Bad Deals All Around

Grind for November 28th, 2018

“The great advantage about telling the truth is that nobody ever believes it.” – Dorothy L. Sayers


The Headline

Second weekend of violent protests in France

The Grind

While America was recovering from Thanksgiving, France was protesting en masse and calling for the resignation of President Emmanuel Macron.

More than 80,000 French citizens took to the streets Saturday in what is the second weekend of “yellow vest” protests against tax increases on diesel and petrol.

The protestors, wearing the high-visibility vests that all drivers in France are required to keep in their cars, clashed with law enforcement and demanded President Macron’s resignation.

Over 244,000 people took part in protests throughout France last weekend and roughly 81,000 participated this weekend. At least two people have been killed and more than 600 injured. Scores of people have been arrested, including a man who demanded an audience with Macron while holding a grenade.

In the meantime, Macron’s approval rating has dropped to about 20%.

The Details

French citizens are furious with Macron for his planned gas tax increase, which would bump up the price of 1 gallon of diesel by about 25 cents starting January 1st.

Diesel is the most commonly used fuel in French cars, and prices have already risen by more than 20% over the past year.

The tax increases are designed to discourage people from purchasing vehicles that contribute to climate change, but working class families who drive old cars insist the tax increase is too much.

Apology Accepted

The Headline

AT&T to refund viewers who paid to watch Tiger Woods VS Phil Mickelson

The Grind

After bungling its broadcast of the showdown between Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson last Friday, AT&T has promised to refund viewers who paid to see the event.

AT&T had been hoping to use the event – which was the first of its kind to be telecast in PPV format – to show off its media capabilities following its acquisition of Time Warner in June.

The Details

As soon as technical problems were detected, AT&T removed the paywall for users using its B/R Live streaming video service.

Distributors Comcast, Dish Network, and Charter Communications have also promised not to charge customers who paid for the event, but it is unclear whether they will be paying AT&T for the agreed-upon share of revenues.

“Since Turner (AT&T) streamed the event for free at the last minute due to technical issues…we are happy to do the right thing for our customers,” said Dish, which issued credits to customers who paid using its SlingTV and Dish satellite streaming services.

In case you were wondering, Mickelson defeated Woods with a birdie on the 22nd hole and took home $9 million.

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