Long before the national robot hamster shortage began, before fights broke out over the toy critters, and even before Consumerist took notice of the trend, Stacey’s daughters wanted Zhu Zhu Pets for Christmas. She ordered two hamsters and a playset for them from Target.com in mid-September, and waited for them to come off backorder. And waited. Finally, less than two weeks before Christmas, Target canceled her order. [More]
Brooklyn Heights blog has an eyewitness account of the aftermath of one customer (allegedly) smacking another customer in the back of the head over a fussy child.
The smacking-aftermath witness says: [More]
The announcement that Best Buy plans to open a Geek Squad outlet inside the Children’s Hospital in Minneapolis seems, at first, incongruous. “Geek Squad?” we said. “Haven’t these families already suffered enough?” Except this Geek Squad isn’t there to profit off sick kids—they’re there to help. No, really.
Learning about how money works is important for children. But today, when all of our transactions seem to take with the mysterious swipe of a card, or inside a computer. So how to teach children about money when nobody uses cash anymore?
A website that focuses on female entrepreneurs interviewed the creator of the Baby Einstein video line back in 2005. As Boing Boing pointed out yesterday, her explanation of how she developed the videos is pretty funny. Well, Boing Boing calls it “damning,” but it’s funny that everyone—Disney included—took the product line so seriously.
If you’ve purchased Baby Einstein products, your tot is probably somehow—inexplicably—still not a genius. But you may be eligible for a refund of the purchase price, due to overzealous claims made about the products.
Turtles remain a popular pet with kids. In 1975 the U.S. banned the sale of ones smaller than 4 inches, but the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) estimates almost 2 million were being kept as pets as of 2006. They’re also responsible for one of the slowest outbreaks of salmonella we’ve seen in recent years.
Starting the middle of next year, Walt Disney will be rolling out a new version of its mall store format that is intended to suck in your child like a fairy princess crack pipe. “The goal is to make children clamor to visit the stores and stay longer,” writes Brooks Barnes in the New York Times, by using things like embedded chips in the packaging to trigger responses from the store’s furnishings, a rotating library of scents that fill the store, and karaoke.
We’re not sure what “soccer” is—it looks like it might be some sort of real-world Quidditch without the brooms—but Visa and a bunch of soccer players have released a fancy-schmancy (for a website, at least) online version that tests your financial literacy. You can try it out at financialsoccer.com instead of working this morning.
If you’re a company like Echometrix that sells parental control software, you’re sitting on a whole bunch of data about what teens and children say and do on the Internet. What to do with that information? Use it to make your software better? Well, of course. But why not sell aggregate data to marketers, too?
Looks like the CPSC can afford donuts tomorrow for their office: Target has agreed to pay $600,000 for selling toys with too much lead on them from May 2006 to August 2007, reports Reuters. The fine “resolves allegations” over the issue, so now Target can focus on what it does best, which is act crazy.
Concerned about bacterial contamination, Tylenol is recalling certain children’s liquid medication products manufactured during a certain period in 2008. While the risk of infection is low when the medicines are ingested, still: eww, bacteria.
New legislation proposed in Congress today would require the U.S. Department of Education to study the nutritional value of foods available in schools, as well as the forms of food marketing. Sponsored by Representatives Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY) and Todd Platt (R-PA), the National School Food Marketing Assessment Act has a large roster of supporters, including the American Academy of Pediatrics, National Parent Teacher Association, American Heart Association, and the Center for Science in the Public Interest.