According to Alvin Toffler in his book, The Third Wave, a PROSUMER is a person who helps design or customize the products they purchase (“producer” + “consumer”). This, according to Toffler is the next best thing in a capitalist society. Consumers should have the last say and Producers should fashion their products/services according to what the Consumers specify.
I read The Third Wave when I was in college as it was a required reading for my Consumer Education subject. Not much of the things told in book stuck to my mind but this concept I remembered so well because it was after reading the book and learning about consumer rights and responsibilities from my teacher that I started a resolve to call up customer hotlines or write product feedback departments to give my comments, whether negative or positive. In that way, through my feedbacks, I am able to voice out concerns, which those manufacturers or service providers could use to evaluate their products.
I could still remember the time when I called up DZMM to tell them that I enjoy listening to “Todo-todo Walang Preno;” I went to Mrs. Cecil Guidote-Alvarez’s condominium to tell her that I support her environmental programs (and to make my effort sulit, I brazenly asked her to give me two books about the environment so I could integrate it in my lessons–i was teaching Math then but I really did it), I wrote Del Monte to commend them on their creative recipes and if it was possible to have some samples of their products, which they didn’t; and I wrote a letter to the New World Hotel in Makati City to complain about their bad service during our school’s Junior-Senior Prom. All these I bothered to do just to stay true to my own version of the Prosumer.
To continue the tradition, I will be posting here in my blog the top products/product brands/services which I will retain, refrain from using, and consider using. It is my hope that by posting them here in my blog, I’d be able to make the readers to also evaluate the products they are using and the services they are getting.
1. Personal care products like Old Spice, Gillette Ribie 2, Olay, Clear Men, and Vaseline Petroleum Jelly. These products suit my needs, are locally available, and does not cost me much.
2. Transportation services of Tas Trans (a bus company plying the Sta. Cruz-SM Southmall Route) and LRT and MRT. I ride Tas Trans busses to work. These busses are clean, with good air conditioning and big windows, employs courteous ticket conductors and inspectors, and they do not wait for the bus to be filled-in before they run, unlike most others. I prefer the LRT and MRT trains because aside from them running on electricity, which means zero or less pollution, they get me to my destination without having to go through the congested streets of the metro.
3. Food products and brands like Bread Pan, Nescafe, Nature’s Muscovado sugar, Century Tuna, and Minute Maid Pulpy Orange Drink. My reasons for choosing these products are the same as with no.1.
4. Coffee hangout places like Seattle’s Best in Harrison Plaza and Bo’s Coffee at SM MOA. They are good places to spend the afternoon writing and having small chats. These places are not as crowded as other coffee places and the free wi-fi and availability of electrical outlets where I could plug in my laptop add more pogi points. And of course, courtesy to customers is also a primary consideration.
(to be continued…)