September 11, 2013 |
Tammie, like many people, receives catalogs she doesn't want. Lots of them. She wants to know: How did these guys find her? And what can she do to get rid of them? Finding people is the easy part. Marketers routinely buy and sell mailing lists. There are also list brokers who make a living selling consumers' contact info, sliced and diced into every possible demographic and personal interest. ASK LAZ: Smart answers to consumer questions Getting rid of an unwanted marketer can be a chore.
July 22, 2013 |
Susan Segal normally spends about $30 for a three-month supply of a thyroid medication from CVS Caremark's mail-order pharmacy. Recently, though, CVS sent her a different thyroid drug, which cost $23 more - a 77% increase. Segal, 56, called to complain. A CVS service rep told the Irvine resident that the pharmacy wasn't trying to pull a fast one. Have a consumer question? Ask Laz The rep explained that Segal's usual med, Levoxyl, couldn't be obtained, so CVS called her doctor and received permission to send her a similar drug, Synthroid, instead.
July 10, 2013 |
Britain is privatizing its Royal Mail postal service through a public stock offering within the next nine months. The step is expected as the British government has been giving the Royal Mail a big overhaul in preparation for going public, including paying its whopping $6.9-billion pension fund deficit and bolstering its profit. So far, so good. Revenue from parcel deliveries was up 13% in the last fiscal year, thanks to the growing popularity of online shopping. Overall profit climbed to $600.5 million, from $226.5 million in the previous year.
July 5, 2013 |
There are many disturbing questions raised by the dog shooting by Hawthorne police. The video of a police officer shooting the 80-pound Rottweiler, Max, as the dog's owner was being arrested has gone viral online and prompted outrage far beyond the South Bay city. The second most heartbreaking part of this video -- after the injured dog rolls over, flinching from the shots -- is the sound of the bystanders screaming and crying out in horror as they watch. The video shows five police cars blocking off a street and officers halfway down the block from Leon Rosby, who saunters back and forth as he videotapes the police action.
June 22, 2013 |
In this age of Instagram and Twitter, it is easy to forget how recently postcards were a principal way of sending images and short messages. Nothing about postal communication seems appropriate for that today: Someone once confessed to me that he hand-delivers postcards after he returns from a trip because they arrive more quickly that way. Yet when postcards were invented, they were revolutionary technology - and caused their own uproar. It was 1865 when German postal official Heinrich von Stephan was the first to propose the adoption of what he described as an "open post-sheet" made of stiff paper.
June 14, 2013 |
Facebook has begun sending out invitations for its next media event, but not in a way one would expect from a top tech company. Facebook is using the U.S. Postal Service. Numerous news publications discovered envelope-clad invitations for a June 20 Facebook event in their mailboxes Friday. Facebook is no stranger to media events -- the company seems to hold one every two months or so -- and it doesn't normally send out its invitations via old-fashioned mail. PHOTOS: Last-minute Father's Day gift idea: Tablets under $200 Like others in the industry, Facebook typically uses email for its event invitations.