I wouldn’t have bothered recording this, but it seems timely, given Geordie Guy’s lovely smackdown of GetUp over the internet filter. One can only hope that there is a growing trend away from rubber wristbands and spam electronic petitions.
In this spirit I present my final correspondence with GetUp. It wasn’t written for an audience and is produced verbatim. I considered going all David Thorne, but honestly couldn’t be arsed.
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 2012 17:57:33 -0700
Subject: Dear Woolies: Do better, regards Heath
At the shops we’re all thinking carefully about the purchases we make. Is this good for my health? Is this the right price? Have animals been treated ethically and workers fairly? The list goes on.
But sometimes the impact companies are having in our communities is hidden. Take Woolworths, for example. They promote themselves as a family friendly grocery store, but they’re also the single biggest poker machine operator, taking money from the most vulnerable people in our communities.
We can do something about that. Here’s the plan.
Print off this short letter.
Sign your name and add any personal comments you’d like to include.
Put it in your shopping bag, purse or wallet, for next time you’re shopping in, or near a Woolworths store.
Deliver the letter to Woolworths staff at the checkout and politely ask them to pass it on to store management.
By working together, we can deliver thousands of letters to Woolworths stores across the country. That’s an avalanche of letters that will run from neighbourhood stores right through the company to get the attention of the board and CEO. When Woolworths hears that stores across the country have been receiving thousands of thoughtful, passionate letters from GetUp members they’re going to take notice.
This isn’t about causing a scene, nor getting angry at Woolworths staff — we know it’s not their fault that Woolworths invest in poker machines, and many are on our side! It’s not about boycotts or protest — and you don’t even have to be a regular Woolworths customer.
It’s simply about hand-delivered notes asking Woolworths to do better by our communities. Please print out your letter now, or if you don’t have access to a printer let us know and we’ll send you a copy in the post:
Thanks for all you do,
PS – This is really important right now because it’s just a month until Woolworths hold an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) of the company to discuss our pokies reform proposals. 257 fantastic GetUp members, who are shareholders of Woolworths, have forced the company to hold the meeting, so now we need to ramp up the pressure. Let’s make sure the Woolworths manager in your local area passes on this message: their customers and community want Woolworths to do the right thing by our communities. That means sensible limits on the amount of money problem gamblers can lose on Woolworths poker machines. http://www.getup.org.au/woolworths-special-delivery
GetUp is an independent, not-for-profit community campaigning group. We use new technology to empower Australians to have their say on important national issues. We receive no political party or government funding, and every campaign we run is entirely supported by voluntary donations. If you’d like to contribute to help fund GetUp’s work, please donate now! If you have trouble with any links in this email, please go directly to http://www.getup.org.au. To unsubscribe from GetUp, please click here. Authorised by Sam Mclean, Level 2, 104 Commonwealth Street, Surry Hills NSW 2010.
From: Heath Cxxx (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Sent: Thursday, 18 October 2012 12:21:47 PM
To: Getup (email@example.com)
Here’s a thought. How about campaigning for matters of genuine importance? You know, like tax exemption and unfettered government funded access to schools for multinational child-rape corporations? Or perhaps draconian anti-prostitution laws that drive the sex industry underground and create a spawning ground for human trafficking from Asia? You could go straight to the heart of the matter and draw attention to the Arrow foundation and its poisoning of democracy by stealthy infiltration of parliament on all levels with well coordinated and heavily funded (again, by the taxpayer) placement of religious fundamentalist candidates.
What if, just bear with me here, what adults choose to do with their own money in their own time is really none of anybody’s fucking business and the last thing Australia needs is more regulation of individual behaviour? I know. Crazy, right? The thought that maybe you are not the arbitrary authority on what is best for all? Better wrap that thought in some plain packaging quick smart. What would the children make of it? Think of the children. The. Fucking. Children.
I really got behind your organisation in the beginning. I thought it was a good thing. It saddens me to watch you dilute into another dim collective wowser tosspottery club.
Yours in disappointment,
From: Info @ Getup (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Sent: Wednesday, 24 October 2012 12:37:37 PM
To: Heath Cxxx (email@example.com)
It sounds like we’ve got a different point of view on this issue. If you’d rather not recieve GetUp updates, you can unsubscribe here:
Also, please refrain from using profanities in future communications with us.
Sarah for the GetUp Team
E firstname.lastname@example.org W getup.org.au
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PS – If you feel passionate about this issue and would like to make a donation in support of our continued efforts, please click here to go to our online donations page. It’s the small donations from people like you that help fuel the movement and make our work possible – thank you.