Congress is just all up in the FCC’s business lately, it seems. Earlier this week, lawmakers in both houses proposed their own version of net neutrality, one that would also strip the FCC of its own authority to regulate broadband in the future. Today, there’s a bill looking to jump into one of the FCC’s other big issues right now: state laws that prohibit communities from developing municipal broadband. [More]
Has RadioShack gone too far with its sales quotas? Allison wrote us to say that when she tried to upgrade her phone recently, the employee had to add accessories to the transaction before the system would approve it. She said he canceled some, and she ended up paying $2 for “two plastic covers for phones I don’t own.” But she says her mom had an even more bizarre experience at a RadioShack, where the assistant actually paid for the accessories herself. [More]
It hasn’t even been a month since our last dead Bank of America customer story, but here the bank is at it again, refusing to let a woman’s son close her checking account no matter what he does. Although she lived and banked in Tennessee and he lives in Pennsylvania, the latest nonsense has the bank demanding that he visit Texas in person to get a document notarized. [More]
The Westfield Galleria in Roseville, California takes the comfort of its patrons seriously–so seriously, in fact, that it wants them to shut up and focus on shopping, or else ask for permission first if they want to talk about any topic that’s not mall related. Last week, the state’s 3rd District Court of Appeal found that the rule violated the state’s constitution, so now mall shoppers can gab as much as they want to each other. [More]
Liz is wondering what’s going on at her local Hobby Lobby. She’s a professional doll maker and she buys a lot of supplies from the craft store chain every month. So far, she and her husband have been able to use the company’s in-store coupons for separate purchases even if they stand together in line at the register, but it looks like her Hobby Lobby may be cracking down on that. Should it? [More]
Think the arbitration clause in a contract is unfair? Go ahead and contest it! Of course, you shouldn’t expect to win, since the Supreme Court has just ruled that it’s just fine for the arbitrator to decide whether the clause is fair. [More]
Here’s a problem for the Lackawanna County park system: They’ve passed new rules that prohibit “unlicensed firearms.” Sounds reasonable until you notice that the park is in Pennsylvania where they apparently don’t license guns.
The people on that People of Walmart website may wear some ugly t-shirts, but at least they’re honest when it comes to dealing with strangers. According to a new study that looked at how markets, religion, and the size of a community impact concepts of fairness and punishment, Walmart grocery shoppers in Missouri came out on top in terms of treating the other side fairly and punishing selfishness. [More]
You know that new rule that says airlines have to let passengers off the plane if it’s stuck on the tarmac for more than 3 hours? It’s supposed to go into effect in April, but at least three airlines are hoping to delay it because they say runway repairs at JFK Airport will interfere with schedules. [More]
You know how there are those people who, no matter what job they have, somehow retain a cheery outlook? And if you’re grumpy like me you wish they’d go away, but secretly you marvel at how they spread cheer to everyone around them and make the day more pleasant? Well, that’s one thing you’ll no longer find at a Burger King in a Concord, NH, mall. The district manager put a stop to it. [More]
In just a little over a week, the CARD Act will go into effect, and a new set of rules will apply to credit card issuers. Here’s a great summary of what will change and what won’t, so you’ll know what to expect. For instance, did you know that cards issued to business entities rather than individuals are exempt? [More]
If you’ve got a complaint about an airline, or you want to find out more about whether your complaint is valid, oh boy is there a treat in store for you! Earlier this month, the DOT launched a redesigned consumer aviation website at airconsumer.dot.gov. The goal of the site is “to make it as easy as possible for consumers to find the information they need to make their air travel experience as smooth and hassle-free as possible.” [More]
If your city has a recycling program but you keep forgetting how it works, Slate has some tips for you. The best solution is to print out a copy of your city’s approved items and stick it to your fridge (doh), but the general rule of thumb is: “If in doubt, throw it out. Meaning don’t recycle.” [More]
Good news, people who are in the unfortunate position of having to do business with an airline in the near future: the TSA’s embarrassingly reactionary new “security rules” have been eased as of this afternoon. Now it is up to the captain whether they’re enforced on each flight, reports CBS News. [More]
As soon as next month, California may become the first state to implement energy consumption rule for big screen TV sets similar to the ones for refrigerators and air conditioners. A trade group has been adamantly opposing it, reports the Los Angeles Times, but hasn’t found much sympathy from the California Energy Commission, which may be able to avoid building a $600 million natural gas power plant if they can cut back on energy guzzling sets.
The problem with annualcreditreport.com—other than its name—is that getting your reports from the site is a little like dealing with GoDaddy: you have to deal with upsells and side-sells at every step. You can indeed get your free credit reports from the site, but you’ll also have to keep turning down other offers from the three participating bureaus. Hell, there are even ads (sorry, “sponsor” links) on the home page, the one place where you’d hope for the least consumer confusion.