Alan Rappa

It’s Time To Start Treating Video Game Industry Like The $21 Billion Business It Is

The majority of video games in the U.S. are purchased and played by adults. The largest titles make money that Hollywood films could only dream of raking in, and the biggest players in the industry run multibillion-dollar multinational operations that employ thousands of people. Yet many consumers still think of gaming as a kid’s thing that doesn’t merit serious consideration or scrutiny. In an age where our culture recognizes previously sniffed-about industries like professional sports as much more than child’s play, it’s time to get over that same hump about video games. [More]

Ch-ch-changes...

Yahoo Ditching Google, Facebook Logins For Flickr Accounts By End Of The Month

After announcing in March that it would phase out third-party logins for photo-sharing site Flickr, Yahoo says it’ll be killing off Google and Facebook logins on June 30. That means you’ll need a Yahoo account to sign in and access your photos. [More]

Lawsuit Claims Medical Center Employees Posted Patient’s STD Diagnosis To Facebook

Lawsuit Claims Medical Center Employees Posted Patient’s STD Diagnosis To Facebook

Sharing a patient’s medical record with anyone other than the patient is a big, fat no-no. Not only can companies found to be leaking the super-sensitive information be fined millions of dollars, but it opens them up to a range of lawsuits. And one Ohio medical center has found itself in that exact situation. [More]

(Raymond Bryson)

Finding The Guy Who Stole Your Stuff Is Easy When He Sends You A Facebook Friend Request

When you find yourself suddenly bereft of personal belongings because some dastardly villain took them off you during a robbery, often the only recourse is to call the cops and wait. And wait. And hope that you can get your stuff back. Or, you can just wait until the suspect sends you a friend request. [More]

Facebook Makes “Friends Only” The Privacy Default For New Users

Facebook Makes “Friends Only” The Privacy Default For New Users

For years, when new users joined Facebook, the default privacy setting had been to share your every baby photo/quote of the day/quiz result/divisive political rant with the public at large. Users had to opt into higher levels of privacy to limit their updates to smaller groups. But today Facebook announced that the default setting for new users is to only share posts with folks on their lists of friends. [More]

Facebook Can Now ID What You’re Listening To Or Watching On TV

Facebook Can Now ID What You’re Listening To Or Watching On TV

Do you want all your Facebook friends to know exactly which song you’re listening to whenever you post something online? How about which TV show you’ve got on in the background? What’s that — you do want to tell the world these things, but you don’t feel like going through the onerous task of having to type this info out? Then the newest feature for Facebook’s mobile apps is up your over-sharing alley. [More]

When You Give Silicon Valley Permission To Spy On You, It’s Kinda Hard To Say “No” To The NSA

When You Give Silicon Valley Permission To Spy On You, It’s Kinda Hard To Say “No” To The NSA

The fundamental goal of the ad-supported web is to collect and capitalize on data from its users; rather unsurprisingly, that data is just as valuable to the government as it is to Facebook and Google. You may think you’d never willingly provide the FBI or NSA with a map of your entire private life, but, in fact, you probably already have. [More]

Facebook Ups The Creep-Factor By Allowing Users To Find ‘Nearby Friends’

Facebook Ups The Creep-Factor By Allowing Users To Find ‘Nearby Friends’

The stalking capabilities associated with Facebook just increased. The social network has always allowed your friends to follow your every move – where you ate last night and who you’ve been photographed with last week. But with a new update, Facebook is taking friend stalking to an entirely new level. [More]

(AJ Brujstein)

General Mills’ New Policy: If You Engage With Us Online, You Can Never Sue The Company

Companies want customers to engage with them online as if they’re just another pal on Facebook or Twitter, one that can offer downloadable coupons and promote contests with attractive prizes. But in new language recently added to General Mills’ website, consumers who interact with the company online will be agreeing to give up the right to sue the company in the future. [More]

If you leave WhatsApp, think of all the brilliant, insightful chats you'll be missing out on.

Feds Remind Facebook & WhatsApp To Respect User Privacy After They Get Married

The Federal Trade Commission is giving a bit of pre-marriage advice to Facebook and one of its many betrothed, messaging app WhatsApp, which said “I do” to Facebook’s $19 billion (with a “b”) proposal back in February. Given Facebook’s past transgressions, the FTC felt that maybe it was worth reminding the giddy-in-love couple that there are laws about what they can and can’t do with users’ data. [More]

Want To Send Facebook Messages On A Mobile Device? You’ll Need A Separate App For That

Want To Send Facebook Messages On A Mobile Device? You’ll Need A Separate App For That

Perhaps you were having a nice walk down memory lane exchanging Facebook messages with one of your high school friends who you haven’t seen in real life in over 14 years but hey, it’s Facebook. In the future if you want to take that conversation to your phone or tablet, you’ll have to download a separate messaging app. [More]

Facebook Ads Will Be Getting Bigger, But There Won’t Be As Many Of Them, So… Yay?

Facebook Ads Will Be Getting Bigger, But There Won’t Be As Many Of Them, So… Yay?

Facebook is rolling out new changes in the next few months that will probably catch your eye. Seeing as “changes” in this case means much larger Sponsored Ads along the right-hand side of the page. But there will be fewer of them than before, the company says, so you can plan your celebrations of that fact accordingly. [More]

Jerk.com Accused Of Using Facebook Profiles To Con People Into Paying To Remove “Jerk” Label

Jerk.com Accused Of Using Facebook Profiles To Con People Into Paying To Remove “Jerk” Label

The Internet has its share of websites that let people post negative comments and statements about individuals and businesses, and then turn around and allow the insulted parties to remove that content (for a fee, of course). The Federal Trade Commission has accused one such site of creating millions of fake profiles in order to scam Facebook users out of $30 each. [More]

Kindly Dinosaur Nags Facebook Users To Check Their Privacy Settings

Kindly Dinosaur Nags Facebook Users To Check Their Privacy Settings

Meet Facebook’s new mascot of accidental oversharing: a kindly blue dinosaur that shows up and gently prods you to think about the privacy settings on your posts. Why a dinosaur? We’re not sure, but it’s definitely cuter than a cartoon annoyed family member or an adorable rendering of a publicly gossiped-about friend. [More]

Comcast, Verizon March On To Worst Company Quarterfinals

Comcast, Verizon March On To Worst Company Quarterfinals

Today, four of the biggest names in Consumerist news, including one former champ, fought it out in the Worst Company Sandbox of… Sand. Each member of this cruddy quartet may be deserving of the Golden Poo, but only two could move on the next round. [More]

Why You Should Care That Facebook Spent $2 Billion To Buy Oculus

Why You Should Care That Facebook Spent $2 Billion To Buy Oculus

Facebook has been all over the news today, and not just because voters here at Consumerist think they’re terrible. It all has to do with the online behemoth’s latest, surprising acquisition: a virtual reality company called Oculus. [More]

Facebook Gets The Thumbs-Up From Haters, Takes Final Spot In Worst Company Not-So-Sweet 16

Facebook Gets The Thumbs-Up From Haters, Takes Final Spot In Worst Company Not-So-Sweet 16

After more than a week of bloodshed, half of the contenders that dared to dip their toes into the Worst Company wading pool (stocked with laser-equipped piranha and some ill-tempered guppies) have been carried out in Consumerist-branded body bags. The 16 fighters that remain are bruised, but not broken, and one of them will soon be crowned with the coveted Golden Poo. [More]