A San Francisco man who fancied himself a landlord and building manager — but who apparently failed to do more than just collect rent that he didn’t always pay up the ladder — has been ordered to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to tenants who paid exorbitant sums to live in “squalid” conditions with phantom appliances, exposed wiring, and rodents run amok. [More]
After years of running its Google Express service — which offers same-day delivery on merchandise and packaged foods from a variety of retailers to customers in a handful of markets around the country — the Internet giant is now reportedly confident enough to try its hand at bringing fresh food and groceries to consumers’ doors. [More]
Comcast’s low-cost Internet Essentials program, cooked up during its acquisition of NBC as a way for the company to look good when trying to appease lawmakers and regulators, has been criticized for having eligibility standards that effectively lock out the elderly and childless. The company even recently fought back against California’s attempt to expand eligibility for the program. But today the company announced that it’s expanding Essentials coverage to include older low-income users, but only in the San Francisco area. [More]
Following a bit of consumer confusion related to rolling its ride-hailing and food ordering options into the same app back in June, Uber has finally pushed out an update aiming to ensure people looking for a ride don’t order a sandwich instead. Along with now prominently displaying separate buttons for requesting a ride and ordering via UberEATS, the update includes an expansion of the food delivery service to San Francisco. [More]
The next time you see a Google Street View car cruising down your block, it might be doing more than just snapping photos — it could be tracking air pollution.
NFL Sunday Ticket — a pricey add-on sports package that offers live access to every out-of-market Sunday afternoon NFL game — is exclusively available through DirecTV, and will remain that way for years to come. But some bar owners allege that the satellite company’s deal with the NFL creates an illegal monopoly. [More]
The city of San Francisco and Airbnb have a somewhat contentious relationship, most recently involving tens of millions of dollars in back-taxes the short-term rental company agreed to pay the city earlier this year. Now, to ensure things continue to go smoothly for renters and rentees of services like Airbnb, the city has created a new office for the sole purpose of enforcing rules regarding vacation and short-term rentals. [More]
Although a proposed tax on sodas and sugary drinks didn’t fly in San Francisco, officials are now mulling the idea of slapping a health warning on advertisements appearing within the city limits for sugary beverages.
A lawsuit filed earlier this month by the city of Los Angeles accuses Wells Fargo of pushing employees to engage in fraudulent conduct with regard to consumer accounts in order to meet the bank’s sales quotas. Now, one of those customers has filed his own lawsuit against the San Francisco-based bank alleging the same misconduct deceived and defrauded consumers across the country. [More]
Airbnb finally gave in to San Francisco’s demands that it fork over a bunch of cash to pay back-taxes after failing to pay the city’s 14% hotel tax going back a few years. Airbnb wouldn’t say how much it had paid, but officials had said it ran into the millions of dollars.
A common complaint against people who rent out their homes on Airbnb and similar sites is that some hosts aren’t just renting out a spare room or letting strangers use their house when it’s empty for a weekend or two, but that some hosts are effectively hoteliers and landlords who don’t have any connection to the places they let out. In an effort to crack down on this practice, the city of San Francisco is about to require that all Airbnb hosts register with the city, and that they do so in person. [More]
This is why I never have any packages left at my door without a signature. Yet another person’s holiday has been spoiled by sticky-fingered thieves swiping packages left on someone’s porch, and once again the crime is captured on security camera footage.
After hearing several tales of consumers being mistreated or accosted by Uber drivers, one might begin to question the company’s “industry-leading” practices when it comes to screening drivers. It appears two California district attorneys are doing just that by filing a civil suit against the company for a number of issues including allegedly misleading consumers on its background checks for drivers. [More]
What would you do for the promise of a couple pieces of free clothing? Just think of all the college freshmen who signed away their financial futures by applying for credit cards at orientation (before such marketing was outlawed). A line of 100 or so shoppers in San Francisco may not have to worry about ruining their credit score, but photos of them shivering in their skivvies will probably follow them forever. [More]
Amazon hasn’t officially confirmed that it is going to open a real-life store in New York City, though “people familiar with the plans” told the Wall Street Journal about the company’s planned , and there’s definitely something about to open in the space across the street from the Empire State Building. However, the company has confirmed that it’s opening two seasonal pop-up shops in San Francisco and Sacramento, California. [More]
San Francisco is kissing and making nice with Airbnb, after city officials voted to legalize short-term rentals under 30 days — with some restrictions. [More]
The ride-sharing app Uber is an immensely popular wherever alternative to taxis wherever it expands. It has one feature that is great for keeping up with demand during busy times, but less great if you’re cost-conscious: prices multiply according to demand for cars. Now a popular restaurant in San Francisco wants to try that idea…with delivery fees. [More]
If you’ve been to a Major League Baseball game this season, you may have noticed that one or more of the gates at the stadium now has TSA-like security checkpoints, as the league has required that all teams scan all attendees with metal detectors starting next season. And just like the airport, the lines can back up and cause annoyance. So of course some company is looking to make a buck off impatient baseball fans. [More]