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Big Tobacco Loses Legal Challenge To FDA Report On Menthol Cigarettes

A federal appeals court has stymied the tobacco industry’s attempt to challenge a Food and Drug Administration advisory panel report on the safety of menthol cigarettes. [More]

Makers Of EOS Lip Balm Facing Class-Action Lawsuit Claiming Product Gives Customers Rashes, Blisters

Makers Of EOS Lip Balm Facing Class-Action Lawsuit Claiming Product Gives Customers Rashes, Blisters

If you’ve ever cruised the lip balm aisle at the drug store, you’ve perhaps noticed brightly colored lip balm pods made by a company called EOS — which stands for “Evolution of Smooth.” But despite its name, a new class-action lawsuit claims the popular product is providing anything but a smooth experience, and instead is turning customers’ mouths and lips into a dry, blistering, cracking, hellish landscape. [More]

(Jenn and Tony Bot)

Warner Bros., BMG, Rightscorp Agree To Pay $450K For Using Robocalls To Hassle Alleged Music Pirates

Even when you’ve been accused of violating the copyright of a major music publishers, you still have the right to not be harassed by unsolicited pre-recorded calls demanding payment for those supposed violations. That’s why Warner Bros. Home Entertainment and other defendants have agreed to pay out $450,000 to thousands of alleged music pirates. [More]

Wells Fargo Mocks Minnesota Vikings’ “Photo Bomb” Lawsuit

Wells Fargo Mocks Minnesota Vikings’ “Photo Bomb” Lawsuit

A few weeks back, the Minnesota Vikings sued Wells Fargo, accusing the bank of trying “photo bomb” the team’s new stadium. Wells has since fired back, calling the whole thing “far-fetched.” [More]

Chipotle Sued For Not Disclosing Food Quality Control Problems To Stockholders

Chipotle Sued For Not Disclosing Food Quality Control Problems To Stockholders

Customers don’t trust fast-casual Mexican-ish restaurant Chipotle very much right now, after a series of foodborne illness outbreaks in different parts of the country. The outbreaks of e. Coli, Salmonella, and norovirus were unrelated to each other, but demonstrated problems with the chain’s food-handling procedures. Now an investor has filed a lawsuit on behalf of shareholders who bought stock in the company in the lsat year, claiming that the company should have known about the problems with its food handling processes, and disclosed them. [More]

Bad News For Naruto: Monkey Can’t Hold Copyright On Infamous Selfie

Bad News For Naruto: Monkey Can’t Hold Copyright On Infamous Selfie

The years-long saga of the “monkey selfie” may have rolled to a quiet end in a federal court in San Francisco yesterday after a judge tentatively ruled that Naruto the macaque photographer does not hold the copyright to images he snapped on a stolen camera more than four years ago. [More]

Adam Fagen

Got A Fitbit Or Other Gadget For Christmas? It’s Time To Opt Out Of Mandatory Arbitration!

Customers have filed a class action suit against Fitbit, claiming that the company’s Charge HR and Surge fitness bands don’t accurately measure users’ heart rate during vigorous exercise. We’ll keep an eye on the lawsuit and let you know if it goes anywhere, but it probably won’t, and that’s what got our attention. The users filed a class action against Fitbit despite signing (well, clicking) away their right to do so when they registered their devices. [More]

Yahoo Hit With Class-Action Lawsuit Claiming Messenger Service Sent Spam Texts To Some Users

Yahoo Hit With Class-Action Lawsuit Claiming Messenger Service Sent Spam Texts To Some Users

When you sign up for one kind of message service, you might not expect, or want, messages about that service elsewhere. As such, Yahoo is facing a class-action lawsuit that claims the company’s Messenger service spammed some Sprint cellphone customers with unwanted texts, which could put it on the line for costly fines if it loses in court. [More]

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Court Says Tattooing Is Protected Speech, Mocks City For Misrepresenting “Margaritaville” Lyrics

The city of Key West, FL, has an ordinance restricting tattoo parlors in its popular Historic District, meaning anyone who wants to open a tattoo shop on the island has to do so in a designated commercial zone. But a federal appeals court has ruled that the city’s rules are too restrictive of tattoo artists’ right to free expression. It also chided Key West for not understanding the lyrics to a Jimmy Buffett song. [More]

Warner Bros. and DCP contend that these devices are being used to circumvent established copyright protections on ultra-HD content.

Warner Bros. Trying To Block Devices That Get Around 4K Video Copyright Protection

A week ago, Warner Bros. home video folks announced they would be catering to the growing number of 4K TV owners by releasing 35 recent titles — including Mad Max: Fury Road and The LEGO Movie — on ultra-HD BluRay discs. Two days later, the entertainment giant was in court, suing to stop a company from selling devices that would let users get around the digital copyright protections on these, and other, 4K titles. [More]

Bill Lewis

24 Stories We Covered In 2015 That We Never Saw Coming

The following is a true story: One day, two Consumerist staffers were chatting about the work day. One said, “I can’t believe I’m writing about the legal ramifications of butt-dialing.” The other replied, “We should probably remember this conversation for a year-end story about things we didn’t expect to ever write in 2015.” A calendar alert was made, and our future selves were duly reminded. [More]

Family Of Late Nursery School Teacher Claims ‘Big Bang Theory’ Ripped Off “Soft Kitty” Lullaby

Family Of Late Nursery School Teacher Claims ‘Big Bang Theory’ Ripped Off “Soft Kitty” Lullaby

If you’re a fan of The Big Bang Theory, you’re no doubt familiar with the method employed by other characters to soothe uptight scientist Sheldon when he gets upset: a lullaby about a soft, nice kitty that helps him settle down to sleep when he’s having trouble. That “Soft Kitty” song has also turned into big merchandising bucks, money the show doesn’t deserve according to a new lawsuit that claims the lyrics are a ripoff. [More]

Musician Files $150M Lawsuit Against Spotify For Royalties

Musician Files $150M Lawsuit Against Spotify For Royalties

To make a song available on a streaming service like Spotify or Apple Music, the services negotiate with record labels and representatives of songwriters. David Lowery is a musician (best known for the bands Cracker and Camper Van Beethoven), a professor, and an activist for artists’ rights in the new music economy, and his latest effort is a class action lawsuit against Spotify for mechanical royalties. [More]

Law Firm Must Pay $3.1M For Operating Automated Debt-Collection Lawsuit “Factory”

Law Firm Must Pay $3.1M For Operating Automated Debt-Collection Lawsuit “Factory”

A Georgia-based law firm behind hundreds of thousands of debt-collection lawsuits, and its principal partners, have agreed to pay a total of $3.1 million in penalties to settle federal accusations that they were operating a lawsuit mill in violation of the law. [More]

Minnesota Vikings Sue Wells Fargo For Attempting To “Photo Bomb” New Stadium

Minnesota Vikings Sue Wells Fargo For Attempting To “Photo Bomb” New Stadium


When you build a new multibillion-dollar stadium for an NFL franchise, you probably want to make sure that advertisers are paying for their name on or in the building, not just near it. And you probably want to ensure that those advertisers who do pay for their name on the building aren’t being overshadowed by the neighbors. Which is why the Minnesota Vikings are suing Wells Fargo. [More]

Court Ruling On Rock Band’s Name Could Bolster “Redskins” Trademark

Court Ruling On Rock Band’s Name Could Bolster “Redskins” Trademark

In 2014, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office canceled the trademark for the NFL’s Washington Redskins, deeming the term offensive and therefore not eligible for trademark. In July 2015, a federal court sided with the USPTO and ordered the agency to cancel the team’s trademark. But a ruling this week by an appeals court in Washington, D.C., adds a new wrinkle to this complicated and controversial issue. [More]

Debt Collectors Can Sue You, But Court Might Not Let You Sue Debt Collector Back

Debt Collectors Can Sue You, But Court Might Not Let You Sue Debt Collector Back

A new report claims that a growing number of debt collectors are trying to exploit a legal loophole that allows them to bring potentially frivolous lawsuits against alleged debtors, but bars those defendants from bringing their own legal action against the debt collector. [More]

Southwest Airlines To Pay $2.8M To Settle FAA Lawsuit Over Improper Repairs

Southwest Airlines To Pay $2.8M To Settle FAA Lawsuit Over Improper Repairs

More than a year after the U.S. government sued Southwest Airlines over allegedly improper repairs to more than a dozen aircraft, the airline has agreed to settle the allegations to the tune of $2.8 million.  [More]