Corrupted counters

  • Date: 03/01/2000

A ship broker was negotiating the details of a fixture directly with two principals. The final clause on an offer ended in two separate paragraphs, each of two lines. When the broker forwarded the message the system ignored the blank line between the paragraphs and forwarded it as a single paragraph of four lines. The recipient counter-offered on the basis that the last paragraph should be deleted. This was intended as a reference to the four lines as received. The counter-offer was accepted on the understanding that the “last paragraph” only referred to the last two lines. In another case a ship broker received a message where the sender had accepted an offer with the exception of three clauses upon which they made a counter-offer. When passing this message the system simply left out the middle of the three clauses. Although a large gap was left on the message received, the text simply provided that the party accepted the offer with the exception of two clauses. The counter-proposal was accepted on that basis.

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