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‘Shonky’ CHOICE Slammed As Political Organisation Masquerading As Consumer Group

CHOICE who parade as the Australian Consumer Association has been described as a “political organisation masquerading as a consumer advocacy group” and an organisation that “pick its battles to maximise its own profile” by no other than the Australian Financial Review.

Apparently the usually vocal CHOICE whose mouthpiece is the publicity seeking Tom Godfrey and Chief executive Alan Kirkland have mysteriously had nothing to say about Cole and Woolworths joining together – with the encouragement of the Coalition government – to jack up milk prices so that farmers get paid more.

The AFR went on to say ‘Where has the fearless campaigner that regularly decries this supermarket duopoly gone? Happy to dish out “shonky” awards to Coles for pet food with little nutritional value, CHOICE is now unprepared to identify a pretty straightforward example of anti-competitive behaviour that’s clearly not in the interest of consumers.

This is the same organisation that tried to intimidate ChannelNews with threats of legal action when we exposed how one of their employees tried to falsely make claims against Samsung.

The group who waits for a publicity event to occur and then jumps on the after wash, in an effort to get a publicity ride, have been slammed on several occasions by brands who have accused the organisation of being “plainly wrong” in their claims.

Telstra who have been attracting their own fair share of criticism due to their recent network failings is such organisation, so is Apple and Samsung big Companies who the left leaning organisation like to slam especially with their ‘Shonky’ Awards.

Last year a so-called analysis of 280 plans, conducted by Choice, claimed that some Telstra customers were paying a hefty premium for their broadband and mobile service, ranging from six per cent to 92 per cent.

“The Choice analysis is flawed and takes into consideration just a handful of plans we provide and ignores the rest,” A Telstra spokesman said.

This is the same organisation that became obsessed in taking on Samsung after the Company faced a publicity backlash over a problem with their washing machines.

Shortly after the Samsung issue was revealed by the media, Choice jumped on the publicity bandwagon with Chief Choice drum banger Tom Godfrey organising the crushing of a Samsung washing machine in an effort to drum up subscription publicity for Choice who rely on subscriptions to fund their organisation.

The only problem back then was that so-called Choice ‘Investigative Journalist’ Jemma Castle appears to have failed to check with the NSW Fire and Rescue Service prior to claiming that a Samsung washing machine had burnt down an NSW home.

Jemma Castle as she appears on the Choice website. In Linkedin she is described as an Investigation journalist.

When ChannelNews revealed that Castle was wrong Choice failed to admit their mistake to either 4Square Media or Samsung.

In March last year Choice, claimed that “more than two-thirds of the new cars sold in Australia cause problems for their owners inside five years” because of issue such as car electronic problems.

Choice claims that the three biggest problem brands are Holden, Ford in the mass market and Audi in the luxury car market.

In an effort to qualify this sister publication SmartHouse conducted a survey of two BMW dealers 2 Holden dealers a Ford dealer and a Mazda dealer. What we discovered was that in a lot of cases the Bluetooth complaint was primarily from people who have purchased a new smartphone and don’t know how to pair their new device with their motor vehicle.

The AFR concluded their bagging out of CHOICE claiming that “If CHOICE isn’t prepared to represent the consumer in a basic matter like this, what is its point, apart from producing a product review magazine? After all, if CHOICE feels free to pick and choose when to represent consumers, it’s really just political organisation masquerading as a consumer advocacy body, picking its battles to maximise its own profile”.

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