Ask The Consumerists: Would You Use A Credit Card With Your
Photo On It?

Ask The Consumerists: Would You Use A Credit Card With Your Photo On It?

Thinking about the controversy over asking for ID during credit card purchases, and the competing values of privacy and safety, Daniel had an interesting idea–though it isn’t a new idea. What if credit cards were photo IDs, and had our pictures on them? Logistical nightmare, or handy fraud-prevention tool? [More]

How Walmart Is Going Green

How Walmart Is Going Green

Ideally, companies choose to lessen their environmental impact because it makes financial sense, not because it makes them feel good–which is a good thing, since companies don’t have feelings. Today, FastCompany published a slideshow that looks at 12 ways the mega-retailer is trying out various green initiatives. Some of them are more about selling the concept of green to consumers, which is dumb, but the ones that deal with shipping, energy consumption, and market creation are pretty impressive. [More]

Hey Stores! How About Offering Some Cash Back With That Receipt Check?

Hey Stores! How About Offering Some Cash Back With That Receipt Check?

In the comments to our most recent receipt check story, I noticed a reader argued that as long as the store wasn’t willing to reimburse him for his time, he wasn’t willing to give it to them. It makes sense; nothing in the marketplace is free, right? Why shouldn’t consumers be compensated for bag searches and receipt checks?
 
Another reader, Adam, suggested a similar idea in his email to us this morning. In fact, he thinks maybe the exiting-the-store moment could be a chance to make a little extra cash.

Hollywood Video Giving Away Free Kids

Hollywood Video Giving Away Free Kids

I’m going to grab a bunch and resell adopt them out for extra money in 2010. Thanks to Kevin, who snapped the pic and who adds, “I know Hollywood Video isn’t probably doing that hot with the advent of Netflix, but I’m not sure if this is the way to go.” [More]

Costco Bans Coca-Cola

Costco Bans Coca-Cola

A dispute over pricing has led Costco to stop selling a number of Coca-Cola brands, which means all Coke varieties as well as Sprite, Squirt, Dasani water, and Full Throttle energy drinks, reports the Associated Press.

Ulta District Manager Apologizes For "No Writing Anything Down" Policy

Ulta District Manager Apologizes For "No Writing Anything Down" Policy

Last week, Daynah wrote about how she was forced to stop writing anything down during a recent shopping trip to the cosmetics store Ulta. At the time, Daynah grudgingly gave in because she really wanted to make a purchase (she tests products for consumers). But once she left the store, she took the fight back to Ulta.

Store Theft In The US Jumped 8.8% Last Year

Store Theft In The US Jumped 8.8% Last Year

Maybe this is why stores seem to be getting more and more aggressive about shoplifting: CNN says that retail theft in the US jumped 8.8% over the past year, versus only 1.5% in the prior year. But you may be surprised (only if you’ve never worked retail) to see where most of the theft occurs.

Ulta Manager: "Take Your Pen To Your Car, You're Not Allowed To Write Anything Down"

Ulta Manager: "Take Your Pen To Your Car, You're Not Allowed To Write Anything Down"

In a world where smartphones can shoot video, snap photos, record audio, scan barcodes, and let you make price comparisons via text message, it’s almost funny to run into a paranoid manager like the one at an Ulta makeup store in Seattle. Well, funny except for that petty tyrant part where she tells you that you’ll have to take your old-school pen and papers out to the car and come back empty handed before she’ll sell you any makeup.

Radio Shack Opening Mobile Phone Kiosks In Target Stores

Radio Shack Opening Mobile Phone Kiosks In Target Stores

One problem I’ve always had when shopping for jacked-up prices is I can’t find enough crazy to go along with it. Same thing for the crazy: I know where to go to get cart-loads of that, but I can’t find the 2400% markup! What I need, clearly, is for Radio Shack to open up specialty kiosks inside Target stores, so then— oh hey! It’s the Bullseye Mobile Solution!

Microsoft Stores To Sell Bloatware-Free PCs

Microsoft Stores To Sell Bloatware-Free PCs

If you hate buying a new PC that’s riddled with bloatware, you may want to pay a Microsoft Store a visit on your next computer shopping trip. They plan on selling PCs free of any third-party trial applications, reports OhGizmo.

Best Buy Can Now Overcharge New Yorkers 'Round The Clock

Best Buy Can Now Overcharge New Yorkers 'Round The Clock

If you like Best Buy, come to New York City! In November the company will open its first 24-hour store, in the remodeled carcass of the Circuit City that formerly anchored Union Square. In fact, it’s probably best we call it the Circuit City Best Buy to avoid confusion. According to Best Buy’s PR department, the store will also feature “the largest Best Buy Musical Instruments Department in the United States.”

Home Depot Needs To Check Your Receipt "In Case You Stole Something"

Home Depot Needs To Check Your Receipt "In Case You Stole Something"

Rather than make up some line about needing to make sure customers receive everything they paid for, Home Depot is now openly treating its customers like shoplifters.

Walt Disney Planning On Turning Stores Into Shopping Theme Parks

Walt Disney Planning On Turning Stores Into Shopping Theme Parks

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.

Linens 'N Things Resurrected (In Canada)

Linens 'N Things Resurrected (In Canada)

In today’s marketplace, going out of business doesn’t mean you go away forever. Your storefronts may disappear, but you’ll just pop up again online—like CompUSA and Circuit City—or you’ll come back on someone else’s shelves as a brand, like Linens ‘N Things.

Rumor: Game Crazy To Close 200 Locations

Rumor: Game Crazy To Close 200 Locations

Joystiq reported last night that Game Crazyplans to close 200 of its approximately 680 locations at the end of October.” There’s no official list of which stores are closing yet, so feel free to ask your local Game Crazy employees and see if you can scare them.

Online Stores Send Customers Handy Pre-Expired Coupons

Online Stores Send Customers Handy Pre-Expired Coupons

BJ received the coupon at left, offering $9.99 off at Heartland America on September 9 (9/9/09, get it?) Which would be great if they had mailed it to him before 10 AM on September 10th. “Looks like if I want to use the coupon I will need to build a time machine,” he wrote.

Walmart's "Junk Food In The Toy Aisle" Mystery Officially Solved

Walmart's "Junk Food In The Toy Aisle" Mystery Officially Solved

Yesterday we posted a photo a reader sent in of a toy aisle in his local Walmart that was packed with junk food. We all got commenty on what exactly Walmart was doing—was it a one-off paid promo by Pepsi? A marketing experiment? A power-mad store manager driven crazy by shelving issues? Nah, it’s actually an intentional choice mandated by corporate.

16-Year-Old Unwittingly Stars In Homemade Abercrombie & Fitch Dressing Room Video

16-Year-Old Unwittingly Stars In Homemade Abercrombie & Fitch Dressing Room Video

A teenager is suing Abercrombie & Fitch and one of its former employees after she caught someone filming her in one of the store’s dressing rooms.