Thursday, 13 May 2010

Rules I

I like rules.  Good rules make for a peaceful harmonious society.
Take for example the rule here that people shouldn't talk on a mobile phone on a train,  in a library or other place where it might cause irritation to the general public who isn't at all interested in the trite mundanities of a stranger's life.  The rule makes train travel so much more pleasant.  There is also a rule that it's ok for children to stand on seats on the train, but they should take off their shoes.  It keeps children happy that they can look out the window and at the shinkansen hurtling past,  and at the same time it keeps seats cleaner and less susceptible to wear.
A rule that said any political campaign vehicles have to have their loud speakers set to 60 decibels or less would  definitely be a good rule, dramatically improving quality of life during election campaings.

Some rules however are are just dumb: ill conceived,unreasonable and very irritating...

Some recent examples....
My work rules:

- non full time teachers may not use university computers, including for work related matters.
- non full time teachers must not keep anything beyond  what fits in a 15cm deep, A4 size drawer  at the university 
- teachers must keep exam papers of students (two semesters) for one year after the test has been done, but the exam papers must not be kept at the university...
- teachers must dispose of exam papers in a way that maintains the privacy of students, but teachers are not allowed to use the university shredder.

Hiro's work rule
- starting times are staggered - either 9 am or 9.30 am - but starting earlier doesn't mean your finishing time is earlier.
- a person going on a business trip by plane may not go to the destination early or return later
even if it is a weekend and using their own time.  For example if there is a meeting in Kagoshima (south of Kyushu island) at 10am, the employee alsmost always has to get up super early to be on the first plane of the morning to get to the meeting on time.  Going to Kagoshima, on Sat,  spending a leisurely weekend and being bright fresh to go to the meeting on Mon. morning, is not permitted - because the rule is that if you are enjoying yourself it might be a junket - even though you are paying your own accommodation. .  If a business trip ends on a Friday afternoon,  the return plane ticket must also be on the Friday.  And yet the rule also says if there is an overseas trip like to S America - an employee will go on Sat, will arrive back Sun, will go to work Mon, and will not get time off in lieu.

- workers cannot keep frequent flier points for work related travel,  but at the same time, they don't
save them for the company's use either...

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