back to article Need the toilet? Wanna watch a video ad about erectile dysfunction?

I'm off to the toilet. Would you like to join me? Sorry, that's a silly question. Of course you won't join me – I'm a bloke. Young women often go to the washroom in pairs but dudes generally don't, at least not for the purposes that the washroom was originally designed. And if you are a woman, or non-specific gender, I can …

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  1. Alister Silver badge

    I can see some fun to be had if they introduce IoT Hand Dryers.

    If a washroom has enough, you could perhaps manage to achieve lift-off, or at least create a pressure differential sufficient to expel people from the room.

    1. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken Silver badge
  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Sterling..

    Just sterling. A brilliant end to the week. Thanks.

    :)

  3. Ledswinger Silver badge

    or at least create a pressure differential sufficient to expel people from the room

    With the right fuel, I can achieve that without any IoT nonsense. Although I prefer to put the pressure on olfactory nerves, rather than using simple pressure differentials.

    Mind you, all that interactive crapvertising still isn't as bad as somethings we already have to endure. There's something of a fad for "back of the cubicle door" propaganda from internal communications departments, often featuring pictures of smiley, happy workers. As one female colleague commented, its a bit hard to concentrate when there's the life size face of one of your own team staring back at you as you try and squeeze one out.

    1. Pascal Monett Silver badge
      Trollface

      Who needs fuel ? One block of C4 should be enough to expel everything from the room.

  4. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

    Sticker manufacturer opportunity

    In the UK, which was invaded by the Vandals who then never left, those screens are going to be covered in waterproof felt tip pen tags in no time. That's if they aren't "disrupted" by a sharpened screwdriver.

    There is therefore a market opportunity for Avery labels or similar in the correct format so vandals can give themselves a new, pristine surface to write on. That's assuming they can get near enough because some hacker has modified the machine to run constantly at full power.

    At the other end of the scale I remember visiting a REME base long ago and being allowed into the officers' bogs without an escort (nice people, very trusting). There were racks of military magazines for reading while defecating, in just about every mainstream Western language other than English. Now that's showing off.

    1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge
      Coat

      Re: Sticker manufacturer opportunity

      There were racks of military magazines for reading while defecating,

      Are you sure they were for reading, and not as a softer alternative to the military Izal?

      1. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

        Re: Sticker manufacturer opportunity

        "Are you sure they were for reading, and not as a softer alternative to the military Izal?"

        The "Please replace after reading" stickers were a bit of a giveaway. Also, wasn't Izal, as I recall. Like I say, officer bogs not OR.

    2. Black Betty

      Rear Echelon Mother (um what's an E?)

      Text goes here

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Always use the disabled toilets

    Under-used so they are clean, fragrant and with lots of space, usually with extra's like working soap dispensers and paper towels.

    Facilities teams also prioritise these due to 'political correctness gone mad' and fear of 'making fun of the disableds' (to quote David Brent)

    My conscience is clean - it doesn't make me a bad person :)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Always use the disabled toilets

      If the actual toilets are disabled, I assume a single visit will make them very fragrant indeed.

      I'll see myself out, thank you very much.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Always use the disabled toilets

        In the US they aren't disabled, but they are Accessible, which I always find to be a useful feature in a toilet.

        1. IsJustabloke Silver badge
          Stop

          Re: Always use the disabled toilets

          "In the US they aren't disabled, but they are Accessible, which I always find to be a useful feature in a toilet."

          Hmmm.... whereas the American embassy in Hong Kong has a big sign on the door that says "Handicapped Toilet" not to mention a big sign on a gate that says "Handicapped Access"

          1. elDog Silver badge

            Re: Always use the disabled toilets

            Not to go off on a US signage tangent, but how about a warning "Slow Child Crossing".

            Or "Caution Falling Rocks". That one was my father's favorite. He made up a whole story (with sequels) about the poor indian boy (Northern NY) named "Falling Rocks".

            There must be a compendium of these stupidities. Oh, yes - the internet.

            1. bombastic bob Silver badge
              Trollface

              Re: Always use the disabled toilets

              'Not to go off on a US signage tangent, but how about a warning "Slow Child Crossing".'

              (yeah, U.S. signage tangent)

              On I5 in the Camp Pendleton area (between San Diego and L.A.) it's all open landscape for miles. Along the side of the road there used to be signs labeled 'Caution' in english, 'Prohibido' in Spanish, depicting a man, woman, and kids running across a freeway. The thing is, this was a REAL problem [and no doubt still is, but the signage wasn't there last I checked]. The presumption is that it's illegals that were taken across the border by coyotes and are now "on their own" in the vacinity of a (no longer operational?) border checkpoint in the middle of that stretch of road.

              FYI the sign was similar to this one: https://chnm.gmu.edu/cyh/primary-sources/289 - that one doesn't have the 'Prohibido' underneath it though.

              No similar signs on the public bathrooms at the nearby rest stop, though... (regardless of the amount of wet paper and other mysterious things on the floor)

        2. Mage Silver badge

          Re: Always use the disabled toilets

          Disabled Parking?

          seems a strange concept.*

          Accessible parking for certificate holder makes more sense.

          (*Though Tesco's "Free from" branding horribly mangles the English language. The "Free From" should be UNDER the main foodstuff name, not above it.)

          I dirty bogs are frightening and I tend to look for somewhere else. But the opulent luxury type Dabbs describes are worrying. I always wonder is it some sort of elaborate trap.

          1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

            Re: Always use the disabled toilets

            (*Though Tesco's "Free from" branding horribly mangles the English language. The "Free From" should be UNDER the main foodstuff name, not above it.)

            Still better than "organic" vegetables. I find inorganic ones somewhat indigestible.

          2. Glenturret Single Malt

            Re: Always use the disabled toilets

            Comes from the same stable as "This door is alarmed".

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The increase of instructions on how to use toilets appears to be linked to the use of Intercompany Transfers from our esteemed outsourcing "partners".

    IEnron's London office had great bogs when I visited them in 1998. Real towels, the assortment of moisturisers, thick bog roll, automatic taps with properly heated (i.e. not scalding, not cold) water. It's nice to know they weren't wasting the money they were stealing.

    1. Mark 110 Silver badge

      Hmm - reminds me of the signs in one of our suppliers Chennai office requesting people not to wash their hair in the sink . . .

    2. Tony S

      Yeah, I've seen those notices. Strange icons that instruct people not to stand on the toilets, nor to wee in the sinks. The best one was to highlight urinals are not for number 2s.

      In addition, they had some rather ghastly pictures on their H&S notice boards, showing someone that had serious gashed his leg / buttocks open on a broken toilet seat caused by people standing on the seats. It seems that he had to have about a dozen stitches and a couple of tetanus / antibiotic shots.

      Apparently the cleaner also got a bit unhappy because on a several occasions, he found that his mop bucket (stored in the corner) had been used by people to relieve themselves, presumably because they couldn't work out that the mop stood in it was for washing floors.

      1. Tony Haines

        What gets me is the sign which says "Now wash your hands" which seems to frequently be positioned at eye level above the urinal.

        Personally I prefer to wait until I get to a sink.

        ...now to work out how we can get the guy who wees on the seat to put their knob in a cheesegrater.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          There was an IT contractor who had a very puerile sense of humour. He was known to stretch a sheet of cling film under the office toilet seats.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          ...now to work out how we can get the guy who wees on the seat to put their knob in a cheesegrater.

          Maybe he already did, which is why he wees all over the seat?

    3. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

      "IEnron's London office had great bogs when I visited them in 1998"

      Establishments where people go to spend other people's money, such as advertising agencies, investment banks and Ponzi schemes, tend to have good facilities.

      Establishments where people go to spend their own money tend to have tighter budgets.

  7. PhilipN Silver badge

    Curved Air

    Nice one, Dabbsy. Spot on. One of the best singles of that decade.

    1. David Haig

      Re: Curved Air

      Sonja khristina !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    2. Inventor of the Marmite Laser Silver badge

      Re: Curved Air

      Amen to tyhat - and they are still performing! Found a concert a week or two back so going to see them in November

  8. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  9. Andy Mac

    Adverts?

    Methinks people will more likely spread their wet, shitty hands around than be subjected to yet another advertising vector with no benefit.

    So long and thanks for all the cholera!

  10. Steve Button

    Seems like a good idea...

    ... if you're an advertiser.

    Even better stick screens on the inside of toilet doors, as you are likely to be sitting for a couple of minutes instead of 15 seconds drying your hands.

    I think this would be a terrible thing, as personally I have some of my best ideas sitting on the loo... but that's not going to stop advertisers now, is it?

  11. Alistair Dabbs

    Queue for the video hand dryer

    If you have to queue up to use an IoT hand dryer, does that count as a DoS attack? Of course, if they're queueing up in the Ladies at the same time, it could be DDoS.

    1. Antron Argaiv Silver badge
      Paris Hilton

      Re: Queue for the video hand dryer

      It's only a matter of time before someone figures out how to put "alternate" content on that video screen.

      // Paris...of course

  12. BebopWeBop Silver badge
    Facepalm

    I derive devious pleasure from the inevitable process of setting up in a boardroom for which absolutely no one, least of all IT support, knows how the extensive and very expensive-looking integrated AV equipment works.

    And has been ever so. As soon as my small company - no a little bigger, could afford a small, portable projector We had two that went on the road for external presentations, no matter what the client.

    They have got a little (well a lot) smaller, cheaper and brighter and we now have 6 - but they are still and essential part of travelling kit.

  13. Nick Ryan Silver badge

    Hotel Toilet quality assessment

    Having in the past travelled extensively, both for business and pleasure I took to judging the real quality of an establishment by the state of the toilets.

    As a rule of thumb it stands up pretty well with those establishments only interested in the shiny veneer of quality having appalling quality toilets compared to their front areas an approach which was usually mirrored by being shoddy elsewhere as well. Whereas better quality establishments looked after the rarely seen areas, taking care to ensure that they are clean and working. The ones that just want to appear as quality but don't follow it through everywhere are the ones to want to watch out for due to the usual joys of infestations, food poisoning or just awful food often combined with a steady decline in the quality of service and rising prices.

  14. mahasamatman

    STERCULIUS

    Is the god you're looking for. Terda was a heroic attempt, though.

    1. Arthur the cat Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: STERCULIUS

      Terda was a heroic attempt, though.

      More fibre needed in the diet then.

    2. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken Silver badge

      Re: STERCULIUS

      O Cloacina, Goddess of this place,

      Look on thy suppliants with a smiling face.

      Soft, yet cohesive let their offerings flow,

      Not rashly swift nor insolently slow.

      (A short poem typically attributed to Lord Byron; and I wouldn't put it past him.)

      1. J. Cook Bronze badge

        Re: STERCULIUS

        ... I need signs made up with this on it.

      2. TitterYeNot
        Coat

        Re: STERCULIUS

        Ode to Flavia Cloacina

        I came upon this odious place,

        A look of nausea on my face,

        I perceived the previous sitter,

        Was nothing but a dirty scumbag with absolutely no consideration for other people...

      3. elDog Silver badge

        Re: STERCULIUS

        This will definitely be included as part of my normal dinner conversations.

        For some reason my family and friends all seem to like to discuss inflows (good food) and outflows (good outflows.) If we're in company, some of the company may hie themselves off to the smoking room or crapper.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Three customers' facilities stand out in my long memory.

    RAF - treated us as officers with full access to the sofa lined Officer's Mess.

    Army - sometimes treated us as squaddies.

    Aircraft manufacturer - our female team members were allowed to use the office staff toilets. The guys had to use the shop floor workers' toilets - which had no locks on the cubicle doors. As it was a weekend we were spared the foreman kicking open the doors.

  16. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    Judge of quality ?

    Screw the marble floors. My only yardstick when it comes to judging a company's true quality is its toilet paper.

    I cannot count the number of fancy office areas I have been in where it all looks expensive and upper-class, but they have rolls of sandpaper waiting for you in the single-access rooms.

    I have, on occasion, been pleasantly surprised by soft tissue of obviously upper quality, but it would seem that most companies above a certain size are perfectly content to have their employees sit on a rash all day long.

    Of course, I cannot judge the quality of the tissue in the Manager's section - as a consultant I never get access to those areas. Somehow I doubt they'll be wiping with the same sandpaper as their underlings. Can't imagine why, but I just don't see it.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Judge of quality ?

      Sometimes I believe it's a polite hint you should use your house toilet - a good one, because if some people had to clean the mess they leave in workplace toilets, probably they would avoid it.

    2. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken Silver badge

      Re: Judge of quality ?

      A place I used to work at didn't have different toilets for management and non-management staff. And one kind of (crappy) tissue for all. But they did have the sort of holder-thingies where you have two bog rolls in them side by side. One night someone who had access to both the right keys and a label maker replaced one of the rolls in every holder with quality tissue. And stuck a neat label reading "Management only" next to them.

      Caused quite an uproar the next day.

    3. Antron Argaiv Silver badge
      WTF?

      Re: Judge of quality ?

      Worse than sandpaper, is that thin, polished (calendared?) stuff that seems popular for some reason in Europe. Sandpaper, I could understand, because it scrapes the material away (perhaps overly harshly) but polished paper seems not to meet the basic requirements for the task at hand -- neither absorbent, nor grippy.

  17. cosymart
    FAIL

    Bog Design

    Standard design for toilets anywhere: 3 urinals & loos, 2 or 3 sinks and ONE hand dryer that on a good day just about reached ambient temperature because the fan motor was under rated. Don't the people who design loos use them?

    1. Red Bren
      Flame

      Re: Bog Design

      Thanks for highlighting two of my pet hates.

      It's a sad fact of life that not everyone washes their hands after heeding the call of nature, but it's no good putting signs on the walls saying "Wash your hands" if you don't provide enough sinks. Who washes their hands but then can't be bothered to dry them?

      And why do cheap hand dryer manufacturers think temperature is more important than airflow? A design based on an asthmatic dragon is going to burn my hands rather than dry them.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: Bog Design

        "Who washes their hands but then can't be bothered to dry them?"

        I do a lot of driving, which sometimes requires stopping at a motorway services for a quick slash. It's mind boggling how many people who

        a) don't wash their hands at all,

        b) press the tap and wave their hands near the water or

        c) at least wet their hands in the water before walking out with wet hands.

        Many times, it's the people in suits, freshly pressed shirts and probably an expensive car outside.

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