you’re notified of these things. The best bit of this version is that you can return to a broadcast via a banner in the notifications if you want to go and use some other apps.
The Periscope team say: “As a small startup, our initial launch was limited to just iOS, but we’ve been working really hard to craft an experience that feels special on Android, yet still unmistakably Periscope.”
So there you go. Now you can broadcast yourself making a round of toast or talking endlessly about your problems, to literally tens of people. Tally ho! Up Periscope!
Remember us telling you that you might have to whip out your ID to watch dirty videos online? Well, there’s more talk about this, with a new system for UK residents being proposed by the adult entertainment industry.
Soon enough, bongo sites could be required to verify the identity of visitors, which they’d do by checking who you are via ‘trusted’ organisations like banks, credit rating agencies and your mobile operator. Even the NHS might have to get involved.
This sounds exactly like the kind of thing that will never, ever, ever happen in a billion years, but, we report on it anyway because the Tories are gagging to find out who is watching smut on the internet. There’s clearly a lot of money to be made from such a thing, or they wouldn’t be bothered by it.
Of course, this isn’t aimed at adults (honest), but rather, protecting children from looking at a host of genitalia and poor acting skills. It is thought that, by introducing some online hurdles, it’ll stop innocent eyes from looking at people knocking their uglies together. Everyone who has used the internet for 10 minutes will know that, where there’s online hurdles, clever children who are internet-savvy will easily be able to bypass them.
The Digital Policy Alliance, which is made up of people in the industry, policy makers, charities and academics, is trying to pre-empt the law and any measures could be used for more than just porno-sites – we’re talking about anything selling tobacco, booze and other age-restricted things.
The alliance suggests “information already on file across central and local government (including DWP and the NHS) and/or the private sector to enable service providers to reliably check the age of almost any online user, including those who wish to remain anonymous”.
Any rules brought into place, you’d assume, would only apply to British companies, and getting businesses from overseas to agree to any measures is going to be nigh-on impossible, so all this seems like a lot of talk and expense for something that will never come to fruition. No change there then.
Look at the state of your carpet. It is a bloody disgrace. You’re either a complete slattern or your vacuum cleaner is complete junk, and has the sucking power of an asthmatic thread worm. With that, we can help.
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The Queen’s Speech is about to drop like a mixtape no-one asked for and, one of the interesting things that could be included is a complete ban on all ‘legal highs’.
We’re not talking about people drinking red wine or sniffing bags of Airfix glue, but rather, the stuff they sell in hippie shops that mimic proper drugs. So, basically, synthetic weed and stuff that is meant to be like a legal version of whizz or coke.
There could be a blanket ban on ‘new psychoactive substances.’
Don’t worry if you’re a recreational drug user – your dealer won’t be going out of business as they’re operating under the radar anyway. However, ‘head shops’ will be most displeased, but they’ll still be able to sell bongs and weed-grinders… this only hits the sales of the sachets of things like Go Gaine and whatnot.
There’s said to be around 250 head shops in the UK, which have been selling all manner of legal highs. They’ve been coming under increasing scrutiny after the potions sold at these outlets have been linked to 97 deaths in 2012, as kids look for other avenues of getting out of their trees.
Sez The Queen: “New legislation will modernise the law on communications data, improve the law on policing and criminal justice, and ban the new generation of psychoactive drugs.”
If you’ve got a Kiddu Lane 123 car seat you might want to get it out of the car and perform a little test on it. There is a video doing the rounds on Facebook (link below) demonstrating that a sharp yank can put the straps straight from the buckle without need for the release to be pressed.
Whilst a young child might not be capable of mustering the strength to pull this out on their own, performing an emergency break will certainly test its capability of staying in place. Alarmingly, that is supposedly what happened to the young child in the seat. The post reads:
Three weeks ago this car seat was returned to Tescos after the Car seat buckle failed on its first use. The store manager and her staff all demonstrated the same fault as we did in this video.
When an Emergency stop was performed my 22 month old child was thrown out of his seat in the back and he landed on the gear stick in the front. He was bruised and is still traumatised by it as he screams when we now put him in a car seat.
The post goes on to say the efforts made by the parents to take this up with Kiddu…
Today we chased up Kiddu who initially said they would send us their report. They have since said they wont be sending it to us and will be doing nothing. Meanwhile this seat is still on sale and we are going Viral to prevent any further injuries or worse- a fatality. Please return this seat and insist on a refund.
So, if you’ve got one of these seats you might want to go and give it a test right now.
Video right here…
For a while, the only time you ever heard about BlackBerry was when there was bad news to share. Then, after a while, no-one wanted to talk about them at all, like they were a dying relative left to perish in a retirement home.
Well, we’re sticking with talking about their bad news and again, BlackBerry find themselves in a very sticky situation.
Shares have been slumping, even though there’s been rumours that Samsung might take them over, and their global market share has dropped to under 1%… which means only one thing – streamlining.
When a company needs to ‘streamline’, what it actually means is ‘we’re going to sack a load of people’, which is bad news for some 7,000 employees. Blackberry’s statement said that it would “consolidate our device software, hardware and applications business” in a bid to try and claw back toward profit. There’s no word on how many people could lose their jobs – we’re just hoping it isn’t too much of a bloodbath.
It still looks like BlackBerry are forgetting about selling phones to the public, who have made their minds up about what they want (and it isn’t BlackBerry) and are still focusing on government workers and people in finance. However, there’s only so many of those people, so is it a wise idea?
Either way, BlackBerry is known for making devices that have an excellent security presence. The company aren’t dead yet, but they’ve been incredibly poorly for years now.
Energy firms are under the spotlight again. After being called out for making too much money last week, now the energy regulator Ofgem has issued a statement slapping the wrists of energy firms who are too quick to force prepay meters (PPMs) on customers struggling to pay, saying that energy should do “all they can to support customers” and to “protect” vulnerable customers who are in danger of self-disconnecting.
Of course, energy firms are always cast in a villainous light, but given the “increase in the number of PPMs installed for non-payment of debt”, Ofgem are now going to “investigate” why the numbers are rising. Ofgem have today stated, very clearly, that “installing pre-payment meters under warrant should be used as a last resort by energy suppliers when consumers get into debt. It is a way to prevent a customer from being disconnected. Suppliers can only install a prepayment meter where it is safe and reasonably practical for the consumer to use.”
It seems that Ofgem suspect that energy companies are not using PPMs as a way to help their customers out of a sticky situation, but are instead leaning on people in order to get their money faster. Ofgem have also said that energy firms might not currently be doing “all they can to support customers struggling to pay” and recommend that, before resorting to PPMs, firms should offer energy efficiency advice and signposting to social support, in line with Ofgem’s own commitment to work with Citizen’s Advice to help identify and protect vulnerable customers. They also want to see common sense applied when setting outstanding debt repayments on the meter, making sure these are at an affordable level “taking into consideration the customers’ financial circumstances.”
In addition, Ofgem note that some energy firms seem to be making it difficult for PPM customers to switch suppliers, even where switching would help customers who are struggling with bills. Ofgem want PPM switching to be easier and they are formalising energy suppliers’ current voluntary practice of allowing PPM customers with a debt of up to £500 per fuel to switch, by making it an obligation.
But of course, it’s easy for Ofgem to say these things and the energy companies to nod sagely and agree, without actually doing anything differently. However Ofgem is also going to require firms to evidence their practices and the actions they have taken to protect customers, particularly where there is additional ‘vulnerability’. For example, if customers are relying on energy for medical reasons, or have mobility problems that limit their ability to access the prepayment meter or top up the meter, the supplier will not be allowed to install a prepayment meter.
So what do you think? Should energy customers do more, or should customers take more responsibility for paying their own energy costs or face the punitive PPMs? Does it make a difference if we’re talking about a pensioner in a freezing cold home, or a working-age family?
In the UK, there’s only really one way of dealing with shoplifters, and that is having some boring bleeping machines and a man with a clip-on tie to take chase, but ultimately, not catch the tea leaf.
Well, that should change. Sure, you can still have detectors and people who wear slacks and walkie-talkies… but things need to be livened up by some Japanese balls.
That’s right! Our pals in Japan have a great solution of shoplifters in the shape of luminous baseballs that are thrown at people on the rob. Over there, they’re known as bohan yu kara boru and what you do is, when someone is stealing, you chase after them and throw one of these balls at them.
When they hit, the thief is covered in orange dye and everyone knows that they’ve been pinching stuff. This is a system that only works if you think people can feel the pressure of public shame. Obviously, it means these scallies can be found very easily if they make a getaway.
Mainly, the good thing about this, is that security guards and shopkeepers can have some fun and make a fine spectacle for everyone watching a chase through a mall – watching a criminal get pelted with balls filled with luminous dye? What’s not to like?
If you want to see what they look like, hit the video below. C’mon British shops! Get some in!
If you’re lucky enough to own a Porsche, then here’s some rare bad news for you – the German car maker has issued a global product recall of 918 Spyder mobiles, which will need to be taken in for a service shop inspection.
Some of these have already been flogged in the UK, so if you have one, ring your dealer.
This particular recall is to do with the electric wiring harness for the radiator fan (in vehicles manufactured until the end of April 2015) which could be damaged by a carbon-fibre component. It is rather boring, but not something you want to leave.
If you have a faulty car, the wiring harness will be examined and re-mounted in the workshop.
Owners of the affected vehicles will be contacted directly by their Porsche contact partner and the workshop visit will be arranged as soon as possible and, of course, will be free of charge. Your car will be taken in for around half a working day.
This follows a spate of recalls on cars, with millions of Toyota and Nissan motors being recalled thanks to a faulty airbag system, which sees the airbag inflating too quickly and firing out metal shards into the car.
For all the latest product recalls, of all kinds, click here and check what is being pulled from the shelves.
If you have ever dreamed about having a funny number plate for your car? Maybe something dirty, or something a bit risque? We all need an outlet for our creative and humorous urges, so why not have it sat in a traffic jam or parked outside the office while people spit at your windscreen?
You can’t have anything you want though, no-siree-bob.
The DVLA have unleashed their newest list of censored car number plates, stating clearly the kinds of things they don’t want to see tootling through the streets of Britain. They meet a couple of times a year to decide what to ban, and they’ve now censored VA61ANA, PI5 OFF, BL03 JOB, SH15 TTY, and the more religiously aligned JE55US, and AL14LAH.
You also can’t have GU11 LTY or AL60 POP, but you are allowed to have PEN 15 and ORG 45M. The DVLA, clearly, think a woman’s undercarriage is to be censored, but a man’s, not.
This is all a nice little earner for the DVLA, as last year, they raked-in over £105 million by selling personalised plates. They have said that they only ban certain plates if they are “likely to cause general offence or embarrassment” on the grounds of racial, political, or religious sensitivities or if the authority finds them in “poor taste.”
Over the years, they’ve also banned BO11 OOX, P15 OFF, UP15 BUM, 15 LAM, and all combinations of anything including the word JEW. Check out the full list here.