BackSlap – Issue 410


Nick Read (pictured) was delighted to be voted Industry Personality of the Year at the Mobile News Awards (even though he wasn’t present to collect his trophy).

This year voting was done by texting the surname of the nominees to 118118.

A bright spark at Vodafone immediately saw the potential for lobbying for their man and a note went out on the Vodafone intranet suggesting thousands of Vodafonies might like to whack in a vote for their boss. Which probably explains why Read raked in 845 votes, trouncing such stalwarts as John Barton (60), Mark Mitchinson (104), Simon Ainslie (27) and Bob Sweetlove (24).

Phones 4U’s Tim Whiting and 3’s Marc Allera might want to rethink their PR profile for next year; they hobbled in last with three votes each. Surely one of those was from their Mums?

Need a loan? Text ‘shark’ to…

You can text to order a pizza or pay for a parking ticket, but what if you don’t actually have the money to pay?

Well, now you can text for a loan. In Sweden, unsecured loans can be obtained by simply sending a text message to one of about 30 companies operating the money-lending scheme.

Of an average loan of £245, interest and fees adds up to £45 on top of that. And, most loans must be paid back within a month. Advertisements for the loans extend to buses, public billboards and even TV to grab the attention of fast-texting 18 to 25-year-olds.

Who said it was just the networks who were sharks?

Looking for Data on Jones’ fortune

Much whoop-de-doo from the Data Select chaps at the Mobile News Awards as they finally broke 20:20’s 11-year run in the Best Distributor Award.

And celebrations all round back at the ranch, where around 130 staff were treated to a slap-up steak dinner in the company’s deli’ (tough on the vegans then).

We’re sure Data Select owner Peter Jones can afford it; in an interview with the London Evening Standard, the Tall One modestly gave an estimation of his wealth thus: “I find it difficult to say exactly what I’m worth – £1 million or £100 million? I’d like to say more like the latter”.

Back Slap humbly suggests that if ol’ Pete is wondering about a £99 million discrepancy, we’d be happy to check his books for a small fee.

Hot mobile deals

Heard the one about the Chinese wife who burned 400 mobiles belonging to her husband?

The not-so-happy couple apparently owned a thriving mobile phone dealership in Sandong province when the old man walked out on her.

Instead of calling her divorce lawyer, she piled the £21,000 worth of stock on her bed, doused the pile in kerosene, and watched the whole lot go ‘woof’. It was hot news for a week.

The world’s first Lycra handset?

OK sports fans, a bottle of champagne goes to the provider of the best caption for this interesting photograph of a man dressed as a mobile phone (as you do). We’ll start you off with, “I get really angry when people push my buttons”.

Your turn. Deluge us with your attempts at