Slide from deck showing 1929 airline flight information

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As the summer of airline delays and cancellations peaks, DOT considers better info to help passengers

 | by
Ed Mierzwinski
Senior Director, Federal Consumer Program

As passengers swelter through a summer of airline delays and cancellations, the U.S. Department of Transportation asked U.S. PIRG to present on whether requiring airlines to provide more information earlier in the search process would increase consumer choice and further the recommendations of the President's Executive Order on Competition.  

Screenshot from slide deck features 1929 "Offical Airline Guide." Public domain courtesy Smithsonian Institution via archive.org.

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Slide from deck showing 1929 airline flight information
 | by
Ed Mierzwinski
Senior Director, Federal Consumer Program

As passengers swelter through a summer of airline delays and cancellations, the U.S. Department of Transportation asked U.S. PIRG to present on whether requiring airlines to provide more information earlier in the search process would increase consumer choice and further the recommendations of the President's Executive Order on Competition.  

Screenshot from slide deck features 1929 "Offical Airline Guide." Public domain courtesy Smithsonian Institution via archive.org.

Obstacle course
 | by
Ed Mierzwinski
Senior Director, Federal Consumer Program

CFPB director Rohit Chopra today announced a request for information about your experiences with your bank. “Customers of large banks should not have to run through an obstacle course to get a straight answer about their account. We are taking steps to ensure the legally enshrined right to obtain basic customer service.”

Cover image via Flickr by Stevan Sheets, WWC Fall Family Fest, Some rights reserved.

Privacy graphic
 | by
Ed Mierzwinski
Senior Director, Federal Consumer Program

Wow. The FTC's consumer chief gave a powerful speech this week that essentially said "privacy notice and choice" are not enough in a surveillance-based economy. "When we’re expecting consumers to have to choose between participating in the digital economy and protecting their privacy, we’re not giving them a choice at all – what we’re really describing is coercion."

Cover image by g4||4is "Privacy. The "i" is a lock" via Flickr. Some rights reserved.

Postcard of FTC Building
 | by
Ed Mierzwinski
Senior Director, Federal Consumer Program

Last year, the Supreme Court eliminated the FTC's key authority to disgorge ill-gotten gains from corporate wrongdoers and use the money to compensate their victims. It was an unfortunate decision that benefited a convicted payday lender who fleeced thousands of victims and will allow brand name Big Pharma firms that block lower-cost generic competitors and other wrongdoers to escape billions of dollars in restitution. The Senate Commerce Committee is voting tomorrow on a bill to restore FTC powers.

-- Cover graphic of FTC Building via Flickr, by Boston Public Library, Some rights reserved.