30 June 2008

Enough is Enough

I'm officially giving up on entering the Bridport.

I've had no end of trouble. It's enough, frankly, to write the poems. A couple of weeks ago I checked out their site. It looked fairly straightforward. Upload entry, pay on-line, nothing to it.

So this weekend I tried.

Logged onto website. Selected "submit entry". Selected "as a word document".

Browsed and located document. Clicked "upload".

And my document wasn't recognized as a word document! How could that be? Well, according to a pop-up box, it was because I was using Mozilla and not Internet Explorer. What?? I hope Bridport didn't pay good money to whoever designed their website because that is crap. But OK, I wanted to submit. So I logged out, swapped browsers, logged in again. This time it worked, my ".doc" was perceived as a ".doc". Hooray Bridport!

But then it came to payment. (This part, by the way, has nothing to do with Bridport, but the credit card issued by one of the most prominent banks in Belgium. ) I was asked to make an electronic signature. That happens sometimes. So I went through the procedure but for some reason it was not accepted. Not once, not twice. So I went to the bank today to straighten it out.

"Oh yes madame, we'll give you a new improved card reader. Yes that sometimes happens. Security, you know."

"Yeah, I know. Except it happens all the time with cards from your bank and you know it. Why don't you make it easier for your clients to buy stuff online? I'd switch banks if I could, but you also know full well how hard that is and that I'm not going to." But I smiled at the sweet young man who helped me out (all of 17 by the look of the down on his cheek), and brought my new improved card reader home, crossing my fingers....

And it didn't work.

Not once. Not twice. And I kept returning to a screen that warned, in red,

"We are very sorry but it is not possible to upload word or pdf files from Mac computers."

Well, I don't have a Mac but somehow, that was the last straw. Between my funky Belgian hyper-securitized visa, and the Bridport website's ineptitude, I'd had it. I don't need to pay 6 GBP (7,60 EUR, 12 USD!!) for this kind of fun. I can submit to literary magazines, and get rejected for free!

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