No Guinness I Will Not Verify My Age!

Really?  Come on, this is the second time I have followed a company that wants me to verify my age on twitter.  Why?  I don’t get why websites do it either, but that is for another time.  First it was BushmillsUSA that wanted me to verify my age, now GuinnessIreland wants me to verify my age so I can follow them on Twitter.  Ahh, no.  What’s to stop me from entering in a fake birthday? You’re not collecting IDs; I’m 37 but if I was 12 you wouldn’t know anyway.  I think it is ridiculous, so I will not be following you… Sorry.  And by the way you don’t need to be following GuinnessIreland to see your twitter feed, You should make your account “Private” otherwise your policy makes no sense….

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15 Responses to “No Guinness I Will Not Verify My Age!”

  1. Reuben gray Says:

    I agree, it’s not like they have anything interesting to say anyway.
    I hate when websites do it and especially the double check. I alway pick a random date and some websites want you to verify what you just entered. It’s a pain in the ass. All you need is a question. Are you over 18 or 21 or whatever the local drinking age is. Yes gives you the site. No gives you a picture of a fluffy bunny wrapped in cotton wool.

  2. TheBeerNut Says:

    Both the same company, of course.

  3. Simply Beer Says:

    The Beer Nut & Reuben, it is just Puritan Thinking. what are the website showing that any kid doesn’t see at any restaurant? They can’t order beer, attempt to buy beer, what it the point?

  4. The Beer Nut Says:

    It’s their legal people and how they have chosen to interpret the laws prohibiting marketing alcohol to the underage. If someone on Diageo’s web team pointed out how stupid the whole thing was, the in-house lawyers would say “You can’t be too careful with these things, now just go and do what we say”.

    Rational thinking doesn’t enter the picture.

  5. Simply Beer Says:

    One day I hope rational people will prevail… Until then, Relax, have a homebrew ;-)

  6. Dusseldorf Alt Says:

    Hey guys, I’ve a bit of first hand experience in this area. Basically,if you’re signed up to Drink Aware (and a few other voluntary codes of conduct – eg MEAS) you need to have age verification. It’s stupid I know,but if you dont do it you can be reported and heavily fined for not complying. Likewise if you do an in pub promotion you have to have the drink aware logo or you can be reported to MEAS. Like I said,ridiculous,but you’ll see more and more companies doing it (Heineken and Cooley both spring to mind) as its better to be safe than sorry.

    Please don’t take this as a defence of it, just the explanation behind it. :)

  7. The Beer Nut Says:

    Cooley has “Are you over the legal drinking age in your country of residence? YES / NO”.

    Why doesn’t everyone do this if that’s all it takes for voluntary code compliance?

  8. Simply Beer Says:

    Here is this website From Dusseldorf Alt’s post (Drink Aware http://www.drinkaware.co.uk/ and MEAS – http://www.meas.ie) So basically company’s sign up for this and get policed by MEAS members? Sounds crazy. Take a look at the links and you can decide if this a good idea or a select few bullying the the rest of us.

  9. The Beer Nut Says:

    There’s a DrinkAware.ie as well.

    The drinks industry signs up to these things because the alternative is fully-toothed government regulation. It’s the lesser of two evils.

  10. Dusseldorf Alt Says:

    Been trying to post this one by phone the last two hours, hopefully it works by laptop…

    The Beer Nut hit the nail on the head when he says its the lesser of two evils. I’ve seen some of MEAS’ proposals, and if they had their way there would be absolutely NO advertising, sponsorship or promotion of alcohol in Ireland, and this includes Twitter and Facebook (although I’m not sure how they’d do that). Drink Aware was actually started by Diageo a number of years ago as a corporate responsibility programme, and most major alcohol companies are now a part of it. Its not ideal, but it keeps the likes of MEAS, MAAD, etc (and by extension full on government regulation) at bay.

  11. Simply Beer Says:

    Thanks for the great info Dusseldorf & BeerNut. how they can monitor twitter and facebook will be a ginormous task for them since the internet is about as close to a borderless society as there is.

  12. The Beer Nut Says:

    DA, I don’t think you mean MEAS.

    MEAS are an industry group made up of Diageo, Heineken, C&C, Pernod Ricard and a couple of smaller players. Big Drink. They’re the ones promoting the age-verification bullshit as a sop to actual regulation of their industry.

    SB, no-one monitors this. That’s the joy of self-regulation. You cover your own ass just in case someone calls you on it. If you inconvenience your customers while doing it, well that’s a minor concern.

    For the record, none of Ireland’s craft breweries have any age verification on their websites or social media. It’s only the producers of industrial macroswill like Guinness who do it.

  13. Dusseldorf Alt Says:

    My apologies Beer Nut,you are spit on to correct me there.
    Even though MEAS is self regulating,there are still heavy fines if breached. For example if,say,Carlsberg were to run a promotion that fell foul of the guidelines,Heineken or C&C (or even you or I) can make a complaint. The advertising authority can also get called in as well,or even legal action (for example,if running an alcohol TV ad,there cannot be any more than 4 alcoholic beverages in any one shot,and all the actors must be at least).

    Another reason that the big companies do the age thing is to cover themselves in other markets. France used to have (possibly still do) extremely strict alcohol advertising policies,so if you’re a multinational just apply the same rule to all markets and you’re covered. Also I know that because Diageo and Heineken have operations in the USA,and export to them,there’s a whole other bunch of regulations that need to be adhered to,even if they don’t apply to Ireland.

    It’s a murky world out there in the drinks industry at times. By the way,I only stumbled on this site earlier through twitter, it’s really great!

  14. Azkyroth Says:

    I’m mystified as to why you’re supposed to verify your age before accessing beer-related websites or web content in the first place, since laws generally won’t let them sell you a case over the net. Is there some new technology that allows you to get intoxicated from javascript?

  15. Simply Beer Says:

    Who ever comes up with that will be a rich SOB


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