Friday, 2 November 2012

Enough with the pictures already ...

Those who read this little corner of the blogosphere will have noticed that recently I have been using a lot of what data journalists call infographics ... don't know which is worst the former or the latter ... but hey ho it has been useful as a way of spreading the message in another forum, namely, Twitter.

With a limit of 140 characters (or if you follow 'best practice' 100 characters) the constraint on meaningful and articulate messages can make communication for a wordy old bugger like me a bit of a challenge ... hence the need to create attachments to tweets that fully convey the point I am trying to make.

This has been incredibly useful over the last week or so in the lead up to yesterday's back bench business debate in the House of Commons on the beer duty escalator (scrapping thereof). I like to think that in some small way that the combined 'reach' that some of these images achieved has helped inform the wider debate and acted as a call to action for those in the trade (and their customers) who might not ordinarily participate in 'politics'.

There are many who say that religion and politics are things that any publican should steer clear of, in their own pub at least, and there are those that say simply getting out of bed is a 'political act' ... but with so much at stake for our industry and that of our suppliers, most notably brewers, I think it behoves all of us in the trade to engage with our customers on the issues facing us and (by dint of association/custom) them.

With unprecedented pub closures in recent years, brought on by many factors already discussed here and elsewhere, yesterday's debate in Parliament was, thankfully, not just about getting a tax break for pubs and brewers, it was an impassioned and evocative plea to save what is, for many people, the quintessential social institution in this country.

So when you, your colleagues and your customers can't be bothered with the issues facing our industry, stop, take a moment, and participate in the debate ... without 'grass roots' support no matter what is spent by industry lobbyists or said by the trade press or pundits such as myself, any efforts to effect changes to the way this administration act toward our industry will ultimately fail or be a waste of money.

So occasionally, if I drop a picture or two into the blog, to illustrate a point, I trust you will forgive me ... hey, you can always pass it on to your customers without having to spend endless hours proselytising and maybe the next time we get our say, in the next General Election, our views might be heard and taken note of by those whose political base relies so heavily upon our customer base.

Now vicar about that ecumenical discussion about those angels dancing on the head of that pin ...

Enjoy the weekend ... and look no pictures!

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