While Amazon.com continues to put U.S. book stores out of business through its cut-rate prices and ruthless business tactics to destroy its competition, France has taken action to protect what it deems a vital part of the nation’s culture and heritage. A new law would ban Amazon from offering free shipping to all addresses in the nation, effectively eliminating one of the online seller’s biggest financial advantages. Government officials say the measure is needed to protect two key components of French culture–books and the proprietors that sell them. Continue Reading →
Parisians–and the French in general–are smokers.
It’s a love affair that’s lasted for decades, and shows no sign of abating any time soon. Studies show that about 30% of French adults smoke, and more alarmingly a similarly high percentage of Gallic teenagers regularly light up. But a recent move by Paris’s new mayor to curb smoking in public places has led some to decry the loss of the iconic image of the Parisian smoker. Is that necessarily such a bad thing? Continue Reading →