Business: Surfline quietly increases subscription price by 35%, gouging shocked customers during Covid-19 pandemic!


And happy 4th of July to my fellow Americans who are waking, like me, with a renewed sense of our shared values. Me first, that’s mine, gimme, etc. Oh these are certainly difficult times but we’ve survived, flourished, under harsher circumstances. Enterprising individuals or companies even growing extraordinarily wealthy on the bent backs of hard-working middle-class folk.

Industrious American companies like Surfline that thought a global pandemic featuring much uncertainty, job loss, fear etc. was the perfect time to raise subscription rates by 35% without telling their customers, rather letting them find out on surprise bank statements.

$69 straight up to $99 for the year very, very quietly.


The practice, called price gouging, is generally frowned upon but Surfline’s customers seemed to enjoy the gift.

@nihilist999 wrote: “Lol leave it to Surfline – raises their membership prices 35% during a global pandemic and auto-bills without a word about the price hike.”

@Out4theyear added: “I got an email from my bank the other day that I was charged $99.99 by Surfline. So glad they let me know thy jacked the price up beforehand. Also, checked my local report today that said FLAT. Poor-Fair conditions look.”

Very fun, though apparently if you were a member before 2018 then you got to stay on the “legacy” price. Still, Surfline joins fine company in its business behavior, like gas stations after hurricanes and black market toilet paper sellers.

Happy 4th to them.

And Happy 4th to you too.

Watch: Giant osprey swoops into ocean and grabs baby shark, horrifying toddlers and their left-leaning parents!


A giant osprey, initially misidentified as a proud bald eagle, put on a show in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, swooping into the ocean and fishing out a baby shark.

Toddlers, who have almost forgotten the song “Baby Shark”, were horrified and expected mommy shark, daddy shark and grandma shark to be clutched and paraded across the sky next.

Their left-leaning parents, equally horrified by a display of species-on-species violence, assumed the bird to be a straight white male and the baby shark to be the rights of indigenous peoples.

Myrtle Beach had not seen this kind of excitement since Kenny Powers went boogie boarding there almost a decade ago.


Evan Geiselman (pictured) to be cancelled for also culturally appropriating a certain style of sitting commonly employed on the subcontinent.
Evan Geiselman (pictured) to be cancelled for also culturally appropriating a certain style of sitting commonly employed on the subcontinent.

Modernity: Calls to “cancel” Evan Geiselman grow louder after stylish Florida professional surfer caught “liking” President Trump tweet!

The hottest club in town!

But oh my goodness how excited are you to think that, right now, allegedly, Kelly Slater’s Surf Ranch’s wooden gates are swinging wide for a gaggle of bright-eyed World Surf League Qualifying Tour veterans, cameras rolling to catch their various reactions, as they begin their journey to become The Ultimate Surfer?

I don’t know exactly when the reality television show is supposed to begin filming but I heard July and now we are in July and so…

It will be a funny show, at the very least, and maybe fun though I can’t imagine any real talents will be discovered. Hidden stars don’t exist any more. Still, will the assembled team of coaches etc. take a professional surfer we have seen many times before, like Yago Dora say, twist a few screws and turn him into a competitive machine who knows exactly what to do to get up in the excellent range?


What about Evan Geiselman?

The stylish Florida pro has long been one of my favorites but maybe we should just keep that between us as he was recently caught “liking” one of President Donald J. Trump’s tweets which, in turn, led to calls for his cancellation.

Have you ever wondered where people go when they get cancelled? Is there a club for them? The Cancelled Club where Lana Del Rey croons, Jimmy Fallon performs his brand of “edgy” comedy and the reality television show COPs plays on closed-circuit televisions?

It sounds nice.

Since Evan will not be at Kelly Slater’s Surf Ranch, I wonder if Dooma Fahrenfort can take his place? I always thought the powerful South African had what it takes to make it all the way to the top.


Never mind.

He got cancelled too.


Happier days at WSL pool. Jordy Smith, centre, hammerhead victim Michel Bourez with embrace. | Photo: Steve Sherman/@tsherms

Longtom on the WSL in its death throes: “Surfing as a sport, dead…yet surfing more popular than ever…ergo, surfing is not sport!”

We forget how young pro surfing is. How tender, how fragile.

Be very honest now.

Organised “competitive” surfing is wandering round in a dark alley in a night-dress calling for help from a mid-western police department, possibly in a terminal condition.

Completely cancelled by Covid-19.

Have you missed it?

Hankering for it? 

Of those who put their hand up, put it down if you are in the local boardriders. You represent less than 10% of surfers, in Australia at least, a far, far smaller percentage anywhere else.

Surfing as Sport has effectively been completely and wholly absent planet-wide since Black Friday March 13 , 2020 and crowds, people actually surfing, as long as beaches are open, have been bigger than ever.


Surfing as a sport, dead.

Yet surfing more popular than ever. 

Ergo, surfing is not sport.

Too quick to rush to the conclusion?

Hold on, poor Nicolas Carroll is choking on his cornflakes, I can read his mind – even over the internets he claims massive overreach.

Let’s walk it back a step: six months or so into the Covid crisis and surfing has never seemed less like a sport that at any time since pre-colonial Hawaii when wave sliding on boards was  the subject of something like a sport.

I don’t know the details of the Hawaiian system, let’s hope Matt Warshaw or even better, someone from the islands themselves like Huli Opu or CkT might fill us in on the sporting aspects of the he’e nalu as it was practised prior to Jimmy Cook’s visitations during  ka wā kahiko.

Notwithstanding that, since George Freeth passed it to Alex Hume Ford, who begat Jack and Charmian London’s embrace, promoted the Duke, who fired up Tom Blake, surfing has drifted away from sport towards Blakes “Church of the Open Sky.”

Ford himself started up the Outrigger Canoe Club in Waikiki as a way to quarantine beachfront land for surfing which “made it possible for every kid with guts to live at least half the day fighting the surf.”

We forget how young pro surfing is.

How tender, how fragile.

Green shoots die off, even established branches like Japan can dieback.

England was once home to CT events. Now, no more.

Even the USA with its coveted consumer market cannot sustain a single long-standing CT event.

Its status in Australia has been more assured thanks to the support of the taxpayer. But you could easily mount an argument that it reached it’s peak there sometime between 1976 and ’86 and has slowly been trading down on the social licence it banked in that golden decade. 

Now, even the owners and governing body of the nominal Sport itself have lost confidence in their baby.

By their own hand they’ve lost focus and tried to pivot towards a “storytelling” organisation. Covid-19 has merely accelerated and put under the glare of unforgiving spotlights a process started by the governing body itself.

An own goal that will go down in History and spawn a thousand unread PhD’s in surf studies. 

Meanwhile, the legends of the Sport who could be called on in these dark times to philosophically buttress the activity that gave them fame and a livelihood are busy spruiking wavepools. Drowning their legacies in an evolutionary billabong for the sport which will never provide the stadium atmosphere or spectacle needed to capture the mythical Middle American market. 

MR says it’s better than any natural wave.

Really? Says who?

If it was that fucking good the punters would be flocking to come watch instead of staying away in droves.

Gerry Lopez, says this “quintessential” perfect wave is going to really “push the envelope of surfing”.

Gezza, I’ve watched every minute of all three pro comps held there and snippets of the proof of concept “dummy” comp and I’d say there is literally nothing more false.

You want the actual truth of surfing progression, go watch one single clip of Italo Ferreira on his black Timmy Patterson at his shitty brown water sideshore beach break in the beautiful bay.

Oh, it’ll be like snowboarding half-pipe or skateboarding, they say.

One simple thought experiment will banish the fantasy. 

What is a skateboarding half-pipe compared to?

Another skateboarding half-pipe.

A snowboard half-pipe can be compared to a mountain but the comparison can be engineered to be favourable.

A wavepool is now, and will be forever, compared to the ocean.

And even the dustiest Okie when asked to conjure surfing in the ocean will have a mental image of Laird at Teahupoo or G-Mac sliding down a hundred foot burger at Nazare.

Why would a head-high streak of pelican shit in a tub ever capture their imagination in comparison to that?

I say why, but I mean, how? 

That’s Joe Blow and the armies of VAL’s. If you have any skin in the pro surfing game, then it’s compared to Chopes and Cloudbreak and even the electric blue cylinders of Kirra rifling down golden sandbanks.

Build ’em bigger you say.

This useless science degree I hold tells me the physics of moving water is brutal, and brutally expensive.

You build the half-pipe, you build it once.

The wave has to be built over and over and over.

Every. Single. Time.

And each time that plough runs through the water, the bank balance dribbles away. 

Don’t worry, the dream won’t die.

We’ll figure something out.

We always do, even if we have to mow a few lawns to keep the rent paid in the interim.

In the meantime I think much fun taking the chat further with Chas and Derek tomoz on Dirty Water.

I got my brown sangas all ready to go.


God, I hope Carroll calls in.

Josh Kerr and Bede Durbidge, coaxed out of retirement. | Photo: WSL

World champs Mick Fanning, Joel Parkinson coaxed out of retirement and nineties journeymen wrenched out of obscurity to star in reality TV series!

"This will be the most-watched event in Australian surfing history," says ambitious presser. 

Back in March, when the coronavirus first started wrapping its fingers around the world’s neck, my boardriders club committee got together to discuss what it was all gonna mean for the rest of our season.

Comps weren’t looking like much of a chance and we wanted to keep that sweet esprit de corps singing through the dead zone.

“How ‘bout we run something online for the groms, at least?” came one suggestion. “Everyone’s got an iPhone. Let them submit clips of them surfing during lockdown and we can judge them all virtually. Keep things moving for the club even if we can’t get together in person. Plus, it’s a piece of piss to run.”

Think Taylor Steele’s Innersection, but with $100 voucher and a few cakes of wax up for grabs, as opposed to worldwide exposure and major sponsorship contract.

Shit’s easy.


Fun to do.

Why wouldn’t ya?

And so the ‘”Instagrom Challenge” was born (I’ll let you know the winners in September).

As it turned out, we weren’t the only ones who had the idea.

The concept popped up in different clubs across Australia, and has now culminated in RIVALS – Surfing Australia’s made for TV broadcast surf comp.

Eleven of Australia’s iconic competitive male surfers will open up old battle scars in an innovative three month, 13 consecutive episode TV series set to air on Channel Nine from 12 pm on Saturday the 8th August 2020.

“This will be the most-watched event in Australian surfing history,” says the presser. 


MICK FANNING – Snapper Rocks – Queensland

JOEL PARKINSON – Snapper Rocks – Queensland

DEAN MORRISON – Snapper Rocks – Queensland

BEDE DURBIDGE – South Stradbroke Island – Queensland

JOSH KERR – Duranbah Beach – New South Wales

DANNY WILLS – Broken Head – New South Wales

SHAUN CANSDELL – Coffs Harbour – New South Wales

JAY THOMPSON – Burleigh Heads – Queensland

GLEN HALL – Avoca Point – New South Wales

KAI OTTON – South Coast Slab – New South Wales

NATHAN HEDGE – North Narrabeen – New South Wales

Each surfer has two hours at their ‘local’ wave to surf however they want, on as many waves as they want, with their best three rides to be scored by the public via online platform and Olympic Surfing Head Judge Glen Elliott.

Back To News

You’ll know I’m the biggest fan girl going when it comes to nineties and noughties Australian power surfing.

This line-up’s got me gooeyer in the fork than a big government intervention during an unprecedented fiscal downturn.

(Though, where’s Mick Campbell?)

But also, this concept, as pointed out in my boardrider’s committee meeting, is an absolute piece of piss to run.

So easy that it took a few volunteers all of five minutes to set up an amatuer version.

So easy that Surfing Fucking Australia have signed on two former world champs and Australia’s largest commercial television station within a matter of months for the same format.

How good would it be if you set the same challenge for the top 16?

Yet, we’re still putting up with re-runs of the quarter finals at France 2009 and motherfucking Lawn Patrol.


The ball’s in your court.





I know you guys are there somewhere.


Mate, we all just want to know you’re all ok.

Kick-flip three times in your next Insta vid if you need us to send help.