Google and Facebook are, hands down, the two most common ways for basically everyone to find information: either you’re searching for links on one, or browsing your news feed on the other. They’re also the two biggest advertising companies in the world, which gives them some leverage to feed or starve some content. And when it comes to totally bogus news, both are now going to take the “starve” approach. [More]
Pawnbrokers offer cash-strapped consumers an avenue to acquire quick cash in exchange for holding possession of their valuables, sometimes stepping into the world of such things as auto-title loans. One such company is now facing the ire of federal regulators for allegedly deceiving customers about the cost of its loans. [More]
We’re almost there: at long last, after one of the frankly just-plain weirdest years of news most of us can remember, Election Day is finally drawing nigh nationwide. And while the candidates at the top of the ticket have definitely captured most of the metaphorical air in the national room, there’s far more than just that at stake this year for most voters.
In addition to selecting candidates for dozens of federal, state, and local offices, voters have a wide array of state and local ballot initiatives to choose from this year. Many of those directly address major consumer issues of many kinds. So we’re helping you break those down, with a state-by-state guide. [More]
Two years after the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau first proposed rules aimed at making prepaid cards safer and less costly for the 24 million unbanked consumers who make use of these sometimes costly and fee-laden financial products, the agency is releasing the final version of the rules that will kick in a year from now. [More]
The state of Verizon landline service in New Jersey has been a sordid saga for several years now, with customers and mayors repeatedly claiming that the telecom behemoth is neglecting their needs. The latest act in this messy play now sees one state regulator all but begging another to do something already about the way Verizon leaves customers hanging with crappy service.
Four years after federal regulators sued the operators behind what might have been the scammiest payday loan Consumerist had ever seen, a federal judge has ordered Scott Tucker and his businesses to pay $1.26 billion to the Federal Trade Commission to resolve allegations of running online payday lending operations that exploited more than 5 million consumers. [More]
If you’re in the market for skincare products from the Home Shopping Network, you might be out of luck, as the company removed every trace of well-known host Dr. Sheldon Sevinor — and his products — from its website after the plastic surgeon’s arrest for allegedly buying cocaine. [More]
For the past seven years, PayPal has offered parents the option of securely sending their college-age kids money for things like rent, activity fees, or other needs through its Student Account program and accompanying Student Debit MasterCard. But that simple money transfer option is ending at the end of this month. [More]
You may have heard that Apple plans to unveil its latest version of the iPhone tomorrow, but it appears that someone working on the tech giant’s website may have jumped the gun a bit. [More]
In the few markets where it exists — however sparingly — Google Fiber has managed to provide enough of a threat of competition that the nation’s biggest cable/telecom providers have been willing to cut prices and/or improve service. But a number of recent developments, including a report that the Fiber staff is being significantly downsized, have some questioning the future of the service. [More]
Getting an email from a retailer telling you to reset your password because you may have been the victim of a data breach is alarming enough. Imagine you’re one of the Walmart.com shoppers who say they have received dozens of emails directing them to reset their login credentials.
Source code essentially runs a program, be it a webpage or an app. So when that code is made available to the public, it not only opens the door to copycats, it gives competitors and hackers a look under the hood. Thankfully for Twitter, the person who found a security flaw that left the source code for its short-form video platform vulnerable didn’t have nefarious plans. And now he’s on the receiving end of $10,000. [More]
Building out a new fiberoptic network in a congested metropolitan area can be slow-going, which is why when Google announced in February that it was bringing Google Fiber to San Francisco, it planned to do so on the back of existing “dark fiber” lines controlled by the city. In an apparent effort to expand that model to privately-operated networks, Google has acquired a small, high-speed broadband provider already operating in San Francisco. [More]
Facebook Lawsuit Over Scanning Of Private Messages Moves Forward, But Plaintiffs Will Receive No Money
Way back in late 2013, a lawsuit accused Facebook of scanning links in users’ private messages and turning them into public “Likes,” from which the company earned revenue. This week, a federal court certified the class action, giving it the green light to move forward, but none of the plaintiffs should expect to see any money if they prevail at trial. [More]
LearningRx To Pay $200K For Allegedly Unproven Claims That Brain Training Can Improve Income, Treat Autism & ADHD
The company behind the LearningRX “brain training” program has agreed to pay a $200,000 settlement and to stop making claims that its system is clinically proven to treat serious health conditions, or that it can dramatically improves a user’s IQ or income. [More]
After the FCC gave its blessing to the marriage of Time Warner Cable and Charter, the only thing standing in the way of marital bliss was the possibility that the California Public Utilities Commission might go full drunk-uncle and raise a boatload of objections before the final “I do”s. However, today the CPUC decided instead to raise a toast to the mega-merger.