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Author Topic: Transport Minister - poor use of language!  (Read 2293 times)

Offline SteelPan

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Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« on: October 29, 2010, 11:59:16 PM »
Few items from Courier Mail of Fri, 29 Oct to rant about - 1) really wish Minister Nolan would NOT refer to customers of Translink services as "punters" - we're not having a bet or being sold doggy "investment products" (maybe poor PT services however??) - it's not the best use of language and kind of patronising to taxpayers and PT users in general.  Perhaps Minister, you'd prefer us to all go back to our cars and jam up already heavily congested roads?  2) Typical Qld stuff-around re the capped seniors go-card concept - why stuff around, just do the say $3 a day "excursion fare" like other states?  Final comment - is it just me, or is PT in SE Qld getting a bit over-priced taking into account 2011 rises???  :pr
If urban rail was a sports stadium - there'd be a station on every corner!  Keep it LOUD for Pro-Rail!  :pr

Offline #Metro

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Re: Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« Reply #1 on: October 30, 2010, 12:08:30 AM »
Quote
"punters"

Got a ticket for Bus Lotto? Draws AM peak and PM peak  ;)
Live in the Western Suburbs?: Play Coronation Drive's Wheel of Congestion, where will it land today? 15 minute or 30 minute traffic jam?
Going to the Airport? Play, The Price is Right and try avoid being ripped off!

Quote
Final comment - is it just me, or is PT in SE Qld getting a bit over-priced taking into account 2011 rises???
The price is going up- actually it will be a steep climb come 2014. Why not start making savings from a more efficient
network? Convert the busway to superbus trunk & feeder, build and interchange at indooroopilly, bigger buses and feed rail etc.
« Last Edit: October 30, 2010, 12:10:07 AM by tramtrain »
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STB

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Re: Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« Reply #2 on: October 30, 2010, 12:18:02 AM »
I must admit I've never been a fan of anyone calling a passenger a "punter", it implies that they are gambling with public transport which conveys a negative view of public transport.

Hopefully she doesn't stick with the word.  I hope she didn't pick it up from you Robert  :P.

Offline WTN

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Re: Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« Reply #3 on: October 30, 2010, 01:46:23 AM »
Quote
Final comment - is it just me, or is PT in SE Qld getting a bit over-priced taking into account 2011 rises???
The price is going up- actually it will be a steep climb come 2014. Why not start making savings from a more efficient
network? Convert the busway to superbus trunk & feeder, build and interchange at indooroopilly, bigger buses and feed rail etc.

A 2-zone go-card peak journey in 2014 will cost more than DOUBLE of what it costed in 2009 ($2.32 vs $4.74). A scary thought. Anyone want to bet what service levels and patronage will be like?

Increase the patronage instead of fares every year!
Unless otherwise stated, all views and comments are the author's own and not of any organisation or government body.

Free trips in 2011 due to go card failures: 10
Free trips in 2012 due to go card failures: 13

Online ozbob

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Re: Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« Reply #4 on: October 30, 2010, 03:00:18 AM »
Quote
Hopefully she doesn't stick with the word.  I hope she didn't pick it up from you Robert

I doubt it very much. 'Punters' is a term in wide use in the Australian idiom. Personally I am more concerned with the poor train frequency.

Punter has a number of colloquial meanings including 'members of the public especially when a customer'.  

Hello customers!  Personally I find  the term customer for passengers far more irritating than punters, customers are passengers on rail!

 ;)
« Last Edit: October 30, 2010, 03:03:11 AM by ozbob »
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Offline #Metro

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Re: Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« Reply #5 on: October 30, 2010, 07:48:17 AM »
Quote
A 2-zone go-card peak journey in 2014 will cost more than DOUBLE of what it costed in 2009 ($2.32 vs $4.74). A scary thought. Anyone want to bet what service levels and patronage will be like?

Increase the patronage instead of fares every year!

Yes, I realised this too. And they still haven't fixed the core rail system frequency.
Will it hurt patronage? The answer is probably yes IF basic frequencies do not improve, but NO IMHO if the service levels are ramped up. Sydney public transport is an absolute ripoff, but they have highest PT mode share in the nation.

Re: language. I have a bit of an issue with the media calling RailBOT "a commuter lobby group", we are not just commuters doing 9-5!!! PT should be for all day use, not just commuting! Some of us are interested in Transit Oriented Development, and land use changes that PT brings about, not just how many services there are.
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Offline Stillwater

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Re: Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« Reply #6 on: October 30, 2010, 09:26:12 AM »

My personal preference is to be called a 'passenger', but I will tolerate 'customer' if that better focuses the minds of QR personnel about whose interests they serve.  With corporatisation of government operations, modern jargon labels employees as 'team members' (the inference being that the orgaisation is run for their benefit or, worse, thet they team up against the customers.)  It doesn't hurt occasionally to remind someone who draws a wage from the public purse that they are a 'public SERVANT'.  But I doubt that you will hear a QR public announcement that refers to passengers/customers as 'masters and mistresses'.  Now, 'mistresses' conjours up slightly different thoughts .....  Come to think of it, so does 'master', but let's not go there either.

STB

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Re: Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« Reply #7 on: October 30, 2010, 05:48:45 PM »
I've noticed lately that guards are calling passengers 'customers' when making announcements.  Kinda annoying for me at least.  I'm a passenger on a transport service, I'm not buying some goods.

Offline nikko

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Re: Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« Reply #8 on: November 01, 2010, 04:52:21 PM »
I'm also not a big fan of 'customer'. However from QRs standpoint, the section who implements these sorts of things (station customer service) truly believes that 'customer' is a more endearing name than 'passenger'.

colinw

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Re: Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« Reply #9 on: November 01, 2010, 04:59:21 PM »
The problem with the term "customer" is that its introduction appears to have coincided with the TransLink's use of spin, window dressing and smoke & mirrors statistics to try to convince us that everything is rosy when in fact nothing much has changed.

Every time I hear them say "customer" I cringe, because it is probably going to be accompanied by some announcement of anything but the frequent
service that as a paying PASSENGER is the main thing I actually require from our public transport SERVICE.
« Last Edit: November 01, 2010, 05:01:01 PM by colinw »

somebody

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Re: Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« Reply #10 on: November 01, 2010, 05:02:48 PM »
its introduction appears to have coincided with the TransLink's use of spin,
So it wasn't as bad back in the days of TL mark 1?

colinw

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Re: Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« Reply #11 on: November 01, 2010, 05:11:23 PM »
TL mk2 is a lot slicker in the publicity department, in my opinion.

somebody

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Re: Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« Reply #12 on: November 01, 2010, 05:14:40 PM »
What I meant was TL mark I effective at promoting PT use?

I mean, BUZ is really what has driven patronage growth in this town, and I do not see any real commitment by TL to that program.  Seems completely BT driven now.  Perhaps not always, although I doubt this.

colinw

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Re: Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« Reply #13 on: November 01, 2010, 05:21:37 PM »
From my perspective, the big gains occurred with the initial integration of ticketing under TL mk 1, and from BUZ.  But I thought BCC always was the driving force behind BUZ, was it not?  There doesn't seem to be any particular enthusiasm for more frequent services at either TL or Government level.


somebody

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Re: Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« Reply #14 on: November 01, 2010, 05:32:04 PM »
From my perspective, the big gains occurred with the initial integration of ticketing under TL mk 1, and from BUZ.  But I thought BCC always was the driving force behind BUZ, was it not? 
That's my read, but I've only been here just over 2.5 years.
There doesn't seem to be any particular enthusiasm for more frequent services at either TL or Government level.
Which is why I find it annoying that they are so obsessed with spinning everything.  And it's not just that they don't want to increase frequency, they don't want to do anything at all.  I'm sorry, but that's just the way I see it.  They still haven't combined the 66 & 109, for example.

Offline Stillwater

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Re: Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« Reply #15 on: November 01, 2010, 05:48:30 PM »
Re ‘passengers’ and ‘customers’, he is what one of the Chambers of Commerce in my neck of the woods advises should be core values in the relationship with customers.  Maybe QR could take heed:
Ask yourself questions such as, “Do our customers like what we’re doing?” Change the way you look at things from having it centred around you to focus on whether the customer would approve. Make the customers an agenda item at every staff meeting. Present their point of view and ask these questions: What would the customer think of this? Would this move be fair to them? How can we serve our customers better or differently?
Do more than is expected. The phrase ‘under promise, over deliver’ is the perfect maxim for customer service. Don’t promise delivery schedules you can’t meet.
Service doesn’t stop when the sale is concluded; this is when it’s reinforced and expanded. Follow-up customers to ensure their needs have been met and ask for feedback.
Always look for ways to help your customers. When they have a request (as long as it is reasonable) tell them that you can do it. Figure out how afterwards. Look for ways to make doing business with you easy. Always do what you say you are going to do.
When something goes wrong, apologise. It’s easy and customers like it. The customer may not always be right, but the customer must always win. Deal with problems immediately and let customers know what you have done. Make it simple for customers to complain. Value their complaints. As much as we dislike it, it gives us an opportunity to improve.

Offline #Metro

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Re: Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« Reply #16 on: November 01, 2010, 05:58:05 PM »
It think the point needs to be drilled home to the pollies here.

The #1 issue is frequency, followed by access etc etc.

The transport system is selling rotten apples.
The product that is being "sold" is bad!!!

While welcome, no amount of station upgrades, rubbish bins, wi-fi internet, extra seats here and there, new decor and livery, happy media releases etc etc
and smiley friendly customer service will take away from this simple core fact!

The single best improvement to customer service that could be done and will attract the greatest passenger increase is 15 minute off peak frequency to as many stations as possible on the suburban network. It would be the biggest increase in customer service ever.

« Last Edit: November 01, 2010, 06:06:35 PM by tramtrain »
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Offline nikko

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Re: Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« Reply #17 on: November 01, 2010, 06:25:32 PM »
While frequency is the number one pressing issue, don't discount those other factors as they also play a major part in whether or not people use public transport.

Offline #Metro

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Re: Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« Reply #18 on: November 01, 2010, 06:32:37 PM »
Quote
While frequency is the number one pressing issue, don't discount those other factors as they also play a major part in whether or not people use public transport.

The other factors help. But they only work well when the core service- frequent, rapid transit, is supplied.
Its like buying a mobile phone with nice packaging, only to find the box inside is empty. Or going to a classy restaurant and then being served
Weet-Bix for dinner.

Out of a new recycling bin vs a new train service, I think new train service would win hands down by an order of magnitude
an improvement to customer service, convenience, attracting new passengers etc.

IMHO the current state of affairs isn't QR's fault.
Rail services should be funded and more trains put on.
« Last Edit: November 01, 2010, 06:36:50 PM by tramtrain »
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Offline #Metro

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Re: Transport Minister - poor use of language!
« Reply #19 on: November 01, 2010, 07:55:50 PM »
I am starting to sound like Brizcommuter (that is such a good name, hats off to you):
http://brizcommuter.blogspot.com/2010/10/priorities.html

Quote
Priorities
It was recently announced that $200m will be spent on upgrading and refurbishing 21 train stations in SE Queensland. These include (amongst others) Enoggera, Alderley, Newmarket, Sandgate, Deagon, Banyo, Buranda, Cooparoo, Morningside, Wynnum Central, and Moorooka.

Now what do these 11 stations have in common?

They all have service gaps in the peak period which exceed TransLink's already pathetic 20 minute service provision. Whilst station refurbishment is welcome (particularly where disabled access will be improved) are the Queensland Government, TransLink, and QR getting their priorities right? A station with a fresh coat of paint may look nice, but will attract few extra passengers to public transport. A significant improvement in peak and off-peak service provision is likely to attract considerably more passengers to public transport, and keep the existing long-suffering commuters happy.

BrizCommuter would like to see increasing rail service frequency as public transport funding priority number one! Whilst on this subject - providing free on-train Wi-Fi, and a new QR train livery (which looks rather 80's) is not an alternative to providing a half-decent train service!
Negative people... have a problem for every solution.
Posts are commentary and are not necessarily endorsed by RAIL Back on Track or its members. Not affiliated with, paid by or in conspiracy with MTR/Metro.

 

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