Consumerist Friday Flickr Finds

Karen Chappell

Here are five of the best photos that readers added to the Consumerist Flickr Pool in the last week, picked for usability in a Consumerist post or for just plain neatness. [More]

Mike Matney Photography

Survey: Americans Waiting Until After Election To Shop For Holidays

Whether it’s because of anxiety due to the upcoming presidential and congressional elections or a stubborn refusal to even think about winter holidays before Halloween, Americans are reportedly waiting until after the election is over to begin their shopping. No, they’re not waiting until after Thanksgiving: that would be silly. [More]

After 60 Days, What Has The “Robocall Strike Force” Accomplished?

After 60 Days, What Has The “Robocall Strike Force” Accomplished?

Two months ago, AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson accepted the challenge of FCC Chair Tom Wheeler to head up an industry-led “Strike Force” to finally do something meaningful to curb unwanted, often illegal, robocalls, and to give consumers free tools they can use to try to block these calls. The team was given 60 days to get this ship headed in the right direction, and now that time has passed a verdict is in: Much was accomplished, but consumers still don’t have the tools they need. [More]

Alan Rappa

Report: Amazon To Eventually Open As Many As 2,000 Grocery Stores

Earlier this month, all-powerful “sources familiar with the matter” claimed that Amazon was on the verge of opening bricks-and-mortar convenience stores and offering curbside pickup. Now, a new report indicates that the e-tailer plans to start small, opening 20 physical grocery stores over the next two years, but ultimately expects to have thousands of stores nationwide. [More]

T-Mobile Wants To Subsidize Your Google Pixel, Sort Of

T-Mobile Wants To Subsidize Your Google Pixel, Sort Of

You may remember that T-Mobile was the carrier that pushed the rest of the wireless industry into selling phones without traditional contracts, but with interest-free installment plans. Now, though, T-Mobile wants to take advantage of the publicity surrounding Google’s Pixel phone and… subsidize it for you. Sort of. [More]


Professional Pooper Scooper Accused Of Impersonating Secret Service Agent To Score Hotel Discount

A Pennsylvania man who reportedly runs a business picking up dog droppings has apparently stepped into a major mess of his own making. According to federal prosecutors, he used forged documents to pretend to be a Secret Service agent to score a discount hotel room and then to try to get out of a traffic violation. [More]


USDA Proposes Importing Avocados From Colombia Amid Shortage

Amid a recent avocado shortage linked to a growers’ strike in Mexico and a drought in California affecting crops, the U.S. Department of Agriculture is proposing an amendment to existing fruits and vegetables regulations to allow the country to import Hass avocados from Colombia. [More]


Apple’s ‘TV’ (Not Just Apple TV) Wants To Be Your One-Stop Streaming Shop

Today at a major press event, Apple announced TV. Not Apple TV, which already exists; nor iTV, which would be in line with their decade-old scheme but is a trademark held by someone else for something else entirely. No, neither of those, which would be less confusing. Just… TV. [More]

Van Swearington / (Van Swearington)

Kia, Hyundai Agree To Pay $41.2M To 33 States & D.C. Over Fuel Economy Issues

Hyundai and Kia agreed Thursday to pay $41.2 million to dozens of states four years after it was revealed that the carmakers overstated the fuel efficiency of certain vehicles.  [More]

23 Lawmakers Want To Know What DOJ Would Do With Expanded Hacking Authority


The U.S. Congress has a month to decide on what it should do about a pending rule change that would arguably grant federal law enforcement agencies more authority to remotely hack into computers. Congress can let this amended rule go into effect by doing nothing, so before they let their idleness get the better of them, a group of nearly two-dozen members of the House and Senate are now pushing the Justice Department for more details. [More]

Great Beyond

Lawsuit Against Amazon Claims Exploding Hoverboard Destroyed Family’s Home

For most people, so-called hoverboards were just a fad, one many didn’t think much about after a serious of fiery incidents involving the electric scooters prompted the Consumer Product Safety Commission to recall half a million of the devices over safety concerns. But it was more than a trendy fad to be forgotten for others, like one Tennessee family that’s claiming a scooter sold by Amazon was responsible for destroying their home. [More]

Twitter Closing Down 6-Second Video App Vine

Twitter Closing Down 6-Second Video App Vine

Four years ago, Twitter bought Vine, an app that let users upload and browse looping six-second video clips. While a community of people who elevated repeating video clips to an art form grew around the site, which hadn’t actually opened yet when Twitter bought it, Instagram and Snapchat also grew since then as places to share short videos. Now, on the same day that it cut 9% of its staff, Twitter announced that it’s shutting down Vine. [More]

FCC To Propose Rules That Could Restore Consumers’ Right To Sue Phone, Broadband Providers

Jason Cook

While the big headline of this morning’s monthly FCC meeting was the release of the Commission’s final rules on broadband privacy, the agency’s leadership also let it be known that it’s planning to take on one of the industry’s most controversial issues: The right of consumers to have their day in court. [More]


Feds Arrest 61 For Alleged Indian Call Center Scam That Bilked Millions From Consumers

Earlier this month, police in India detained hundreds of employees in three different call centers for allegedly proliferating a scam that involved calling unsuspecting consumers masquerading as employees with the Internal Revenue Service and threatening to arrest if the person didn’t pay up. This week, federal authorities in the U.S. followed up on the case, ending a three-year investigation by arresting dozens of people in the U.S. and India for allegedly scamming tens of thousands of consumers out of millions of dollars through the sophisticated call center scheme.  [More]


Uber Has Plans For An On-Demand Flying Car Service

Every time some company comes up with an idea that’s sort of like a flying car, we have to ask, “Yeah, but what about living like The Jetsons?” Uber has apparently been thinking about this too, announcing that it’s been working on a flying car project. [More]

Verizon Hoping Zero-Rated NBA Basketball Can Make Someone, Anyone Use Go90

Verizon Hoping Zero-Rated NBA Basketball Can Make Someone, Anyone Use Go90

Verizon has a streaming media app. It’s true! It’s called Go90, for marketing-related ~reasons~, and they spent a lot of time and money making it happen. And since the conventional wisdom still says live sports is the key to getting people to sign up for your TV thing, Verizon’s gonna try that. Because goodness knows, nothing else has done it. [More]


Groceries & Millennials: They’re Buying Less, Shopping Online

From Whole Foods launching a supposedly hipper 365 brand of stores to Target’s mini-stores aimed at attracting young shoppers, retailers across the board have millennials in their crosshairs. But a new report suggests those efforts have been for naught, with younger shoppers continuing to seek out e-commerce options when it comes to grocery shopping.  [More]

Lisa Brewster

Woman Buys Lottery Ticket To Prove It’s A Waste Of Money, Wins $1M

A woman looking for tell her husband “I told you so” amid a disagreement over whether or not lotteries are a waste of money was denied that moment recently — but she’s probably fine with it, considering she won $1 million in her effort to prove her point. [More]