loss in revenue

Today in history, March 22nd 1873, Puerto Rico officially, Abolished slavery. Although that date was the official date for the abolition of slavery, enslaved Africans and their descendants still suffered under the conditions of slavery for a minimum of three more years, while slave owners were given money, and land agreements in their favor to compensate for the incoming loss to their revenue. Even after that, previously enslaved Africans and African descendants worked under similarly harsh conditions under the same “employer” for low wages.

It’s now been 144 years later, and I would implore us, Puerto Ricans , to reflect on what the abolition meant, and how the effects of race-based social structure still lingers on in current day Puerto Rico, and the Puerto Rican diaspora. How are conditions like for Puerto Rican’s of African descent, what are conditions like for Puerto Rican’s who’s African heritage is worn on their skin? What can we do to continue fighting against anti-blackness, and ensure a more inclusive, and less discriminatory Puerto Rican culture?

vanityfair.com
Trump’s Tax Plan Would Be 23,500 Times Better for the Ultra-Rich than the Poor
Yes, really. It would also raise the deficit by $3.4 trillion.
By Bess Levin

It is instructive to recall the many instances in which the Republican Party, in a more dignified universe, might have been expected to disown Donald Trump. On the campaign trail, there was the infamous “grab ‘em by the p—y” fiasco. Since taking office, there have been a gobsmacking number of tweets that might have prompted concern for his mental state, like the one in which a sitting president, doing his best impression of a tween-age mean girl, attacked Mika Brzezinski and claimed she’d had a facelift because she was mean to him on TV; or when he baselessly accused the F.B.I. director he had fired of criminal activity, based on a botched Fox News segment; or when he went to the mat to defend his eldest son’s meeting with a Kremlin-linked lawyer after being promised damaging information about Hillary Clinton straight from the Russian government.

Of course, we all know why, against all odds, the G.O.P. has stood by 45: tax cuts. Yes, the prospect of shrinking the government while simultaneously transferring trillions to the rich takes precedence over potentially punishing the president for any unsavory campaign dealings with a foreign government. Especially when, as a new analysis of Trump’s proposed tax plan shows, said redistribution would be bigger and bolder than anything in Paul Ryan’s wildest dreams.

According to the Tax Policy Center, the cuts that Team Trump included in their bullet-point outline last April could result in a loss of revenue between $3.4 trillion and $7.8 trillion over 10 years. To whom will those benefits go? We’ll give you two guesses, but you’ll only need one.

alalunastuff  asked:

Hey Jen, you trully are a rare gem for any fandom worthy to have you! Beyond happy you're part of the Olicity fandom! Only one thing I would like you to address, esp given your knowledge of TV and how the business works. So, what is your view on ratings for Arrow Season 5? The decline in ratings goes ofc accross shows and channels as a general trend nowadays. But specifically how do you feel about Arrow ratings this year? TY!

What a sweet thing to say. I am but one among many, but you are so incredibly kind. Thank you. Hope you don’t mind that I’m publishing this ask because I always like ratings questions. I think they are fun. Yes. I am weird. I don’t know if it’s knowledge. It’s more a weird obsession combined with some (hopefully) educated guesses. (Some of this will be a repeat for those who’ve read my thoughts on ratings before).

Stumbled on this article today. Vulture always takes a look at returning/aging dramas and writes an article on rating trends every year. It’s a good read. The take away is it’s been a rough year for everyone. Most returning/aging dramas saw a significant drop in their live ratings. This was The CW:

31% drop is… well… ouch. 

I agree with Vulture. I don’t know a network executive that would be happy with any of these drops because they like money. Loss of revenue is not good. Networks ain’t never gonna be a fan of that. A live ratings decrease = a loss of ad based revenue. 

But am I worried about Arrow? NOPE. The single most important question any fan of a television show that airs on The CW should ask is…

How in sweet holy heaven does The CW make money?

Keep reading

To those hating on Lay for not being a part of EXO’s comeback...

With the recent block (some are calling it a ban) on Korean entertainment in China, several Korean entertainment companies have had concerts cancelled, Dramas pulled and brand deals broken. To recoup some of these revenue losses many companies are pushing for their popular Chinese entertainers to promote solo in China to get around the “Hallyu Ban.” I believe this is the case with Lay as well as GOT7’s Jackson. It sucks but currently it is a necessary evil. With many of these solo obligations made prior to EXO’s comeback date being scheduled, it is understandable that contracts and appearances agreed upon before the comeback date would take precedence or Lay as well as SM would be facing legal issues. Remember despite having his own  studio set up in China, Lay is still represented by SM entertainment and more than partially responsible for approving his solo en-devours. 

anonymous asked:

Lol if they are serious about suing, kindly remind them how that went for Digital Homicide , a game dev. Who sued a reviewer for giving his game a bad review, which it truly deserved. Just watch how he (Jim Sterling) handled the legal stuff and court stuff- he won the case against the game dev. Who tried suing for "defamation and loss of revenue". Video is by Jim Sterling on YouTube called "why Jim Sterling was sued for 10 million"

i hope the figure is $10 million I love it

Laid off to give my work to foreman's girlfriend and waste three years of my life? Cool enjoy the OHS fines!

So a month ago our shop foreman got his girlfriend hired into the parts department, which was separate from his department. She started complaining she was bored and didn’t have enough work. Out of the 7 people in my department, five of them stood around talking all day, one was management busy doing daily paperwork and lastly was myself who was kept so busy doing four other people’s positions after they were laid off. I hardly had time in a day to take my own lunch break to keep up with my daily duties. Anyways.

She started complaining to management that she wasn’t busy enough in a day and wanted more work. Management never once asked me if there were any duties I could pass on to keep her busy, which I would’ve gladly handed some over. A week after she was hired I was sat down and given a layoff notice for “not enough work” and economic slowdown. I’d been there for three years and the manager had Told me only two weeks prior to the new hire that I would get to enroll in my apprenticeship this month. He obviously had no intention of actually following through on my apprenticeship, which now three years worth of practical hours were wasted. They were going to shove all of my duties onto the new girl, also forgetting I was the only certified forklift operator in the building and had to unload freight trucks all day in between other duties.

So the day after my layoff takes effect, I call into occupational health and safety and call in every single infraction that I saw over the course of my employment and really drove home the point of now they don’t have a forklift operator which is a huge fine in itself. Also reported mechanics smoking less than a foot from a dirty oil disposal tank, mechanics without appropriate drivers license driving class 1 vehicles outside of the lot, improper storage of dangerous and hazardous materials, improper use of grinding and cutting equipment without appropriate safety equipment, employees climbing and scaling racking in the warehouse, uncertified employees fork lifting other employees on the forks of the forklift without harnesses or man-basket, no safety procedure for evacuation of building or muster points and lastly letting people who’ve been stripped of drivers licence for medical reasons drive company vehicles off the lot and drive heavy equipment in the compound. I was also able to provide photographic and video proof of most of these incidents.

OHS called me back after reviewing the information and informed me that they had passed on some of the infractions (driving ones) to RCMP to review and that both the documented drivers and well as the company would receive charges for these. As a result of my report the business operations are suspended until further notice to give them time to get everyone certified and licensed appropriately and are facing some very heavy fines.

There are twelve mechanic bays and one alone down for a day makes the business loose $5000/day. That’s $60,000/ day losses in revenue for just the shop and about $20,000/day for parts department. $80k losses a day in revenue plus upwards of $100K in fines and certifications costs.

BONUS: the manager was fudging the employment application numbers to make it seem like there wasn’t enough certified locals to employ so that he could bring in people from his home country- England. I also called the provincial and federal immigration and employment offices and reported what he was doing. Currently we would get upwards of 100 journeyman resumes a week for the last year and he brought two Englishman over in the last 6 months who were first year apprentices. No one Currently employed faces deportation but the company as a whole will have importation of labour freeze for up to ten years and also faces major fines for falsifying information that led to importing workers.

————————————–

Here is another example of out right manipulation. What makes this post especially bad is that conscious-ramblings plays the LGBTA card and Lucystarkid circles the wagon.

Absolutely no one should ever guilt you in to buying a product. Harry is a wealthy adult who just signed an $80 million contract. He does not need your money.

We as consumers have power! Do you want to become an activist. Spend your money at companies were you respect their business practices.

Sony only severed ties with Kesha’s abuser, Dr. Luke because of fan out rage and loss of revenue as a result. So yes, we can make a difference.

I have no idea if these two bloggers are incentivized to manipulate or they just want to maximize Sony’s revenue under the guise of helping Harry. Either way it is inappropriate and inexcusable.

We as a fandom cannot allow this manipulation and abuse to continue.

Corporate welfare is subsidized by our taxes. Corporations avoiding taxes passes on the burden of running the country, while the losses in tax revenues are used to cut social programs. These tax avoidance schemes have to end. 

(NOTE: Yearly tuition for all US students totals $60 billion)

like k if you’re homeless and starving and lift some food or sanitary wipes or anything actually necessary for your wellbeing i wont judge you in a million years but the shoplifting community on tumblr is so fucked. y’all are completely ignorant to how you’re affecting retail staff when you decide that you just Need that fucking lip gloss or mascara or booty shorts or whatever. i just scrolled through the shoplifting tag real quick and the things i saw lifted were a choker, some lip gloss, a bunch of makeup, and for what?? to feel like you’re rebelling against capitalism??? none of that shit is necessary for your wellbeing and the staff that let it happen are the ones that get into shit for your crime. as someone who works in retail i can assure you we’re trained to prevent theft, and when it happens we’re held responsible. this can result in written warnings or termination!! not to mention that the loss in revenue can result in cut staff!!! is another persons job really worth those 4 dollar false eyelashes. honestly the shit i see on this site is mindblowing. 

Okay, but has anyone seen the movie After the Ball?

It’s on Netflix, and it’s got Adrinette and Ladrien written ALL OVER IT. Basically, fashion-Cinderella? Featuring Evil!Sabine

  • Marinette is just graduating from fashion school, but is having trouble finding a job.
  • So she goes to work for her father’s friend’s fashion company, Gabriel.
  • However, Marinette’s stepmother, Sabine, works at Gabriel, with her two daughters, Chloe and Lila.
  • They’re conspiring to destroy Gabriel, and can’t have Marinette rising in the ranks so they put her to work sorting buttons and other odd jobs.
  • Working next to the button room is the shoe-designer, Adrien, son of the company owner.
  • The two hit it off immediately, and Marinette already feels herself falling for him as he encourages her to keep working hard and she’ll outdo her stepmother.
  • Chloe and Lila succeed in running Marinette out of the company, taking credit for her designs in the process and framing her for leaking designs to the rival design company, Akuma.
  • With the help of her father, she disguises herself, with the help of her best friend Alya, as the legendary designer known as Ladybug.
  • “Ladybug” quickly impresses Gabriel with her designs and quickly becomes his star apprentice, buddying with Adrien and the design assistant, Nino.
  • Adrien tracks down Marinette to her father’s bakery to check on her, and asks her to the fashion ball.
  • Marinette is conflicted since she was invited as Marinette by Adrien, and as Ladybug by Gabriel, and decides to do both.
  • While changing disguises in a storage room, she overhears Sabine and the owner of Akuma, Mr. Hawk, conspiring to steal designs and frame Ladybug. Ladybug runs to tell Gabriel, but Gabriel has already heard Sabine’s story and fires Ladybug.
  • Upset, Ladybug runs from the ball, but not before Adrien puts the pieces together that Ladybug is Marinette.
  • With his loss of revenue, Gabriel prepares to sell his company to Akuma.
  • Luckily, Adrien and Nino have a plan, and go to Marinette’s bakery to get her and Alya in on it.
  • Adrien confesses to Marinette that he knows she’s Ladybug, and kisses her.
  • Marinette tricks Chloe and Lila, who had followed Adrien and Nino, into agreeing to model the fall line at the press conference Gabriel called to announce his selling of the company.
  • Ladybug struts into the press conference before Gabriel announces the deal and with the help of Adrien, Nino, and Alya, exposes Sabine, Chloe, and Lila as the real perpetrators.
  • Chloe and Lila walk in modeling ridiculous clothing, backing up Ladybug’s story.
  • Gabriel fires Sabine and her daughters.
  • Ladybug reveals herself as Marinette, and Gabriel rehires her.
  • 6 months later, Marinette and Adrien are dating, and Marinette is the head designer at Gabriel, which is thriving under her work.
  • Sabine, Chloe, and Lila go to work for Akuma, and find themselves sorting buttons.
mic.com
There's a Radical Way America Can Create 10 Million Jobs — But Congress Won't Let It Happen

Can you believe there’s an economic fix Democrats and Republicans agree on? The much more believable part — it’s still not getting done anytime soon.

A new study from S&P Capital IQ found that lowering the corporate tax rate by 10 percentage points would create 10 million jobs — enough to offset the loss in tax revenue that would result.

President Barack Obama has proposed lowering the rate to 28%, with a 25% rate for manufacturing companies. Republicans in Congress have proposed dropping it to 25% across the board. Seems like they could find a compromise, right?

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anonymous asked:

I'm also on team break, but just to play devil's advocate, I think it's *possible* that the break might have been scheduled to accommodate Zayn's departure (rehearsals for a new Zayn-less show) and an upcoming management shift. Plus I wonder how early on Louis was committed to Be in the Band, whether the break was scheduled to allow him to do that or if he was able to do it because the break had already been scheduled.

I think an upcoming management shift would be a bigger factor in 1D’s revenue loss of two months’ worth of concerts. And I think that stuff like Be in the Band is organized /as part of/ the new 1D. They tried to do ‘Louis the Businessman’ a year ago, with the attempted Rovers deal, but Modest fucked it all up with their constant obstructionism (same with the weed video at that time), and then when they did reintroduce it this November, we got to see Louis in the X Factor studio with Simon Cowell, strongly associated with his attempted image makeover with the apple rainbow shirt (until Modest again fucked it all up).

My premise: a voluntary revenue loss of two months’ worth of concerts is a big fucking deal, and 1DHQ wouldn’t lose out on all that money just to let Louis do a side project.

We also have the past two months of increasing heat, and my other premise is that for the next two months they’re going to continue to turn up that heat, not shut it off.

We shall see soon enough if we get an Adrenaline April.

Doing some ratings research unrelated to Scandal made me realize  how much of a petty Olitz fan I am

While at this point, IDGAF about Olivia’s romantic dalliances and I think Fitz and Olivia needed to split given the hyper absurdity of the circumstances written for them, I still cannot get over the swindle of season five’s key art and the marketing and promotion of the show in general. And while I understand and even surprisingly agree with Olivia’s choice to have an abortion, I still cannot get over how unsettling and gratuitously unexpected the depiction was. 

When Scandal returns, the Petty Olitz Fan in me wants their ratings to drop so fucking low, ABC is forced to consider instant cancellation.

When Scandal returns, the Petty Olitz fan in me wants their ratings to get so low, production is forced into budget cuts because advertising revenue isn’t up to par. 

When Scandal returns, the Petty Olitz Fan in me wants their ratings to get so low that DJ Casper is in disbelief when he gives instructions for the ChaCha Slide.

When Scandal returns, the Petty Olitz Fan in me wants their ratings to decline so far that they’re instantly forced to course correct whatever direction the writers are taking the show. 

When Scandal returns, the Petty Olitz fan in me wants their ratings to stoop so terribly low, the writers consider bringing Harrison back from the dead.

When Scandal returns, the Petty Olitz fan in me wants their ratings to drop lower than a Hotep’s IQ and credit scores combined.

When Scandal returns, the Petty Olitz fan in me wants their ratings to tank so fucking hard, that it’s only profitable to air repeats of “The Trail” every fucking Thursday for the duration of the season. 

When Scandal returns, the Petty Olitz fan in me wants them to cut every Rowan and Mellie monologue per episode, inevitably cutting the show down to at least 30 minutes to make room for the loss of ad revenue. And in that additional time frame, the Petty Olitz fan in me wants ABC to be forced promote shows on competing networks.

When Scandal returns, the Petty Olitz fan in me wants the writers to be forced to write Olitz fan fiction as scripts to recoup the loss in audience.

The Petty Olitz fan in me is talking smutty fanfic where it’s basically the Vermont portion of 308 for 44 minutes of screen time, no plot, no story line to compensate for the ridiculous whiplash they’ve given their characters in development and their audience in viewing the show. 

When Scandal returns, the Petty Olitz fan in me wants their ratings to be so historically low Nielsen considers new methods of data collection. 

When Scandal returns, the Petty Olitz fan in me wants CSPAN to have a higher viewing audience. 

When Scandal returns, the Petty Olitz fan in me wants it to be an instant bubble show and gets ignored in marketing and promotion like it did in season one and like every other non TGIT related drama does now. 

When Scandal returns, the Petty Olitz fan in me wants the ratings to be so low, when it returns in season six (because it will return even if there is a ratings drop because everything else on ABC might as well not exist), I hope the writers are forced to write a time jump since they’re so obsessed with them and  write a five part, traditional Indian style wedding that lasts for days as Olitz fan apologia. 

Because honestly, I’m here for whatever changes or “evolution” Olivia is going through. That’s fine. It’s a show about her. But when you incorporate a relationship into the fabric of the show for five seasons and fail to pay it off in any meaningful way (which isn’t to say it won’t happen. who knows?), when you have repeated the same patterns in writing a relationship after five fucking seasons, when you sell the show as the season when an on again off again couple finally will have an “At Last,” forever moment…only to tear that shit to shreds in the most devastatingly way possible for a viewer, when you have asked an audience to watch and invest in a couple that has gone through impossible ass circumstances including rigging an election, forgiving murder (of a parent at one point might I add), starting a fucking war, possible impeachment and public scrutiny, when you have written a couple as having at least a half dozen logical places to split only to have your audience watch them split in the context of a procedure that it is deeply personal and ideological…bringing up DEEP-seated emotions for viewers, you have truly challenged fans….to not watch your show. And the Petty Olitz Fan in me hopes the general audience says,” challenge fucking accepted.”  

Because holy shit what shippers have been fucked with and trolled as much? Scandal has earned audience disinterest sooooooo hard. It’s saving grace, ESPECIALLY following the shit-tastic 4B, has been ABC’s ability to create buzz (buzz often generated from Olivia’s relationships).The Petty Olitz Fan in me hopes it last no more. 

anonymous asked:

I understand your positive view of DLC and the for-profit models. It would be insane to argue that the people who make the games we love don't deserve to be paid for making them. I'm interested to have you go deeper into the financials of DLC/IAP/freemium content when, as an outsider, it seems like it doesn't add up. When I read things like Clash of Clans makes $5mil a day or CoD setting another record, I want to feel the billion dollars is being reinvested into the game and not 30 Ferraris.

The first thing to note is that the sales figures are always, always divided up into chunks. There are always people who are standing by to take their cut from the revenue, and there are a lot of other costs associated with the game that need to be paid for up front. One thing is for sure - DLC is designed to be much more efficient than any initial development, which is why it’s so lucrative and publishers are pushing harder on it. 

Let’s take FIFA as an example, since I’m actually more familiar with AAA development than the social/mobile arena. 

EA makes a lot of money from FIFA’s Ultimate Team mode/minigame - to the tune of approximately $200 million in revenue for FIFA 2013. That’s a lot of packs being bought! So let’s begin breaking this down.

25-30% of every sale goes to Microsoft, Nintendo, Apple, Google, and/or even a different division of EA

This includes all money via retail, digital copies, and so on. Even for PC titles, if it’s distributed in some way (like EA does with Origin), that money has to be counted as Origin’s revenue, as a cost to FIFA. This sort of accounting is necessary in order to track Origin’s overall continued performance and its justify its continued existence. FIFA’s developers don’t get any of this cut, despite EA being the ultimate owner of both products. Remember, EA’s executives need to allocate and approve budgets for studios and projects, so it’s important that they can calculate (roughly) what the monetary value of the service or product is.

In exchange for the 25-30% of each sale (plus some flat fee for “free” things), the developers are given a few things in return. The platform provides curation, online distribution, and handling of all financial transactions to a regular and engaged playerbase that numbers in the millions. You, as a player, also get the benefit of the certification process - any DLC you obtain will be guaranteed to work with your hardware to a minimum level of competence.

Some undisclosed percentage is paid to FIFA (the organization) for the license

I believe the number is around 15-20%, though I am not certain. 

DLC revenue is NOT considered separate from the original product for accounting

This includes things like development costs and marketing costs when it comes to accounting. Everything is calculated in terms of the original project’s Profits and Losses, which makes some amount of sense - the systems, tools, and skills/training developed for the game are used for the continued development of the DLC, and so the revenue from the DLC should also be considered to help offset that initial cost. A significant chunk of the revenue goes to pay for the development and marketing costs. You might not realize this, but marketing costs a lot. Some games, like Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, actually spent four times ($200 million) as much on marketing as they did on the actual game’s development ($50 million). Most of the time you’re looking at about a 1:1 ratio of dev costs to marketing, with development costs on a AAA game usually in the $60 million ballpark.

So what do they spend whatever’s left over on?

The main thing you’re looking at is different labels, since they earn profits and losses individually. This means that revenue is distributed on a label-by-label basis. FIFA is part of the “EA Studios” label, which is actually headed up by Patrick Soderlund, and that includes all of Bioware, EA Sports, DICE, Visceral, and so on. The revenues earned by FIFA 2013 Ultimate Team went to pay for the continued development of games that are in development by that label, like the new Mirror’s Edge game, Bioware’s new IP, Star Wars Battlefront 3, and a bunch of other unannounced games and/or canceled games (e.g. Dawngate, Shadow Realms). But that isn’t all it went to pay for. It also gets paid out as bonuses for the employees (the team, the leadership, and so on), and stock buybacks to share those profits with the shareholders, as well as reinvesting in themselves. 

In good years, we get more games green lit and funded, as well as better bonuses for employees and profit sharing for shareholders. In lean years, even big revenues from a few projects are barely enough to cover the development costs of the scant projects still in development. Remember, most games take at least two to three years to come out, and many are killed before even being announced.

So let’s recap: ~40-50% of that $200 million revenue is cut from the take immediately, going to Sony, Microsoft, Origin, FIFA, and so on. ~30-50% of what’s left gets taken to pay back marketing and development costs. What remains is profit, which is used for:

  • Paying out bonuses to employees
  • Paying out dividends or profits to shareholders
  • Funding projects/games (announced and unannounced) that are in various stages of development

This isn’t to say that some people don’t make enough to buy a bunch of ferraris. Usually this occurs at the executive level, since the executives tend to be the ones who get the largest portion of the compensation and rewards for making the decisions that affect the largest amount of the finances, and these sorts of bonuses and compensation can be in the millions. However, even if they were in the double digit millions on an annual basis, a publisher like EA, that’s a very small number. According to their Fiscal 2015 report, EA earned ~$4.3 billion in total revenue of which was $806 million in net income (revenue - cost). Part of that ($95M) went into a stock repurchase, some of it is going towards bonuses, and most of it will go to fund new projects.

Further Reading:

Rediscover

Summary: Becoming a prostitute wasn’t exactly the plan. Neither was ever seeing Kurt again.

Prompt: Can you do an OS where Blaine become a prostitute after him and Kurt broke up. It’s been a long time since kurt as saw him (like years), and one day a friend/coloc of Kurt (don’t care who he is) come home with prostitute Blaine. They sleep together and the day after kurt see Blaine. Would like Cold Blaine. Angst. Lot of angst.

Warnings: Prostitution, sex, violence, abuse, injuries, self-hate

Once he had dreamed of having his name up in lights. 

He saw himself walking across the stage in a crisp suit, accepting his Tony award. He even had an entire speech written up, going as far as knowing where to tear up and where to smile. 

This is such an honor. I just want to thank my beautiful husband Kurt who has always supported and loved me through everything.

Then he made the biggest mistake of his life. Blaine knew that he was entirely at fault; you don’t just cheat and expect everything to go right. Without Kurt it felt like he was floating through empty space without an anchor. 

The application to NYADA never got sent out. Applications to other colleges didn’t get sent either. He spent his graduation night packing and left for New York the day after. 

He was going to be Blaine Anderson, musician and actor. 

Now he was Blaine Anderson, a kind wandering aimlessly around New York with no prospects. 

The money ran out quickly and Blaine refused to call his parents, staying in the tiny apartment until he got notice after notice on his door. 

“No work honey?” Gina, his neighbor, asked sweetly. She seemed to have a fondness for tiny skirts and tube tops, her cigarette stained teeth gleaming yellow in the half light of the hallway. 

“Apparently not,” he grumbled, crumbling up the paper. Maybe just sulking in his apartment wasn’t a good plan. 

“You’re a pretty boy,” Gina looked him up and down. “I’m sure you can find some work somewhere.”

“I’ll try harder,” he gave her a tight smile and she laughed. 

“You don’t want to get on Carlo’s bad side,” she rolled her eyes at the mention of their creepy landlord. “Maybe you should do what I do and blow him. He took an entire month’s worth of rent off.”

Blaine paused, blood running cold. “You’re saying I should fuck him for rent money.”

“No baby, just suck him off,” she patted him on the shoulder. “With that pretty mouth he might just give you two months.”

Blaine almost turned around ten times on his walk to Carlo’s apartment. Finally, after a quick self pep talk, he knocked on the door and put his most charming smile on his face.

“Your rent is late,” Carlo said as soon as he opened the door, his droopy eyelids concealing his glare slightly. He was a rather overweight man who was balding and had several large moles on his neck. 

“I know,” Blaine said, forcing sweetness into his voice. It felt stupid but he thought back to the porn he used to watch and tease Kurt about. “But I was hoping maybe you could give me an extension? Then I can take care of…your extension.”

Carlo gave him a long look before laughing loudly, holding onto the doorframe. “Kid, that was absolutely terrible. I won’t turn down those cock sucking lips though.”

It was honestly the worst experience of Blaine’s life. Carlo was extremely rough and hissed the most horrible things down at Blaine, gripping his hair so tight it brought tears to his eyes. He had never felt more humiliated in his entire life. 

“Let me know if you need any more help kid,” Carlo chuckled breathlessly as Blaine wiped across his mouth with a grimace. “You’re fun.”

Blaine threw up everything in his stomach when he got back to his apartment and sobbed himself to sleep that night. 

The next night his mind raced. What was he even doing here? Was he really so desperate to stalk his ex-boyfriend to a city just to try to get a glimpse at him? It was pathetic and sickening. It made him feel beyond dirty and he hardly even recognized himself. 

Desperate to get away from his thoughts, Blaine hurried into the chill night air and started walking the streets. He could feel himself shivering but didn’t even care enough to grab a jacket to put over his tank top. 

A short whistle made him freeze and glance over to a car that pulled up behind him. 

“Hi sweetie,” a rather handsome man leaned out and grinned. “Need to get warm?”

“No,” Blaine felt his skin crawl. 

“You sure? I have a hundred dollar bill in my pocket for a pretty thing like you,” the man smiled warmly and Blaine paused. 

He needed the money desperately. How bad could it be? Maybe he could finally have someone touching him, keeping him warm. He could have someone look at him like a treasure and not have to risk them breaking his heart. 

“Two hundred.”

“It’s a deal.”

Joseph was one of Blaine’s favorite clients. They met when he was still wandering street corners and was more than happy to help Blaine out as much as he could. He was the one to spot Blaine the last bit of money to get him that nice apartment and bought him tons of clothes. 

Plus, he actually cared that Blaine got a little pleasure out of their activities too.

“No baby,” Joseph whined, grabbing onto his belt loops. “Stay.”

“I’d love to,” Blaine pouted and ran a finger down his chest. “But I have other appointments today. We’ll see each other soon enough, I know you can’t stay away for long.”

“Course not,” Joseph looked down at his tight shirt, black leather jacket and skinny jeans. 

Blaine gave him one more smile, pocketed the money and with one more sashay of the hips, walked out the door. He made it a few steps before someone rather rudely ran into him. 

“I am so sorry!” The man gasped, turning around and Blaine opened his mouth to snap a response before his brain malfunctioned. 

Kurt. 

He looked just as breathtaking as ever, dressed to the nines and Blaine was lost in his stunning eyes. They stared at each other before Kurt blinked a few times. 

“Blaine?” Kurt asked awkwardly. “Wow…it’s been-“

“Blaine!” Joseph leaned out the door, surprised to see him so close. He blushed and looked away from Kurt before handing out two crisp hundred-dollar bills. “I realized I short changed you a bit.”

“This is why I just adore you Joseph,” Blaine gave him a sweet smile. “I owe you something special next time.”

Joseph beamed and shut the door. An uncomfortable silence followed as Blaine folded the bills and added them to his pocket.

“Well, it was great seeing you Kurt,” he said quickly but Kurt grabbed his arm. 

“Wait, wait!” He gasped. “You don’t just get to walk away after that. That better have been a…Craigslist deal or something. Were you selling your old toaster?”

He almost smiled. “No. Joseph’s my client.”

“And you’re…a hooker he found or something?” Kurt squeaked out.

“Hooker sounds crass. Joseph and I have an agreement. You’re his neighbor right? I come by maybe once a week,” Blaine shrugged. “He tips very well.”

“Are you in trouble or something?” Kurt dropped his voice. 

“I’m a businessman,” Blaine raised his chin. “I’m actually pretty happy and I’m good at it.”

Kurt bristled and his face set. “Clearly you practiced when we were dating.”

Blaine felt like all the air vanished from the hallway for a moment before he sneered. “Guess I can say you ignoring me led me to my current career path.”

He hurried out of the hallway before he could say anything else.

The next time he saw Kurt he was in the hallway with Joseph. 

Joseph was tipsy from dinner; Blaine refused to drink while working, and was messily kissing up Blaine’s neck. Blaine laughed, arms wrapped loosely around his neck as he pressed his hips forward. 

His leg was halfway hiked up Joseph’s before the door across the hall opened and Kurt stepped out. Their eyes met and Blaine let out a little gasp as Joseph bit down on his neck. Kurt’s eyes widened and he went as still as a statue. 

“Let’s go inside,” Blaine said softly and looked away as Joseph unlocked the door.

Sometimes clients took it too far. It was the reason Blaine liked to work with the same men over and over, not taking on new guys. When he was just starting out he didn’t have much of a choice. It was dangerous and scary but a necessary evil. 

Matteo was a married banker who just needed to get his frustrations out. He left Blaine was bruises littering his side and a pretty spectacular black eyes. The injuries put a dent in his schedule and even Joseph seemed reluctant to spend too much time with him.

He was scowling down at his phone when Kurt walked down the hall.

“You okay?” He asked softly. 

“Hazard of the job,” Blaine shrugged. “I’m fine.”

Kurt dug into his messenger bag and grabbed a bottle of aspirin and shook two out into his hand. He held it out and took Blaine’s phone as he downed them, tapping some numbers into the contact.

“My new number,” he said softly as Blaine snatched the phone out of his hand. 

“Gotta go, have to make up for the loss of revenue somehow,” he jogged down the steps. 

Through the entire night Blaine kept trying to make up new reasons not to delete the number in his phone.

“How much would it cost for the night?” Kurt asked quickly and Blaine raised his eyebrows. 

“More than you could probably afford.”

“I wouldn’t want to do anything,” there was that slight blush that made Blaine weak in the knees. “Just give you a break for a bit. Make sure you’re okay.”

“I don’t need to be saved,” he sneered, chest feeling tight. “This isn’t Pretty Woman.”

Kurt looked so sad that for a moment Blaine wished he could go back in time and take it back. “What happened to you Blaine? Why are you so angry?”

Because I threw my life away for you and you moved on.

Because I hate who I am.

Because I lost the thing that meant the most to me.

“Maybe you never knew me.”

The knock on his front door at ten in the morning came as a surprise. Blaine pushed himself to his feet, dressed in just pajama pants and opened it. 

“Hi,” Kurt gave him a tiny smile and held up a box of cronuts. “This is totally creepy but I got your address from Josrph. You really shouldn’t give it out to people like him.”

“Joseph’s harmless. He’s just lonely,” Blaine continued to stand in the doorway. “What do you want?”

“Just to talk.”

Against his better judgment, Blaine stepped aside and Kurt walked in. It was strange, mixing his old life with his new one and it made him feel incredibly uncomfortable. 

“This is nice,” Kurt looked around the apartment. “So, this is what sleeping with someone will buy you?”

“No, this is what being the best will buy you,” he laughed as Kurt blushed again. “I told you I was doing quite well.”

“I can see,” Kurt opened the box and Blaine took one. “You look good.”

“So you want to like…reconnect or something?” Blaine took a huge bite and Kurt nodded. “What are you doing now?”

“I work for Vogue as an assistant to one of the designers,” pride shone in Kurt’s eyes. “I’m working on my own line of clothes right now. Rachel wore one of my designs to the Tony’s last year.”

Something softened in Blaine’s chest. “That was always your dream.”

“Yeah, it’s crazy,” Kurt laughed to himself. 

“Boyfriend?” Blaine took another cronut. 

“No…work’s been busy and doesn’t really leave time for a relationship,” Kurt shrugged. 

“Same here.”

They fell into another silence before Kurt sighed heavily. “Did you do this because of me?”

“Despite what everyone seems to think, I do have complete control over my own actions,” Blaine huffed out. “I guess I…fell into it? Is it my dream? No…but I get to live in New York. People like me. I’m not…lonely.”

Kurt nodded. “I’m glad you’re happy.”

I’m not.

The first thing Blaine realized when he opened his eyes was that he was in excruciating pain. His side ached furiously and he could taste blood in his mouth. After a few fuzzy minutes of searching, the night came back to him in flashes.

Joseph had seemed agitated. 

He couldn’t get it up and started screaming.

He threw a punch and wrapped a hand around his throat.

“Hey,” he looked across the machines by his bed and saw Kurt. “I really hope I didn’t just ruin a lucrative BDSM deal.”

He let out a laugh, wincing as his throat flared with pain. 

“You scared the crap out of me. I could hear Joseph shouting and you were crying out in pain. I thought he was killing you,” Kurt shuddered. “I smashed him over the head with a vase and called 911.”

“Very action movie of you,” Blaine whispered hoarsely. 

“Does this happen often?” Kurt asked, tears flashing in his eyes. “How often do you risk your life?”

“Not very.”

“That’s too often!” Kurt snapped. “Jesus Blaine, you could have died! I can’t stand the thought of you being out there in such dangerous situations. Please…stay with me and we’ll try to find you something to do in the meantime. Or…I can stay with you…Joseph might be coming back and I don’t want him near you and-“

“Why? After what I did to you, why do you care?” Blaine frowned.

“You were the great love of my life,” Kurt whispered. “I guess I…”

It didn’t need to be said.

“Me too,” Blaine whispered. “Okay.”

Proposed ban on flavoured tobacco sales raises worries among retailers

A proposed ban on the sale of flavoured tobacco products in Singapore has caused rising concerns among provision shops, coffee shops, minimarts and other tobacco retailers over the sustainability of their businesses.

In a recent survey of 1,475 independent general trade retailers commissioned by four trade associations, almost all respondents (99 per cent) were worried that such a ban would hurt their business. 

Their concerns stem mainly from the potential revenue loss from menthol cigarettes – the most popular flavour on the shelves.

A handful of provision shop and minimart owners who spoke to Yahoo Singapore estimated that 40 to 65 per cent of their profits come from cigarette sales. Most of these merchants said that flavoured cigarette sales accounted for at least half of these profits.

In tandem with overall cigarette sales, market share for menthol-flavoured tobacco has increased over the past three years, according to three minimart owners. They were troubled by the prospect of having to forgo their biggest income generator.

Businesses interviewed by Yahoo Singapore attributed at least half of their total revenues to cigarette sales, of which about half are from flavoured cigarettes.

“Cigarettes are good profit-makers especially since they take up less storage space compared to food and drinks. Furthermore, they have a high sales turnover since people don’t typically sit at the table to smoke for long periods of time,” said Hong Poh Hin, chairman of the Foochow Coffee Restaurant and Bar Merchants Association, one of the associations that commissioned the survey.

“It is important that any proposed tobacco control measures be supported by evidence of their effectiveness in reducing smoking incidence in Singapore, while addressing the impact to the affected retailers,” he added, warning of possible business closures that could follow if the rule is passed. Hong compared the potential impact to the ban on alcohol sales between 10.30pm and 7am, which has been in place since 1 April 2015, and its negative effect on retailers that sell alcohol products.

This survey was concluded in September 2016 and was commissioned by several trade associations, including the Foochow Coffee Restaurant and Bar Merchants Association Kheng Keow Coffee Merchants Restaurant and Bar-Owners Association, the Singapore Mini Mart Association and the Singapore Provision Shop Friendly Association.

About 97 per cent of the respondents flagged another key concern — that a ban could cause smokers of flavoured cigarettes to turn to the black market.

A provision shop owner, who declined to be named, agreed with the finding. “What happens is that when people can’t get the kind of (cigarette) variant they want, they will find alternative ways to get them,” he said.

The trade associations said they were carrying out a separate study on the efficacy and business impact of the proposed ban on flavoured tobacco products. The results will be presented to the government upon completion.

“The trade associations urge the government to review these results and consult with their members before further deliberating on this proposed regulation,” Mr Hong added.

This article was produced in partnership with the Foochow Coffee Restaurant & Bar Merchants Association

Voltage Fandom Public Dirty Secrets

I understand that with more followers come more responsibility. With that in mind, I know that whatever I am going to post in my blog will be viewed by a lot of people. Actually, I am hoping that it will reach even those who do not have a tumblr or facebook and are part of the Voltage fandom.

So I want to dish out a few of these “public dirty secrets” as I call it because they are simply the cancer within the fandom that not only me but a few of us do not tolerate and are ashamed of, but nobody talks openly about it. I am not advertising them. I am condemning them. So if you think they are awesome ideas then you are the lowest scum of this earth and you should think twice about your purpose in life.

Public Dirty Secret #1
Free route underground society

It has come to my knowledge for quite some time now about the existence of an underground group that rips the screenshots of whole paid app routes and share them in their super private group. It was once a hot topic of conversation among us here on tumblr. People had them reported to Voltage Inc and Facebook. But because they were private, it was impossible to shut them down, as far as I know. They started on facebook and they move around. I don’t understand why the admins of these pages do what they do.  Are they doing it for glory? For notes? For likes? Are they so desperate for love from their poor follower leeches?  To the admins of that site, nobody cares about you guys, they only care about themselves, so just drop this stupid group and live a life without guilt.

Like I said, I am not advertising this group here. What they do is despicable beyond measure. I know who the admins are and they should be ashamed of themselves. More than a thousand people are part of that group. Can you imagine the loss in revenue for Voltage?

I am saddened there are people running such criminal nest and for the followers who like leeches, just suck resources without shame. They have notorious reputation and I personally believe that group is the reason why SITSC stopped being updated.

Public Dirty Secret #2
The Voltage Inc beggars

I am sorry I am using this term but when a stranger messages you on your Facebook out of the blue asking if they can use your transfer code to read routes for free AND totally ignore you after you refuse to do so, then I call them ungrateful rude beggars. Yes, you heard me correctly. I came across one individual doing this and so this is probably a much more widespread situation that I was not aware of. I don’t care if you are 12 or 20 and have no credit card. I don’t care if you are desperate to read Voltage routes. If you cannot afford it, then you should not be playing them to start with. Wait till you grow up and figure out how to earn your own money or ask your parents for an allowance or get a part time job during summer. Going around asking for transfer codes is stealing and to anyone willing to give those transfer codes should know there is a difference between being nice and being an instigator to criminal behavior. DO NOT DO IT!!!

I also heard of transfer code trades. Shame on you if you are part of that group. I know that these routes are not cheap, but if you can’t buy them, there are other solutions. Wait for a sale, or play party games. You can play party games for free if you have time and patience, which is what people without money have in their hands. You know time is money is a famous saying for a reason.

Public Dirty Secret #3
Wattpad and Fanfic.net are havens of plagiarism (FB, tumblr and youtube can be too…)

So I heard that a sweet girl from the fandom offered to type up the whole prologue of several apps and post them on wattpad. And why would anyone do that if they are available for free, with images on the app itself? Are people so lazy they cannot be bothered to download the app in the first place? It doesn’t matter if the prologue is free. You cannot copy and paste the story on another medium without the original author’s consent. My fics/summaries are free to be read by anyone, but as soon as someone copy them to another medium without my consent, that is called plagiarism. It is the exact same thing.

But this sweet girl also wants to type the whole route, line by line, on wattpad. Wait what? Why? Because she wants to showcase how awesome the routes are to those who are on the fence about buying Voltage routes. Just because your intention seems noble my dear, what you are doing is also a crime. It is plagiarism. It is a waste of your time and not the right way to advertise Voltage games. They already offer 3 chapters for free in some apps. They can go play party routes which are free. There are other ways to promote the game, giving them out like tissue on the street is not a lawful way to go about it.

Conclusion

All these shameful behaviors are a slap to the face for the hardcore fans who buy and support Voltage Inc as a company. They are willing to spend money to buy programs to rip the routes but not the routes themselves. It just doesn’t make any sense to me.

It also cripples the company who can use those funds to create more and better products. The staff in the company work hard, often putting overtime to translate routes and programming the text into the game. They have families to feed, health insurance to pay. You are stealing their livelihood.

Those involved in the above criminal activities will probably just laugh at my post and continue their criminal offense because as long as you are not getting caught, what’s the damage right? I believe in ethics, I believe in karma, and a healthy conscience. I believe that one day, these people will pay for the hurt they inflicted upon others, no matter how detached it is from their lives.

Thank you for reading.

anonymous asked:

i find it really funny all the guilt tripping that was done to louies for feeling anxious with harry's mag cover saying "well louis would want you to be as proud as he is!" and now you have some harries legit so mad at niall even AFTER proving that harry supports it. i guess im just assuming harry knew that the release would coincide. i honestly dont think there would be hard feelings

HARRY’S NOT EVEN PROMOTING ANYTHING THAT CAN BE PURCHASED. WHY WOULD HE BE MAD ABOUT NIALL’S SINGLE??? 

like, yes, let’s say harry had released a single this morning and then niall swooped in and dropped his own too and stole his thunder - that would be super shitty.

but the only thing harry’s article is selling is HIMSELF (and guess what? as much as the solo harries might wish otherwise, HE IS NOT FOR SALE). 

there’s no loss of revenue here for harry. THE MAGAZINE SOLD OUT DAYS AGO. HE’S LAUGHING RIGHT NOW AND PROBABLY SINGING ALONG TO ‘THIS TOWN’ WHILE HE CLINKS GLASSES WITH LOUIS.