When you have guests over for a fancy gathering, or you’re celebrating an important holiday, some families like to haul out china. Maybe it’s a family heirloom, or maybe it was a pricey wedding gift that you regret not exchanging for a KitchenAid mixer. Either way, the more guests you have, the more important this question becomes: can fine china go in the dishwasher? [More]
General Motors’ Buick — perhaps the oldest existing name in U.S. car brands — is trying to re-introduce itself to younger American consumers who associate it with a stuffier generation. But Buick is a hit in China, with a number of models manufactured specifically for the local market. One of those cars — the Buick Envision — may end up being GM’s first China-made car to be imported to the U.S. [More]
Depending on how you feel about the way real estate works now, the idea of sticking a house in your Internet shopping cart and clicking “Buy” may or may not appeal to you. Advances in technology mean that you can buy a new house without even going outside, and get a discount for doing so…in India. [More]
In the months since Chinese e-commerce behemoth Alibaba began trading shares in its Cayman Islands-based holding corporation on the New York Stock Exchange, entities ranging from the Chinese government to the owner of Gucci have accused the company of knowingly profiting from counterfeit branded goods. Alibaba has promised to improve its capacity to ferret out fakes, and now says that it will take down some brands’ items more quickly. [More]
Here at Consumerist, we’re fascinated with the global gray market: the system of parallel imports that gives us Omega watches from Paraguay at Costco and a pirate Trader Joe’s store in Canada. There are even bigger things that trade on the gray market, though: in Shanghai, there’s a place where luxury car buyers can save money by purchasing cars that haven’t been imported through official channels. [More]
It’s been a whirlwind week for the relationship between e-commerce giant Alibaba and the Chinese government. After one agency released a report criticizing the company for allowing fake goods to be sold online through its vendors, and another government group promised to crack down on such practices in general, Alibaba is now pledging to shape up its business practices.
After another Chinese government agency scolded e-commerce giant Alibaba and its eBayesque subsidiary Taobao over its mismanagement of its business and for selling or allowing bogus goods to be sold to the public, the country’s Ministry of Commerce has pledged to crack the whip on the online industry and try harder to prevent the sale of counterfeit goods.
China-based e-commerce megasite Alibaba is catching heat in its home country following a government report that scolds the company for lax controls over the sale of bogus goods to consumers, along with allegations of bribery and using its size to bully merchants from working with Alibaba’s competitors. [More]
Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba is the world’s largest online marketplace, and its wide reach has a downside for consumer safety. Retailers and consumers alike use the site to source parts and products directly from factories abroad. The lack of intermediaries makes it very easy to order products that have been banned in the United States for safety reasons, and that’s why the Consumer Product Safety Commission has teamed up with the site. [More]
Everyone knows that the “genuine designer handbag” going for $20 from a street vendor is neither genuine nor designer, and indeed may not even hold up as a bag. But when you go to a reputable retailer and spend what it costs to replace the tires on your car, you expect to get what the real goods. Alas, Consumer Reports has found: just because there’s a brand name you know on the outside of a tire, doesn’t mean you’re getting what you should be.
Have Americans finally had enough cheese-stuffed crusts? That could be. We just aren’t flocking to Pizza Hut restaurants like we used to in past decades. Instead, competing chains like Papa John’s and Little Caesar’s are munching on slices of what used to be the Hut’s business. [More]
Last week, a group called out a Samsung supplier for alleged exploitation of child labor in a Chinese factory. This morning, Samsung announced that it has suspended its business with this contractor after its own investigation turned up some sketchy hiring practices. [More]
Here’s another to add to the list of product names that don’t travel well: Burger King China’s PooPoo Smoothie, which may conjure up images of… well, I’d rather not say, but your inner grossed-out 8-year-old knows what I mean, but which has nothing to do with excrement and is apparently not awful. [More]
If I had a nickel for every time my donkey meat snack turned out to be fox meat instead, I’d have no nickels. But there would be plenty of coins coming in for customers at some Walmart stores in China after tests showed that what was labeled as “Five Spice” donkey meat was tainted with the meat of other animals.
Monday was a holiday here in the United States, but many people are still comfortable with the idea of honoring our military veterans with crass commercialism. You see “Veteran’s Day” sales here and there, but it’s not the commerce powerhouse that it could be. Over in China, though, November 11 is the biggest online shopping day of the year. [More]
Last year, reports surfaced of a woman in Oregon who bought Halloween decorations from at Kmart, pulled the unopened package out of storage a year later, and found a letter inside from the factory worker in China who packaged them. This was no lighthearted note. It was a desperate cry for help secretly written at night inside a Chinese labor camp. [More]