Big rich companies doing wrong by their employees, customers or other stakeholders during COVID-19

I’ll leave it up to “Big rich” as obviously its hard to blame small or struggling businesses but here’s three examples:

  1. Philadelphia 76ers and New Jersey Devils, both simultaneously owned by 3 billionaires and the Sixers team worth $2 billion on the open market, announced Monday night they were cutting the salaries of any non-contracted employee of either team making $50,000 or more by 20%. Their weasel internal memo said no one was losing their jobs, they would still have benefits etc etc. The memo quickly leaked into the media, and after about 18 hours of outrage, the team owners rescinded and apologized. Yeah, at the end of the day the right thing was done, and OK if the league has to cancel the 2020-21 season, OK, but considering everything going on this was poor optics.

  2. Whenever WrestleMania is held in a city, several smaller promotions and conventions set up shop in that city to take advantage of the 50-70,000 wrestling fans that visit that weekend. WrestleCon booked a convention at the Tampa Marriott, and asked to cancel when WWE moved their event to a small arena in Orlando with no fans. Marriott said NO and sent the promoter a letter saying they would be on the hook for $114,000 for an event that in two weeks will be all but shut down by government order anyway.

  3. I signed a contract to have a gentleman teach a class at one of our facilities. Due to the COVID-19 crisis, we cancelled the class. Delta Airlines will not refund his $600+ airline ticket despite the entire world be closed down.

Who else? Name names!!! Please remember these bad corporate actors the next time they ask for your business. :mad::mad::mad:

Update: Marriott decided to cancel the event at no charge, but just like the Sixers/Devils only did so after a massive Twitter campaign by wrestling fans and several big name wrestlers.

In other words, these fat cat corporations would have gone through with it if no one was alerted.

And of course there’s this a-hole:

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I stopped shopping at Hobby Lobby after the birth control lawsuit. TBH though even before that I wasn’t too crazy about their attitudes – I get that not having their stores open on Sunday (which used to be a good day for me to shop) is their prerogative, but FFS couldn’t they hire a few Jews or Seventh Day Adventists or atheists to work that day?

Amazon has requested donations to pay for sick leave of employees.

After all, Jeff Bezos is too hard pressed to pay for this himself.

All the major airlines are screwing with their customers and telling them they have to pay a cancellation fee if they don’t want “store credit” for cancelled flights.

Smaller airlines like RyanAir are surprisingly just giving out refunds.

That’s an extremely selfish stand to have. The industry on the verge of collapse, liquidity is terrible to the point where paying wages is almost impossible… and you expect them to be able to refund thousands of tickets.

Some solidarity is required these days, also with companies (and its employees) that have income fall to zero by no fault of their own.

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I travel around the USA teaching certification classes. I currently have over $6000 in airline credit because of canceled classes and a European vacation my wife and I had to cancel. The credits are on five different airlines. While it’s true that I have the credits available (for the next year, I believe), this doesn’t help pay my CC bill at the end of the month. They want their money and I’m not getting the income from the classes to offset it.

The owner of the Boston Bruins just can’t stand not being an asshole.

On a positive note Mark Cuban is paying the arena workers in Dallas their hourly wages for games missed.

The article is from the 12th, last interview I heard indicated that the payments will continue

Pretty simplistic take on the whole situation with the airlines. Each airline has it’s own contract of carriage that dictates how it treats cancellations, refunds, vouchers, etc. Many, many people buy the cheapest ticket which almost always means it’s non-refundable and non-changeable. Once the shit hit the fan, many airlines, at least the large US airlines, immediately started allowing people to cancel and rebook or get vouchers for even the most restricted tickets, as well as waiving change fees. That seems pretty reasonable to me. If you’re not happy getting a voucher or the ability to change your previously non-refundable, non-changeable ticket, then I think the airline should be able to charge a cancellation fee. Not sure why you think the airlines should be on the hook for millions of these tickets.

Now as more travel bans/restrictions have gone into effect, the airlines are having to cancel flights and reducing/changing schedules. In many cases if THE AIRLINE cancels your flight or makes a change of more than X hours (depends on airline) you ARE due a refund. Each will have its own process for this. I just had to do this with AA and even though the airline cancelled my flight I still had to “cancel” it on my end and then request the refund via their website. There was a period of over a week where my flight hadn’t yet been cancelled by AA and if I’d initiated the cancellation on my end first, I’m sure it would have defaulted to getting issued a voucher rather than refund, so it pays to wait as long as possible to cancel.


This is helpful to understand the situation. However, what happens to all those vouchers and credits if your airline goes bankrupt or belly-up? While I agree the airlines are being as flexible as they can, for most of their customers, they look at it as a purchase of goods and services not received, and are due a refund.

They get in line with the other creditors.

People who paid for a flight they can’t take aren’t privileged over employees who are due their last paycheck, or contractors who are due payment for services supplied, or holders of bonds who gave their money to buy planes, etc.

Bankruptcy sucks and everyone takes a hit.

Well, in the case of the airlines that could happen in the best of times!:smiley: But really, even though the stakes are lower, the same question could be asked about hundreds of local businesses that are in danger of going under due to lack of business and forced closures. At least the airlines are throwing a bone to those that bought a non-refundable/changeable product.

They can also simply be closed on Sundays. They don’t need to do it with a sign on the door that says “We are closed so our employees can attend church.”

Normally I’d pull for a company, even a large company, who is negatively affected by our current circumstances. Unfortunately, the airline industry as a whole hasn’t made made much of an effort to endear themselves to the public. I don’t know if I would have ever described flying as a fantastic experience, but in recent years it’s become downright miserable. The seats are smaller, there’s less legroom, they’re charging me for carry on luggage, and on occasion they’ll kick you off the plane after you’ve been seated because the airline overbooked the flight. And they might knock your teeth out if you refuse to relinquish your seat.

So, sure, intellectually I can understand why the airlines can’t just give everyone refunds right now. But on the other hand, over the last twenty years or so they’ve been treating their customers like crap. So it’s hard to be sympathetic now that they need something.

Also for everyone crying poverty on behalf the airlines, well the why could t Delta just take my colleagues $600 refund out of their CEOs compensation? He only makes $15 million a year.
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Take heed that ye do not your alms before
men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have
no reward of your Father which is in heaven.
Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a
trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the
synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory
of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.
But when thou doest alms, let not thy
left hand know what thy right hand doeth:
That thine alms may be in secret: and
thy Father which seeth in secret
himself shall reward thee openly.
And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites
are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and
in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men.
Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.
But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy
closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray
to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father
which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.

Add Royal Caribbean to the list. They canceled a cruise then refused to refund a nurses convention. Nurses— you know the medical professionals risking their lives right now?

Yeah, the offered a credit, like that does any good right now. Eventually they relented: only after all getting caught. In other words they would have stiffed them if they could get away with it.
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