Tesco profits drop by more than half

October 7th, 2015 1 Comment By Mof Gimmers

tesco Tesco profits drop by more than halfTesco have watched their profits drop by more than half over the first half of their financial year, going from £779m to £354m. Now, that is still a lot of money, but when your profits drop by half within 6 months, if they keep that up, they’ll soon have no profits at all.

Life-for-like sales were down by 1.1%, and yet somehow, these figures were marginally better than some people in the City had initially feared.

Of course, Tesco have been having a howler of a year, and it all goes back to the accounting scandal which saw the supermarket posting a £6.4bn loss.

The company’s chief executive, Dave Lewis, said: “We have delivered an unprecedented level of change in our business over the last 12 months and it is working. The first half results show sustained improvement across a broad range of key indicators.”

While Lewis is thinking about his broad range of key indicators, there’s more trouble ahead for Tesco, what with the Serious Fraud Office about to deliver their findings after their investigation into the business.

The SFO have been talking to former finance director Laurie McIlwee, one of the most senior figures at the retailer, as a witness. They’ll also be talking to Chris Bush, Tesco’s former UK managing director, asking him how you manage to balls-up a company that was doing as well as Tesco were. This pair are being interviewed, but not accused of anything, for the record. This is rather different to the way the SFO went about interviewing former chief executive Phil Clarke, who was interviewed under caution.

It is thought that the investigation will be done before the year is out, but we’ll just have to wait and see. If someone has been doing something especially crooked in all this, they could be looking at 10 years in prison.

Deals of the Day: Wednesday 7th October 2015

October 7th, 2015 No Comments By Mof Gimmers

deals of the day 300x162 Deals of the Day: Wednesday 7th October 2015Do you play video games? Like shouting at strangers on the internet as you hand them their sorry arses on a plate? Specifically, do you like playing games and shouting at people on the Xbox?

Well, you can get 7 months of Xbox Live on the cheap! You can have it for £11.39, which is not bad at all. You’ll need a code, but don’t sweat it – we have it via this link right here. Have a lovely time with it.


Sainsbury’s Indian meal-deal – 4 mains, 2 sides and a movie download for £10
Beats Dre Solo HD headphones for £49
3 issues of Official PlayStation Magazine and get 4 free PlayStation coasters for £5
Toshiba Canvio basics hard-drive for £38.27
500w hammer drill for £11.99
AKG headphone – hifi product of the year, twice, for £37.85
Samsung 43″ full HD Freeview smart TV for £339
£10 bonus on your next purchase using Quidco – find out how, here


sainsburys 300x192 Are Sainsburys not giving as much to charity through Plastic Bag Tax?The Plastic Bag Tax made some people very angry and confused, despite it being one of the most simple premises in the world. Either way, most people back the idea of reducing the amount of plastic bags used in England, and who can really complain if the money generated from the 5p sale goes to charity?

Well, it looks like Sainsbury’s are employing a loophole and have been accused of giving less money to charity than their rivals.

So what’s the craic? Well, most supermarkets are using the same plastic bags as before, and giving the proceeds from them to good causes. Sainsbury’s however, have got rid of all their old plastic bags and have replaced them with sturdier, reusable bag for 5p, with free replacements when they break or wear thin.

The kicker here, is that these carrier bags fall outside the new law, which means that Sainsbury’s have no obligation to give anything to charity.

In a statement to The Telegraph, Sainsbury’s said that some of the money from the 5p charge goes toward the cost of supplying their new bags, which are pricier than the bog-standard carrier bags. They are voluntarily giving the rest of the money away to good causes. The rest of the supermarkets are offering bags that are less than 0.07mm thick, and are only allowed to take “reasonable costs” from the 5p fee. Asda and Morrisons waived their opportunity to deduct costs entirely. Official guidelines on the deductions a business can take are: “You can’t include existing costs, such as the cost of the bags. You’re likely to see reasonable costs significantly reduce after the first year.”

And lo, it turns out Sainsbury’s have been able to reduce their costs by this method, but the bags they’re selling must also be sold for more than 5p by law, but they don’t have to because they can reduce the price using the money they would’ve given to a charity. It is worth pointing out that they’re not actually doing anything illegal, but there’s going to be some consumers that aren’t happy about this, and think the whole thing is not really in the spirit of scheme.

Volkswagen Logo 300x300 VW quietly launch websites so you can check if your car is affected by emissions scandalAfter all that emissions scandal nonsense concerning Volkswagen, it turns out that VW are testing a new system which will alert drivers whether or not they are affected by the the whole thing.

On the quiet, Volkswagen and Audi sites are already being tested, while the Skoda and SEAT sites are going to be up and raring to go soon enough.

So, if you think you have a car that has the dodgy software that has been lying about the amount of emissions it puts out, you can go and check on the sites now.

Click here to go to the VW website

Click here to go to the Audi website

Click here to go to the Skoda website

Click here to go to the SEAT website

A lot of drivers will have a lot of questions that need answering about all this. There’s a screengrab below, and we’re sure that VW and related companies will be getting in touch soon. You can start your own investigations now.

stream img 500x280 VW quietly launch websites so you can check if your car is affected by emissions scandal

Matthias Müller, he’s the new Volkswagen chief executive, said that they should start recalling vehicles in January and complete repairs by the end of 2016.

taxwall 300x224 Google, Apple and more   theyre coming after your tax!While Google have sneakily dropped their ‘don’t be evil’ motto, they’re finding that people are coming after their tax, along with other companies like Starbucks and Apple.

Basically, big-ass businesses have been enjoying a variety of loopholes so they can sidestep billions in tax, but that could well be a thing of the past, thanks to a worldwide clampdown. World trade body the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) announced that they are looking at getting back some of the £160billion they reckon they’ve lost to tax avoidance by multinational companies.

The OECD say that this ‘seismic shift’ in international tax rules is going to force the hand of these massive companies, where they’ll have to cough-up the money that is due, as they ban ‘brass plate’ operations in low-tax territories and outlaw dicky loans between companies.

“This is coming to an end,” said OECD head of tax Pascal Saint-Amans, aiming to help “local companies that cannot benefit from loopholes in the international system”. Finance ministers from around the world are going to meet up, to look over the plans. Over 60 countries have already agreed to them.

Saint-Amans added that many tax laws date back to the 1930s and are “not fit for purpose”, which has led to “more and more aggressive planning from companies”, which will have “a major behavioural impact” on large firms.

Next week: Huge businesses find a different way of not paying taxes.


Next are looking for Christmas staff

October 6th, 2015 27 Comments By Mof Gimmers

next shop 300x180 Next are looking for Christmas staffBitterwallet continues to bring the jobs to you, this time, Next looking to take people on for Christmas. That’d be Next there, looking to give you a job – not Bitterwallet. We’re a news and sarcasm source – we can’t help you at all.

Of course, a number of people aren’t even reading these words. In previous posts like this, people have just asked for a job, got in touch in the comments, left their number and personal details and asked us to get in touch, like we’ll sort them out with a job.

These people are literally not reading the words. Look at the comments on this Boots article, this Argos article, and this Royal Mail article we published. So with that, we’re making all the words of this article about how we can’t get you a job, but rather, point you in the direction of where you can apply. The links above will also take you to articles which link to the careers pages of the companies, if you’re going to go on an applying spree this week.

So, given that we’ve written all that, do you fancy working for Next over Christmas? If you do, then you should click here to see what Next are offering. You can also see how many vacancies are at each branch, by clicking here, which is a nifty tool.

Happy job hunting. You’re not reading this are you? Comments asking for jobs in 3… 2…

facepalm Morrisons drop confusing Aldi and Lidl Match & More price promiseDo you remember Morrisons taking on Lidl and Aldi with a price matching offer? Well, they’ve decided that they’re going to stop doing it, just one year after they kicked the scheme off.

A Morrisons spokesman said: “Our customers said that sometimes they were confused by the price matching scheme, where sometimes they got points and sometimes they didn’t. A lot of customers struggled with the fact that if their basket was cheapest, they didn’t get any points. Customers generally want more points, and a loyalty scheme should be a thank you for spending.”

“In future, customers will be rewarded with points on everything they spend, and will get many more points when buying products with promotions attached.”

Get that? Now, cast your mind back to Morrisons launching this price matching scheme and recall how Lidl responded to it.

That’s right – they trolled the crap out of Morrisons, by pointing out that you could jump through all these hoops and do all manner of needlessly confusing things… or you could just shop where things were cheaper.

The ad they ran was executed perfectly and now, turns out to be true.

IMG 20141004 092235 408x500 Morrisons drop confusing Aldi and Lidl Match & More price promise

So what’s changing with Morrisons? Well, from November 2nd 2015, you’ll no longer have to spend £15 in one go to earn Morrisons points. From then, you’ll earn 5 points for every £1 you spend in the supermarket.

However, you won’t get points if you could have bought items cheaper in Aldi, Lidl or another rival supermarket. You can still get a £5 voucher for every 5,000 points you collect, and earn 10 points per litre when you buy fuel… and yes, this isn’t wholly clear cut, but that doesn’t matter because no-one shops at Morrisons anyway.

Drunk teenager throws hissy fit in McDonald’s

October 6th, 2015 1 Comment By Mof Gimmers

mcdonalds logo Drunk teenager throws hissy fit in McDonaldsSometimes, you just have to take your punishment on the chin. If you’re drunk or far too rude to service staff, and they tell you to leave, the best thing to do is get out of dodge and take it from there. Of course, some people really, really like causing a massive scene.

They may tell you that they’re trying to get what should be rightfully theirs, but really, no-one ever got all up in a manager’s face, called them a number of names and shoved them around, only for the staff to say “you know what? We’ve changed our minds and you can get served.”

And so, to America where no-one can handle their ale, and a drunk teenager who wanted some kind of Big Mac at a McDonald’s. In fact, it was a bacon jalapeño Mac and cheese, which sounds absolutely brilliant.

Anyway, drunk and underage, he decides to give the manager and staff a load of aggro, for aaaaaages. Seriously. The restraint on this manager is something else. The temptation to smack this little bozo must have crossed his mind countless times. We suspect a number of BW readers would’ve lobbed this kid out of the nearest window.

Either way, watch this video and have a think how you’d get on and to see how the drunk teenager acts like a massive wuss when the authorities arrive.


tesco Tesco ditch £93,000s worth of garlic bread for lyingTesco have had to withdraw nearly 70,000 packs of garlic bread slices, after it turned out they were selling them at the wrong weight. That’s right – Tesco have been swizzing people out of product by flogging underweight garlic bread.

Shout out to anyone who just shouted “GARLIC BREAD?!” in their heads just now.

So what’s the deal? Well, after visiting some stores in Scotland, Trading Standards officers found that 39 packets of the supermarket’s own-brand product had net weights below the figure declared on the packaging. Some were quite substantial too, being 20% less than what was advertised.

As a result, Tesco have had to remove the offending product from shelves, to the tune of around £93,000′s worth of garlic bread.

The Trading Standards manager, Wilma Urquhart, said: “Aberdeenshire council’s Trading Standards service takes these incidents extremely seriously and we were pleased to see that the supermarket acted swiftly following the discovery.”

“By issuing an emergency product withdrawal, batches worth £93,000 have been removed from the shelves. Our work is very important in protecting both consumers and businesses from unfair competition, and the service will continue to work with both Tesco and Bakkavör [the baker of the product] to ensure legislative compliance.”

A Tesco spokesman said: “We take great care to deliver clear information for our customers so they can make informed decisions on the products they buy and to ensure that customers receive the stated quantity of product.”

“We are disappointed that errors occurred with a very small number of products and we have worked with our supplier to ensure there is no repeat of the issue.”

Facebook loses EU court battle

October 6th, 2015 No Comments By Mof Gimmers

Bitterwallet Facebook censorship Facebook loses EU court battleFacebook hit a snag in their EU privacy court case, and it looks like it has come to bite them on the arse. The EU Court of Justice has said that the transfer of European Facebook users’ data over to America could well be suspended.

The court ruled that the key agreement which allows US companies to transfer EU users’ data to the USA is invalid, because “that country does not afford an adequate level of protection.” Basically, the EU don’t think American data protection laws are up to much.

The thing that has been allowing the transfer of personal data is called the Safe Harbour agreement, but that is now under threat. Basically, it has been allowing US intelligence agencies to track Europeans, and it won’t only be Facebook that fall foul of this – a lot of tech companies enjoy the fruits of this particular agreement.

“American companies are going to have to restructure how they manage, store and use data in Europe and this take a lot of time and money,” says Mike Weston, CEO of data science consultancy Profusion.

Max Schrems launched the legal challenge regarding Safe Harbour after Edward Snowden dropped his revelations all over the place, about the US National Security Agency (NSA)’s Prism surveillance system, which basically allows spies to look at everyone’s personal data from all over the globe.

The ruling said: “The national security, public interest and law enforcement requirements of the United States prevail over the Safe Harbour scheme, so that United States undertakings are bound to disregard, without limitation, the protective rules laid down by that scheme where they conflict with such requirements.”

“The United States safe harbour scheme thus enables interference, by United States public authorities, with the fundamental rights of persons, and the Commission decision does not refer either to the existence, in the United States, of rules intended to limit any such interference or to the existence of effective legal protection against the interference.”

“The Court adds that legislation permitting the public authorities to have access on a generalised basis to the content of electronic communications must be regarded as compromising the essence of the fundamental right to respect for private life.”

Deals of the Day: Tuesday 6th October 2015

October 6th, 2015 1 Comment By Mof Gimmers

deals of the day 300x162 Deals of the Day: Tuesday 6th October 2015Lego fans! Apart from standing on a Lego brick with a bare foot, there’s nothing to not like about it! It is a toy that teaches you about engineering, is creative and you can make whatever you like with it. Lego is ace.

Well, with that, you can get a Lego Classic box, which is 1,500 pieces in 39 different colours, for the lowest price we’ve seen for it. How much? To you, £30 mate. If you want in on the deal, click here.


Halloween fans – Large pumpkins for only 50p from Morrisons
Sonic the Hedgehog – 10p from Google Play
Tesco half-price toy sale
Samsung Galaxy S6 in platinum/gold 32gb SIM-free for £399
Sony PlayStation 4 (1tb) for £264.99
HP ProLiant tower-server for £155.94
Dell venue 8 Pro tablet for £74.98
Free steak at Beefeater grill when you order another main meal- see here
Lenovo Z50-75 quad-core laptop for £313


Even though most people know that the new plastic bag charge of 5p is really easy to work out, some people are having a really hard time of it. Some are angry, while sections of the press are talking about the ‘confusion’ that will reign down on the people of England.

Seriously. 5p for a carrier bag. That’s all you need to know. It is so easy, that even an unborn foetus could fathom it, and they don’t even have fingernails in which to prise them apart. Of course, this move is a bid to try and reduce the amount of litter that bags create, and cut back on the manufacturing process which isn’t too great environmentally either.

Seeing as we’ve all got loads of plastic bags in a drawer or under the sink, stuffed inside another plastic bag, we should all be just fine, right? Wrong. One person is going to protest against this move.

CQjuGbVWEAI6 5A 500x113 Plastic Bag Tax: the best angry and confused responses

Another is going to refuse to pay and has vowed to do it ’til the ‘day they die’, which is hilarious. All over plastic bags they already have and 5 pence they can afford.

CQj2oUDW8AAxDZu 500x160 Plastic Bag Tax: the best angry and confused responses

Of course, the Daily Mail – who have long campaigned against the free use of plastic shopping bags from supermarkets – are now a bit hysterical about the whole thing, and came up with a genius idea of how to ‘get around’ the charges.

CQimqPsVAAA9r1P 375x500 Plastic Bag Tax: the best angry and confused responses

That’s right! The whole point of the tax – to get people to use carrier bags they already have – is the Daily Mail’s advice for just saying “NO” to these measures that came in yesterday.

We can’t forget the chaos that will ensue, can we?

CQiEv2nWEAA9Tgv 387x500 Plastic Bag Tax: the best angry and confused responses

Some critics have said that the charges are too complicated, and may well lead to confusion and longer queues at the tills. Let Bitterwallet clear this up for you – you’ll get charged 5p for a plastic bag so take your own, or pay for one. In some smaller shops, you won’t get charged, but if you’ve got your own shopping bag on you, it won’t matter will it? Or you can take one, and use it at Tesco or Sainsbury’s or whatever.

Sky News even have a guide on ‘how the new bag changes affect you‘. A guide! It’s 5p or take your own! It’s a piece of piss to work out! Honestly, god help us if there’s a war (etc).

Anyway, if you’re going to be conducting a protest against your local supermarket for obeying the new laws, do let us know and preferably, film it, so we can include it in an article, so everyone can laugh at your impotent rage.

[images via the always excellent BestoftheMail]

Pepsi release Back to the Future bottles

October 6th, 2015 1 Comment By Mof Gimmers

Fans of Back to the Future will know that October 21st 2015 is a special date – basically, Marty McFly went there. And yes, this is the real deal, not some ‘shopped job which has changed the date.

With that, a lot of people will be kicking their marketing teams into action. Pepsi, who star in the film, have been at it, and are recreating their bottles that star in Back To The Future II.

pepsi back to the future 500x281 Pepsi release Back to the Future bottles

At the moment, it looks like it’ll be US-only, which is rubbish. That could change, mind you.

PepsiCo’s senior director of marketing, Lou Arbetter, said: “So we wanted to take advantage of the fact that Marty travelled to the future, to this month, and wanted to actually come out with the product.”

Each bottle will also come in a furnished case, which means it’ll probably be expensive and one for hardcore fans only. The lads down the comic book shop will be wetting themselves over this, and if you’re at New York Comic Con this week, Pepsi will give you a Back To The Future Pepsi bottle if you’re one of the first 1,5000 people there dressed up like Marty McFly.

We’re looking forward to a portaloo company doing a Jurassic Park marketing stunt. Anyway, here’s the bottle from Back to the Future II…

…and here’s Pepsi’s adverts about it all…

Richard Branson sticks up for Uber

October 5th, 2015 No Comments By Mof Gimmers

Richard Branson15 415 300x267 Richard Branson sticks up for UberUber may offend a number of people, but Richard Branson isn’t one of them. A number of business sorts have stuck up for Uber after some new rules to hinder the service are being considered. Branson said that taxi firms need to ‘accept’ that the app has changed the industry, and in turn, they need to adapt and respond to it.

Talking to some awful event, he said: “Once you’ve let the genie out of the box and people are benefiting from something, you can’t put it back in.”

“You cannot stop progress and you can’t turn the clock back. Countries that try to ban Uber are holding themselves back. It’s like banning Google because it’s competing with education. You must embrace it.”

The new rules being considered are basically bans on some of Uber’s key features. Transport for London (TfL) have been saying that there should be a five minute gap between ordering a taxi and its arrival, for some reason. And there should also be a ban on operators showing cars that are for hire within a phone app.

Of course, this isn’t solely aimed at Uber, as there are a number of taxi hailing apps and services out there, but the success of Uber has definitely forced the situation.

What do you think?


apple How to easily disable iOS 9s content blocking in SafariIf you’ve upgraded to Apple’s iOS 9, and found that a load of stuff you want to look at online is suddenly blocked (hey, we’re not here to judge you, okay?), there’s a really easy way of getting around it, so you can fill you boots with whatever you like.

Apple’s content blockers are enabled or disabled through the Safari section of Settings, as you’d imagine, but if you only want to do it temporarily, and quickly while looking at something you wouldn’t normally get stuck into, then there’s a nice shortcut you can employ.

If you tap and hold on the reload button in Safari, it will give you an option to ‘Reload Without Content Blockers’, which means you can quickly look at a page as the developers of the page intended. With this method, there’s also an option to look at the desktop version of the site, if that’s your thing (you might want to hit a ‘submit’ button on Tumblr, which isn’t available on the mobile app, or whatever).

Either way, it is as easy as that. If you want to turn off content blocking completely, then go into your settings and mess around in there.