Trending: The high price of online shopping with an out-of-date browser
Rhodri Marsden is the Technology Columnist for The Independent; he has also written about crumpets, Captain Beefheart, rude place names and string. He's also a musician who plays in the band Scritti Politti, and won the under-10 piano category at the 1980 Watford Music Festival by playing a piece called "Silver Trumpets" with verve and aplomb.
Monday 18 June 2012
We're used to seeing irritating surcharges when we're shopping online. Unexpected sales taxes, inflated postage costs and spurious handling fees are an integral part of the shopping basket. But technology retailer Kogan has come up with a novel way to inflate costs – and, what's more, it's making a noise about it: a 6.8 per cent tax on anyone completing their purchase using Internet Explorer 7 (IE7). Anyone using the much-maligned browser is greeted with a pop-up window containing the following message: "It appears you or your system administrator has been in a coma for over five years..." along with recommendations for alternative browsers – Chrome, Firefox, Safari – that sidestep the tax.
The company head, Ruslan Kogan, is known for his publicity-grabbing announcements. Not long ago he offered free HDMI cables to anyone buying a telly from John Lewis or Currys as a protest against their cable pricing.
But he's making a good point. Web developers spend a lots of time ensuring that websites work in old browsers – particularly IE, which was renowned for its bugs and layout discrepancies. And many of us are upgrade-phobic – scolding, haranguing and gentle persuasion have no effect. But slap a £40 tax on a £600 purchase? Pass me that Chrome installer, pronto.
Life & Style blogs
What is Lyme disease, what are the symptoms and is treatment readily available?
iPhone 7 (or iPhone 6S) leaked pictures show similarities to older model — but Apple is fixing the biggest issue of all
The face of fertility: why do men find women who are near ovulation more attractive?
'Help me I'm trapped in a factory' messages keep being found on bottles of vitamin water
Optical illusion turns blue demon into brunette
The moment a Queen's Guard soldier lost it and drew his gun at annoying tourist
Greece crisis: IMF was pushed around by Angela Merkel and Nicholas Sarkozy – and now it is being humiliated
'I wish the BBC would stop calling it Islamic State' – David Cameron unleashes frustration at broadcaster
Greece crisis: The wider lesson is that it’s time to abandon this failed experiment in currencies
Girl, 7, stares down hate preacher at Ohio festival with pro-LGBT rainbow flag gesture
Forget little green men – aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert
- 1 David Cameron refers to 83-year-old Labour MP Dennis Skinner as 'Jurassic Park'
- 2 iPhone 7 (or iPhone 6S) leaked pictures show similarities to older model — but Apple is fixing the biggest issue of all
- 3 'Help me I'm trapped in a factory' messages keep being found on bottles of vitamin water
- 4 German ethics council calls for incest between siblings to be legalised by Government
- 5 Alwaleed bin Talal: Saudi Prince to donate entire $32bn fortune to charity
iJobs Gadgets & Tech
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This is a great opportunity to join a medium s...
£8000 - £10000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity ...
£17500 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A fantastic opportunity is now ...
£35000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you familiar with the sayin...