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Monday, March 30, 2015

Corporate Concern Trolling: Always Good for a Derisive Chuckle.

Indiana: The Worst Place Ever?

It is if you listen to Apple CEO and billionaire, Tim Cook (scroll down).

Enacting a state-law religious freedom restoration act makes it a veritable hotbed of discrimination and such. According to him of the ironclad principles.

However, if you have an ounce of intellectual integrity, you'd ignore Tim Cook, given that he just opened the world's largest Apple store in the United Arab Emirates last month.

That would be the same United Arab Emirates where you can be put on trial for "gay handshakes" and other through-the-looking-glass views of human rights.

So, think of that when pondering Cook's admonition that "opposing discrimination takes courage." When dollars are on the line, his courage is placed into some kind of medically-induced coma. Well, OK, to be fair--Apple also expanded into Saudi Arabia this year, too, so...

You. Gotta. Be. Kidding. Me.
What the Hell, man?

Oh, and speaking of corporate posturing--Angie's List, too, is just so concerned about Indiana these days, alleging that it has to pass on the expansion of its headquarters in Hate Central. 

Because Integrity.

Or is there just the outside chance it's trying to posture for good publicity in the wake of major credibility problems posed by a lawsuit filed three weeks ago in Pennsylvania and the likelihood that public funding would not be approved? You decide!

 Filed March 11 in U.S. District Court in Philadelphia, the lawsuit alleges that Angie's, an online consumer review service, manipulates company ratings that are sold to its subscribers as impartial user reviews. It does so, the lawsuit claims, by giving paid advertisers preferential treatment, such as boosting their visibility on the site and suppressing negative reviews.

"Angie's List does not help members find the 'best' service provider, but rather the one who paid the most money to Angie's List," the complaint says. "This certainly is not 'always placing the interests of the consumer first,' " as the company says in its public filings.

Debra DeCourcy, an Angie's spokeswoman, said it is company policy not to comment on pending litigation. The company's lawyers have not yet filed a response in court.

The lawsuit was brought by Pennsylvania resident Janell Moore, an Angie's member since 2012, according to court documents. Moore says she relied on Angie's reviews in 2014 to hire a remodeling contractor who didn't finish the work and refused to refund her $4,000.

According to the lawsuit, when she tried to file a negative review, she learned from an Angie's employee that other subscribers had given the contractor bad reviews as well — only they didn't show up on the site. The suit claims that's because Angie's suppresses bad reviews of paid advertisers by hiding them or not counting them toward the companies' A-F rating.

Advertising has become a substantial source of revenue for the company, dwarfing that of subscriptions, according to its annual reports. The company made $241.9 million from service providers in 2014 vs. $73.1 million from members.

The lawsuit comes at a critical juncture for Angie's, as it seeks $18.5 million in taxpayer assistance to expand its headquarters on the Near Eastside. City-County Council members in both parties have expressed support for the project, while acknowledging that many of their constituents remain deeply skeptical of giving the company public assistance.

The timing of the attack of alleged integrity is...intriguing.

Corporations: the principle usually follows the money.


  1. People didn't know about that other stuff (cause the elite didn't tell them) and they don't care anyway (because the elite didn't tell them to, and because there's no social status to be gained from affecting a posture of moral outrage over them).

    I am surprised by my own amazement at the insincerity, cynicism, and transparent hypocrisy of the discourse surrounding this whole thing. Surprised because I should be used to it by now, that they're all just liars lying to each other.

  2. What a great post, Mr. Price. It is actually quite funny in a sick sort of way