Friday, October 25, 2013

Bunny Justice and the philosophy on Ethics

 
Well, Almost Halloween, and although it is not celebrated in Australia that much it is picking up some speed…I was a bit shocked this week though by already seeing Christmas stuff out in the shops everywhere and a facebook post of somebody stating it was only 8 Fridays to go til Christmas! EIGHT Fridays !!!! Shockingly fast this year is going that is for sure! It seemed like only a couple of months ago that I was having a great time at the Bendigo Show..oh wait ..it was! Lol..Maybe time seems to go so fast because we always seem to hurry up and cant wait to look at the next thing. Also time measurement seems to be a partner in crime…I mean 8 Fridays sounds a lot LOT worse than 61 days or 1464 hours or 87.840 minutes or EVEN BETTER: 5.270.400 seconds ! yeah!

Anyway , enough about time. I am going to tell you about something fundamentally wrong and annoying. A totally stupid small thing in the scheme of things but at the same time, very fundamental and something I feel, we should change our way of thinking about. Here’s my story:

Last year, after lots of saving up pennies , we worked hard to renovate our kitchen. With that renovation came new stuff: a new cooker (we installed a more sustainable gas unit to our very old electric one) and a new fridge/freezer. We did not want a fancy one making ice cubes or anything like that, just a unit that was big enough to keep our produce cool or freeze what we make, since we are not exactly in the middle of the city and don’t go shopping to stock up that much and we make things ourselves too that need to be refrigerated or frozen. To cut a long story short..not even a year old and the fridge/freezer decided to have a change of heart and instead of freezing it wanted to be a heater instead, defrosting EVERYthing we had in there.

I did what anyone would do, called the place where we got it from (Harvey Norman) who directed me to Samsung , the producer of the unit. It was excruciating ..over thirty calls made to call centres hundreds of miles away to people who were not listening or did not care or both and in the end when technicians were sent out to look at it , days later, they stayed for 5 minutes, said it was the compressor and left saying the part had to be ordered. Weeks went by..nothing…then a technician came and changed the motherboard and asked me to monitor it..they didn’t have a compressor…safe to say that plan didn’t work..it still doesn’t hold temperature or freezes reliably at all…food goes off…..

So, other calls and emails even facebook messages by that stage on their Samsung (yes people : SAMSUNG! fb page..hint,,hint…after numerous frustrating emails and phonecalls, and conflicting messages I demanded a refund and compensation. They agreed ..yeeeha! well, only if I were to sign a document that said I was responsible for the packing, the freight, I could be charged transport costs and I would only be refunded AFTER Samsung would assess the situation. It was totally different from what I was promised on the phone. I emailed, made it clear to them I would not sign that document, so I changed the wording on the document to reflect what was discussed, signed it and sent it back. Samsung agreed to pay….obviously not reading the document properly.   More than a  week passed, no sign of a refund at all. Yesterday I received a text message asking me when the unit could be picked up by a freightforwarding company. I sent an email to Samsung telling them I would only have the unit picked up AFTER payment which was very overdue and then all hell broke loose..Samsung called me saying that they will not refund me or pay me for the spoilt goods at all. I asked to put that in writing..I just received an email that they cannot put any documented? conversation into writing unless subpoened by a coourt of law……. What is this? ITS A FRIDGE PROBLEM ..it could have been resolved so easily !  Obviously , this is an opportunity for a brand to own up. And it shows how easy it is to make a small problem into a PR nightmare!!!

It also opens up a window of opportunity for other brands: I found out that WESTINGHOUSE still produces their fridges in Australia, is Australian owned and produced ! So, my next fridge, when I finally get some kind of refund back from Samsung will go to Westinghouse.

Not that I want to suggest anything, but remember the incident when a musicians bass was destroyed by American Airlines and they did not own up or refund the guy? They made a song of it and put it on YouTube, In no time a company who had nothing whatsoever to do with the problem stepped up hearing about the fiasco but seeing that the YouTube clip had a hundred throusand hits in no time, offered the musician a free bass hard case.
By doing that , it promoted their brand in a very good way and sending a good vibe. We need more good vibes in the world and less greed and bad illogical behaviour !

I am not a confrontational person. It takes a lot out of me. If I were a confronational person I would probably be somebody totally different by now.
I would have acted differently to all the school bullying I was put through, the hell that as a kid you can be put through by other kids. I was the one turning the other cheek and going into my cave and focussing on drawing and reading and studying and music and art. I was the geeky kid being bullied, Instead of doing that, I could have hit back, shouted back and be confrontational, maybe I should have, but I didn’t , because it is not in my make up.

I wanted to study art..my parents said Id never make any money at all, and again, I caved and went to law school…to find out I wanted to fight for justice and stand up for the underdog ..It was hard, very hard, because I was confronted with the fact that fighting for what you believe is right and just, is not always what the system approves of. Fighting and confrontation is hard. So, I changed, I studies medical anthropology instead, thinking Science would be better and less confrontational.. I was wrong, you have to deal with government agencies and again fighting for the underdog (the poor , the unempowered native population struggling to survive)..I worked for years in the system, trying to make a difference and I hope I did, but it was hard.

If I were a confrontational person, my life would have been different: I would not have been bullied to the extreme, I would not have been in a heart breaking abusive relationship in the past for an excruciatingly too long a time, I would have grown up to be different person and , now, maybe I would not have been so hurt and upset by big companies treating their customers in such a terrible way: it is unjust and illogical. And I rather spend my time spinning, having fun in life and getting better and healthy. Instead, I have to put loads of energy into dealing with unethical stupidity..the two things in the world I hate most: Stupidity and Injustice.

Yet, every experience we go through adds up and makes us the person we are now. I have learnt and fought and fell down and stood up again numerous times.

In this case, I feel sad because it is just “STUFF” but saying that, it is something more fundamental: it not only has to do with the fact that when you buy something , it needs to work properly. No, what all this has taught me, is a very important thing we all have consider: instead of looking at buying something because it looks good , we read the reviews and make a decision on what best suits us, we listen to the advertisements , we look at what we can afford and make our decision to buy stuff. , You have to add a whole new level to that thought process and decision making : ETHICS.

What do I mean by that? Ask yourself: Is the company who is making the products ethical in their production?; How is their customer service? Where is it made? What is their company philosophy and what do they stand for? In a way, on a smaller scale , we already make an educated ethical decision about foods: you probably rather buy free range eggs than caged ones, organicaly grown vegetables opposed to sprayed and GMO ones, fresh milk rather than over pasteurised milk.

As a consumer, I believe, we have to go further than just that. We have to choose wisely and ethically. Buy from small businesses who care about their customers, support companies who treat their customers well , do our due diligence before being sucked in by advertisements and flashy promises.

I have a very small business, very very VERY small, I care for what I make, how I make it and who I sell it to. My customers are everything to me and my customers are always right. If anybody has a problem with anything I make, I try to make it better, do it again and send them a gift on top of that. Why? Because I care. Why? Because I know how important it is to be happy with something you worked so hard to buy. That is my philosophy but apparently , it is not the philosophy of Samsung or who knows , what other companies. I would never in my wildest dreams ask my customers to sign a document telling them one thing and tell them the opposite by phone and let them wait for weeks and weeks and weeks and weeks to get another product or their money back.. If that was my policy, I would be out of business in 5 seconds.
Is it hard work to be an ethical producer and business? Yes, ofcourse it is . Is it worth it? HELL YES! Because only by being an ethical maker and seller can you truly have pride in what you do and produce something that is not only STUFF but has something extra: good karma and a happy smile on anybody’s face who owns that ethically made product.

The sad thing is , Samsung has a 40% market share in fridges..go to any store and it is very hard to see another brand ! They even have a bigger market share for their phones, their TVS and other products. They are HUGE!
We own a Samsung tv, a dvd player and our mobile phones are SAMSUNG…saying that: after being treated like this by them, will I ever buy anything Samsung again? No!
This experience has tainted my perception of the brand…I have put a sticker over their brandname on my phone because I don’t want to have a grumpy attack everytime I make a call. Is it a bad phone? No. it could have better battery life time wise, but it s not a bad phone…

At this point if Samsung were to invent the first time travel machine on the planet for $10 , I would not have a bar of it.. Who knows where you will wind up going? It may say you go year 2358 but in reality it will just transport you back to the Ice Age, where your consumer rights will be swallowed up by a Mammoth and you cannot call Samsung customer service at all because there is no reception…come to think of it , it is not much different now…….

The time for confrontation and taking it further has come. In the end,no matter how unconfrontational a person is, in your life you have to stand up for your rights and those of others, however heart breaking, upsetting and time consuming it is…


Now for this weeks update special fibre blend: Lush Bunny tops. It is what I have called A Pearlescent blend ! With Super Fine merino, angora bunny, cashmere,and Tencel.

It is the tencel that gives the top and the yarn you spin from it , that pearlescent glow and that silky touch. It is truly LUSH!


Exclusive IxCHeL blend:
Lush Bunny Tops
100+grams     AU$24
a pearlescent blend of superfine merino, angora, cashmere and tencel.
super soft and special to spin and wear !

Absinthe on Ice-sold-

Blast from the past-1 left-

 Eucalypt Advneture-sold-

Forest Spring-sold-


Honey Bear-sold-
Honey Bee Sky-sold-
Ice Age River-sold-
 
Kaleidoscope Heart-3 left-

 
velvet-1 left-


IxCHeL GIFT VOUCHERS !

Want to give somebody something special and still let them pick out their fav colour or fibre blend? Well, search no more: I offer an IxCHeL gift voucher package that is so hard to resist you even want to buy one for yourself ..lol Here’s the deal:

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Comes with a personalised gift voucher and free post for the receivers first order in Australia !
 

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Comes with a personalised giftvoucher, free post for the receivers first order in Australia ! and a cute badge a bunny photo and last but not least some amazing fluffy stuff in a gift pack
 

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Comes with a personalised Christmas giftvoucher, free post for the receivers first order in Australia !, a badge, and last but not least some amazing fluffy stuff and yarn in a gift pack! Just let me know what giftvoucher pack you would like to gift to a friend or hey, you can even gift it to yourself ! And I will send you all the details.  


Badges!
Happy funny Badges to attach to just about anything: your craft bags, clothes, the perfect little gifts ! 
1 badge AU$2
Buy 10 for AU$18
20 badges for AU$35
30 badges for AU$49

every badge has a nr so when ordering just mention the nr of the badge and how many you would like..easy!


newest additions : badge nrs 84-90

Badges 1-20

Badges 21-40

Badges 41-59


Badges 60-83

How To Order:

1. You can email me on ixchel at rabbit dot com dot au or ixchelbunny at yahoo dot com dot au
2. message me on facebook or ravelry where I am Ixchelbunny.

I will email you right back with all your order details and payment methods.

Any questions? Any custom orders for yarn or dyeing fibre? Please don’t hesitate to ask! Always happy to enable.
 
Thank you so much for your help and support !
 
 RABBIT ON !
((hugs))
Charly

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3 comments:

Leonie said...

Charly there is somewhere you can help with this - Consumer Affairs. Try this link (http://www.consumer.vic.gov.au/shopping) and check out the info under warranties, repairs and replacements. There is info on pretty much everything to do with your problem and you can call them 1300 55 55 81. Good luck, this should never have gotten this far.

a rose said...

Hugs to you. I know how difficult it can be to deal with the company in question as I had a similar problem about 10 years ago. It was at that time I vowed never to buy any of their products ever again (and I should add my fridge is a Westinghouse. Nothing fancy, but 4 years old and hasn't missed a beat).

a rose said...

Hugs to you. I know how difficult it can be to deal with the company in question as I had a similar problem about 10 years ago. It was at that time I vowed never to buy any of their products ever again (and I should add my fridge is a Westinghouse. Nothing fancy, but 4 years old and hasn't missed a beat).