Archive for the 'news' Category

UK prison pays inmates to sit still and do nothing

UK prison Whatton in Nottinghamshire is under fire for literally giving inmates money in return for doing nothing.

It is perhaps the ultimate job. Sit there and earn money. I checked and found nothing like it down the local job centre.

While on Wednesday prison officers across Britain were on an unofficial strike over pay and conditions the inmates at Whatton decided that rather than behave in a manner unbefitting a human being, they would in fact sit still and wait for their guards to return. Apparently the prison Governor Peter Wright noticed this and decided a £2 (US $4) bonus payment should be awarded to each one.

Now paying prisoners is not without precedent. They can earn money (up to £8 per week) by cleaning and gardening and other essential yet not exactly risky or exciting jobs. But rather unsurprisingly the Prison Officer’s Association isn’t welcoming the idea of paying them for doing precisely what any normal human being would be expected to do under similar circumstances.

Glyn Travis, Assistant Secretary of the Association told the BBC it was “absolutely despicable“.

Can’t really argue with that conclusion…

I might however argue that if the UK Government felt it had some spare change:

  • Could I have some money for paying my bills? On time, naturally.
  • Could I have some money for going to the gym to try and keep healthy?
  • Could I have some money for mowing the lawn?
  • Could I have some money for yawning and going to bed?

ICSTIS rebranding itself PhonePayPlus

It sounds a bit like a company it should in fact be regulating, doesn’t it?

ICSTIS, the premium rate telephony regulator in the UK who’s behaviour can often be described as ‘lacklustre’ has decided that recent press coverage damning the industry and the regulator’s lack of, well, regulation, can only be resolved one way.

So, buried deep inside a PDF is an announcement that from October 2007 the “Independent Committee for the Supervision of Standards of the Telephone Information Services” or ICSTIS, who’s tagline currently reads “the premium rate services regulator” will be called PhonePayPlus.

Is it me ???

Nope, apparently not. A survey asked people what they thought the name meant. Most people got the wrong answer. OK, 99% of people got the wrong answer. But they are going ahead, presumably because someone’s been given a budget, someone made a decision and now the entire country is stuck with it.

El Reg readers have raised an interesting idea. Perhaps “those in charge” also had a hand in the London 2012 branding.