Wednesday, March 31, 2010


Why is it that a country that was basically on-line ahead of the rest of the planet with the Minitel system, uses almost exclusively chip-embedded hyper secure bank cards, and superior cell phone technology has such uniformly crappy Web sites? (And yes, I am talking about you, SNCF, among others.) And while you're at it, can someone please explain why my cable box still has not switched over to daylight savings time? Every time I glance up and look at the clock, I have to remind myself that it's an hour behind. Are we waiting for Jean-Pierre over at Orange (France Telecom) to manually set the clock back for its 3 million subscribers?

End of rant.

Update (4:40 p.m. Wednesday, three days after the time change): The display now reads "8". Not "8:00". Just "8".


Joy said...

I was unfavorably impressed, overall, with the crappy websites for many things here, too. I was especially happy to be told, when we called initially to set up a landline and internet in the house, to fill out the online application!!!

We stumbled across a stat in a magazine or paper during our time here that just under half of French homes have a home computer. (Either that, or home computer with internet access. Still, surprisingly low numbers, overall.)

debbie in toronto said... a good rant...that cable box thing would bug the **&& out of me....I hate stuff like that....get with it!

debbie in toronto said...

LOVE IT..just 8....way too funny

Starman said...

You have to remember the French motto: If there is a way to complicate it, we will find it and employ it.

All the American credit card companies used to have smart chips but discontinued them because of the "cost". As far as I know, Amex is the only one that still has them.

Anonymous said...

The SNCF website has to be one of the most confusing websites on the planet. I have always wondered how anyone ever has success on there!

PS- I read your blog every day- thank you so much- it helps me feel like I am in Paris, too!

love from a fan,
Jill (from Dallas)

Anne said...

Thanks, Jill. Happy to oblige.

Rosabell said...

SNCF has a web site because most of the companies do have such sites nowadays not because they would expect people to actually use it :) In most cases a phone call serves you better at finding the data you need.So ,it is better to use the site just to find out the phone number :))) It is the same in Italy too, the quality of web sites is very low due to the fact they don't really expect people to use it for 100% reliable info. They use the web site mainl for brand recognitionlike "let's have it if everybody has it".

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