30 April 2008

Name Our Glatt Kosher Restaurant

NYC Restaurant Holds Fake Contest, Misleads Customers, And Collects Email Addresses
hat tip Consumerist.com

A small glatt kosher restaurant in New York City's East Village ran a contest where people submitted names for the new restaurant. According to the official rules (all 33 words of it), the $3,000 "will be given to the first person who entered the name we will choose." Eric writes in to note that they've announced their new name—Kosher Village—but they haven't announced any winner. To make things more suspicious, they also registered the domain name "koshervillagenyc.com" on April 12th, over two weeks before the contest ended this past Monday the 28th. Eric adds that "the in-store sign for Kosher Village was put up this weekend, also before the contest deadline." So was there ever a $3k prize, or was the entire contest a scam to drum up publicity and collect email addresses?

contest home page

Sounds pretty fishy to me. But the menu looks pretty good and the prices are reasonable. I hope this is a mistake.


OTOH, If the story is true, I would urge the OU Kashrus administrators to be certain that they want their heksher on this establishment. Its a sign of bad business to do such a thing, halachic considerations and legal considerations of fraud aside and a consumer fairly or unfairly could be led to presume things about the kashrus of an establishment that would be willing to hold a phony contest. Like I said, I hope it is an oversight and a mistake or bad information so that I can come back and report the matter closed. If anyone knows that an award was given, please let me and the Consumerist website know.

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What Words Offend Arabs? The Truth.

Children's Poetry Booklet Recalled After Arabs Complain
(Israeli censorship kowtows to Arabs.
When Will We Tell The Truth Without Fear)

(IsraelNN.com 7 Sivan 5768/June 10, '08) Ynet's web site and Arab complaints against a ten-year-old boy's poem about terrorists has resulted in the recall of all of the Nes Ziona municipality's children's poetry booklets.

Ynet boasts that its coverage of the poem resulted in its being recalled.

The text of the poem (Ynet's translation):

Ahmed's bunker has surprises galore: Grenades, rifles are hung on the wall. Ahmed is planning another bombing!What a bunker Ahmed has, who causes daily harm.Ahmed knows how to make a bomb. Ahmed is Ahmed, that's who he is, so don't forget to be careful of him.We get blasted while they have a blast!Ahmed and his friends could be wealthy and sunny, if only they wouldn't buy rockets with all their money.

Poetry competition director Marika Berkowitz, who published the booklet, was surprised at the protests and told Ynet: "This is the boy's creation and this is what he wanted to express. Of course there should be a limit, but I think the there is no racism here. 'Ahmed' is a general term for the enemy. These are the murmurings of an innocent child."

The Education Ministry told Ynet: "The local authority that published the booklet should have guided the students in a more correct manner through the schools. The district will investigate the issue with the local authorities."
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