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Britain's E-minister - Patricia Hewitt - paraded her grasp of technology and the ability to sniff out a bargain in front of a select committee hearing on Wednesday when she outlined how she recently bought a new television.

Unfortunately for Britain's fledgling e-conomy, it appears that Ms Hewitt went to a shop to make the purchase and used a catalogue (one assumes made of paper) rather than Web site to do her research.

This will come as crushing blow to e-tailers who would have hoped that Ms Hewitt - of all people - would have bought online.

Said Ms Hewitt: "I recently had the experience as a consumer of having my main television set at home fall to pieces, so I went out, with the children of course, to find a new one.

"Fortunately, I knew what I was looking for, which was an integrated digital television set, but I was only able to get it and get a wide-screen integrated digital television set at the excellent price of £399, by reading very, very small print in, as it happens, the Argos brochure," she said.

By 'eck, that's impressive. ®

Related Links

For a full unedited transcript of what Ms Hewitt has to say in front of the Culture, Media and Sport select committee, go here.

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