50 posts tagged with consumer.
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How Google Skewed Search Results

The Wall Street Journal reports on how Google favored its own shopping, travel services over rivals, and the U.S. antitrust probe of Google:
The 160-page critique, which was supposed to remain private but was inadvertently disclosed in an open-records request, concluded that Google’s “conduct has resulted—and will result—in real harm to consumers and to innovation in the online search and advertising markets.”
Is Google an unelected superpower? A truly sinister social networking platform could manipulate public opinion even more effectively. (Previously)
posted by Little Dawn on Mar 19, 2015 - 68 comments

Runs smiling face infinitely looped

We Know How You Feel Computers are learning to read emotion, and the business world can’t wait.
posted by infini on Jan 18, 2015 - 61 comments

"Enjoy the clean air."

Warehouse Empire Behind the largest undercover bribe the FBI ever paid to a public official is the story of how our whole consumer economy has been transformed, bringing lung-stunting pollution and, in some cases political corruption.
posted by sio42 on Nov 6, 2014 - 22 comments

What do we expect? They're Dick's.

12-year-old calls out Dick's Sporting Goods chain for being sexist. We might never have known about her exceptional letter, but one of her parents is a reporter.
posted by spock on Oct 11, 2014 - 49 comments

"— a fixer who knew just what to do."

PAPER BOYS: The Dark World of Debt Collection [New York Times] In the murky world of unpaid bills, a banker and an ex-con can make a fortune — if they don’t run into too many crooks.
posted by Fizz on Aug 15, 2014 - 16 comments

A dance between math and intuition: Beer pricing

When you go out to a bar or restaurant, have you ever wondered why your beer costs what it does? Here's your chance to find out. [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Jul 14, 2014 - 19 comments

The Aperture is Closing

Apple is discontinuing another of their "pro" apps, Aperture. [more inside]
posted by juiceCake on Jun 28, 2014 - 44 comments

It's last call to do your shopping at the last mall

The Guardian on the decline of America's shopping malls. "Dying shopping malls are speckled across the United States, often in middle-class suburbs wrestling with socioeconomic shifts. Some, like Rolling Acres, have already succumbed. Estimates on the share that might close or be repurposed in coming decades range from 15 to 50%. Americans are returning downtown; online shopping is taking a 6% bite out of brick-and-mortar sales; and to many iPhone-clutching, city-dwelling and frequently jobless young people, the culture that spawned satire like Mallrats seems increasingly dated, even cartoonish.

The trend is especially noticeable in the Midwest, a former blue-collar bastion where ailing malls have begun dotting suburban landscapes. Outside of Chicago, Lakehurst Mall was levelled in 2004 and the half-vacant Lincoln Mall is costing its host village millions in botched redevelopment plans. Dixie Square Mall sat vacant for more than 30 years after serving as the backdrop for the iconic chase scene in the 1980 film The Blues Brothers. It was finally demolished in 2012. Many others will similarly lie dormant as they wait for the wrecking ball."
posted by porn in the woods on Jun 19, 2014 - 181 comments

Netflix vs Hulu Plus vs Amazon Prime vs ...

Lifehacker: "One of the more annoying things about Netflix, Hulu Plus, and Amazon's television streaming libraries is the vast difference between the selection available. It would be almost impossible to get a thorough idea of who has the better library without searching for hundreds of TV shows on each service and comparing them manually. So we did just that." [more inside]
posted by Wordshore on Mar 4, 2014 - 105 comments

The best car we have ever tested. Ever.

Consumer Reports says the Tesla Model S is a truly remarkable car.
posted by I'm Doing the Dishes on May 9, 2013 - 251 comments

"Most of the big chains are trying video analytics"

How stores spy on you: Many retailers are snooping more than ever Gaze trackers are hidden in tiny holes in the shelving and detect which brands you’re looking at and how long for each. There are even mannequins whose eyes are cameras...Cisco is testing a system [that] automatically detects your mobile device and connects you to the retailer’s free Wi-Fi network. "Once the customer gets on the network, he has opted in, and the privacy concerns are allayed..." [via] [more inside]
posted by mediareport on Mar 28, 2013 - 51 comments

My immediate thought: Messy.

The West Virginia Surf Report is picking up where they left off [McDonald's McSkillet burrito] (previously), Fast Food: Ads vs. Reality has recently been updated with picture comparison and comedic review of: Taco Bell Doritos Locos Taco Supreme [more inside]
posted by TangerineGurl on Mar 28, 2012 - 43 comments

Can you give us a hand with a little research?

Amazon has recently declared that tomorrow is Price Check day. If you go into a brick and mortar retail store with Amazon’s new Price Check App on your smart phone, and scan a barcode with the location settings active, and then report back to Amazon on the price of that product, Amazon will deduct $5 from your online purchase of that product. Amazon claims it’s trying to keep prices low for consumers, but others attribute the move to a less innocuous agenda. [more inside]
posted by Toekneesan on Dec 9, 2011 - 143 comments

Zagat's for Revolutionaries?

Diner's Guide to the Working Conditions of American Restaurants [PDF] published by labor advocates at Restaurant Opportunities Centers United.
posted by Miko on Dec 7, 2011 - 68 comments

Elizabeth Warren to enter Senate race

Elizabeth Warren will announce her entry into the Massachusetts Senate race tomorrow morning. Warren, who created, but was not confirmed to head, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, is seeking to replace Scott Brown (R), who won Ted Kennedy's seat in 2010. Brown remains rather popular in Massachusetts, and Democrats weren't at all confident any of the current candidates had much chance to knock him off. The hope is that Warren and her pro-consumer bona fides can ride the expected wave of high Democractic voter turnout in the general. [more inside]
posted by schoolgirl report on Sep 13, 2011 - 76 comments

"It's like, okay, I could spend thirteen cents less on a mop..."

Comedian Louis CK on the Opie and Anthony radio show discussing consumers and commercialism: (part 1) (part 2) (part 3). [more inside]
posted by spoobnooble on Jul 8, 2011 - 35 comments

The Overheated, Oversexed Cult Of Bikram Choudhury

Bikram yoga, popularized in the USA by Bikram Choudhury, is criticized for being overly sexual and as subverting the traditional aims of yoga. The bacchanalian atmosphere at the training clinics held by Choudhury seem to confirm this view.
posted by reenum on Feb 19, 2011 - 67 comments

Finally someone says it.

The College as a Philanthropy
posted by bardophile on Nov 10, 2010 - 53 comments

Credit CARDs

"I Stopped Denying People." Former Bank of America employee Jackie Ramos appears on the Daily Show last night in a segment covering the sweeping credit card reform the went into effect last week.
posted by lunit on Mar 3, 2010 - 188 comments

Manufacturing Concern

Consumer products and especially those marketed for children continue to be the subject of massive recalls even after what was called a '100-year flood' level of health and safety problems in 2007-2008. The list of recent recall issues include: burn and fire hazards in game console battery chargers, gas grill hoses, dehumidifiers and notebook computers; lead in toy military figures, certain cloth books and trucks; as well as various safety risks in baby play yards, cribs and car seats.  Even the decades-old issue of strangulation in drape cords continues to be a problem. [more inside]
posted by Hardcore Poser on Jan 10, 2010 - 36 comments

The business of online loyalty programs

A US Senate Committee just released its report on online loyalty programs. Combined, Webloyalty, Affinion, and Vertrue have made $1.4 billion in the past ten years charging customers $10-$20/month for marketing program memberships. Unfortunately, many of their customers (4 million this year) have no memory of authorizing the charges. [more inside]
posted by Nelson on Nov 18, 2009 - 26 comments

Everyone's Favorite Upstart Mom-and-Pop Search Engine Tries to Yank Watchdog's Funding

Bob Boorstin, Google's Director of Policy Communications, wrote a letter to the Rose Foundation, suggesting that the foundation stop funding Consumer Watchdog, an outspoken Google critic. [more inside]
posted by univac on Feb 26, 2009 - 49 comments

Retail therapy

Apropos on Black Friday, Charles, Prince of Wales addresses the Foreign Press Association with a comprehensive lecture on the dangers of unchecked consumerism and the need for an increasingly holistic worldview in light of the global social, economic and environmental challenges. The credit crisis is a side effect of a throwaway society and consumerism is no cure for depression, he says, and we need to question the concepts of "Modernity" and "Economic Growth" we take for granted.
posted by infini on Nov 28, 2008 - 102 comments

Tis the Season for Shoplifting

Tis the season for Shoplifting, when the unemployed, teens, professionals, kleptos, and political shoplifters jack, rack, nick, and stroke holiday gifts. The BBB anticipates a rise in light-fingered merchandising, but notes that on average, shoplifters get pinched only "once for every 48 times they steal." Retailers are fighting back in unusual ways. Wal-Mart, the oft-target of political shoplifters, aggressively guards its merchandise, while across the pond the Dutch approach the problem with bemusement.
posted by terranova on Nov 27, 2008 - 50 comments

It came without ribbons. It came without tags. It came without packages, boxes or bags.

"This year, Americans are planning to spend over $400 on Christmas gifts. Instead of buying things we can’t afford, here’s a way to do something more meaningful." Via
posted by jbickers on Nov 26, 2008 - 42 comments

The most banal, grotesque, ironic, twisted, or perverse creations of the capitalist marketplace.

The Museum Of Weird Consumer Culture.
[more inside]
posted by sushiwiththejury on Dec 14, 2007 - 39 comments

Buy

Luxury items, once made by European artisans, fetched a high price due to the craft of making the items by hand in small workshops. But now, although the prices are even more astronomical, the products themselves are really cheaply produced in Chinese factories, similar to those that make Gap socks, or baseball caps. Despite this, they continue to be worn as badges bought on thinning credit.
posted by four panels on Nov 24, 2007 - 65 comments

LIQUORICE ALLSORTS ARE SERIOUS BUSINESS

When they came for the gummy bear, I remained silent; I have cavities. When they came for the red hots, I remained silent; I am allergic to cinnamon. But when they came for the liquorice allsorts, one man did not stay silent. And for that Bertie Bassett thanks him.
posted by robocop is bleeding on Nov 7, 2007 - 72 comments

Roberts Supremes reverses 100 years of antitrust law

There's been much talk about the Supreme's decisions on desegregation and free speech, but another ruling with broad consumer impact has gone relatively unnoticed. In a 5-4 decision [PDF], the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a 96-year-old ban on minimum pricing agreements between manufacturers and retailers. Dissenting opinion believes that this ruling will hurt consumers, raise prices and keep new retailers out of the marketplace. The 1911 ruling that was overturned was Dr. Miles Medical Co. vs. John D. Park & Sons which decided that it is always illegal for a supplier to dictate minimum prices to a retailer.
posted by dejah420 on Jun 29, 2007 - 47 comments

Now that's service!

...no one here has any intentions of helping you with anything. I am the manager of all of Customer Service. There is no one higher than me that you will speak with.
posted by Blingo on Feb 1, 2007 - 79 comments

Unpimp Your Credit Score, Say Yahhhh

In the last few years, Fair Isaacs, along with the FTC have made considerable effort in educating us in how our credit scores are derived. But is the whole system about to change? In a somewhat quiet AP story, the three major credit bureaus, Equifax, Transunion, and Experian, announced they had agreed on a new common formula for generating your credit scores: VantageScore. [more inside]
posted by poppo on Mar 15, 2006 - 42 comments

Who Rules as Evil Empire?

The Worst Company in America. Which company sucks most? The first two square off: Halliburton vs. Monsanto. Do your own research and vote.
posted by FlamingBore on Feb 22, 2006 - 47 comments

Skål!

Similar to the US Federal Trade Commission, the Consumer Council of Norway, or Forbrukerrådet (PDF) strives "to achieve a balance of power between the consumer and the provider of products or services." This week, the council filed a formal complaint, citing several violations of Norwegian law in the fluid terms of service attached to iTunes music file downloads.
posted by Rothko on Jan 28, 2006 - 9 comments

to buy or not to buy, that is the question.

Organic Foods... Consumer Reports spells out which organic foods are worth buying, and which you should skip.
posted by crunchland on Jan 10, 2006 - 34 comments

Inky milk ?

Possible "contamination" of some baby milk-based products 30 million liters of big-brand name milk were recalled in Italy and other EU countries because of contamination by traces of ITX (ISOPROPYLTHIOXANTHONE) which is a product used in packaging printing.Tetrapack issued a press release (Italian language) in which they declare they are not going to use ITX for printing anymore as a precautionary measure. According to a memo sent to an italian consumer-oriented tv show(italian), Tetrapack acknowledges that 1200 more products use packaging with the same printing technology. What about their recall and is it happening worldwide ? [Google News query]
posted by elpapacito on Nov 25, 2005 - 13 comments

Security smackdown

Howard Schmidt thinks that developers should be accountable for security holes. Schneier responds.
posted by afroblanca on Oct 20, 2005 - 29 comments

Cloture for Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005

A Senate bill to overhaul federal bankruptcy laws, a top priority of retailers, auto lenders and banks, cleared a key hurdle Tuesday afternoon. Sixty-nine senators -- nine more than needed -- voted for "cloture," a procedural move that limits debate. Republican leaders hope to push the bill to a final vote by the end of the week. Earlier, the Senate turned back a controversial, abortion-related amendment that has scuttled previous efforts to pass bankruptcy legislation. The Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 was first introduced in 1998 as The Consumer Bankruptcy Reform Act.
posted by airguitar on Mar 8, 2005 - 63 comments

Class action suit fun time !

Got certain DVD ? Join class action, get replacement ! Apparently MGM mislabeled (or simply sold ?) from 1998 to 2003 a few hundred DVD titles as Widescreen format while they were not really Widescreen. As one must respect MPAA they must respect our looking in this list to see if our dvd titles are in the list and our joining class action. Let's not be on the receiving end for a change ! (via HardOcp (SFW))
posted by elpapacito on Jan 28, 2005 - 22 comments

Buy Nothing Christmas

The perfect Christmas gift for the geek in your life. Or maybe you need something for your new niece or nephew? Then again, this site may have all the stuff on your gift shopping list.
posted by Doohickie on Dec 11, 2004 - 24 comments

global poverty solutions: consumerism

If the poor get richer, does the world see progress? The global "consumer class", defined by those who make $7,000 or more in local currency, is growing quickly but making it even more difficult for the worlds poor to get ahead. 1.7 billion belong to the consumer class while over 3 billion survive on less than $2 a day. Will the growing tide of new consumers in the developing world contribute to the solution of global poverty or simply add to the problem?
posted by stbalbach on Feb 3, 2004 - 26 comments

Oh no Credit Card troubles again

More problems with credit cards...after you canceled one Apparently some credit card company may not take you seriously when you say "I want to cancel this credit card". If the account of the credit card is not "terminated" you may still be charged, even after receiving a letter from cc company confirming you its cancellation. You may also receive "accidental charges" of stuff you never ordered. One more link inside.
posted by elpapacito on Nov 25, 2003 - 26 comments

Bankruptcy bonus at K-Mart

If you're still working for K-mart A bankruptcy bonus may be delivered to you soon. 1. Work for some company 2. ??? 3. Bankruptcy 4.PROFIT!
posted by elpapacito on Apr 9, 2003 - 11 comments

Airline Evildoer

Purchasing an one-way airplane ticket with cash May trigger airport security alert on you. No credit card ? Bad Guy ! Credit Card ? Good guy ! Unofficially sponsored by VISA or Amex ?
posted by elpapacito on Feb 28, 2003 - 56 comments

People are talking. Now, someone's listening.

People are talking. Now, someone's listening. Late-from-the-gate tech startup BuzzMetrics "analyzes, measures, monitors, & influences the unaided consumer discussions that naturally occur in online communities." If that's not spooky enough, they continue: "Some consumers have more influence over public opinion than others, but targeting them has always been extremely difficult." BuzzMetrics is happy to identify negative posters and research their posting histories, among other services. Does this toe an ethical line? Does it change how you post to online conversations? Oh, yeah -- they're hiring.
posted by busbyism on Oct 10, 2002 - 9 comments

Robots vs. bunnies!

Robots vs. bunnies! Dust bunnies, that is. Roboticist Rodney Brooks, who you should know because you should have seen Fast, Cheap and Out of Control, co-founded iRobot, which is releasing its first consumer model this week: Roomba, the vacuuming robot. Even once you've seen it in action (which, of course, I haven't), it's probably not going to convince that the future has arrived or get you thinking about the moral rights of robots, but every consumer tech movement has its watershed, and maybe this will turn out to have been a Big Step for getting robots in our daily lives. The author notes that iRobot "hopes that one day Roomba will do for vacuuming what dishwashers did for dishwashing."
posted by blueshammer on Sep 16, 2002 - 18 comments

Just FYI Honda is recalling 1.3M cars

Just FYI Honda is recalling 1.3M cars For a fault in ignition system. Check if your car is in the list.
posted by elpapacito on May 24, 2002 - 10 comments

DigitalConsumer.org

DigitalConsumer.org is trying to get Congress to pass a six-point Consumer Technology Bill of Rights to protect the legitimate rights of honest consumers who buy copyrighted content legally. You can read about the issue and the group in Walt Mossberg's WSJ column.
posted by pmurray63 on Mar 14, 2002 - 4 comments

Legally, is a computer more like a TV, a pen, a radio, a CD player or a shortwave radio (or a hat, a brooch or a pterodactyl)?

Legally, is a computer more like a TV, a pen, a radio, a CD player or a shortwave radio (or a hat, a brooch or a pterodactyl)? "Last month the top executives of two of the most powerful media companies in the world traveled to Washington to testify before Congress about the most dangerous threat they face: the American consumer." As in most computer piracy discussions, this NYTimes article (reg. req'd) analogizes computers to existing technologies: "airplanes, telephones, watches and televisions." Isn't the problem that no existing precedent really fits? To me, a computer is at once a communications tool, an entertainment (audio and video) device, a content creator, a copier, and much, much more. The laws regulating each of those things vary significantly, and in some cases approach mutual exclusivity, and for good reason. How can one device satisfy all of them? (oh, and via blogdex)
posted by Sinner on Mar 13, 2002 - 14 comments

The People's Bureau for Consumer Information

The People's Bureau for Consumer Information has been a long time coming (The Designer's Republic have been trailing it to those in the know for over 2 years). Yesterday, it finally went live. tDR's work may or may not be your bag (I'm about 50/50) but the way they have set this site up is amazing - everything even the secure purchasing is done with a very uniquely styled Flash frontend.. It's worth going just to play with it.
posted by jackiemcghee on Feb 15, 2002 - 34 comments

Fauxhemian Rhapsody:

Fauxhemian Rhapsody: Rob Walker writes in the New York Times Magazine "boho trappings that vaguely suggest counterculture taste are everywhere, because the fauxhemian idea is that you don't have to choose anymore. You can be mainstream and alternative, a grown-up and a hipster, all at the same time." [via canceled] A scene from Washington, DC illustrates: She, wrap skirt artfully tossed; he, purchased punk rock look, price tags still attached. Both on their way back from an afternoon at the Pentagon City mall Borders. They climb into their carefully battered Golf, with the prominent "Friends Don't Let Friends Drink Starbucks" bumper sticker leering from the rear, and she is carrying a huge paper Starbucks coffee cup, fresh latte steam rising in the chill air.
posted by gac on Jan 24, 2000 - 0 comments

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