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Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Email your suggestions directly via Facebook

I have noticed that very many residents like to complain about catering, facilities, or other matters on the hall's Facebook group (, but startlingly few of these complaints ever make it into an email to our dedicated suggestion box -

I understand that sometimes people want to "vent" publicly about something that's irritated them. Facebook is good for doing that; and it's fine if they do not expect anything to be done on the basis of their "vent".

But I am concerned that residents might think that their Facebook posts will be seen and acted upon by halls management. They will not: halls management are not - and cannot be expected to be - members of every single page or group set up by or for residents, nor monitor them daily for new posts. The Senior Members and I do monitor posts and bring things to the attention of management when we notice posts about real problems - but of course, we don't know which posts are there simply for letting off steam, and which ones were posted seriously with the hope that things will change.

As you can see, this is not a robust system and people may well be disappointed that their post was not seen or acted upon. This is a pity, when the only thing preventing those people from sending an email might be that they forgot the suggestions email address, or did not have the time or inclination to formulate a nice email with "dear so-and-so" and all that.

So today I created a fictional Facebook personality called "Connor Tall" (get it?) and he has made a post on the main Facebook group used by hall residents:

Any comments made on this post will automatically be forwarded to and therefore read by me, the Hall Manager, the catering company, and Residents' Club Committee & Senior Member representatives. This will ONLY happen for comments on Connor Tall's post. Other posts in the Facebook group will NOT be forwarded to the people on this list.

Please note we cannot reply to messages sent using this method, as your email address will not be included in the message (unless you include it in what you write).

I hope this will be a useful new feature and look forward to being able to use your comments to improve the service we provide at Connaught Hall.