Apollo wrote:Although the crossing question is interesting, how does it get classed under the heading of 'Freedom of Information'?
A while back I wrote to the council with a question about the notices stuck to all the lampposts round here ('No dumping, Monitored site, Maximum fine £20,000') - asking what they mean by monitored, and how many people had been fined and how much. I was angling to embarass the relevant department/people into writing back that the notices mean nothing and no-one gets fined, and then maybe (eventually) at least putting it on the list of things to do something about. (If only take the ***** notices down since they're a total joke).
I did get a reply - but it started by saying my letter had been treated as a request under the Freedom of Information Act, which was a surprise since I hadn't thought it would be a state secret. It came from some bunch specially dedicated to answering questions and if it ever got anywhere near the relevant people they clearly just punted it straight on to the data-miners in the cellar.
So it looks as though they've set up a special group to answer anything that gets asked, which means they'll be able to say it's costing £x0000000 to provide info so they're going to have to charge - when in the past most questions would have been handled by the department with the info, and no cost would have been attached.
Or maybe I've just got a nasty cynical suspicious mind?
Back to the zebras - I was amazed there are so few, then realised I couldn't think of any. I think it's a shame - very bad for drivers' reflexes - you have to have your wits about you much more when people are likely to step out in front of you expecting you to stop. I got a very nasty look (and some kind of hand gesture) from some poor woman in London once - they had their foot on the crossing and I just hadn't been concentrating at that level of detail and went whizzing past. And interesting that there's been stuff in the press recently about the Dutch (?) town where they've taken out lights and crossings and stuff and let drivers and cyclists and pedestrians all look out for themselves, and things are flowing much better for everyone.