FTC Settles Charges Of Deceptive Advertising Against Four Weight-Loss Marketers For $34M

FTC Settles Charges Of Deceptive Advertising Against Four Weight-Loss Marketers For $34M

Put down that shaker of Sensa. Those promises of shedding 30 pounds while eating french fries and sitting on the couch aren’t real. We know — who would have thunk it? Well, the Federal Trade Commission for starters, which announced today that four marketers of fad weight loss products settled FTC charges on deceptive advertising for $34 million. [More]

(M. Bitter)

Vitaminwater Labeling Lawsuit Can Continue, But Plaintiffs Probably Won’t Be Able To Seek Damages

It’s been more than four years since the Center for Science in the Public Interest and others filed its lawsuit against Coca-Cola for allegedly overstating the health benefits of vitaminwater and the case has still not been resolved. It has, however, inched closer to trial after a federal magistrate recommended that the case go forward as a class-action suit with regard to the products’ labeling, but that the plaintiffs could not sue for damages as a group. [More]

FTC Pulls Plug On Sites That Made $359 Million On Bogus "Free" Offers

If you’re a Consumerist reader, you’re probably the type of online shopper that would be wary of a website promising a “free trial” period. But every year, millions of Americans think they’re getting something for nothing — only to end up much poorer because they didn’t read the fine print. [More]

FTC Finally Permanently Shuts Down Fake News Sites Shilling For Acai Berries

FTC Finally Permanently Shuts Down Fake News Sites Shilling For Acai Berries

It was nine months ago that the Federal Trade Commission announced its crackdown on companies that created sites aimed to look like news reports that were really just advertisements for supplements and other weight loss products made from acai berries. Now, as part of a settlement agreement, six online marketers will permanently stop the deceptive practice. [More]

Those "1 Tip For A Tiny Belly" Ads Are (Shocker!) A Scam

Those "1 Tip For A Tiny Belly" Ads Are (Shocker!) A Scam

Probably the most shocking part of this story is that it took so long to reveal what seems to be kind of a given: Those ubiquitous “1 Tip for a Tiny Belly” ads are a scam, says the Federal Trade Commission. [More]

FTC Crackdown Does Little To Curb Ads For Fake News Sites

FTC Crackdown Does Little To Curb Ads For Fake News Sites

Even though the Federal Trade Commission recently appeared to be coming down hard on “news” sites shilling for things like acai juice, it looks like those sites are not only still around, but links to them are popping up on major, legitimate news sites. [More]

Debt Collectors Out To Prove They Are Not All Zombie Bullies Who Want To Eat Your Face

Debt Collectors Out To Prove They Are Not All Zombie Bullies Who Want To Eat Your Face

For decades, U.S. debt collectors have plied their trade under the watchful but lazy eye of the Federal Trade Commission, which has the authority to go after the worst of the bunch but can’t create new rules governing these businesses. But later this summer, debt collectors will come under the supervision of the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau… and that scares them, especially after complaints about debt collectors jumped 17% last year to 140,036. [More]

Science Finds Way To Add Probiotics, Fiber & Antioxidants To Your Hot Fudge Sundae

Science Finds Way To Add Probiotics, Fiber & Antioxidants To Your Hot Fudge Sundae

The other night, while I was going hog-wild on a pint of something containing fudge, peanut butter, sprinkles and unicorn horn, I thought to myself, “If only there could be some health benefit to eating this.” Now I find out that a food scientist at the University of Missouri is tantalizingly close to squeezing all sorts of goodness into the gobs of gluttony in my ice cream. [More]

FTC Cracks Down On Fake News Sites Shilling For Acai Berries

FTC Cracks Down On Fake News Sites Shilling For Acai Berries

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission is taking a harsh legal stand against 10 companies and individuals marketing acai berry weight-loss products online by using fake news websites which imply endorsement from major media outlets — including our sibling publication Consumer Reports. [More]

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  • Acai Berry Company Temporarily Shut Down By FTC Over Billing Practices

    Acai Berry Company Temporarily Shut Down By FTC Over Billing Practices

    Last summer, Central Coast Nutraceuticals settled a deceptive practices charge from Arizona’s Attorney General by promising to pay $1.4 million in fines. Now the company, which peddles acai berry and colon cleansing products, has been forced to temporarily stop selling or marketing its wonder products completely under an injunction obtained yesterday by the FTC. [More]

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  • Who's Showing Love For Consumerist Today?

    Who's Showing Love For Consumerist Today?

    Our more scholarly siblings over at Consumer Reports recently sat down for an interview with David Vladeck, director of the Bureau of Consumer Protection at the Federal Trade Commission. And while Mr. Vladeck had all sorts of important things to say about scams, frauds and various sorts of hoodwinkery, the most important thing is that he likes us… he really likes us. [More]

    24 Ways To Make Some Extra Money

    24 Ways To Make Some Extra Money

    If you’re between jobs, underemployed, or just have a lot of extra time on your hands now that you’ve give up expensive hobbies like smoking or shopping, here’s a list of 24 ways you can you earn some extra money. They’re not full time jobs, or sometimes even part-time jobs, but they’re a good starting point if you need some inspiration on how to bring in a little extra cash. [More]

    Scams That Came Of Age In 2009

    Scams That Came Of Age In 2009

    Get-poor-quickly schemes abounded in 2009, and Mark Huffman Consumer Affairs sifted through the best of the best to come up the top 10 scams of 2009. [More]

    Visa Cuts Off Payments To Unrepentant Scammers

    Visa Cuts Off Payments To Unrepentant Scammers

    That “local mom” trying to sell you her secret formulas for weight loss and tooth whitening in Internet ads may need to find a new job. Visa cut off payments to 100 merchants. The culled companies were the fine folks behind the “free sample” negative-option scams that Consumerist has written about extensively in the past. [More]

    Oprah's Dr. Oz Sues Resveratrol Anti-Aging Scam Companies

    Oprah's Dr. Oz Sues Resveratrol Anti-Aging Scam Companies

    Amazing pills that will make me look younger and lose weight? And it comes as a free trial, you say? Of course I’ll try it! Here’s my credit card number. What could possibly go wrong?