Anthony Murray, the editor of the Co-operative News, emailed to say: “We are currently looking at how we can integrate readers’ letters into the website. Our team have a few great ideas at not only integrating letters, but other sources such as blogs, news and social media to provide a clear picture of what co-operators are thinking”.
The next emessage came from a reader who wrote about the Co-operative Bank’s phone charges. He commented:
“I don’t mind a few 0845 numbers to offer a central starting point, but main offices (such as insurance) should offer a geographic number – since they do have an office – or at worst the new 0300 numbers which are non-geographic but charged at standard rates and not hiding a 10p/minute… which they do not mention when you call!”
He gave a link to a 2012 Guardian article, reporting that Co-op customers must now use a more expensive 0844 number to speak to a bank adviser. It said:
“The Co-op move means an elderly customer, not comfortable using internet banking, will pay around £1 for a 20-minute call – with the Co-op pocketing some of that money. Revenue generating numbers such as 0844 allow the receiver a share in the revenue”.
It had a very useful chart giving the cost of calling 08 numbers.
This is the sort of subject which can be raised in the letters column of the News – and in due course via integrated blogs and social media, addressed to the editor:firstname.lastname@example.org or Co-operative News Holyoake House Hanover Street Manchester M60 0AS .