Each day, Inc.'s reporters scour the Web for the most important and interesting news to entrepreneurs. Here's what we found today:
Local businesses root, root, root for the home team. Because when they don't win, it's a serious hit to their bottom line. As the Boston Globe reports, with the Boston Red Sox failing to make the playoffs for only the second time since 2003, the businesses surrounding Fenway Park are also feeling the pain of a lackluster baseball season. According to the Globe, for each postseason game not played, businesses collectively lose an estimated $2.5 million. The past few weeks have already seen parking garages around Fenway lower their rates and t-shirt shops slash prices on their inventory. To add insult to injury, businesses are not only dealing with declining revenues, they are also facing the ignominy of rooting for a losing team. As the owner of a local bar explains, "For us, it's a real double-whammy."
How to get back at an ex-partner. If you're serial Web entrepreneur Jason Calacanis, you blast him on Twitter, of course. Calacanis, the former TechCrunch 50 conference partner of Michael Arrington, ripped into Arrington yesterday amidst rumors of a possible AOL-TechCrunch marriage (see below). Besides labeling Arrington a "trainwreck," "sociopath," and "liability," Calacanis also tweeted: "I'm fairly certain that [M]ike screwed me so he wouldn't have to split the sale of techcrunch50." We imagine this won't sit well with Arrington, who already starts each day "in a pissed-off" mood.
AOL to buy TechCrunch? According to GigaOm, AOL is poised to acquire the tech blog founded by Michael Arrington and could announce the decision as early as this week at San Francisco's Disrupt conference. Author Om Malik sites "sources familiar with both entities," and though he says the deal is far from secure, he says it's unlikely to fall through. AOL has already acquired blogging company Weblogs, and Malik says it's about time AOL entered the tech blogosphere. He also offers congratulations to "Mike and his crew," for turning a small blog into a company.
POM powers discredited. For years POM Wonderful has told us of the pomegranate and the disease-fighting powers contained in its stout red bottles. Yesterday, however, the Federal Trade Commission found their claims to be false and deceptive. The AP reports that the company spent $12.1 million on advertising last year, focusing largely on product abilities to prevent or treat ailments such as heart disease, prostate cancer, and erectile dysfunction. The FTC reports that there is no scientific evidence to back these claims up, but POM isn't going down without a fight. Two weeks ago the company sued the FTC was violating its right to free speech and imposing an undue hardship...by suddenly changing direction in the criteria it uses to evaluate deceptive advertising." The FTC will hold a hearing within eight months to conclude if the law has been violated.
Faster Wi-Fi for your travels. If you've ever begrudgingly bought overpriced airline Wi-Fi service that couldn't even handle your movie streams or downloads, you're not alone. According to The New York Times, ViaSat, a satellite communications company, is entering the airline Wi-Fi business with a deal that partners themselves with JetBlue to provide Wi-Fi service on JetBlue's 160-plane fleet of Airbus A320s and Embraer 190s with better Wi-Fi. According to the company's president and CEO, ViaSat's Wi-Fi service will be faster with a higher bandwidth at a lower cost per bit. Airline Wi-Fi, long thought of as a way to very expensively read e-mail, has traditionally been serviced by ground antennas, but the new proposals will utilize satellites to deliver the service.