Diane's Feed
Jul 30, 2014

U.S. cellphone users hit for ‘hundreds of millions’ in bogus charges -Senate study

WASHINGTON, July 30 (Reuters) – U.S. mobile phone users have
likely paid hundreds of millions of dollars in unauthorized
charges “crammed” onto their bills, according to a report
released by the U.S. Senate Commerce Committee on Wednesday
ahead of a hearing on the subject.

The cramming often originates with small companies that
provide celebrity gossip, ring tones or similar services.

Jul 29, 2014

U.S. Senate panel to look into price setting for contact lenses

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Moves by three of the four major U.S. contact lens makers to set price floors for many of their products, preventing low-cost retailers from discounting the expensive devices, have drawn scrutiny from lawmakers.

The Senate Judiciary Committee’s nine-member antitrust panel will meet on Wednesday to consider the decisions by Alcon, owned by Novartis AG; Bausch+Lomb, owned by Valeant Pharmaceuticals; and Johnson & Johnson to put in place minimum sale prices for some of their products.

Jul 24, 2014

Merger of papermakers may be OK’d despite antitrust concerns

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Verso Paper Corp’s plan to buy privately held rival NewPage Corp could well be approved by U.S. regulators, even though the new company would make more than half the coated paper used in magazines and catalogs.

If the $900 million deal goes through, the new, bigger Verso would have 54 percent of U.S. capacity to make coated paper and South Africa’s Sappi Ltd, the new No. 2, would have about 25 percent, giving the top two companies in the business nearly 80 percent of market capacity, according to Hilco Valuation Services.

Jul 23, 2014

Abuse of U.S. generic-drug rules costs billions -report

WASHINGTON, July 23 (Reuters) – U.S. rules that ensure
prescription medicines are not misused have been manipulated by
brand-name drug companies to fight off generic competitors,
costing consumers billions of dollars, according to a report
released on Wednesday.

Called “risk evaluation and mitigation strategies” (REMS),
these U.S. Food and Drug Administration rules are meant to
secure the safe distribution of dangerous medicines.

Jul 22, 2014

Google must face class action over kids’ in-apps purchases

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Google Inc must face a class action lawsuit filed by a U.S. woman whose son had bought online videogame items without her consent, a federal judge ruled late on Monday as he turned down the company’s request to dismiss the action.

The case, which accuses Google of breaking various laws regarding fair dealing with consumers, can go forward, Judge Ronald Whyte ruled late on Monday in the U.S. district court in San Jose.

Jul 21, 2014

U.S. panel rules Seagate, Avago’s LSI do not violate Realtek patent

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Avago Technologies Ltd’s LSI and Seagate Technology do not violate patented technology owned by Realtek Semiconductor Corp, the U.S. International Trade Commission said on Monday.

Taiwan-based Realtek accused the companies of violating a patent to make an integrated circuit with high frequency and low noise.

Jul 17, 2014

Fox-Time Warner deal could bring the game to ESPN

By Ronald Grover and Diane Bartz

(Reuters) – Twenty-First Century Fox’s plan to buy Time Warner could create an upheaval in the sports television world, creating the first meaningful challenge to Walt Disney Co’s ESPN.

Time Warner’s board has rejected an $80 billion bid, but Fox Chairman Rupert Murdoch is unlikely to walk away quickly. A deal would bring him college basketball’s “March Madness” championship tournament, prime time National Basketball Association (NBA) games, and Major League Baseball (MLB) games.

Jul 1, 2014

U.S. sues T-Mobile USA, alleges cramming of bogus charges on bills

WASHINGTON, July 1 (Reuters) – U.S. authorities filed a
complaint against T-Mobile USA on Tuesday, accusing the
wireless provider of adding millions of dollars of unauthorized
charges onto customers’ bills, a practice known as “cramming.”

The charges were for subscriptions for services like
horoscopes or celebrity gossip delivered by text message, which
often cost $9.99 a month. T-Mobile USA received 35 to 40 percent
of the amount charged, the Federal Trade Commission said in its

Jun 30, 2014

L’Oreal settles over skin care ads that U.S. termed deceptive

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Cosmetics maker L’Oreal USA has agreed to settle U.S. complaints that its advertisements for skin care products Lancome Genifique and L’Oreal Paris Youth Code were deceptive, the Federal Trade Commission said on Monday.

Under the settlement L’Oreal USA, a subsidiary of L’Oreal SA, is barred from making claims about the products that have not been substantiated by scientific proof, the FTC said.

Jun 10, 2014

U.S. Congress updating music copyright laws as world goes digital

WASHINGTON, June 10 (Reuters) – The U.S. Congress is working
to update laws on who gets paid for recorded music, in a
possible omnibus bill, as old CDs pile up at yard sales and
music lovers increasingly shift to streaming services such as
Pandora and Spotify.

One bill, the RESPECT Act, would close a loophole that
allows digital music services, like SiriusXM, to stream music
recorded before 1972 without paying for them. These include
legends such as The Beatles, Aretha Franklin, Diana Ross and
other Motown artists.