CHICAGO (CBS) — Had it with those soaring gasoline prices? There’s a movement to get millions of drivers to boycott the gas pumps Friday.
But as CBS 2’s Mike Parker reports, it may not have any effect at all.
Maybe you got a chain e-mail recently. It calls for all Internet users to stage a so-called “Gas Out” on April 15. “Don’t Pump” is the slogan used to help convince Americans to stay away from gas stations for a day.
Ivo Widlak, a Chicago freelance Internet journalist, is one of those sending those e-mails out.
“It’s a great idea and there’s no doubt about it, for every driver who is just passing any gas station and sees the prices skyrocketing every single day,” he says.
And sure enough, motorist Charles Popov finds the idea of a gas-out appealing.
“If it keeps going up like this, I probably would do it,” he says.
But according to the About.Com Urban Legends website, the e-mail is false and misleading. The message says a 1997 gas-out forced the price of gasoline down 30 cents overnight.
The problem is, there was no such boycott in 1997.
There was a gas-out in 1999 but it was a flop and had no effect on the price of gas.
“That could be a hoax, that could be an urban legend,” says Widlak “But maybe tomorrow the drivers will show that drivers and people, residents are completely fed up with the prices.”
One gas station is not worried. He says if drivers don’t buy tomorrow, they’ll be back the next day, or the next.