Donors Who Expected an XO by Jan 15th - README!

Discuss your experiences with purchasing the XO though the G1G1 program here. First impressions or whatever else is important to you. Mention it here!

Re: No worries here.

Postby Goatview » Sun Jan 27, 2008 8:25 pm

Steve Holton wrote:
lershac wrote:How do you reconcile the lies out of OLPC with their promises to deliver to the needy?

Strong words. Do you have anything to back that up?


lershac's post reads like a question to me, and it's a question that a whole lot of websites have now brought up. Why should we have confidence that OLPC can get thousands of laptops to third world countries when it can't get them to cities in the United States? The party line seems to be that it is easier to get thousands of laptops to third world countries, but I just can't seem to get my head around that.

How come it is so easy for me to order from every other company online? Why does a little furnace repair shop with a totally lame website have no problem FedExing me an obscure part in less than a week? Why have I had no trouble with Amazon thousands of dollars and ten years after first discovering them? And how about the Ebay sellers? No trouble there, either. Since I am fairly careful about the honesty of the companies with whom I deal, I've had no problems with shipping issues until now...it's just OLPC.

The folks who took advantage of G1G1 are very likely smarter than average. It is a completely logical step to go from "What's the problem getting me my laptop?" to "If they can't get it to Texas, how can they get them to Africa?" You don't need any evidence to back that up.
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Re: No worries here.

Postby golfr » Sun Jan 27, 2008 10:25 pm

Goatview wrote:
Steve Holton wrote:
lershac wrote:How do you reconcile the lies out of OLPC with their promises to deliver to the needy?

Strong words. Do you have anything to back that up?


lershac's post reads like a question to me, and it's a question that a whole lot of websites have now brought up. Why should we have confidence that OLPC can get thousands of laptops to third world countries when it can't get them to cities in the United States? The party line seems to be that it is easier to get thousands of laptops to third world countries, but I just can't seem to get my head around that.

How come it is so easy for me to order from every other company online? Why does a little furnace repair shop with a totally lame website have no problem FedExing me an obscure part in less than a week? Why have I had no trouble with Amazon thousands of dollars and ten years after first discovering them? And how about the Ebay sellers? No trouble there, either. Since I am fairly careful about the honesty of the companies with whom I deal, I've had no problems with shipping issues until now...it's just OLPC.

The folks who took advantage of G1G1 are very likely smarter than average. It is a completely logical step to go from "What's the problem getting me my laptop?" to "If they can't get it to Texas, how can they get them to Africa?" You don't need any evidence to back that up.



Right on goatview, I see it the same way.It's not about the product getting to my greedy little hands it's about the deception. You see the same BS out of politicians and I am begining to wonder if this idea is about politics and power.
If you remember,during the 60 minutes interview, when Negroponte was asked about the competion from HP he became agitated and upset,that should have sent up a red flag for me.
As for you Steve Holton,remember 911 and the backlash towords the Red Cross.Do you want to see that for this excellent endeavor?I found the responses from the spokesperson from OLPC,deceptive,rude,evasive and arrogant.I was always under the impression that charity organizations were open for public scrutiny,apparently not now if it's for a noble cause
So go ahead , try to shout down anybody that questions why OLPC cannot handle the simple effort to deliver in the US and ask us to believe that they can handle difficult third world trans-border nightmares
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Re: Donors Who Expected an XO by Jan 15th - README!

Postby brisalta » Sun Jan 27, 2008 10:40 pm

Golfr you may want to get off your high horse as Walter responded with an explanation about an hour before your rant. His explanation is located at http://en.forum.laptop.org/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=150739. You will have to scroll down to find his post.
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Re: Donors Who Expected an XO by Jan 15th - README!

Postby Goatview » Sun Jan 27, 2008 10:48 pm

brisalta wrote:Golfr you may want to get off your high horse as Walter responded with an explanation about an hour before your rant. His explanation is located at http://en.forum.laptop.org/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=150739. You will have to scroll down to find his post.


That may be a good explanation in your eyes, brisalta, but it doesn't address my concerns at all. Not at all. Besides, there isn't any apology in it--just more of the overweening arrogance and donors-be-damned attitude that has colored the entire G1G0 mess. Walter's post = same old same old. I suggest you take a little of your own advise and get off YOUR high horse.
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Re: No worries here.

Postby Steve Holton » Sun Jan 27, 2008 11:18 pm

golfr wrote:So go ahead , try to shout down anybody that questions why OLPC cannot handle the simple effort to deliver in the US and ask us to believe that they can handle difficult third world trans-border nightmares

Wow. That's like pretty harsh.
Now I am confused. So, if someone were to offer to buy you out, that is, pay you the full amount of your donation in exchange for the future delivery of your XO(s) would you take it?

I'm clear on your frustration, okay? I get that. I'm just wondering if you're planning to stick around in this community after you get your XO's, or if you'll be selling your XO(s) on eBay and leaving the 'shouters' like me to our folly ?

Because you seem to be burning an awful lot of bridges here, and you might find the community you disparage today is less willing to help you tomorrow.
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Re: No worries here.

Postby Goatview » Sun Jan 27, 2008 11:23 pm

Steve Holton wrote: So, if someone were to offer to buy you out, that is, pay you the full amount of your donation in exchange for the future delivery of your XO(s) would you take it?


Make me that offer. $800 plus shipping and you can have them both, assuming they will ever arrive.


Steve Holton wrote:Because you seem to be burning an awful lot of bridges here, and you might find the community you disparage today is less willing to help you tomorrow.


This from an official spokesperson for OLPC? You don't find that sort of comment a little arrogant, Steve? And a little vindictive? And a bit short on apologies? Criticize us now and we will see to it that you never get your little toy to run right? Hmmm, not just arrogant and vindictive, but threatening.

I just hope a whole lot of people read your post before you think better of it and do some heavy editing.
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Re: Donors Who Expected an XO by Jan 15th - README!

Postby golfr » Sun Jan 27, 2008 11:30 pm

. I'm just wondering if you're planning to stick around in this community after you get your XO's, or if you'll be selling your XO(s) on eBay and leaving the 'shouters' like me to our folly ?

What a thug,so you think I am somebody thats in this for some kind of personal gratification.Go away,your on ignore you simpleton.You make me sick.
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Re: No worries here.

Postby microwiz » Sun Jan 27, 2008 11:39 pm

Steve Holton wrote:
golfr wrote:So go ahead , try to shout down anybody that questions why OLPC cannot handle the simple effort to deliver in the US and ask us to believe that they can handle difficult third world trans-border nightmares

Wow. That's like pretty harsh.

To be completely fair, especially to Steve who is doing a lot of hard work on our behalf:

I have never seen a volunteer or official OLPC rep attempt to "shout down" anybody on either of the two forums. (I've seen a number of randoms show up and try to intimate that people who are asking questions are ethically- or morally-challenged, but that's neither here nor there.)

Now, there hasn't been any shouting down, but there hasn't been much straight-up information either. I wouldn't mind if we got more straight answers like the one that Walter gave in that other thread.

...oops, ouch. I was composing this when that last reply came in. golfr, a strategy I have for (hopefully) not burning bridges is to never allow myself to post the first draft of a reply. I always write them, let them sit for a while, and try to come back to them later when the heat's gone out of things a bit. You might want to give that a try :|
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Re: No worries here.

Postby microwiz » Sun Jan 27, 2008 11:47 pm

Steve Holton wrote:Because you seem to be burning an awful lot of bridges here, and you might find the community you disparage today is less willing to help you tomorrow.
Hmm, that does sound kind of threatening :/

Steve, I'm sure I don't have to remind you, you're a volunteer and thus directly representing OLPC in some capacity. Please consider letting the heat go out of responses to the populace before they're made public.
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Re: Donors Who Expected an XO by Jan 15th - README!

Postby golfr » Mon Jan 28, 2008 12:25 am

I will not back down, I smell a rat.Something is wrong and I hope there is some kind of congressional investigation into what is going within the OLCP.I don't give a flying f**k about a G1 but something stinks about the the system and money that has been generated by OLPC.
If you do not believe me,ask for a financial report for their fiscal year and see what response you get,I have.
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Re: Donors Who Expected an XO by Jan 15th - README!

Postby microwiz » Mon Jan 28, 2008 12:54 am

golfr wrote:I will not back down, I smell a rat.
I'd be interested to see their fiscal report too - please consider putting a copy somewhere public once you've got a copy.

However, I'm pretty sure you don't "smell a rat," because we're very light on facts in the face of OLPC's opaque processes around G1G1; in the end, there's just not very much to "smell" right now. (We're lucky we even know the names of the contractors that seem to have contributed so much to the current difficulties!)

What are the things that are adding up for you to the "rat" conclusion?
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Re: No worries here.

Postby lershac » Mon Jan 28, 2008 1:31 am

Steve Holton wrote:
lershac wrote:How do you reconcile the lies out of OLPC with their promises to deliver to the needy?

Strong words. Do you have anything to back that up?


How about:

"All G1G1 laptops without address problems should have shipped by now"

"Someone will call you back in X amount of time"


And another thing, Please dont recruit volunteers to do something and then dont give them the tools do actually DO anything, except to cheerlead, and try to intimidate dissenters with threats of no support once delivery is made (if ever)
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Re: Donors Who Expected an XO by Jan 15th - README!

Postby Pecisk » Mon Jan 28, 2008 5:57 am

Disclaimer: I am not ordered XO trough G1G1 program, but I plan to do it when it will be available in Europe. I also follow OLPC project from it's very begining and think it is right on it's track. I hope all problems will make them only stronger.

I also think that problems with delays are overblown and simply very loud minority (don't get me wrong people - you have rights to be angry) just try to create FUD image. It is not said that it has been intentional, however, it has been very egoistic.

Yes, you have all rights to be angry. However, I don't believe that such attitude as demonstrated by Goatsview or others will help their or OLPC cause or will deliver their laptops. They just steam out, throwing words, without even thinking what kind of damage it can do. I can't stand such "me, me" attitude. You don't have rights to be jerks.

In fact, I am surprised about only one thing - why people think that simple every day shipping to known addreses and shipping tens of thousands laptops to tens of thousands individuals all around the country is comparable? Such mistakes DO happen, even with commercial distribution. And it usually happens when it is done by entity who don't have expierence of doing this. Who could think that address stuff these days can be so nightmarish and so ... closed? ZIP additions, additional infos, uknown addresses, etc.

It happens every day. And it could happen to everyone. Really, I have expierenced this from both - distri butor and client - side. And I know that Amazon will not distribute to you if your address won't check out in their system.

So why when this happen to OLPC project, suddenly everyone questions their capacity to deliver? Personally I doubt that it will impact it, because most of laptops delivered to goverments and schools will go to very concrete place, verified thousand and thousand times. That's huge difference. Also they delivered majority of G1G1 laptops, and we are talking about some percentages.

I think OLPC will keep their word and everyone who still want XO will get it. I hope they will learn the lesson and will just create database for all orders. Only mistake from their side was thinking that such operation will be easy ride. Also they must get their PR in order. People should must be restricted from making comments on such touchy issues, because it will be easy used from opposition.

p.s. sorry, I was reading all this stuff for three days and I was getting very confused with certain people's attitude. Adults is why they are adults. So I was trying to get it off my chest.
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Re: Donors Who Expected an XO by Jan 15th - README!

Postby Goatview » Mon Jan 28, 2008 9:01 am

Pecisk wrote:
In fact, I am surprised about only one thing - why people think that simple every day shipping to known addreses and shipping tens of thousands laptops to tens of thousands individuals all around the country is comparable? Such mistakes DO happen, even with commercial distribution. And it usually happens when it is done by entity who don't have expierence of doing this. Who could think that address stuff these days can be so nightmarish and so ... closed? ZIP additions, additional infos, uknown addresses, etc.

It happens every day. And it could happen to everyone. Really, I have expierenced this from both - distri butor and client - side. And I know that Amazon will not distribute to you if your address won't check out in their system.


You missed a few parts here.

First, OLPC farmed out the shipping job to Patriot and Brightstar, firms that ostensibly have plenty of experience. The shipping isn't being done by a bunch of starry-eyed volunteers armed with yards and yards of bubble-wrap and packing-tape dispensers. Even if P. and B. are doing the work gratis, their employees are not--they are professionals. The boxes shown in photos have been packed beautifully and labeled clearly. Patriot got the addresses from OLPC, as I understand it, and OLPC failed to put a system in place whereby correct addresses would be acquired, dropping second lines from addresses and rejecting PO Boxes out of hand without saying that a street address was needed.

Second, Amazon (an unfair comparison I admit, but since you are using them I'll do it again) doesn't charge you until your item ships and gives you an opportunity to back out of the deal if it is going to be longer than a couple weeks, keeping you informed every step of the way.

Third, we who OLPC is saying have bad FedEx addresses do NOT have bad FedEx addresses as shown by the FedEx deliveries we receive from everyone except OLPC.

I am being abrasive, but I'm not being childish. OLPC has $847 of my money and I have nothing except a couple of tax deductions that weren't necessary since I had more than enough deductions already. I did this because I wanted to help the cause AND get a little laptop to see what was what. My impatience is due to being ignored and misled by OLPC over and over again through this whole process. I don't think they are evil or intended to be dishonest--I think they really wanted to help the children in the developing world but in my opinion the ends do not justify the means in this or any other venture. Means and ends have equal weight in my book.
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Re: Donors Who Expected an XO by Jan 15th - README!

Postby Steve Holton » Mon Jan 28, 2008 10:18 am

Goatview wrote: Patriot got the addresses from OLPC, as I understand it...

This is not correct. OLPC was never in posession of personally identifiable details. Patriot provides the order management. Patriot employees (or subcontractors) take the orders, verify billing details and shipping addresses, and hand the verified orders to Brightstar for fulfillment. When someone phones Donor Services, they are talking to a Patriot employee.

Part of that is a legal requirement; to fulfill privacy, recordkeeping, etc. responsibilities, Patriot has to have a formal contractural arrangement with it's contractors; hence the need for a professional, employee-type relationship. That's usually not possible with volunteers.

So, in case there is some confusion among the forum readers, I am not a Patriot, Brightstar, or OLPC employee. I am neither compensated nor reimbursed for my expenses.

Goatview wrote: Second, Amazon (an unfair comparison I admit, but since you are using them I'll do it again) doesn't charge you until your item ships and gives you an opportunity to back out of the deal if it is going to be longer than a couple weeks, keeping you informed every step of the way.

In all fairness, when someone conducts business with Amazon in this way, it is under a purchase-type arrangement, rather than under a donation-type arrangement. Every non-profit I've ever dealt with (including the ones I've run myself) is governed by the same legal framework. There is a legal requirement for sellers not to bill until the purchase has shipped, but that requirement specifically does not apply to non-profit organizations; when one makes a pledge to a non-profit, that pledge becomes actionable immediately.

I will agree OLPC did a poor job of making that clear.

I personally never considered the XO to be anything other than a trinket, a souvenir of the educational project. Similar in my mind to the Public Radio coffee cup. My intent has always been to use it as-is, as intended, as an educational aid for my three children. But clearly others believed they were 'buying' a 'laptop computer', as evidenced by the help requests we see in the more technical parts of this forum. This perception should have been addressed by OLPC long ago.
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