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View Full Version : My rant for the week - Event Cinemas



johcar
30-11-2010, 12:24 PM
A couple of weeks ago (Saturday 14 Nov), my son and I decided to go see the latest Resident Evil movie. I chose Albany and to book online, because there is/was a competition to win a 3D TV.

The online process seemed to work initially – I saw an “Approved” message pop up on the DPS credit card processing page and then I was returned to the Event Cinemas (skycitycinemas.co.nz) site, where I was informed that there was an error with the booking.

So I did what most people would do and picked up the phone to call their help line. The 302 0002 number rang a couple of times, connected and then disconnected me. Repeat. Same result. Repeat. Same result. No other contact numbers on the site. Damn.

So I sent an email, hoping someone would answer – luckily, someone did. I got a phone call about 2 hours before the movie started and a nice CSR confirmed the booking was successful and she also gave me the booking number so I could collect my tickets.

My son and I drove to Albany (about 15km from home) and arrived about 30 minutes before the movie. When I tried to pick up the tickets, my son was asked to produce ID. I thought this was because I had booked for 1 adult, 1 student, and the cashier wanted confirmation of his student status. But no, it was because the movie was an R16.

My son had not brought his Student ID with him (he turned 16 in August this year) – it didn’t even cross my mind to think to bring it.

I explained I was his father and would vouch for him. This was not acceptable to the cashier and I was referred to someone who I assume was the duty manager.

I asked if there was a document I could sign to confirm my son was 16. I said I would be happy to sign an affidavit, but the ignorant idiot behind the counter insisted several times that “this would not cover the law”. I have to assume he did not understand that an affidavit is a legal document that would indeed stand up to scrutiny under ANY law in ANY court in NZ.

He asked me if we could go home to get the ID – this was impractical, as the distance was too great in the time left before the movie started, and would have been a severe inconvenience and cost in both time and money to me, when some form of statutory declaration could easily have been made and signed by me.

I was offered another movie, which I declined as we were going to the movies with a specific movie in mind.

I was then offered a refund, which I accepted (but this did not include the online booking fee of $2).

I was (and still am) extremely angry and annoyed.

I understand that the R16 restriction must be legally enforced, but I am annoyed there was no alternative for proving the age of an attendee (such as a legal declaration, signed by an identified adult).

I was equally annoyed that the online booking process did not prompt me to remember to bring ID for the non-adult at the time of the booking. This might have been covered in the confirmation email that I did not get (but I would lay money that there isn't), because the online process informed me there was an error in the booking process (there was NOT an error, as I was informed by the nice young lady on the phone around 3pm).

It would be a very simple piece of logic to insert in the ticket order process flow – the movie is selected (therefore the rating is known), and the fact that at least one of the tickets being bought for a non-adult could easily trigger a pop up warning message, reminding the purchaser to bring ID for the non-adult. This would also prompt a customer to go back and check the movie rating before proceeding with the purchase transaction, in case the non-adult did not qualify to see the movie at all...

We drove 30km (round trip), wasted nearly an hour and did not see the movie we wanted to at the theatre we travelled out of our way to.

(In the end, when we got home, we picked up my son’s ID and went to a slightly later showing of Resident Evil at Hoyts Wairau Park – much closer to home.)

I sent the details above via email to Event Cinemas, who have only just replied – two weeks later!!!!!

I was told (again) they had a policy in place to comply with Films, Videos and Publications Classification Act (FVPCA) 1994 and was offered two complimentary tickets for Albany – which I have declined on principle, since there is obviously no willingness to look at changing an inflexible policy and actually deliver some customer service.

/rant

(Ahhh! That feels better!)

DeSade
30-11-2010, 12:32 PM
How is it the cinema's fault or the online stores fault that you failed to bring the ID to a movie you booked knowing full well what the rating was.

I used to work retail and I tell you I would not accept anything signed by anyone to prove age, nothing but legal ID would cover the cashier in event of a audit. That is drummed into all of us that might be selling anything with a age restriction, just try that **** on in a bar see how far you get.

Sorry mate on this one your wrong, grow up and take responsibility for YOUR mistake and stop asking for hand-holding measures to be put in place because of it.

SoniKalien
30-11-2010, 12:42 PM
:lol:

johcar
30-11-2010, 12:59 PM
No argument that I should have realised that it was R-rated, I'm happy to wear that. But a movie rating is not the kind of thing I've have to even think about for at least 30 years.

My son should probably have realised (since an age rating is more relevant to him - and it was his idea to see the movie) and should probably have been carrying his ID.

A bar is different - the age limit is always the same, and I would expect it to be enforced (and it was when I worked in bars).

But customer service is about delivering. They did not do so, IMO.

A simple (legal) form on which a customer who has valid photographic ID (I carry my drivers licence) can confirm the age of an accompanying minor, which would take the onus of legal compliance off the cinema is easy.

As is a pop-up reminder in the browser at the time of making an online booking.

Both these options deliver customer service.

(Not to mention it took them two weeks to respond to my email!!! Where's the service in that?)

Gobe1
30-11-2010, 01:00 PM
Went to The Expendables with my sister and her daughter and had the same problem they would not let her in without ID, too bad got a refund (no 2 dollars here as it was point of sale) went and hired a HD movie, too bad. Will remember next time i tell you.
They would not let here in even though sister said she could. Thems the rules i guess

DeSade
30-11-2010, 01:04 PM
A simple (legal) form on which a customer who has valid photographic ID (I carry my drivers licence) can confirm the age of an accompanying minor, which would take the onus of legal compliance off the cinema is easy.


(Not to mention it took them two weeks to respond to my email!!! Where's the service in that?)

Blah blah
Honestly all I am hearing is excuses, the website should have told me, the cinema was at fault, my son should have known....

Jeez you booked them it was your mistake.

As for this legal document crap, no one would accept that, its not valid, no cashier is going to risk a 2k fine for them and a 10k fine for the company over your bit of paper, get real.

You obvioulsy have no concept of the laws around age limits if you think you can just sign something to get around it.

Two weeks to respond via email is crap, that should have been 2 - 3 days at the very most.

lordnoddy
30-11-2010, 03:01 PM
You obvioulsy have no concept of the laws around age limits if you think you can just sign something to get around it.

Two weeks to respond via email is crap, that should have been 2 - 3 days at the very most.

The two weeks is pretty shocking for Customer Service. But I'm agreeing with the above on this one - The Statutory Declaration should be sighted and also signed by a JP (Justice of the Peace) or someone of similar status. To make it legal

Richard
30-11-2010, 03:43 PM
For Chrissake all he was doing was taking his boy to a movie! I agree with Johcar, what a lot of crap to go through for NO service. Some people need to realise what customer relations is all about. A theatre Manager? Not in my book. :annoyed:

DeSade
30-11-2010, 03:52 PM
Not saying it was not a lot of crap to go through, but it was entirely brought on by his own mistake in forgetting the ID.

plod
30-11-2010, 03:55 PM
No argument that I should have realised that it was R-rated, I'm happy to wear that. But a movie rating is not the kind of thing I've have to even think about for at least 30 years.

My son should probably have realised (since an age rating is more relevant to him - and it was his idea to see the movie) and should probably have been carrying his ID.

A bar is different - the age limit is always the same, and I would expect it to be enforced (and it was when I worked in bars).

But customer service is about delivering. They did not do so, IMO.

A simple (legal) form on which a customer who has valid photographic ID (I carry my drivers licence) can confirm the age of an accompanying minor, which would take the onus of legal compliance off the cinema is easy.

As is a pop-up reminder in the browser at the time of making an online booking.

Both these options deliver customer service.

(Not to mention it took them two weeks to respond to my email!!! Where's the service in that?)
For them to be able to provide a form to prove age, surely this would have to be passed through government as acceptable ID. While I can see your point these rules are set in place to take the onus off the person at the counter being paid minimum wage. Computer games are the same, different ratings. I say good on them for sticking to there guns. How many times to we watch target and have a go at the dairy owner for selling smokes to a 17 year old. No ID, no entry. You would be the first to complain if your sum managed to hire porn at the local video store

mpc
30-11-2010, 04:19 PM
Hi, EVENT cinemas staff here.


The website clearly states the rating of each movie, it is not the cinema's responsibility to remind you or your son to bring his ID along.

An affidavit may stand up in court as a legal document, but it is not a legal form of identification, and as such, accepting one would breach EVENT Cinemas legal responsibilities with regards to restricted movies. you say your son turned 16 in August, you realise that a 16 year old boy could look anywhere between 14 and 18 right? why would a cinema attendant let a child in willingly because an older person claiming to be the parent signs an affidavit. This would require a law change to be acceptable, not simply a policy change at our end. Feel free to put forward a request to parliament.

admittedly, our call centre is barely used these days, and as such is maintained to a sub-par standard. I suggest avoiding it at all costs, but rather ringing the cinema directly.

also you turned down complimentary tickets on principle because we wouldn't risk breaking the law to compensate for your failure to bring identification? If you whinged at the cinema like you have whinged on here, then I can understand why the cinema manager took so long to reply to you.

mpc
30-11-2010, 04:27 PM
p.s. non-adult tickets cover students, seniors, and children. children's tickets are unselectable for restricted movies. seniors tickets would obviously not require a prompt. student tickets cover anyone from any formal learning institution, secondary, tertiary, or other education. while it may be a suggestion we could look at implementing, i would say that given the small percentage of the market that this would apply to, it wouldn't be practical.

lordnoddy
30-11-2010, 04:31 PM
@ MPC

So full of win!

CYaBro
30-11-2010, 05:03 PM
I thought if the under age'd person had their parent with them then there was no need for ID as the parent can take their child to whatever they want?

mpc
30-11-2010, 05:07 PM
that only applies in bars or to "R" movies, not to R16 or R18 movies. it is entirely illegal for a parent to take their underage child to a film with either of these ratings.

plod
30-11-2010, 05:08 PM
I thought if the under age'd person had their parent with them then there was no need for ID as the parent can take their child to whatever they want?
I think that is a RP rating not a R rating

johcar
30-11-2010, 05:36 PM
Hi, EVENT cinemas staff here.


The website clearly states the rating of each movie, it is not the cinema's responsibility to remind you or your son to bring his ID along.

An affidavit may stand up in court as a legal document, but it is not a legal form of identification, and as such, accepting one would breach EVENT Cinemas legal responsibilities with regards to restricted movies. you say your son turned 16 in August, you realise that a 16 year old boy could look anywhere between 14 and 18 right? why would a cinema attendant let a child in willingly because an older person claiming to be the parent signs an affidavit. This would require a law change to be acceptable, not simply a policy change at our end. Feel free to put forward a request to parliament.

admittedly, our call centre is barely used these days, and as such is maintained to a sub-par standard. I suggest avoiding it at all costs, but rather ringing the cinema directly.

also you turned down complimentary tickets on principle because we wouldn't risk breaking the law to compensate for your failure to bring identification? If you whinged at the cinema like you have whinged on here, then I can understand why the cinema manager took so long to reply to you.

I'd like to reply to each of your points, since you are presuming to represent the cinema chain (I can't tell whether this is in an official capacity or not)


The website clearly states the rating of each movie, it is not the cinema's responsibility to remind you or your son to bring his ID along.

This may be true, however the online booking process also takes money from customers, so in the interests of good customer relations, I posit that it would put the cinema in good standing with its customers if the customer was warned/reminded just prior to committing to the financial transaction that the movie they were booking was R-rated and that ID may be required to be sighted when the tickets are uplifted. As I stated, it's not rocket science to insert that logic in the workflow.


An affidavit may stand up in court as a legal document, but it is not a legal form of identification, and as such, accepting one would breach EVENT Cinemas legal responsibilities with regards to restricted movies. you say your son turned 16 in August, you realise that a 16 year old boy could look anywhere between 14 and 18 right? why would a cinema attendant let a child in willingly because an older person claiming to be the parent signs an affidavit. This would require a law change to be acceptable, not simply a policy change at our end. Feel free to put forward a request to parliament.

Apart from the fact that I was not suggesting an affidavit be used as a form of identification, I stand corrected on this one - further investigation tells me that a court representative must witness a statutory declaration, so I retract this as a viable option. However, the fact that a JP is required aside, if "an older person claiming to be the parent signs an affidavit" stating that the accompanying person meets an age criterion, providing the signatory is properly identified, that would be sufficient under the law to absolve the cinema. However this is all hypothetical, since it is unlikely that a JP is going to be employed by every theatre. It's not practical.


admittedly, our call centre is barely used these days, and as such is maintained to a sub-par standard. I suggest avoiding it at all costs, but rather ringing the cinema directly.

An example of the poor customer service ethic again. If it is not maintained, take the contact details off the website!!! There are no contact details listed for individual theatres on the site: http://www.eventcinemas.co.nz/about-us/contact.aspx

Just the 09 302 0002 phone number that does not work.


also you turned down complimentary tickets on principle because we wouldn't risk breaking the law to compensate for your failure to bring identification?

As stated above, I would have brought ID had I known it was an R16 - I didn't check, because I am of an age I don't need to check. However I accept I should have.


If you whinged at the cinema like you have whinged on here, then I can understand why the cinema manager took so long to reply to you.

Nice.

It wasn't the cinema manager - it was the Group Manager who replied to me, and in a much more polite tone than you are using in this thread.

zqwerty
30-11-2010, 05:57 PM
Yep this is why we left Africa because of all the power tripping monkeys claiming that the law allowed all sorts of breaches of common sense because the rules must be followed to the letter, now we find it's just the same over here, there are idiots everywhere.

These are the people who should be the first against Prefect's wall.

R2x1
30-11-2010, 06:00 PM
I am amazed that :
a. The cinema can be so inept - must be a few NCEA diplomas in the staff chain.
b. People still go to the movies. (Perhaps two customers on the same day panicked the staff.)

SoniKalien
30-11-2010, 06:27 PM
It's all because we live in a very PC world, and business need to make money, cinemas especially are losing out, so they cut costs where possible, and usually this means a loss in customer service.

Can't really blame them for taking the action they did.

goodiesguy
30-11-2010, 08:27 PM
PC = political correctness = bad.

Cicero
30-11-2010, 08:51 PM
Yep this is why we left Africa because of all the power tripping monkeys claiming that the law allowed all sorts of breaches of common sense because the rules must be followed to the letter, now we find it's just the same over here, there are idiots everywhere.

These are the people who should be the first against Prefect's wall.

That's a nice looking African tiger Zqwert.

Greven
30-11-2010, 11:18 PM
The law has removed the ability to use common sense in many areas. It is stupid that a parent can't vouch for their child to get into a movie, but that is not through any fault of the cinema staff.

mpc
01-12-2010, 01:33 AM
just thought id reply to say that i no way am i representing the cinemas on an official level, i just happened to be on here and thought id chip in with what i know.

zqwerty
01-12-2010, 09:15 AM
'That's a nice looking African tiger Zqwert'

Surprised it's taken you so long to notice the anomaly Cic!.

Did you notice the penguin in it's mouth, they are not even on the same continent either, the explanation is that they are in a poorly managed Zoo in Africa which would be par for the course.

Have you heard of Tigrons and Ligers?

Cicero
01-12-2010, 09:36 AM
'That's a nice looking African tiger Zqwert'

Surprised it's taken you so long to notice the anomaly Cic!.

Did you notice the penguin in it's mouth, they are not even on the same continent either, the explanation is that they are in a poorly managed Zoo in Africa which would be par for the course.

Have you heard of Tigrons and Ligers?

I have heard of Spoodles!

So the Enigma is solved!

--Wolf--
01-12-2010, 04:10 PM
I think the most amazing part of this thread (and only part worth replying about) is there is a bloody penguin in zqwerty's tiger!

How I have never seen that before is beyond me.

zqwerty
01-12-2010, 06:42 PM
Yes, in one interpretation the Tiger is Micro$oft and the penguin is Linux, I did it because at one time Jen's avatar was the penguin.

Cicero
01-12-2010, 06:46 PM
Yes, in one interpretation the Tiger is Micro$oft and the penguin is Linux, I did it because at one time Jen's avatar was the penguin.

Is it some kind of obsession, you can get help you know!

zqwerty
01-12-2010, 08:26 PM
No Cic I was learning PhotoShop at the time and thought it would be good practice.

At the same time it was a harmless troll but no-one on the site noticed except for roddy_boy and he was scornful.

Gobe1
02-12-2010, 09:05 AM
I think you need to change the tigers colours into the windows colours or maybe add something micros$ft on it other wise the interpretation is lost (unless you mention it and now you have)

Cicero
02-12-2010, 10:32 AM
I think you need to change the tigers colours into the windows colours or maybe add something micros$ft on it other wise the interpretation is lost (unless you mention it and now you have)

I agree Gobel.

He should be more creative,we like subtle, but we are not Sherlock Holmes.

That is, we don't carry a magnifying glass with us.

Chilling_Silence
02-12-2010, 10:50 AM
I agree Gobel.

He should be more creative,we like subtle, but we are not Sherlock Holmes.

That is, we don't carry a magnifying glass with us.

You don't? I thought everybody did these days ... ?

Snorkbox
02-12-2010, 11:18 AM
I agree Gobel.

He should be more creative,we like subtle, but we are not Sherlock Holmes.

That is, we don't carry a magnifying glass with us.

You don't?

Win7 magnify.exe :cool:

Cicero
02-12-2010, 11:57 AM
You don't? I thought everybody did these days ... ?

Do not attempt to win with old Snorty.;)

lordnoddy
02-12-2010, 12:18 PM
Hmm, I love how this thread has gone from a Rant to everyone talknig about zqwerty's Tiger!
:clap :clap :clap :clap

prefect
02-12-2010, 12:43 PM
This my view:
Absolutely can understand why JC is annoyed I would be to, its just another example of PC gone mad.
The manager should be a person who can manage things, just saying no makes him a cabbage imo.
If I had a manager like that he would get the arse for being an autocrat, cleverly though and the billies of this world wouldn't be able to do a thing about it.

Cicero
02-12-2010, 01:31 PM
This my view:
Absolutely can understand why JC is annoyed I would be to, its just another example of PC gone mad.
The manager should be a person who can manage things, just saying no makes him a cabbage imo.
If I had a manager like that he would get the arse for being an autocrat, cleverly though and the billies of this world wouldn't be able to do a thing about it.

Good point about the Billy thing, you have to watch his type.

He loves to protect those like Metla, who think work is a holiday resort.