While food production has gotten more sophisticated and complex, and we now know much more about how the human body is affected by a wide variety of ingredients, there haven’t been any changes to the food labeling provisions of the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act since 1990, and some sections of the law have not been updated since 1938. So in an effort to bring nutrition labeling into the 21st century, lawmakers in both the House and Senate have introduced legislation that would require clear front-of-package labeling while clarifying when companies can use marketing buzz words that may be misleading. [More]
Despite repeated reassurances to the public that their energy drinks are safe and not marketed to kids, a group of lawmakers is calling the manufacturers of those drinks out for a variety of concerns listed in a new report. From labeling practices to potentially unsafe amounts of caffeine, the report details widespread labeling inconsistencies, questionable marketing practices and how much caffeine is in those beverages. [More]
Months After Newtown School Shooting, Facebook Finally Gets Around To Dealing With Scammy Tribute Pages
It’s been more than two months since the tragic shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, CT, and just as long since heartless, greedy scammers immediately jumped on the event as an opportunity to enrich themselves with fake Facebook pages. Now the site is finally doing something about it. [More]
This happens all too frequently: Someone with good credit suddenly incurs a large number of medical bills. Sometimes it’s too much money for the person to pay off in time, sometimes one bill will get overlooked and the debt is sent to collections. That person’s credit will now carry that stain for up to seven years. [More]
Most regular readers of Consumerist know that we’re not exactly fans of payday loans, which charge upwards of 25 times the interest of a high-interest credit card and hundreds of times the interest on a standard loan. And yet, there are people — well-educated people at that — who stick with the argument that payday loans are a good thing. [More]
Four of the nation’s largest banks — Wells Fargo, Fifth Third Bank, U.S. Bank and Regions Bank — are involved in high-interest, short-term loans that may not always be called “payday” loans but might as well be. Thus, a group of five U.S. senators have asked regulators to put a stop to the practice altogether. [More]
Last week, Facebook came out swinging against the practice of employers asking employees or potential hires for access to their social network accounts, in order to dig around and find out more about them. And now, U.S. Senators Richard Blumenthal and Charles Schumer are pushing the government to investigate the matter further. [More]
On March 15, 1962, President Kennedy addressed Congress and called for everyone to recognize four basic consumer rights — the right to safety, the right to be informed, the right to choose, and the right to be heard. It’s a message worth repeating. [More]
For fans of football teams with poor stadium attendance, Sunday afternoons can be a dreary experience of having to watch Cheers re-runs while occasionally checking the score of the game you’d be watching if it weren’t blacked out. But if a quintet of senators get their way, these black outs would come to an end. [More]
When you buy a new cellphone you have to sign a contract where you give up your right to sue. You agree to what’s called, “mandatory binding arbitration.” This is a bad thing to give to an industry that has high levels of complaints about hidden fees and abusive anti-consumer practices. Because if their crummy customer service fails to remedy an issue, your last resort option is to participate in a kangaroo court system that is paid for out of fees paid by the cellphone companies themselves. So Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Al Franken (D-MN) have today introduced The Consumer Mobile Fairness Act that would ban mandatory arbitration clauses in cellphone contracts. [More]
How was a group of business owners able to secure an A- BBB rating for a fictional company called “Hamas?” (Yes, named after THAT Hamas.) [More]
A group of attorneys general have decided to go ahead with a multi-state investigation of the Google Streets View project after it was revealed that the cars it uses to capture the images were also capturing data from people’s home and business wireless networks. The capturing was done in 30 countries and the government of France says that it included people’s passwords and email.
Google says they were capturing the data “inadvertently” and that the quality of the data was poor because the cars were moving. [More]
Books on managing your money better are an especially apt holiday gift this year. If you need some ideas, Vanguard recommends these 16 books. Mastering your personal finances, the gift that keeps on giving. [More]
Are CVS and Walgreens price gouging on liquid Tamiflu? The attorney general of Connecticut’s office says the AG, Richard Blumenthal, has “received information suggesting that some pharmacies have charged substantially increased out-of-pocket prices for Tamiflu, in some cases as high as $130 or more. He has also heard that some retailers may be purchasing capsules of higher-dosage Tamiflu from distributors and remarketing it as liquid-form lower dosages at greatly inflated prices.” [More]
Connecticut AG Richard Blumenthal has announced that Craigslist will be dropping its controversial “erotic services” section, and will replace it with a moderated “adult” category.
Here is a resignation letter sent on Tuesday by Jake DeSantis, an executive vice president of the American International Group’s financial products unit, to Edward M. Liddy, the chief executive of A.I.G. It was published in the New York Times.
A Connecticut mall has to pay $259,000 in settlement fees to consumers who bought gift cards that had monthly inactivity fees.
Someone ring a bell because Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal has just sued Countrywide (and, of course, Bank of America) for deceptive lending practices. They’re seeking damages of $100,000 for each violation, as well as “up to $5,000 per violation of state consumer protection laws, disgorgement of all ill-gotten gains and an order compelling the company to cease its illegal practices.”