washington

KOMO News

Costco Gives Shopper New Pants After Phone Catches Fire In Pocket

It must be terrifying and possibly humiliating to have your phone suddenly start smoking and catch fire in your pocket, causing you to ditch your pants in the middle of a store. At least one Costco shopper in Washington got a free pair of pants out of the ordeal. [More]

J-J-W

Soon-To-Be Proposed Sugary Drink Tax In Seattle Won’t Apply To Starbucks

Seattle could soon be joining the ranks of Philadelphia, Chicago, Boulder, CO, Albany, Berkeley, CA, and a handful of other cities in charging consumers a little extra when they purchase a sugary drink. But the home of Starbucks will reportedly provide some relief for java lovers, as coffee shops will be exempt from a proposed rule on sweet beverages.
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5-Hour Energy Ordered To Pay $4.3 Million For Deceptive Ads

5-Hour Energy Ordered To Pay $4.3 Million For Deceptive Ads

Four months after a Washington state court ruled that the maker of the popular 5-Hour Energy drink had misled consumers into believing that its product was superior to caffeine, the judge has ordered the company to pay a total of $4.3 million. [More]

Student Loan Giant Navient Sued By CFPB & Two States Over Alleged Illegal Practices

Student Loan Giant Navient Sued By CFPB & Two States Over Alleged Illegal Practices

Eighteen months after Sallie Mae spin-off Navient revealed that its wholly-owned subsidiary Navient Solutions Inc could one day be on the receiving end of a federal lawsuit related to its student loans servicing practices, the day has come to pass. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, along with two states, filed lawsuits against the nation’s largest student loan company for allegedly cheating borrowers out of repayment rights.  [More]

Matthew Keys

Comcast Unable To Shut Down Lawsuit Over “Deceptive” Service Protection Plans & Fees

In August, Washington state sued Comcast, alleging that the cable giant had deceived hundreds of thousands of customers in the state about an add-on service intended to cover the cost of service calls. Comcast later sought to have the case dismissed, calling it a “profound mischaracterization” of the company’s business practices, but the court recently allowed the matter to move forward over Comcast’s objections. [More]

State Files Consumer Protection Lawsuit Against Man Accused Of Using Facebook To Trick Women Into Sex

State Files Consumer Protection Lawsuit Against Man Accused Of Using Facebook To Trick Women Into Sex

Washington state prosecutors are using state consumer protection laws to go after a man — already facing multiple criminal charges of rape — that they claim spent years misleading women about his job, and even his gender, with the goal of misleading women into sleeping with him in exchange for a non-existent shot at stardom. [More]

Jeanette E. Spaghetti

State Sues Monsanto For Decades Of Alleged PCB Pollution

The federal government banned the use and production of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in 1979 after determining the chemicals are toxic. However, the state of Washington alleges that Monsanto knew as early as 1937 that the PCBs it produced were dangerous, but that company continued to allow them to pollute the state’s waterways. [More]

Ryan Dearth

The Beer Industry Is Taking A Hit Because Of Legal Marijuana

When it comes time to kick back on the couch and get your buzz on, a new study says consumers in states with legal marijuana may be reaching for the bong instead of a beer. [More]

PhotoFM

3 Things To Know About Running A Multi-State Legal Marijuana Business

This week brought legalized recreational marijuana to a number of new states, including California and Nevada. With non-medical adult use of pot already legal in Washington and Oregon, this creates a geographically contiguous bloc of four states where marijuana and THC-infused products could be sold. Any enterprising pot entrepreneur would drool over the idea of being able to produce, ship, and sell to all of these people but creating a legal, multi-state weed empire is not easy. [More]

5-Hour Energy Loses One Deceptive Advertising Case; Wins Another

5-Hour Energy Loses One Deceptive Advertising Case; Wins Another

More than two years ago, the attorneys general for Washington and Oregon each filed separate (but very similar) deceptive advertising claims against the makers of the popular 5-Hour Energy drinks, alleging that the ads misled consumers into believing that doctors recommend the product, and that the combination of ingredients provides some sort of benefit that is superior to just drinking coffee. In the last few days, judges in both those cases came to very different decisions. [More]

Amazon

Job Listings, Tax Collection Give Away Amazon Plans For Stores In Boston, Washington D.C.

After starting in Seattle and San Diego, slowly coming to the parts of the country that face the Pacific, Amazon seems ready to head east. Recent developments in Beantown and our nation’s capital indicate that the massive online retailer seems ready to build new brick-and-mortar stores on the more Atlantic side of things. [More]

Matthew Keys

Washington State Suing Comcast For “Deceptive” Service Protection Plans & Fees

Accusing the nation’s largest cable company of “engaging in a pattern of deceptive practices” affecting nearly 500,000 people who signed up for a plan intended to cover most service calls, the Washington state attorney general’s office has filed suit against Comcast. [More]

Scammer Must Repay $7.75M For Running Bogus Prayer Center & Consumer Complaint Service

Scammer Must Repay $7.75M For Running Bogus Prayer Center & Consumer Complaint Service

When facing times of trouble, some people choose to believe in the power of prayer. Others put more trust in their ability to file an official complaint. A Seattle-based scam artist apparently figured he would cover all his bases, operating a trio of bogus companies covering everything from religion to consumer gripes. [More]

Washington Law Would Let Counties Sell Broadband Service When Comcast Won’t

Washington Law Would Let Counties Sell Broadband Service When Comcast Won’t

Last year, we told you about Seth, who had recently relocated to Washington only to find out he might have to sell his new house because Comcast had lied to him about being able to provide the Internet connection he needs for his home office. And even though the county runs a high-speed fiber network not far from his property, current state law restricts consumers from buying access to that service. Recently proposed state legislation hopes to right that wrong and give counties the ability to serve residents when Comcast and others refuse to. [More]

Washington Attorney General Sues Tech Support Company For Scamming Customers

Washington Attorney General Sues Tech Support Company For Scamming Customers

When your work computer goes wonky, you call IT. That’s easy enough. When it’s your home computer, though, the choices are a lot murkier. There are thousands of sources for tech support out there, from one-person operations to giant call centers. But if you don’t have enough technical know-how, it can be hard to tell which ones are actually helping, and which ones are just out to scam a quick buck.

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Costco Pulls Chicken Salad In Western States Over E. Coli Concerns

Costco Pulls Chicken Salad In Western States Over E. Coli Concerns

After linking a number of cases of E. coli poisoning back to chicken salad bought at Costco, the warehouse chain has pulled the product from its shelves in the western portion of the U.S. [More]

A screen grab of the MMS product as sold on the Project GreenLife website (via the Internet Archive)

Man Who Sold Industrial Chemical As “Miracle Mineral Solution” Sentenced To 51 Months In Jail

There are plenty of people out there peddling “miracle” cleanses, juices, and elixirs that don’t really do anything, but that will usually just get them a slap on the wrist and some fines for false advertising. But if the “Miracle Mineral Solution” is really nothing more than an industrial chemical that can’t be sold for human consumption, then you’ll probably end up in jail for a few years. [More]

Washington Pushes For Pesticide Transparency In Retail Marijuana

Washington Pushes For Pesticide Transparency In Retail Marijuana

For decades, buying pot off the street sometimes meant you had to take the seller’s word about the quality and origin of their product. But with some states legalizing retail marijuana sales in the U.S., there’s an opportunity for consumer safeguards and increased transparency for pot purchasers. [More]