Groupon Waits Until Now To Admit It’s Not Shipping Nexus 7 Purchased On Black Friday

Groupon Waits Until Now To Admit It’s Not Shipping Nexus 7 Purchased On Black Friday

Hey, remember that debacle in 2011 when Best Buy waited until a few days before Christmas to cancel many orders placed during the Black Friday frenzy? Groupon doesn’t. They offered a great deal on a Nexus 7 tablet through their Groupon Goods site on Black Friday, and kept promising that it would be on customers’ doorsteps by Christmas. Then they canceled the orders. [More]

Is Sephora Really Banning Customers Who Spend Thousands Every Year?

Is Sephora Really Banning Customers Who Spend Thousands Every Year?

It was news to us that beauty superstore Sephora recently debuted a new tier to its customer loyalty program. VIB Rouge is for customers who spend at least $1,000 per year at Sephora stores, because some people manage to do that. Some customers report that they were banned from online purchases for placing too many orders. This seems like a bad idea.  [More]

Fuzzy Math At Work: Dog Food, Towels, Bagels, Muffins

Fuzzy Math At Work: Dog Food, Towels, Bagels, Muffins

Fuzzy math: it’s not cuddly numbers, but what happens when you add up bulk pricing at a major retailer and things just don’t add up. Buying things in bulk is supposed to make things cheaper. Putting things on sale is supposed to make them cheaper, too. In the real world, that isn’t always the case. [More]

This Is Probably The Worst Cyber Monday Deal Of 2013

This Is Probably The Worst Cyber Monday Deal Of 2013

Retailers with a huge coupon list the exclusions to that coupon when manufacturer deals or other factors keep them from lowering the price too far on a given item. We understand that. What we understand slightly less is why Dick’s Sporting Goods bothers to publish their exclusions at all. [More]

Take Us Shopping With You This Black Friday

Going shopping this long weekend? Working in the retail frenzy? We want to hear your tales of commerce, mayhem, bargains, chaos, fun, and greed. You know, Black Friday. Don’t forget to put the Consumerist Tipster App for iOS or Android on your smartphone so you can beam your experiences right to Consumerist HQ. If you don’t have a smartphone, we like regular old e-mail just as much.

Black Friday Shoppers Set Up Camp At Best Buys Nationwide

Black Friday Shoppers Set Up Camp At Best Buys Nationwide

For some people, the weekend before Thanksgiving means house-cleaning and checking their grocery list for the big feast on Thursday. For others, it means setting up a tent in front of Best Buy and settling in for the rest of the week. For these people, at least, Best Buy opening at 6 P.M. on Thanksgiving Day is good news.

[More]

(baywatch brimful)

Apply For A Job Or Shoplift A Sex Toy, But Not Both During Same Shopping Trip

It’s good to multi-task and combine errands in one trip, saving time and fuel. It isn’t such a good idea to get drunk, then visit a sex shop in order to steal an “adult toy,” then apply for a job at the same shop. [More]

Well, Apparently Someone Still Needs Cassette Tapes For $4 Each

Well, Apparently Someone Still Needs Cassette Tapes For $4 Each

Sure, hardly anyone uses cassette tapes anymore, but all that means is that when you need one, you really need one. That’s why Staples can charge $12.53 for a three-pack, we suppose. Reader Karl found these tapes marked down to a slightly more reasonable $9.97 for three two. [More]

Party City Saves Money On Models, Just Makes Photos For Plus-Size Items Wider

Party City Saves Money On Models, Just Makes Photos For Plus-Size Items Wider

If you’re a costume store and have both misses’ and plus-sized tights and leggings to sell, there are two things you could do. You could hire models who fit into each respective product line, and take photos of their legs in each item. Or you could take pictures of a misses’ size model wearing the tights, then stretch out the images to create the illusion of a plus-size model. Party City did one of these. [More]

Scammers Distract Cashiers, Install Skimmers On Nordstrom Cash Registers

Scammers Distract Cashiers, Install Skimmers On Nordstrom Cash Registers

Keyloggers are devices that plug in between a keyboard and computer, and they have perfectly legitimate uses. For example, let’s say that you suspect one of your employees is writing “Sherlock” fan fiction instead of doing data entry: you can see what they’re actually typing and find out. The keyloggers found at a Nordstrom store in Florida were put to a use that isn’t legitimate at all: stealing credit card numbers. [More]

Mannequins Take Jobs Away From Hard-Working American Sign-Spinners

Mannequins Take Jobs Away From Hard-Working American Sign-Spinners

Sign-spinning isn’t a prestigious or particularly interesting job, but you do get to people-watch and earn an honest living. And standing on a street corner twirling a sign to get people’s attention is the kind of real-life job that can’t ever be outsourced or done by some kind of machine. Right? Nope. Meet the sign-twirling mannequin industry. [More]

(Maulleigh)

When A Real EBT Outage Hits, Customers Freak Out And Don’t Get To Buy Food

This weekend’s 17-state EBT glitch was a disturbing lesson in human nature, with customers at one Louisiana Walmart cleaning off shelves when their cards showed no limit, and abandoning entire carts when their transactions didn’t go through. Reader N. works at a retailer somewhere in the Midwest, and reports that a much smaller government benefits system outage on Monday had very distressing results at her store. [More]

Gustbuster Umbrella Works As Promised, Withstands High Winds

Gustbuster Umbrella Works As Promised, Withstands High Winds

If you’re standing outdoors in winds over 50 miles per hour, you may have bigger problems than a broken umbrella. In case it happens, though, don’t you want the strongest possible rain protection? You can find the Gustbuster online and in an awful lot of golf stores, but is that any kind of endorsement? Lab coats flapping in the breeze, our sibling publication Consumer Reports decided to test the Gustbuster’s claims. [More]

Goodwill Fires Cashier, Presses Felony Charges For Giving Discounts To Poor People

Goodwill Fires Cashier, Presses Felony Charges For Giving Discounts To Poor People

Goodwill is a charitable organization that sells donated goods in thrift stores to raise money for its job-training and employment programs. So it’s an organization that helps people. Just not the people who shop in its stores. That’s what a teeenage cashier learned recently when he gave some broke customers off-the-books discounts, and got arrested on felony charges (and fired) for his trouble. Update: The store decided not to pursue the charges. [More]

Dick’s Promotes Great Sale That Only Applies To 12 Random Items (Update: Not So Fast)

Dick’s Promotes Great Sale That Only Applies To 12 Random Items (Update: Not So Fast)

There’s a very prominently featured sale on the website of Dick’s Sporting Goods for the next few days. It’s a pretty good deal: $20 off with a $100 purchase! Only reader Dave couldn’t figure out which items on the site were eligible for this promotion. He sought help from a customer service chat rep and learned the sad truth: only twelve items are part of this promotion. [More]

Just Because A Refrigerator Costs $10,000, That Doesn’t Mean It’s Any Good

Just Because A Refrigerator Costs $10,000, That Doesn’t Mean It’s Any Good

As consumers, we tend to conflate price and quality. If a car costs ten times more than a basic car, we assume that there must be some wonderful reason. Being really expensive doesn’t mean that something is immune to terribleness. That’s not true, though. For proof, just look at the $10,000 cramped, energy-hogging Fhiaba refrigerator that our lab-coated cousins over at Consumer Reports just tested. [More]

Trader Joe’s Gets Rid Of Health Insurance Benefit For Part-Timers

Trader Joe’s Gets Rid Of Health Insurance Benefit For Part-Timers

At first glance, this story has a scary headline: Trader Joe’s is yanking health insurance away from many employees because of Obamacare. That is what’s happening, but leaves out that yes, workers are losing their coverage…because the Affordable Care Act means that adults whose jobs don’t provide health insurance but who are well above the poverty line will have access to reasonably priced insurance through state exchanges. [More]

Shopkeeper Stocked Store From The TJ Maxx Where He Worked

Shopkeeper Stocked Store From The TJ Maxx Where He Worked

When you’re launching a new business, it can be a good idea to keep your day job so you can keep some steady income as well as any benefits you might have. However, you should avoid the worker-to-owner transition that one Brooklyn man made. He allegedly stocked his little store with merchandise that he took off the shelves of the TJ Maxx store where he worked. [More]