You won’t find little, pale-yellow packets of Splenda at Dunkin’ Donuts, but you will find little pale-yellow packets of a knockoff version of the sweetener. Heartland Consumer Products, the company behind Splenda, is taking Dunkin’ to court, claiming the coffee-and-donut chain is misleading consumers into thinking they are getting the real Splenda when it’s just a knockoff. [More]
Frustrated by a piecemeal approach of recalling batches of affected vehicles here and there, lawmakers and safety advocates recently pushed for a recall of all cars equipped with shrapnel-shooting Takata airbags. But federal safety regulators say that this sort of all-at-once recall may actually do more harm than good. [More]
Gasoline mixups are one of the scarier consumer horror stories out there, since there isn’t much that a motorist can do to prevent or mitigate them. One happened in Tarrant County, Texas recently: people who pumped gasoline received diesel fuel, and people who pumped diesel received gasoline. [More]
Between TargetExpress and CityTarget, the country’s No. 2 big box retailer appears to have the mini urban store market down. But when you operate three similarly named stores, there’s bound to be a bit of confusion, right? Apparently that’s the case for Target, which now plans to rebrand its smaller-format stores to, you guessed it: Target. [More]
Right now, there are two seemingly incompatible things going on in Kmart stores: the retailer is pushing layaway contracts for the holiday season, and also closing many stores. While the company insists that this should not lead to customer confusion, it took a while for some stores to get on-message. [More]
Paul opened up Dell’s “November Gift Guide” earlier this week and saw a great deal on a digital SLR camera (and lens!) from Nikon. It cost only $499. He wanted to take advantage of this great deal, so he hopped right on Dell’s website to buy it. That’s when he learned that the prices in the November gift guide only applied for a fleeting moment, possibly before he even received it in the mail. Update, 11/20/12: Hey, look at that! The price suddenly fell for some reason that we’re sure had nothing whatsoever to do with this post! [More]
When is a habanero pepper still a habanero pepper? When it’s a cayenne pepper. We aren’t experts on the spiciest of spicy foods, but we’re still kind of confused at about this sauce that reader Chris found in Whole Foods. “It’s a ‘Habanero Pepper Sauce’ that contains no habanero peppers,” he writes. “It always pays to read the ingredients.” How does this even make sense? [More]
Some good news out of Toys ‘R’ Us: after a seeming fit of disorganization, randomly canceled orders, and no information getting out to customers, we’re getting reports that maybe–just maybe–things are getting straightened out over at Big Giraffe. [More]
Ally is a tireless disgruntled former Sears customer. We don’t mean that she’s tireless in that she’s working without ceasing to take down Sears. We mean that she really needs some new tires, which she ordered from Sears last week. She called them up to make sure that they had her tires in stock, and they did. When the time came for her service appointment, though, she found out that Sears didn’t have the tires in stock for her, and they couldn’t explain why in a clear way. What they could provide her with was a hold on her bank account because she had originally ordered the tires with her debit card. So that was awesome.
David, a Cablevision customer, recently moved outside of their service area. They were evidently sad that he left, because they just can’t let him go. Or figure out whether he owes them money or not. First he had a zero balance, then it was weeks overdue, then he had a small balance from his last month of service, then he received a letter from a collection agency. He called in to verify whether he needed to pay this bill or not, and learned that Cablevision isn’t able to send him a document stating that his balance is paid in full. Because they just can’t.
Tom and his wife got married last year (congratulations!) but still have separate checking accounts. Tom never had a problem depositing checks also made out to his wife in his Chase checking account, so he didn’t foresee any problems with depositing their joint $2,000 tax refund check in that same account. But this is The Consumerist, not Satisfied Chase Customers Weekly, so you can guess how that turned out. Now Tom and Mrs. Tom get to wait patiently and hope that the check doesn’t get lost in the mail on its way back to them.
Uno Chicago Grill, the chain that has brought the deliciousness of deep-dish pizza to suburban wastelands everywhere, is honoring veterans next week. That’s excellent. But their publicity for the event gets some terminology wrong. Despite what a current press release says, the 19.43% discount doesn’t just apply to active-duty personnel and those who spent decades in the military and retired with a pension. It’s for everyone who has served.
Last week’s post about a baffling and possibly incriminating e-mail solicitation from ProFlowers produced a hilarious comments section and a lot of speculation as to the identity of Margaret, the woman (not his wife) to whom reader Chris was being encouraged to send more flowers. We have an update. The good news: Both the offending ProFlowers account and Margaret have been found. The bad news: The couple has no idea who Margaret is, but they have her full name and home address. They still have no idea how Margaret’s info ended up in the account in the first place. [More]
Sears might be doing an okay job with adjusting to doing business in the 21st century if they weren’t stuck with a pesky brick-and-mortar store network. Maybe. When John returned a malfunctioning dehumidifier to his local store, he wanted to exchange it for a working one. He couldn’t, though, because the item was out of stock. Logical enough: dehumidifiers are popular in the summer. Yet he was able to go home, order the item online, and pick it up at the very store he had just been told was out of the item.
Mike pre-ordered the Kinect, a new sensor thingy for the Xbox, from his local Best Buy. He expected the store to be open at midnight so he could be united with his new toy just after the official release. The store web site said that they’d be open at midnight, so why should he expect anything different?
Miguel writes that his Samsung monitor stopped working, but it has a 3-year warranty. He contacted Samsung to see if they could help him. They could not, but not for any mundane reason. Samsung insists that his monitor is from Canada, and they can’t provide warranty service to Miguel because he doesn’t live in Canada. Where did he buy his monitor? Um, a Sam’s Club store in Missouri.