The inside story of Iger's Disney return, Epic Games record-breaking fines + ClimateCamp CEO | E1643 | Summary and Q&A

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December 20, 2022
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This Week in Startups
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The inside story of Iger's Disney return, Epic Games record-breaking fines + ClimateCamp CEO | E1643

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Summary

In this video, the hosts discuss various topics, including a long read about the conflict between Bob Iger and Bob Chapek at Disney, the record-breaking FTC fines against Epic Games for privacy violations and deceptive practices, and the problematic cancellation processes of companies like Equinox, The Economist, and the Wall Street Journal. They express their frustration with these companies and encourage viewers to take action.

Questions & Answers

Q: What was the long read about the conflict between Bob Iger and Bob Chapek at Disney?

The long read provided an inside story on the relationship between Bob Iger and Bob Chapek at Disney. It revealed that Iger had hand-picked Chapek as his successor but delayed his departure multiple times. Chapek, after taking over as CEO, made some questionable decisions that led to scrutiny and a rift between him and Iger. Ultimately, Christine McCarthy, Disney's Chief Financial Officer, played a role in bringing Iger back as CEO.

Q: What record-breaking fines were imposed on Epic Games by the FTC?

The FTC imposed record-breaking fines on Epic Games for two violations. The first fine, amounting to $275 million, was for violating the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) by collecting personal information from children. The second fine, totaling $245 million, was for using deceptive tactics, known as dark patterns, to trick players into making unintended purchases.

Q: What are dark patterns and how were they used by Epic Games?

Dark patterns refer to deceptive design patterns that confuse and mislead users, often with the intention of encouraging unintended actions or preventing users from canceling subscriptions or purchases. In the case of Epic Games, they employed dark patterns to make it difficult for users to unsubscribe or cancel purchases. They obscured cancel and refund features, threatened users with bans, and made it challenging to find unsubscribe options.

Q: What were the complaints against Equinox, The Economist, and the Wall Street Journal regarding their cancellation processes?

Equinox, The Economist, and the Wall Street Journal were criticized for their problematic cancellation processes. Equinox, in particular, was accused of making it difficult to cancel memberships by requiring customers to call and engaging in upselling tactics. The Economist was mentioned for its convoluted online cancellation process that often involved live chat attendants attempting to upsell and then disconnecting customers. The Wall Street Journal was criticized for using dark patterns and deceptive design to make it challenging for users to unsubscribe, often requiring phone calls and prolonged conversations.

Q: How can customers take action against companies with problematic cancellation processes?

Customers who have faced issues with cancellations can file complaints with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) through their website at ftc.gov/complaint. This allows individuals to voice their concerns and potentially prompt investigations into these companies' practices. Additionally, using social media platforms and hashtags like #Equinoxsucks, #TheEconomistsucks, and #WallStreetJournalsucks can help raise awareness and put pressure on companies to improve their cancellation processes.

Takeaways

The hosts express frustration with companies that employ deceptive practices, such as using dark patterns and making it difficult for customers to cancel subscriptions or make unintended purchases. They encourage viewers to take action by filing complaints with the FTC and using social media to spotlight companies' problematic practices.

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