Sleep-deprived readers discuss Paul Shaw, Groupon

 FEATURE, OCTOBER 13, 2011
SLEEPLESS IN ST. LOUIS
No sleep for you: In a perfect world, everyone would get an adequate amount of sleep ["The Big Sleep," Aimee Levitt]. However, there is a demographic that will never be able to do so. I refer, of course, to shift workers, a fairly large segment of the population that provides essential services: hospitals, police and fire departments, etc.

While Shaw is rigidly adhering to his sleep regimen, in real life this is often difficult to do because of one's profession.
terence.clarke, via the Internet

Overtired crank weighs in: This guy obviously does not have kids, a wife or a life. Someone should smash his fucking stupid head in and let him sleep forever. Just another retard who thinks he knows it all and couldn't possibly be wrong. Bet he fucking snores, and that's why his cat does not like him.
Steve, via the Internet

NEWS REAL, OCTOBER 13, 2011
GROUPON GROUPIES
Dining alone: I've been observing just the opposite of what the reporter claims to be happening ["Groupon Fail," Ettie Berneking]. I frequently dine solo, and the deals seem to be trending toward offers that only make sense for parties of two or more, the "$20 for $10" and "$30 for $15" types. Unless it's an upscale place, a deal like that can't possibly be more than barely advantageous — if at all — for single diners. If the smaller deals are making a comeback, count me as one happy to see it.
Anon, via the Internet

Defending Groupon: I am the other owner of Local Harvest, and this story does not accurately depict our experience with Groupon. While we did get very busy, and some customers got upset, we never complained about it or regretted our decision. It was a choice we made, and we weathered it fairly well. Groupon has contacted us, and we've told them the same thing.

I would probably advise other businesses our size to not do such a large-scale Groupon, but we aren't whining about our experience. We knew what we were getting into, and we made it through. Not only that, but our average daily sales are up overall after the Groupon dust has settled. The tone of this story misrepresents our experience.
Patrick Horine, via the Internet

Strategizing: "Local Harvest had worked with Groupon to cap the number of deals sold at 3,500. They sold every one. That was a shocker. 'I never thought we would sell that many,' Earnest says."

The lesson here, which has been demonstrated time and time again, is that it doesn't matter how many you expect to sell. What matters, what is critical, is that the business owner works out how many they can handle and set the cap at that. The restaurant knows the number of seats, the number of staff and the food and drink resources that it has. If 3,500 is too many, why did they settle for that number?

Although it is ultimately the business owner's responsibility to set caps and price the deal properly, daily deal sites like Groupon should really not permit businesses to go so obviously beyond their capacity. It's harmful for all parties: the business, the customers and eventually the daily deal company as everyone grows weary of this.
Coupon Marketing Guru, via the Internet

ERRATA
Owing to a copy-editing error, in last week's theater review, "Timing Is Everything," we mistakenly said that Defending the Caveman ran on Broadway for half as long as God of Carnage. Caveman, with around 600 performances, actually ran for 200 more performances than the former work.

 
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