New York State Attorney General Tries To Shut Down Lyft Before Tonight’s NYC Launch

New York State Attorney General Tries To Shut Down Lyft Before Tonight’s NYC Launch

Seven hours from now, people in the New York City boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens were supposed to be able to dial up a vehicle from ride-sharing service Lyft and coast through traffic in a cloud of peer-to-peer vehicular bliss. “Not so fast!” the New York state government said to the service, its drivers, and their pink-mustachioed cars. [More]

(Ryan)

Barnes & Noble To Train Employees To Not Be Jerks To Breastfeeding Moms

In spite of the fact that every state in the U.S. has laws that allow nursing moms to feed their babies in public, there are still frequent reports (some possibly fictional) of breastfeeding mothers being told to cover up or leave stores, restaurants, and airplanes. In the wake of one such incident at one of its stores in New York state earlier this year, Barnes & Noble has agreed to train its employees that it’s not illegal for a mother to give sustenance to her young child. [More]

(Wayne Gunn)

Uber Agrees To Not Gouge Riders During Emergencies & Natural Disasters

One of the nice things about ride-sharing services like Uber is that the company can compete against taxi cabs by charging decent rates. But the fact that Uber rates are dynamic and can go up in times of high demand means the door could be open to gouging in situations where other transportation options are not available. [More]

(Cheri Sundra)

Court Rules NY Towns Can Use Zoning Laws To Ban Fracking

The battle over the highly controversial topic of fracking — a mining technique that has gained popular use as a method of extracting natural gas from the earth — continues as New York state’s highest court has ruled that towns can use zoning laws to effectively ban the practice. [More]

Bank Of America Agrees To Scan For Illegal Payday Lenders In NY

Bank Of America Agrees To Scan For Illegal Payday Lenders In NY

Payday lending is illegal in more than a dozen states, including New York, but some lenders manage to fly under the radar by operating online or hiding their loans as part of another business. In an effort to crackdown on loans that violate state laws, New York has created a database for banks to use to help identify sketchy lenders, and Bank of America — no stranger to the issue of questionable loans — is the first to sign on. [More]

Comcast One Step Closer To Slapping Its Logo On Top Of 30 Rock

Our resident artist's rendition of what Comcast will do to the Prometheus Fountain at Rock Center (photo: Michael Colwell)

Comcast may have its global HQ inside the world’s tallest thumb drive here in Philadelphia — and it’s even building a huge middle finger right next door to reaffirm that Philly is Kabletown USA — but the real real-estate cherry in its portfolio has yet to be adorned with the Comcast logo: 30 Rockefeller Plaza in NYC. [More]

New York A.G.: Never-Ending Sales At Hobby Lobby Stores Broke The Law

New York A.G.: Never-Ending Sales At Hobby Lobby Stores Broke The Law

When a store runs the same promotion for 52 consecutive weeks, it’s really not a sale. It’s actually a type of deceptive advertising and that’s something the New York Attorney Generals’ office just isn’t going to stand for. [More]

Airbnb Agrees To Hand Over Some User Info To NY Attorney General

Airbnb Agrees To Hand Over Some User Info To NY Attorney General

There’s been yet another development in the ongoing battle between Airbnb and the state of New York, with the online home rental service agreeing to turn over some data about its customers to the state’s Attorney General, but not to the extent that a subpoena from the AG’s office had originally sought. [More]

Researchers Estimate 19 Tons Of Microbeads Washed Down The Drain In New York Each Year

Researchers Estimate 19 Tons Of Microbeads Washed Down The Drain In New York Each Year

You wouldn’t dream of eating the tiny beads found in your face wash, right? Well, even if that’s the case, if you like seafood there’s a possibility you’ll be digesting that microbead at some point. [More]

Dirty Hot Dog Vendors Avoid Cleaning Up By Changing Their Names

Dirty Hot Dog Vendors Avoid Cleaning Up By Changing Their Names

Look, we all know that there is a certain level of self-delusion involved every time we buy a hot dog from a street vendor, but we’d like to believe that any street-meat seller whose lack of cleanliness merits multiple Dept. of Health violations would be put out of business. Which is sort of true, in that the sketchy hot dog dealer merely can merely resurrect his business under a new name with a new license. [More]

Airbnb To Start Collecting Taxes In Portland, San Francisco, Maybe New York City

Airbnb To Start Collecting Taxes In Portland, San Francisco, Maybe New York City

Airbnb is a site that lets people rent rooms or entire apartments or houses, directly from the homeowner or renter. It has proven popular with travelers, but less popular with landlords, the hotel industry, and local governments. Why do local governments care? Airbnb rentals aren’t subject to sales and hotel changes. In some cities, that’s about to change. [More]

Report: Telemarketers Pocket Nearly 2/3 Of Charity Donations

Report: Telemarketers Pocket Nearly 2/3 Of Charity Donations

While the person who calls you to ask for a charitable donation is probably representing a non-profit organization, that telemarketer may be employed by a for-profit fundraising company hired by the charity. But just how much of what you’re giving ends up going to the charity, and how much goes to line the telemarketer’s pockets? [More]

McDonald’s Manager Says She Was Fired After Paying For Firefighters’ Meal

McDonald’s Manager Says She Was Fired After Paying For Firefighters’ Meal

It’s a classic case of she-said/franchisee-said at a McDonald’s eatery in New York state, where a 23-year-old single mom claims she lost her job as a manager at the fast food joint after paying for breakfast for a group of firefighters. [More]

(Great Beyond)

“Operation Angry Birds” Rescues 3,000 Cockfighting Contenders

When you think of a coordinated law enforcement effort that involves simultaneous takedowns of three illegal operations in three different counties, you might assume it involved narcotics or human trafficking or terrorist cells. But New York state’s Operation Angry Birds had a truly fowl target in mind. [More]

To clarify, this is not one of the defendants, but she's probably just as much of a real nurse as any of the people who went to these fake nursing schools. (Photo: Mike Rollerson)

Trio Convicted Of Running Fake Nursing Schools

When you scam wannabe nurses out of more than a million dollars by selling them a fake education, you have to expect you’ll get caught at some point. But that didn’t stop three women in New York from operating a number of bogus nursing school programs in NYC and Long Island. [More]

Super Bowl Ticket Scalpers Need A Hug Because Nobody Is Making Them Rich This Year

Super Bowl Ticket Scalpers Need A Hug Because Nobody Is Making Them Rich This Year

Can we pause for a moment to reflect on the plight of the lowly Super Bowl ticket scalper? He toils thanklessly for his art and all he asks in return is that you pay him several thousands of dollars to watch a football game in which you probably have no personal stake. With heartless, penny-pinching fans taking a risk by purchasing their Super Bowl tickets through “legitimate” means, this year’s scalpers may be forced to sink to selling NHL or NBA tickets just to pay the rent. [More]

Time Warner Cable Will Try To Not Suck As Much In L.A. & NYC

Time Warner Cable Will Try To Not Suck As Much In L.A. & NYC

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, if you want to get a Manhattan resident’s blood boiling, your best bet is to mention Time Warner Cable. In addition to the horrid billing and customer service problems experienced by TWC customers all over the country, New York customers will claim they are plagued by frequent and unexplained outages and bouts of cripplingly slow download speeds. From what we gather, things aren’t much better for TWC customers in L.A. [More]

Sick Of Husband’s Gambling, Wife Alerts Authorities To $600K Super Bowl Pools At Local Bar

Sick Of Husband’s Gambling, Wife Alerts Authorities To $600K Super Bowl Pools At Local Bar

All around the country, local bars operate betting pools where patrons pay a set fee to buy a shot at taking home everyone else’s cash. At lots of bars, the price for a box is reasonable, but some pools charge thousands of dollars to check off a single box. These pools often go ignored by police and other authorities, but after the wife of a Staten Island gambler complained to the state about the large sums being wagered at a local bar, that establishment is no longer accepting bets. [More]