The Grocery Shrink Ray is what we call it when the manufacturers of food and consumer goods make their products smaller––sometimes almost imperceptibly smaller––rather than raise prices. You know what it looks like: it’s why your toilet paper doesn’t quite fill the holder anymore, and why you don’t get as many servings of hot chocolate as you used to. We know that it’s been in action for decades, but is there proof? Yes: one need only turn to collectors of consumer ephemera like boxes and cans. [More]
Here’s something odd. Would you think that packages would get lost more or less often according to the brand on the box or the words on their packaging? That shouldn’t be the case. A German company that sells handmade, minimalist shoes, did a cool branding thing and uses tape with the company’s name printed on it to seal their shipping boxes. That company’s name? “Atheist.” They noticed that a lot of packages sent to the United States were significantly delayed, and wondered why that was. So they conducted an experiment. That experiment proved that if you want a package to get lost, brand it with the word “ATHEIST.”
If big banks weren’t at the root of so many problems, maybe we’d be starting to feel the tiniest bit bad for all the trouble they’ve been getting into lately with authorities. But yeah, we don’t feel the slightest twinge of sympathy that regulators are reportedly about to start cracking down on a few big banks for money-laundering.
Pepsi's Amp, Monster & 5-Hour Energy Drinks Under Investigation For Calling Beverages Dietary Supplements
What’s that? You’re not drinking that energy drink for its dietary benefits, but instead to stay awake after pulling an all-nighter at the office? That’s funny, because New York’s attorney general also thinks energy drinks shouldn’t be marketed as dietary supplements and that maybe PepsiCo’s Amp, Monster and 5-Hour Energy a drinks are being a bit squirrelly with how they sell their products.
Movie Gallery/Hollywood Video went bankrupt with only one real asset: enough outstanding overdue notices to make a librarian weep. Americans owed the chains something like $125,000,000, which is not a typo. These debts were sold, and the new owners zombified them and really, really want to get their paws on that money. A year and a half after we first reported that customers and even employees were receiving invoices from collection agencies for zombie debts, they’re still at it.
Not being able to tell your family why you were out of work and broke for three years would be something most of us couldn’t even imagine. One of the whistleblowers involved in the investigation that led to this year’s $25 billion mortgage settlement with some of the nation’s biggest banks says he had a pretty rough time waiting things out, while not being able to utter a word to his loved ones.
As every action Walmart has taken over the last few years is being picked apart in the aftermath of the New York Times story that alleges they used bribes to expand in Mexico and then covered up those bribes, lots of little interesting side stories are popping up. For example, a new report says Walmart was involved in lobbying aggressively against the very anti-bribery laws they are being investigated for violating.
A new report says the U.S. Justice Department is taking allegations of Walmart bribery in Mexico very seriously, and have started a criminal investigation. And just as that news hits comes a story that the company has created a Global Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Compliance Officer. Coincidence? We think not.
Hold the darn phone — Walmart has been indicated in a bribery scandal in which the company’s Mexican arm was bribing people to the tune of $24 million to obtain permits, and then attempted to cover up the whole scandal? We shan’t believe it. Ha! Just kidding. That makes total sense.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is looking into claims that 2005-2006 Ford Tauruses are having acceleration problems, reminding us that the Ford Taurus still exists. Those cars have been around so long, it’s more like, dino-taurus! Am I right?
We already make jokes about being so addicted to caffeine we need a constant IV drip in order to function, so now that a company is making an inhalable form of the beloved substance, the Food and Drug Administration is preparing to check into things just to make sure it’s safe for consumers to go huffing away at it.
There are some private schools out there offering high school diplomas for a hefty fee — but be careful, as they might not give a flying bark whether you’re man or beast. One local news team investigated a school offering diplomas, and successfully snagged one for their canine pal, Molly.
Old school Consumerist readers may remember Memphis-based Mo Money Taxes from its appearance in this classic Great Moments In Commercial History post. But now the company, which provides tax prep services in several states, is making headlines because it has put a lot of bad refund checks in the hands of its customers.
Whether it’s being suckered into thinking you won a super awesome prize that requires a payment to collect it, or some aristocrat in Nigeria needs your help and money to collect on a big financial settlement, consumers were hit by a lot of scams last year. A new report lists the top 10 schemes consumers fell prey to in 2011.
If, like me, you’re a regular watcher of basic cable programming (yay for House marathons on a dreary Sunday!), you’ve probably seen the ads for those kits that promise to restore car headlights that have fogged over or dulled from oxidation. They promise to clear up that haze quickly and cheaply, but do they work?
What amount of money could make up for the time the giant cruise ship you were on steered too close to shore and hit rocks, triggering a scary evacuation of you and your fellow passengers, the loss of your belongings and the trauma over the fact that others on the boat were killed? Costa cruise lines thinks about $14,460 is the right number.
A North Carolina Butterball facility was raided recently by officials, who were investigating claims by an animal advocacy group that the company has been abusing fowl on the premises. Mercy for Animals sent law enforcement video they’d collected from hidden cameras at the plant.