Andrew Dickens: Refusing to use the app is either laziness or childish petulance

Author
Andrew Dickens,
Publish Date
Mon, 25 Jan 2021, 12:19PM
(Photo / NZ Herald)
(Photo / NZ Herald)

Andrew Dickens: Refusing to use the app is either laziness or childish petulance

Author
Andrew Dickens,
Publish Date
Mon, 25 Jan 2021, 12:19PM

So Covid is in the Community. No great surprise, we all knew it was just a matter of when. 

Last week I hosted ZB's Drive Show and started with an editorial as you always do. 

In it, I railed at New Zealanders pathetic usage of the Covid App. I criticised opinion writers like Peter Dunne and Richard Prebble who spent the summer dissing the app.  I shamed the vast majority of customers at my supermarket who breezed past the QR code without scanning it when the process takes seconds.  I know that because I got my son to time me. 

I got a lot of support but also a lot of criticism. One comment stuck in my mind from a bloke called Michael.  Michael told me to “Jump in the River, Mate. You’re so self righteous.  I’ll scan when there’s community transmission and not before”. 

So, how are you feeling about that now Michael? 

The infected woman left MIQ on Wednesday January 13.  She started feeling iffy on Friday 15.  She finally got tested on the Friday 22, it was confirmed on Saturday and announced yesterday. 

So the virus was in the community for a week, Michael.  But because you didn’t know, I presume you weren't swiping.  I wonder if you went shopping at Helensville Countdown last week.  I wonder how many people who went shopping at Helensville Countdown swiped in.  Based on what I’ve seen all over the country, I would venture five eights of FA. 

Not using the app until there is a case in the community is like refusing to wear a seatbelt until you've had a car crash.

The app works on most phones.  It works on cheap smartphones which you could buy if it doesn't work on your old clunker. It works even better now that it has Bluetooth and yet so many of us refuse to use it. It’s not the government’s fault.  Its yours. It’s either massive laziness or childish petulance.  Ask yourself what your motivation has been.

After the announcement at 4pm yesterday, there was disappointment and some anger at the delay in the release of the public places the woman had visited in the week, which we know number 30. 

They were posted on the Ministry of Health and media websites at 9pm.  Five hours later. But if app usage was widespread the people who needed to know would have been pinged and would know even if they hadn’t heard the news. 

The app is fast, efficient and the only defence we have other than social distancing.  And it stands between us and lockdowns. It may not work on older phones but, my god, it's a lot better FA.