Adventures in Ethical Consumerism

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

The Corporation

Look out for a brand new documentary film, The Corporation, at an art-house cinema near you. It's released in Britain on Friday 29th October and it promises to be a real treat.

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Cheaper, more ethical phone calls

The Phone Co-op will save you money on your phone bill. I still pay monthly line rental charges to British Telecom (whose customer service has made vast improvements in recent years), but all the calls I make on my land line are automatically re-routed through the Phone Co-op. This service cost me five pounds to set up (I paid the fiver so I don't have to manually dial a prefix before every call) and it is saving me money on practically every call I make.

The Phone Co-op also provides broadband and dial-up internet services at reasonable rates, and this is what I use at home. They can be beaten on price for their internet services, but I was happy to go for this because of the lack of promotional gimmicks, and also because I could go broadband without having to sign a one-year contract, and I could choose my own modem/router etc.

I much prefer paying my phone and internet bills to this company. They were not established to make profit like BT or the many other companies offering phone and internet services. Like any co-operative, people who use the Phone Co-op are free to join and take a share in the profits and the decision making. I would like to see more people choosing to spend their money with more democratic, less profit-orientated companies like this one.

Monday, October 25, 2004

The show must go on

I haven't been posting much over the past three or four weeks. To be honest, I've been feeling a tad overwhelmed. When I started this blog, it was intened for a fairly local audience. I was going to put down things that are related to my ordinary everyday shopping: the shops I go to, the products I buy, and those that I don't, and why.

Thanks to the splendid Site Meter, I have been able to have an idea of who is reading the blog. Well, not who, exactly, but I can usually tell where about in the world my readers are. And they are from all over! I haven't had much feedback from the people I actually know here in Edinburgh, and that has been a disappointment, but it was incredible to see that people from different countries are reading the blog regularly. I didn't expect this!

In the past few weeks, I have been thinking about the blog in a different way; trying to find a way to write about the bigger issues in ethical consumerism, not just the individual products on the shelves. But the fact is, I'm not ready to write about the bigger issues yet. I have a whole lot more research and learning to do first.

So I'm going to get back to writing about the little things. For the moment, it's what feels right to me. If you are reading this in New Zealand or elswhere in the world, and the products I'm writing about are irrelevant to you - I'm sorry!!! All I can say is: "Watch this space..."

Thursday, October 07, 2004

Sign up for wind power

Want to know a free and easy way to help support the development of wind power in the UK? A new website, embrace the revolution, is "a new campaign to give a voice to the silent majority - 74% - who support wind energy."

Signing up is quick and easy, with no intrusive questions and no passwords required. You get to have your name put on a new wind turbine (to be erected early next year), and the website also makes it ridiculously easy for you to email your MP.

This is an excellent chance to show that you support a clean, green future for Britain's energy provision.