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The Random Thoughts Thread


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Some thought: the next time you buy a digital download through digital places (like Apple's App Store or Google's Google Play store) - in Canada, you will be subjected to the GST/HST/QST. 

This had been in effect since last month (July 2021). 

What does everyone has to say about this change? Do you usually notice it? 

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3 hours ago, FutureHeartsJunkie said:

Some thought: the next time you buy a digital download through digital places (like Apple's App Store or Google's Google Play store) - in Canada, you will be subjected to the GST/HST/QST. 

This had been in effect since last month (July 2021). 

What does everyone has to say about this change? Do you usually notice it? 

Some digital retailers already charge the full taxes, so it really doesn't come as a surprise. If I were to purchase something on the Xbox Games Store, it would already account for the sales taxes for the specific area and included in the final total. This was well before July 2021. 

Though some regions charge sales taxes on gift cards for those services because of how digital sales were not equally taxed. So the tax revenue is recouped somehow. I know that is the case with British Columbia, but Ontario you just pay the face value of the gift card and nothing more beyond that. Once you buy the digital item, it would charge the appropriate sales taxes when buying through the digital channel. 

Every time I purchase a gift card, I always budget for the sales tax to ensure I get a large enough card to cover the purchase. 

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The sky went dark and opened up here with a total deluge.  It sounds like the storm is moving off now with the rain ending and thunder receding into the distance.  I didn’t feel uptight or stressed out about it this time since the new roof is on the house now vs the last few storms I was worried about the south side leaking with the way it had deteriorated so fast once it started to go.

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Remember my thought about my wish that the Global Television Network in Canada - should air a local newscast for Ottawa, ON? Currently, CIII-DT (which is based in Toronto) has a transmitter that serves Ottawa (technically, that transmitter is in the Gatineau Park in Quebec), but they only air news stories based in Toronto. 

I would wish that Citynews should offer that same treatment - offering television newscasts for viewers in the Ottawa area that are relevant to the city. 

ICYW, the only radio station in Ottawa that bears the Citynews branding is on the radio dial on 1130AM (they recently broadcast an FM station on 101.1FM).

I really wished that Citynews should expand its brand to radio stations. 

Instead of the presenter saying "680 News time - 7:45", they should say "Citynews time - 7:45".

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Sometimes, you don't really know what is going on behind the scenes especially reading about the Mike Richards scandal and how he managed The Price Is Right. Turning 50 years old and preparing some special stuff for the special milestone. 

I mean Richards did try to apply for the hosting duties of The Price Is Right being in his early 30s that time. Seeing the audition tape when the search to replace Bob Barker who was retiring. Drew Carey was chosen instead to be the replacement host since 2007. Never forget the showcase showdown scandal where Terry Kniess got the final bid right on the nose. Bringing question on how he obtained that info which if it was $250 or lower, Terry would have won both showcases anyway. 

Watching the documentary regarding how there was a big investigation and the concern of an employee working in the prize department sharing confidential info. 

https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/tv/tv-news/jeopardy-mike-richards-price-is-right-1235006082/

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I've stumbled to upon to find this particular story and I hope that something that happened in it - shouldn't happen to you: a blogger has to pay a huge sum against a doctor for defamation - all for a simple blog posting (and even leaving a negative review from Google Reviews) about a business' poor treatment against her.

Further reading for some context: https://globalnews.ca/news/8147217/bc-blogger-defamation-suit/

This brought me memories when I had received bad advice from a social worker that I used to dealt with (and although I didn't made any negative reviews on my own personal blog which has since been shuttered years ago - it did had a negative impact in my life) many years ago. 

It also reminds me that I used to boycott against a now-defunct music store 20 years ago (they thought I stole something - all because of mistaken identity/misunderstanding from what I remembered back then).

I really wished that people who are employed as "loss prevention officers" - should be offered training (which includes but not limited to) in: racial sensitivity, accessibility training and other topics relating to what I had discussed.  As for how often that training should offered, it should be offered on a yearly basis just to make sure that their "skills" are "fresh" and "relevant".

In other news, CIBC has recently gobbled up the Costco contract in Canada - which results in acquiring the Capital One Costco MasterCard portfolio. That marks the end of the Capital One saga in Canada. 

Unlike the situation in which former Capital One Hudson's Bay MasterCard cardholders have to re-apply for the new MasterCard powered by Neo Financial, the cardholders' portfolio for the Capital One Costco MasterCard gets transitioned to CIBC.

 

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Is anyone here into urban planning/traffic engineering? Early on this year I got hooked on this guy's videos:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC0intLFzLaudFG-xAvUEO-A

It's really opened my eyes up to how bad things are over here, especially in a suburban monstrosity like Mississauga. It's actually a super interesting topic; I'm curious as to what all your opinions are on the planning here, since its all roughly the same in urban centers in Canada (perhaps Montreal is somewhat of an exception). 

I'm almost inclined to start a separate topic for it for some discussion. 

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Most places I've been to in Europe could wipe the floor with our cities, planning wise.

Slovakia's near side traffic lights are not such an example. I want to know how much coke the people who came up with that idea were on.image.thumb.png.5eed08b634a225a97dce8c5612968415.png

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I wonder how everyone feels about "Truth and Reconciliation Day"? ICAW (In case anyone is wondering), it's a new statutory holiday in Canada and this new holiday reflects the emotional trauma caused by the residential schools of yesteryear and to honour the survivors and families who grieve those who died while serving in those residential schools (or something like that).

This new holiday - applies to people who work in a federally-regulated sector (i.e. banks, credit unions (not sure if they are regulated federally) federal government departments, etc.).

Still with statutory holidays, Ontario is the only province in Canada that recognize Boxing Day as a statutory holiday. While it may be understandable that people may have to work the next day (even if the holiday falls on a weekend and observed on an alternate day - or something like that) during those times, it is the employer's responsibility to see if their staff should work on the day after if Boxing Day (or even Christmas) falls on a weekend.

Sorry if I tend to confuse anyone on this post.

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Ontario plans to rollout digital ID as an option in late 2021. Noting there was a trial with a third-party to integrate digital ID, but I think I will rather wait for the rollout for Apple iPhone which is being rolled out in a few US states to determine workability along with privacy safeguards. 

The benefit is that I don't have to show all the info on my card with a digital ID. It only transmits the necessary info such as proof of age and nothing else. With the concerns regarding how some businesses are recording all the info on photo ID cards or how much info is being shared. Of course it will take time for businesses to adjust their policies and have equipment to process such information. 

https://toronto.ctvnews.ca/mobile/ontario-prepares-to-launch-digital-id-program-and-here-s-how-it-works-1.5577757?utm_source=break.ma&utm_medium=break.ma

Reminds me of how some businesses are demanding more info. Like National Student Loans and how banking info is integrated to verify a user and making sure all the info matches between the two sets of data. Though, I think there is always going to be the privacy versus technology debate and how it may be misused or compromised. I think some people who aren't comfortable can always stick to a physical card and carry it around at all-times.

5 hours ago, FutureHeartsJunkie said:

I wonder how everyone feels about "Truth and Reconciliation Day"? ICAW (In case anyone is wondering), it's a new statutory holiday in Canada and this new holiday reflects the emotional trauma caused by the residential schools of yesteryear and to honour the survivors and families who grieve those who died while serving in those residential schools (or something like that).

This new holiday - applies to people who work in a federally-regulated sector (i.e. banks, credit unions (not sure if they are regulated federally) federal government departments, etc.).

Still with statutory holidays, Ontario is the only province in Canada that recognize Boxing Day as a statutory holiday. While it may be understandable that people may have to work the next day (even if the holiday falls on a weekend and observed on an alternate day - or something like that) during those times, it is the employer's responsibility to see if their staff should work on the day after if Boxing Day (or even Christmas) falls on a weekend.

Sorry if I tend to confuse anyone on this post.

I think it is nice that a special day is made to acknowledge the trauma and hardships that occurred in residential schools. Regarding a statutory holiday at the provincial level, it is more of how much notice was given since there wasn't that much for businesses to prepare. Family Day was the last recent holiday which was introduced in February 2008 because of a liberal election promise and the long gap between New Years Day and Easter long weekend was pretty far. 

Having to also calculate the costs of providing an additional holiday was also factored in. 

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2 hours ago, captaintrolley said:

Why are people so obsessed with Walmart, Dollar Store and Amazon?

Most likely low prices. Or with Amazon, some items can't be found at the local store like curtains of a certain size. That is where I went considering that the first order was damaged, but the replacement came through without issues.

I mean Dollarama may be cheap, but the quality isn't always good sometimes. Especially if it breaks, the customer would just buy a new item pretty much. 

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44 minutes ago, GTAmissions1 said:

Most likely low prices. Or with Amazon, some items can't be found at the local store like curtains of a certain size. That is where I went considering that the first order was damaged, but the replacement came through without issues.

I mean Dollarama may be cheap, but the quality isn't always good sometimes. Especially if it breaks, the customer would just buy a new item pretty much. 

Yes, I get that, but it just seems to me that people should be trying to focus more on the local economy and supporting local businesses that have quality products, not businesses which put the emphasis on externalizing costs to produce cheap goods that perpetuate the 'throw away society' and add to the endless cycle of goods going into the landfill.

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19 hours ago, GTAmissions1 said:

I think it is nice that a special day is made to acknowledge the trauma and hardships that occurred in residential schools. Regarding a statutory holiday at the provincial level, it is more of how much notice was given since there wasn't that much for businesses to prepare. Family Day was the last recent holiday which was introduced in February 2008 because of a liberal election promise and the long gap between New Years Day and Easter long weekend was pretty far. 

Having to also calculate the costs of providing an additional holiday was also factored in. 

I totally agree. If the current Ontario government were to remove "provisions" that if a holiday falls on a weekend (i.e. Boxing Day), then people will have to go to work! Many people believe that it should return to a normal weekday (even if a statutory holiday falls on a weekend). If i were, then Ontario would be like the rest of the province (or even being "Americanized"! sorry that I have to add some insulting points.)

Anyhoo, I really wished that the Ontario government should do more to loosen rules for intercity bus travel. My dream is that I have a bus link from the Allandale Waterfront (or Barrie South) GO station to Collingwood. The Simcoe County LINX offers such service but on a weekends, you have to transfer to two different buses (or something like that).

Aside from what I had discussed, many live venues are losing a lot of money to stay afloat due to the pandemic. Many venues have decided to improvise - charging an entry fee (or even a recovery fee) for patrons who go to concerts/festivals. Reminds me of paying the so-called Airport Improvement Fee (at Canadian airports) or even the departure tax (elsewhere). Thesedays, those fees/charges are now embedded on the price of a plane ticket.

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One random thought to add: TD Bank (in Canada) has recently enabled Samsung Pay for customers who utilize a Samsung Device (Galaxy Smartphones, Galaxy Watch). 

Up until recently, TD (in Canada) was the only bank not offering Samsung Pay or Google Pay for its customers (forcing them to use an unreliable, in-house mobile app solution). It also offers Apple Pay as well. 

While offering Samsung Pay is a good start for TD, I believe that TD (in Canada) should do more to offer it's solutions for other Android users (not using Samsung Smartphones, etc.). 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

EU proposes mandatory USB-C compatibility on all devices using wired charging. Most notably, it impacts the iPhone which is still using the lighting port which can be a struggle for those that don't use wireless charging. Having to carry two different charging cables and adapters to support the same charging functions. 

Feel the struggle with my AirPods which still use lighting and having to remember which adapter is the correct one. My next purchase will probably be one with a wireless case considering that I have been using wireless charging for years for my iPhone at my nightstand. 5W of charging isn't a lot, but it still works even though it takes longer and better options exist. 

https://www.theverge.com/2021/9/23/22626723/eu-commission-universal-charger-usb-c-micro-lightning-connector-smartphones

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25 minutes ago, FutureHeartsJunkie said:

I'm feeling emotional (in a good way) that a new logo is unveiled by CIBC (one of big five banks in Canada). 

It reminds me of one of their old logos from the late 80s:

As for the new logo, it reminded me of a car company that has a similar logo.... 

I heard someone mentioned it on Facebook. The car company logo looks like Renault. 

Having to update their branding costs money especially with all the correspondence and signage that needs changing to reflect the new logo. 

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4 hours ago, GTAmissions1 said:

I heard someone mentioned it on Facebook. The car company logo looks like Renault. 

Having to update their branding costs money especially with all the correspondence and signage that needs changing to reflect the new logo. 

Hahahaha, yes, it does look like the Renault logo.

”Le Bank”, anyone?

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this sounds intriging HBC is  trying mini "Zellers" inside  one of their hudsons bay stores, i wonder if this is to see if theres demand to bring it back?

https://retail-insider.com/retail-insider/2021/09/zellers-store-in-store-launches-inside-of-hudsons-bay-location-photos/?fbclid=IwAR1sT2Hl4WRjQ2PjoSQnijZUBotIMn5FWzHeXUqYDpzqHoNaYFxdLeFMKZk

 

 

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Just bought a movie ticket for James Bond No Time To Die which is Daniel Craig's last film as Bond. Considering that COVID-19 delayed the release and postponing any further isn't possible. Watching in 4DX cashing out my Scene points (still have enough for another 4DX ticket). Considering the direction that Scene is going and how the monthly paid membership CineClub pretty much the ones that benefit frequent moviegoers, I think it is time to cash out my points while I still can at the current value.

I remember when loyalty reward programs actually encourage you to shop at x retailer. Instead now, companies are now selling a premium version with additional benefits to generate additional revenue. I know with PC Optimum, there is the PC Optimum Insiders subscription which is $119 annually. I was lucky to get it at $99 annually because the old pricing got grandfathered in instead of charging me the additional $20. 

I try to avoid the concession stand because of the high markups. $6 for a bottle of water is expensive. Of course, the concession stand is what keeps the theatre operating knowing that people will cave in and purchase food and drinks. 

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Another thought that I had been thinking recently: It's been nearly 5 years since I had saw one lady who works at a mental health organization (I utilised their services many years ago but stopped using long after I got a new career) and I dropped in to talk and to socialize. 

I haven't talked to that person (or persons) for that period of time and while I may be still on their file (and got a contact to that worker), I had a concern that person won't even recognize me (or my voice when I had left a message - in fact, I've left that voicemail message back in June 2021 - in which my call was never returned). 

There's also another person I used to deal with - but while she's within company, her direct phone number was taken over by another worker within it. 

To summarize: I really wanted to follow up with those people to tell them how I've been doing with my life thesedays, but (even though I have my file with them) they might turn a blind eye. 

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Law and Order is in the works for a 21st season. The series started in 1990 was cancelled due to low ratings back in 2010 along with Criminal Intent a year later. Of course the only series that didn't get cancelled was Law and Order: Special Victims Unit currently in the 23rd season with pretty healthy ratings and a stable audience watching weekly with a 24th season already planned for the series.

CBS bringing back CSI: Vegas which is the original CSI: Crime Scene Investigation. 

Somehow the companies are bringing back old series that were pretty popular during their peak time before becoming stale. Trying to bring it into a 2021 lens rather than an approach that worked in the 2000s. Hoping to bring back older viewers and attract new ones to the series. 

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