Tag Archives: Kate Rock

“Some drivers are better than others!” says tyre firm

Think you’re a good driver? Take this psychological test to find out if you’re a ‘punisher’, an ‘escapee’ or a know-it-all

Whether you shout and swear at bad drivers who cut you up or are blissfully unaware of the road wars happening around you, people cope with rush-hour driving in different ways.

Now a group of psychologists has identified seven ways in which people respond on the road and have created an interactive quiz based on its research.

Personalities range from ‘the competitor’ for whom life is a race to ‘the punisher’ who takes it upon themselves to get even with bad drivers.

Source: Daily Mail, 8th September 2015


What kind of driver are you? This latest piece of research suggest you fall into one of seven categories, although this research falls into a certain category itself – PR for a tyre manufacturer:

The study was carried out by experts at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) with tyre manufacturer Goodyear.

That said, the involvement of LSE is interesting, as it’s their story which gets the write-up in the newspapers:


Where does this fall on the Bad PR spectrum? It’s a tough question. On the one hand, the involvement of LSE and Dr Chris Tennant may suggest there’s more to the science and legitimacy of this research than we see in the majority of Bad PR stories.

On the other hand, it’s not unusual for these science-led PR stories to involve very little science, instead using the reputation of a professional body or organisation to hide the fact that this article is little more than an advert for Goodyear.

In fact, even when the science is legitimate, the involvement of PR can taint it and leave it essentially worthless. It’s why, in my opinion, professional scientists and research bodies ought to stay well away from PR, if they want to keep their reputation beyond reproach.

“Parents do a lot of driving!” says tyre manufacturer (this year)

Mum and dad’s taxi service: Parents drive 27,000 miles ferrying their children around

Parents often joke about providing a taxi service for their children and new figures show it’s no wonder they feel like full-time chauffeurs.

Parents rack up 26,741 miles driving their children around by the time they turn 20, according to a new study.

As parents ferry their children to and from school, friends’ houses and clubs, it means they clock up 197 days at the wheel.

Source: Daily Mail, 2 June 2014


It’s an age-old story: the put-upon parent and ferrying their children around, being treated like a taxi service. In this particular instance, it’s easy to see who placed this story into the press:

Meanwhile, parents are sat waiting for their children in the car for 30 hours and 46 minutes a year, according to the study by Goodyear.

Goodyear, of course, being the tyre manufacturer – highlighting to parents just how much driving is involved in raising a child.

But, as I mentioned, this is an age-old story, and Goodyear aren’t the first to realise the newsworthiness of this fairly inane finding. Take, for example, a story which appeared in the Mail back in 2013, on behalf of Sainsbury’s car insurance:

Taxi of mum and dad ‘would cost £55 a week at black cab rates’

The taxi service of mum and dad would cost around £55 a week if charged at black cab rates, a survey has found.

Parents are each clocking up more than 1,000 miles, putting nearly £2,000 on the family ‘meter’ and spending more than three full days’ waiting time each year as they act as unpaid chauffeurs for their children.

Collectively Britain’s ten million parents are clocking up an annual bill of nearly £20billion in running costs plus another £10billion ‘waiting time’, according to the study by Sainsbury’s Bank car insurance.

Source: Daily Mail, 23 March 2013


Or, indeed, the following from the Mail in June 2012, courtesy of Sainsbury’s car insurance again:

‘Taxi’ parents spent two days a year waiting in their cars for their offspring

Parents who double as their children’s unpaid chauffeurs spend more than two and a half days a year sitting in their cars ‘waiting’ for their off-spring to finish their sporting and social events, new research reveals today (Thursday).

The ‘mum and dad cabbies’ waste on average an hour and a quarter of their lives every week on stand-by while their sons and daughters do their thing – after they’ve been driven to their appointments, says the report by Sainsbury’s car insurance.

Source: Daily Mail, 14 June 2012


In fact, eagle-eyed readers might recognise the poor, put-upon parent in the photos accompanying each of the three stories – given that the Mail used precisely the same set of stock photos for all three articles. They very much seem to be the Daily Mail’s go-to stock driving family.

This poor lady isn’t the only stock-parent cursed to spend eternity behind the wheel, however – the same story also appeared in June 2011 on behalf of Halford’s Autocentre and even as far back as February 2008, when the AA brought it to the Mail’s attention.

It’s enough to drive you to distraction.