Read­ers’ Views

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Gov­ern­ment could take a leaf out of Dis­cov­ery’s suc­cess hand­book

The let­ter “Let my wor­ries be your wor­ries” (Read­ers’ Views, De­cem­ber 2) is be­wil­der­ing for the fol­low­ing rea­sons.

Most peo­ple I know also can­not af­ford the “Rolls-Royce of op­tions”, nei­ther in a med­i­cal aid nor the trans­port ver­sion thereof.

Dis­cov­ery, in par­tic­u­lar, re­wards its members for a healthy life­style. There­fore, there should be no rea­son for members to live un­healthy lives and ex­pect an in­surer (or members) to pay for it. Per­son­ally, I have been a mem­ber of Dis­cov­ery for 20 years, and I have never en­coun­tered an un­rea­son­able op­tion.

I am grat­i­fied and em­bold­ened that “my med­i­cal aid” has suf­fi­cient money to af­ford a mul­ti­mil­lion-rand build­ing in­stead of work­ing from dreary run­down build­ings, as some med­i­cal schemes do.

How­ever, I de­tect a hint of envy in the words “it is a mon­u­ment to enor­mous wealth. Huge prof­its are be­ing made un­der the Dis­cov­ery um­brella”. That, my dear, is pre­cisely the point of a com­mer­cial en­ter­prise.

I wish the gov­ern­ment would take a leaf out of Dis­cov­ery’s hand­book so that we could in fu­ture avoid out­ages and have a sus­tain­able wa­ter and sew­er­age sys­tem.

Nathan Cheiman, Jo­han­nes­burg

Where’s my DStv mag­a­zine?

Why does it not sur­prise me that DStv is ex­pe­ri­enc­ing neg­a­tive growth in the lo­cal mar­ket, “Net­flix, econ­omy weigh on DStv” (De­cem­ber 2)?

Not only are they ap­par­ently hav­ing to con­tend with the likes of Net­flix and the econ­omy, but within their own ranks they are be­ing hand­i­capped by the in­ef­fi­ciency of their “help desk”.

I have, since Au­gust 2017, when they ar­bi­trar­ily removed my name from their monthly mag­a­zine mail­ing list, been at­tempt­ing to have it re­in­stated. So far, with­out suc­cess.

And not from want of try­ing, ei­ther.

Al­most on a monthly ba­sis, I have been com­mu­ni­cat­ing with them by e-mail or tele­phon­i­cally, deal­ing with a dif­fer­ent per­son on each oc­ca­sion, and, in re­turn, re­ceiv­ing a litany of prom­ises, as­sur­ances and un­der­tak­ings. But no mag­a­zine.

Dur­ing this time, on two oc­ca­sions, they ac­tu­ally couri­ered the mag­a­zine to me, a process that can’t be too cost­ef­fec­tive for the com­pany, par­tic­u­larly when I was told by the courier that he had “many” mag­a­zines to de­liver that day.

Can it re­ally be so com­pli­cated to re­store a name to the list?

One can­not progress be­yond the help desk as they refuse to di­vulge the names and con­tact de­tails of their su­pe­ri­ors, and even the su­per­vi­sor of the depart­ment ap­pears to be a pro­tected species, as one can­not speak di­rectly to him or her. And he or she is al­ways go­ing to re­turn your call but never does.

Yes, I am aware there is a dig­i­tal op­tion avail­able, but no, I do not want to go that route. And why should I be forced to do so? I far pre­fer the pa­per for­mat which is and has al­ways been avail­able. Ex­cept to me, it ap­pears!

I qual­ify in all re­spects to be a re­cip­i­ent of the mag­a­zine (age cat­e­gory, Pre­mier customer), so what ex­actly does the fu­ture hold for DStv if they can fail at some­thing as sim­ple as restor­ing one’s name to a mail­ing list?

I’m not hold­ing my breath.

Der­ick Clegg, by e-mail

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