How Waterstones thrives without the sound of muzak | Letters

Letters: Soon after he took over, James Daunt reversed the policy of his predecessor and dropped the playing of background music in a large number of Waterstones branches

Your article about the extraordinary turnaround in the fortunes of Waterstones (21 November) omits to mention another reason why so many of us have returned to shop in the store. Soon after he took over, James Daunt reversed the policy of his predecessor and dropped the playing of background music in a large number of Waterstones branches. This meant his customers were able to browse again in peace, stay longer and purchase more books as a result.
Dorothy Lewis

• I agree that live broadcasts of theatre productions are a very good idea (Letters, 20 November); we even have them in Tiverton. What I like about them is the lack of irritating and inappropriate background music which TV programmes seem to have all the time, even on the news. This music is usually drums or someone drowning out the voices with pop tunes which somebody thinks fit the moment. I wish they would stop – it is beginning to sound like the muzak in supermarkets.
Jane Bonnick
Tiverton, Devon

• The report that women are less likely to pass their driving test at all ages (Mirror, signal, sexist jokes? Women fail more driving tests than men, 23 November) included the statement that men are less likely to pass the theory part of the test. Presumably there was no need to discuss this further as everyone knows that men are stupid. Does sexism only apply when it is to the disadvantage of women?
Dr Donald Smith
Haddington, East Lothian

• I discovered the encouraging news that Labour has gained five points in the polls under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership in a tiny item at the bottom of page 14 under the heading “Miliband: party in worse condition under Corbyn” (23 November).
Susan Hoddinott
Cheltenham, Gloucestershire

• Of late the quick crosswords have been a tad easier. Thanks. It’s good for my ego.
Carole Deery
Gildersome, West Yorkshire

• Health issues of the vast majority? No problem (Letters, 23 November).
John Sissons
Ramsey, Isle of Man

• Join the debate – email


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