The End Is Nigh For Room Keys At Hilton-Operated Hotels

The End Is Nigh For Room Keys At Hilton-Operated Hotels

Arriving at the door of your hotel room after a long day of traveling only to find that the key doesn’t work can be a frustrating experience. But that could be a situation of the past for guests at Hilton Hotels now that the company plans to rollout an initiative that would do away with flimsy, magnetic strip keys. [More]

Loophole Allows Auto-Title Lender To Charge Triple-Digit Interest Rates Despite Law

Loophole Allows Auto-Title Lender To Charge Triple-Digit Interest Rates Despite Law

Consumer advocates have long claimed that usury caps are the best way to protect borrowers from predatory lenders offering payday or auto title loans. But even those protections aren’t surefire. A title loan company in Florida has been skirting the state’s cap for the past three years. [More]

Forty-Year Family Feud Leads To Empty Shelves At 70 Supermarkets, Protests In Two States

Forty-Year Family Feud Leads To Empty Shelves At 70 Supermarkets, Protests In Two States

A weird situation in New England is getting weirder. Regional grocery store chain Market Basket, which operates 71 stores in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Maine, is finding itself at the center of a massive controversy, with employees, executives, customers, and even local lawmakers all getting involved. The core issue? The board ousted good-guy CEO Arthur Demoulas to replace him with perceived money-grubber Arthur Demoulas, and the resulting furor has led to strikes, boycotts, and empty shelves. [More]

Comcast Memo: Rep From “Painful” Retention Call Was Doing “What We Trained Him To Do”

(chrisinphilly5448)

A week after the posting of the neediest customer-retention call in Comcast history, the fallout continues, with the company’s Chief Operating Officer telling Comcast employees in a memo leaked to Consumerist that the incident was “painful to listen to,” but that the rep “did a lot of what we trained him…to do.” [More]

Here’s A Sample Complaint Letter For When You Don’t Know What To Say

(Donovan Beeson)

It’s hard to know where to start when writing a complaint letter. If our inbox is any indication, this difficulty manifests itself in free-form rants and confusion about what to say. It doesn’t have to be that way: simply stating the facts and explaining why the company should help you is enough. If you aren’t much of a wordsmith, Consumerist is here to help. [More]

(Steve Rhodes)

Comcast Locks You Out Of Your E-Mail Accounts, Shrugs

It all began when Karen paid her Comcast bill online. Maybe that’s what caused her issue, or maybe it wasn’t–all she knows is that when she tried to log in to her account after the payment posted, she got kicked back to the login screen. That’s how two weeks of what she called “Xfinity Hades” began. [More]

Amazon Asks FAA For Permission To Blacken The Skies With Delivery Drones

Amazon Asks FAA For Permission To Blacken The Skies With Delivery Drones

Last month, the Federal Aviation Administration laid down a speed bump in the road toward the impending robot apocalypse, clarifying that package-delivery drones like the ones being planned by Amazon and others are currently illegal. But, much like a locked door or a cinderblock wall will not stop a T-1000, a bit of bureaucracy will not stop Amazon from its destiny of creating Skynet Amazon Prime Air. [More]

Someone Swiped My House’s Comcast Connection; Comcast Wants $40 To Come Look At It

The black cable comes up from the ground and is supposed to go into the house. Instead, it's been pulled out of the conduit and connected to the orange underground-grade cable, which runs down the side yard to a neighboring property (see photo below).

All Consumerist reader Dan wants is to get Internet access to the house he just purchased. Shouldn’t be a big deal since Comcast says the building was previously wired for its service. Problem is, the cable running to his house no longer connects with his house, but instead now snakes off across his yard — on top of the ground — to a neighbor; and Comcast wants Dan to pay up just to come out and fix the mess. [More]

Samsung Gear Fit Wristband Causes Rash, Must Be Returned With All Accessories

Samsung Gear Fit Wristband Causes Rash, Must Be Returned With All Accessories

There are currently a lot of wearable fitness trackers on the market, locked in a battle for wrist domination. Reader Rob bought Samsung’s cool-looking Gear Fit a few months ago, and really likes it. Except for how some of the coating wore off the wristband clasp and he’s developed a mysterious rash on his wrist. [More]

AT&T/DirecTV File Merger Docs With FCC, Argue They Need To Merge To Compete Against Comcast

AT&T/DirecTV File Merger Docs With FCC, Argue They Need To Merge To Compete Against Comcast


The busy summer telecom merger season continues apace. Late yesterday, AT&T filed its paperwork with the FCC, officially kicking off the regulatory process that the company needs to get through in order to buy DirecTV and allow the two to live happily ever after. [More]

Apple Buys Beats Electronics And Music For $3 Billion In Its Largest Acquisition Yet

Apple Buys Beats Electronics And Music For $3 Billion In Its Largest Acquisition Yet

Listen up, music fans. If you use Beats headphones or listen to Beats streaming music service, there’s a new company in charge of servicing your ears: Apple has confirmed that it’s buying Beats Electronics LLC for $3 billion, which includes both the streaming-music service as well as its headphones business. [More]

Groups Protest Time Warner Cable Merger Outside Comcast Meeting

Groups Protest Time Warner Cable Merger Outside Comcast Meeting

On Thursday, Comcast’s investors will be meeting here in Philadelphia, but they’ll be doing so over the din of protestors from numerous local and national organizations who are coming out to oppose the cable company’s planned merger with Time Warner Cable. [More]

Fill Out This Simple Survey, Get Actual Help From Sears

Fill Out This Simple Survey, Get Actual Help From Sears

Over the last nine years or so of Consumerist, we’ve chronicled the tragic decline of Sears, an American institution. This has happened under the leadership of manifesto-writing hedge fund manager/CEO/intra-company deathmatch impresario Eddie Lampert. Shoppers’ biggest complaint: profound dysfunction and incompetence in stores. A manager at Sears slipped Consumerist a bit of information that people locked in a customer service battle with Sears might find useful. [More]

Here’s Why The Justice Dept. Should Block The Comcast & Time Warner Cable Merger

Here’s Why The Justice Dept. Should Block The Comcast & Time Warner Cable Merger

Now that Comcast and Time Warner Cable have been paraded in front of the Senate and Congress to state their case publicly for why they should be allowed to merger into a truly massive mega-company, it’s time for the investigation that really matters, as regulators at the FCC and the Justice Dept. look into whether or not this deal is good for the public or violates antitrust law. [More]

Does Amazon’s Inventory Commingling Help Fake Products Fly Under The Radar?

Does Amazon’s Inventory Commingling Help Fake Products Fly Under The Radar?

When you order a certain brand’s product on Amazon and end up with a fake version of the real thing, who’s to blame? Some companies say it’s Amazon’s fault for commingling its inventory at some warehouses in the name of expediency, mixing up products that come directly from them with third-party sellers who also use the e-commerce giant’s warehouse order-fulfillment services. [More]

eBay Brings Back Real-Time Auctions

eBay Brings Back Real-Time Auctions

Would you stop by eBay for a real-time auction of valuable art or collectibles? Five years ago, the company got rid of their live auctions, though they never really made the reason clear. Now they’ve partnered up with Invaluable, a company that handles online bidding for auctions of much higher-end merchandise than typical eBay fare. [More]

Panera Bread Replacing Some Cashiers With Kiosks — So Yes, The Robots Have Already Won

Panera Bread Replacing Some Cashiers With Kiosks — So Yes, The Robots Have Already Won

No one panic, but it appears we’re already too late to stem the inevitable tide of robot overlords waiting to take over our planet and suck out our souls via some as yet unimagined technological terror. Because clearly, adding more kiosks and taking away a few cashiers at Panera Bread is a clear sign of that impending doom. [More]

Target CEO Clocks Out In Wake Of Data Breach

Target CEO Clocks Out In Wake Of Data Breach

After 35 years at the company — the last six of them as CEO — Target’s top exec Gregg Steinhafel has stepped down less than half a year after the retailer was the site of a massive data breach that compromised credit card and personal information for more than 100 million customers at the height of the holiday shopping season. [More]