In spite of the fact that this post reeks of scamminess, more than 85,000 Facebook users passed it on, at least hoping that it was authentic.

No, Qantas Isn’t Giving Away Free First Class Tickets For Liking A Post On Facebook

It’s a Facebook post in which the company name is misspelled. It contends that an underwhelming number of passengers is reason to celebrate. It states that all you have to do to get free first class seats is to “Like” the post, and that “winner’s will be inbox’d on March 17.” Nothing about this seems legitimate, and yet more than 85,000 people thought it was worth a shot. [More]

Tesla Says Software Update Will “End Range Anxiety” For Model S Cars

Tesla Says Software Update Will “End Range Anxiety” For Model S Cars

The base version of the Tesla Model S already gets around 200 miles to a charge and the 85kwh version can reach more than 260 miles before needing to be plugged in; farther than any other electric vehicle currently in production. But company founder Elon Musk is promising that a new software update will “end range anxiety.” [More]

Comcast Continues To Screw Up Accounts, Even After Local News Involvement

Comcast Continues To Screw Up Accounts, Even After Local News Involvement

We’ve done seemingly countless stories in which the only reason a company paid attention to a wronged consumer was the involvement of the media. And in most cases where this happens, the customer’s problem is finally resolved, never to crop up again. But that’s not always true. [More]

Facebook Clarifies: Bared Nipples, Hate Speech Not Allowed

Facebook Clarifies: Bared Nipples, Hate Speech Not Allowed

Facebook, like a lot of online sharing platforms with a large user base, frequently takes a “shoot first, ask questions later” approach to complaints about supposedly offensive posts. This has led to automated removal of rather innocent images — mothers breastfeeding, photos of nude paintings and sculptures — and other content that may offend some but was not intended to injure anyone. Today, Facebook tried to give users clearer guidelines about what sort of posts actually violate the site’s standards. [More]

Review Of Comcast/TWC, AT&T/DirecTV Mergers On Hold Again Over Confidentiality Issues

Review Of Comcast/TWC, AT&T/DirecTV Mergers On Hold Again Over Confidentiality Issues

Once again, the FCC has paused the 180-day clocks to review the two pending mega-mergers on its to-do list: Comcast’s acquisition of Time Warner Cable, and the marriage of AT&T to DirecTV. This time, the FCC is saying it can’t go forward with the review of these deals until a court determines whether interested parties should be granted limited access to confidential information about the involved companies. [More]

FTC Chair Edith Ramirez Talks Privacy, Data Security

FTC Chair Edith Ramirez Talks Privacy, Data Security

You may now be able to change your thermostat from another continent, your fridge might know when you need to buy more eggs, and your connected TV recommends shows and movies. But is your data being used for things other than keeping your house warm, your eggs in stock, and your kids entertained — and, just as importantly — is it secure? [More]

Will Congress Try To Kill The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau?

Will Congress Try To Kill The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau?

Since its creation as part of the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reforms, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has been a target of pro-bank, anti-regulation lawmakers who contend that the agency lacks legislative oversight and puts too much authority in the hands of a single director. With the recent political power shift in the Senate and another presidential election on the horizon, some advocates are concerned that the anti-CFPB movement may take hold on Capitol Hill. [More]

Why Do Robocalls Continue In An Age Of “Do Not Call” And Strict Telemarketing Rules?

Why Do Robocalls Continue In An Age Of “Do Not Call” And Strict Telemarketing Rules?

Even though millions of Americans are on the federal Do Not Call list to limit unwanted telemarketing calls, and even though it’s illegal for anyone to make a commercial prerecorded robocall to a consumer who hasn’t given their express consent to receive such calls, the problem persists and is getting worse, with no cure-all solution in the offing. [More]

FDA Warns That Chantix May Decrease Users’ Alcohol Tolerance

FDA Warns That Chantix May Decrease Users’ Alcohol Tolerance

Smokers using the prescription drug Chantix (varenicline) to help them through the quitting process may want to sip their beers slowly, as this week the FDA approved new warnings that the drug can change the way users react to alcohol. [More]

The Federal Trade Commission says that DirecTV is deceiving consumers by failing to adequately disclose how much these promotional prices will increase after 12 months, that subscribers face hefty early cancellation fees, and that they may be automatically subscribed to expensive premium channels after three months.

Government Accuses DirecTV Of Deceptive Advertising

While DirecTV may make people laugh (or cringe) with its multiple Rob Lowe ads, the thing that matters to many people when choosing between cable and satellite is price. But a new Federal Trade Commission complaint filed against the nation’s second-largest pay-TV service alleges that DirecTV is tricking consumers into believing they’re getting a better deal than they end up with. [More]

(CBS San Francisco)

Owners Of Wrecked Boat Out $20K Because AAA Tow Driver Used Personal Vehicle

Common sense would tell you that if your vehicle is wrecked while in the care of a AAA tow truck driver, either that driver’s insurance or AAA would be responsible for making you whole again. But if the tow driver is using their own personal truck at the time of the collision, you could be stuck holding the bill. [More]

(kevin dean)

Parents Using Uber To Chauffeur Kids To School, Even Though It’s Not Allowed

Rather than packing their kids onto a crowded bus in the morning or having to take time out of their morning schedule to get those students to school (or just making them walk, which is what legs were invented for), some parents are looking to ridesharing service Uber to ferry their youngsters around — even though it’s against the company’s own rules. [More]

(Drriss & Marrionn)

TV Viewership Down 10%; Industry Blames Streaming Video

Even though many of us have hundreds of channels to choose from on cable or satellite, we’re choosing to watch less live TV. But it’s not just because we’ve all decided to go outside and take up steeplechase; it has a little something to do with the availability of subscription streaming services. [More]

(Mike Mozart)

Wikimedia, Amnesty International, Others Sue NSA Over Mass Surveillance

The foundation behind Wikipedia, along with several other high-profile non-profit organizations, has sued the National Security Agency challenging its “suspicionless seizure and searching of internet traffic” in the U.S., claiming that this mass data collection goes beyond what the law allows the NSA to collect and that it violates protections afforded by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. [More]

Montel Williams-Endorsed MoneyMutual To Pay $2.1M Penalty

Montel Williams-Endorsed MoneyMutual To Pay $2.1M Penalty

For years, TV personality Montel Williams has been the daytime TV face of payday loan lead generation service MoneyMutual, even as it faced investigations from federal and state agencies. Just a few days ago, Montel got into a Twitter spat with a woman who questioned why he was acting as a spokesperson the company, and showed that maybe he needed a refresher course on annual percentage rates. But as part of a deal with regulators in New York state, Montel will no longer market payday loans in the state and MoneyMutual will pay a $2.1 million penalty to settle allegations that it illegally marketed payday loans to New York residents. [More]

While fewer than 8% of all banks put arbitration clauses on deposit accounts, those few banks account for nearly half of all insured deposits in the U.S. (source: CFPB)

In Wake Of Arbitration Report, Consumer Advocates Ask CFPB To Revoke Banks’ “License To Steal”

This morning, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau released its final report on forced arbitration, showing how banks and credit card companies use contractual clauses to short-circuit class-action lawsuits from their customers. Now that the Bureau has done its research, consumer advocates are calling on regulators to use their authority to end the practice. [More]

The "Social Media Addendum" for this Orlando-area apartment complex not only fines tenants $10,000 for negative online reviews, but transfers the copyright of anything you write or any images you publish about the property or its management.

Apartment Complex Claims Copyright On All Tenants’ Reviews & Photos Of Property

When you move into an apartment building you may face all sorts of rules about noise, public areas, trash collection, and paint colors, but one Florida management company tried to go the extra mile by including a “social media addendum” telling tenants that not only will they be hit with a $10,000 fine for griping about their living situation on any social media platform, but that the apartment owners automatically hold the copyright for anything tenants write about — and any photos they take of — the place. [More]

(Mike Mozart)

Burger King Quietly Dropped Soda From Kids Meals

When Wendy’s decided it January to remove soft drinks from its kids meals, it meant that Burger King was the only one of the big three burger chains to still include soda with their youth-targeted menu. But in the last month, BK has quietly pulled the sugary beverages from its kids meals and menu boards. [More]