Tendencias en marketing en Redes Sociales 2014 #infografia #infographic #socialmedia

Hola: Una infografía con tendencias en marketing en Redes Sociales 2014. Vía Un saludo

TICs y Formación http://ticsyformacion.com/2013/12/11/tendencias-en-marketing-en-redes-sociales-2014-infografia/ Via Alfredo Vela y www.bscformacion.com

Las 10 mejores páginas de empresa en Linkedin 2013 #marketing #socialmedia

Hola: Una presentación con las 10 mejores páginas de empresa en Linkedin 2013. Un saludo

TICs y Formación http://ticsyformacion.com/2013/12/11/las-10-mejores-paginas-de-empresa-en-linkedin-2013-marketing-socialmedia/ Via Alfredo Vela y www.bscformacion.com

Study: Easy Public Displays Of Support For Charities Lead To Slacktivism

Sure, you wear the button that says you want a basket-thieving bear for President, but are you really willing to donate your time or money to the cause? (photo: bluwmongoose)

Sure, you wear the button that says you want a basket-thieving bear for President, but are you really willing to donate your time or money to the cause? (photo: bluwmongoose)

Scroll through your Facebook timeline and you’ll no doubt see any number of people passing on links, photos, stories, invites to groups… all for allegedly good causes. It’s become increasingly simple to say you support things like ending world hunger or providing shelter to victims of natural disaster, while at the same time doing absolutely nothing that actually helps to solve those problems. Such behavior has earned the name “slacktivism,” and a new study aims to show how many people can trick themselves into thinking they have done enough by simply putting on a ribbon or liking a Facebook page.

The report, published in the Journal of Consumer Research by researchers at the University of British Columbia Sauder School of Business, performed various tests to see if public support for a cause had any correlation to his/her likelihood of donating time or money to that cause.

Test #1

The first test involved Remembrance Day, the day on which Canadians commemorate those who fought and died in World War I. It’s common on this day to wear a poppy while out and about. Researchers looked at 91 college students who were not wearing poppies while entering the school’s student union building.

These students were divided into three groups. The first group was approached and offered a poppy that they could wear then and there. The second group were offered poppies in envelopes that they could later choose to wear or do with as they please. The third group did not receive any offer of a free poppy.

A short while later, each of the people who willingly took a poppy (or who were in the third group) was asked “Would you like to make a donation to support Canada’s veterans?”

The results showed that those who had received the poppies in a private manner (i.e., in the envelope) donated an average amount that was more than twice that of those that received poppies publicly, and nearly six times that of those who were not offered the flower.

The researchers believe that this is because those who agreed to wear the poppy may feel like they have already done their part to support the cause, while those who received the flower privately are now aware of the issue but have not yet made a public show of support.

Test #2

This second test is a bit more complicated. Researchers showed groups of college students two different causes that were in need of support. One group was given the option of publicly signing a petition for either of the causes, while members of another group was asked to fill out an individual ballot and place it in a sealed box. A third group was only asked to sign attendance sheets showing that they had read about the charities. Other groups were randomly asked to read about either of the causes but not asked to sign a petition or provide any other form of token support.

Around 45 minutes to an hour later, students were told that whichever cause they had chosen to support needed volunteers to help stuffing envelopes for a letter-writing campaign. Participants were then asked how much time, between 0-150 minutes, they would be willing to volunteer.

Once again, those whose support of the charity had been done in a private manner were significantly more willing to give of their time, averaging nearly an hour of envelope-stuffing compared to around 30 minutes on average for those who had signed the petition in public. The groups that were not asked to provide token support for either group had similar results to those participants who signed petitions in public.

“Taken together, the results of studies 1 and 2 provide support for the notion that an initial act of public token support is no more effective than no initial act of support, and less effective than a private act of token support, in motivating meaningful contributions to a cause,” write the researchers.

Test #3

This test effectively repeats the second, but takes away the time variable when it came time to volunteer for one of the causes. Rather than ask participants how many minutes they would volunteer for the cause they supported, the researchers simply asked a yes or no “Would you volunteer to help stuff envelopes for 60 minutes?”

And again, those who had been asked to show their support for a cause in private were significantly more likely than those who had been asked to express their support in a public petition (78% to 59%), and those who had not been asked to show any support via petition showed basically the same positive response as those who had done so publicly.

Test #4

“[C]onsumers have multiple avenues open to them to engage in very public forms of token support… in ways that are relatively easy and costless,” write the researchers, giving ribbons, bumper stickers, and Facebook likes as examples. “One question that arises, then, is whether a way exists to overcome the tendency to withhold more meaningful contributions to the cause following an initial act of public support.”

The fourth test takes the two charities used in the previous two tests and moves them to Facebook. Student participants were asked to log on to Facebook using their personal accounts, and then choose which of the two organizations’ Facebook groups they wanted to join.

Researchers set up the test so that for some participants, the groups they were joining were public (i.e., that their joining of these groups would show up in the users’ timelines for friends to see) while for others the charities’ groups were made private (i.e., the user knows he has joined the group but this information is not shared on the timeline). These latter participants were also notified that their joining of the charity’s Facebook group was not being made public.

The participants were then asked a series of questions to determine how well they believed their personal values aligned with the values of the charities whose Facebook group they joined. Finally, they were asked the yes/no question about whether they would help stuff envelopes for the group they had chosen to support.

Interestingly, when a participant’s values are the same as those of the charity he supports and that charity’s Facebook group is public, he is just as likely, if not more so, to donate his envelope-stuffing time to that charity. This is the one instance in the report in which a private token show of support did not result in a higher likelihood of participants agreeing to provide a more substantial form of support for the charity.

That said, when the participant’s values do not align with the selected charity, there is once again a mammoth difference in willingness to stuff envelopes between those who joined the group privately and those who did so publicly:

(Source: The Journal of Consumer Research)

(Source: The Journal of Consumer Research)

“The results of study 4 highlight how charitable organizations can use value alignment to combat slacktivism,” write the researchers, “turning initial acts of public token support into more meaningful subsequent support. We show that by focusing those who engage in an initial act of token support in public on the value alignment between self and cause, we can increase helping on a subsequent, more meaningful task.”

One thing this report does not get into is the psychology of those who choose to loudly trumpet their support of a cause in very public venues and whether those same people are more or less likely to also be making substantial contributions.

The results do, however, seem to indicate that the average consumer, perhaps subconsciously, feels that making some sort of public statement for a cause — whether it’s a ribbon, a flower, a bumper sticker, signing a petition or sharing a Facebook like — may alleviate them of any obligation for further, more substantial support.

by Chris Morran via Consumerist

Consejos sobre el trabajo #infografia #infographic

Hola: Una infografía sobre consejos sobre el trabajo. Un saludo

TICs y Formación http://ticsyformacion.com/2013/12/11/consejos-sobre-el-trabajo-infografia-infographic/ Via Alfredo Vela y www.bscformacion.com

Plan de marketing en Linkedin en 5 minutos #infografia #infographic #socialmedia

Hola: Una infografía sobre el plan de marketing en Linkedin en 5 minutos. Un saludo

TICs y Formación http://ticsyformacion.com/2013/12/11/plan-de-marketing-en-linkedin-en-5-minutos-infografia-infographic-socialmedia/ Via Alfredo Vela y www.bscformacion.com

¿Es importante la atención al cliente en Redes Sociales? #infografia #infographic #socialmedia

Hola: Una infografía sobre si ¿Es importante la atención al cliente en Redes Sociales? Un saludo

TICs y Formación http://ticsyformacion.com/2013/12/10/es-importante-la-atencion-al-cliente-en-redes-sociales-infografia-infographic-socialmedia/ Via Alfredo Vela y www.bscformacion.com

Errores habituales en Redes Sociales #infografia #infographic #socialmedia

Hola: Una infografía con errores habituales en Redes Sociales. Un saludo

TICs y Formación http://ticsyformacion.com/2013/12/10/errores-habituales-en-redes-sociales-infografia-infographic-socialmedia/ Via Alfredo Vela y www.bscformacion.com

Los primeros días en Bolsa de Twitter (vs FaceBook) #infografia #infographic #socialmedia

Hola: Una infografía sobre Los primeros días en Bolsa de Twitter (vs FaceBook). Un saludo You will find more statistics at Statista

TICs y Formación http://ticsyformacion.com/2013/12/10/los-primeros-dias-en-bolsa-de-twitter-vs-facebook-infografia-infographic-socialmedia/ Via Alfredo Vela y www.bscformacion.com

Cómo afrontar con éxito una entrevista de trabajo #infografia #infographic

Hola: Una infografía sobre cómo afrontar con éxito una entrevista de trabajo. Vía Un saludo

TICs y Formación http://ticsyformacion.com/2013/12/10/como-afrontar-con-exito-una-entrevista-de-trabajo-infografia-infographic/ Via Alfredo Vela y www.bscformacion.com

Tendencias en Redes Sociales para 2014 #infografia #infographic #socialmedia

Hola: Una infografía sobre tendencias en Redes Sociales para 2014. Vía Un saludo

TICs y Formación http://ticsyformacion.com/2013/12/10/tendencias-en-redes-sociales-para-2014-infografia-infographic-socialmedia/ Via Alfredo Vela y www.bscformacion.com

Historia visual de los ordenadores #infografia #infographic

Hola: Una infografía con la Historia visual de los ordenadores. Vía Un saludo

TICs y Formación http://ticsyformacion.com/2013/12/10/historia-visual-de-los-ordenadores-infografia-infographic/ Via Alfredo Vela y www.bscformacion.com

Guía SEO (edición cómic) #infografia #infographic #seo

Hola: Una infografía con una Guía SEO (edición cómic). Vía Un saludo

TICs y Formación http://ticsyformacion.com/2013/12/10/guia-seo-edicion-comic-infografia-infographic-seo/ Via Alfredo Vela y www.bscformacion.com

AMC Offering Company Stock To Some Loyal Movie Fans In Upcoming IPO

Do you love movies? Not but really, do you love movies so much that you’d be willing to invest in AMC Theaters? Because ahead of the company’s upcoming Initial Public Offering, AMC says it’ll offer some of its most loyal customers a chance to snag some stock at the same price as the big kahuna investors out there.

There will be 110,527 shares of common stock earmarked especially for members of AMC’s Stubs reward program, according to a letter from CEO Gerry Lopez (via CNNMoney).

Those shares will be sold off at first-come-first-served basis, with a similar deal set up for AMC’s employees as well. The IPO price hasn’t been set yet but it’s estimated to be between $18 and $20 per share.

And unlike investors on Wall Street looking to buy in, the deals for customers and employees won’t come with any fees when buying shares in amounts between $100 and $2,500 using an online broker that’s working with AMC. That’s more than can be said for buying a movie ticket these days, eh?

This is kind of a big deal, as most of the time when there’s an IPO, most shares are set aside for big banks and large institutions. Those investors are usually the only ones who can buy shares at the IPO price while the rest of us are forced to get shares on the secondary market at higher prices.

Gotta wonder if the shares come with free popcorn or at least a couple extra movie tickets on the house. A moviegoer can dream.

AMC offers stock to loyal movie fans [CNNMoney]

by Mary Beth Quirk via Consumerist

Sysco To Buy U.S. Foods, Gobbling 1/4 Of Foodservice Supply Industry

When you go out to eat at establishments ranging from the fanciest restaurants to a humble hot dog stand, there’s a pretty good chance that at least part of your meal came from either Sysco or U.S. Foods, the two biggest companies in the category. Now Sysco has announced plans to acquire the smaller company, and together they’ll have 25% of the food-service supply business.

They’ll pay $3.5 billion in stock and cash. Sysco actually wanted to take over its closest competitor seven years ago, but the price was too high and they demurred. Since then, they’ve been gobbling up smaller suppliers like so many chickpeas at a salad bar.

Sysco to Buy Rival US Foods in Deal Valued at $3.5 Billion [NY Times]

by Laura Northrup via Consumerist

Panorama global del pago móvil #infografia #infographic

Hola: Una infografía sobre el panorama global del pago móvil. Un saludo

TICs y Formación http://ticsyformacion.com/2013/12/10/panorama-global-del-pago-movil-infografia-infographic/ Via Alfredo Vela y www.bscformacion.com

Confianza en la publicidad en Latinoamérica #infografia #infographic #marketing

Hola: Una infografía sobre la confianza en la publicidad en Latinoamérica. Vía Un saludo

TICs y Formación http://ticsyformacion.com/2013/12/10/confianza-en-la-publicidad-en-latinoamerica-infografia-infographic-marketing/ Via Alfredo Vela y www.bscformacion.com

Algunas ideas para marketing dental #infografia #infographic #marketing

Hola: Una infografía con algunas ideas para marketing dental. Un saludo dental marketing ideas

TICs y Formación http://ticsyformacion.com/2013/12/10/algunas-ideas-para-marketing-dental-infografia-infographic-marketing/ Via Alfredo Vela y www.bscformacion.com

Social Media analytics #infografia #infographic #socialmedia

Hola: Una infografía sobre Social Media analytics. Un saludo

TICs y Formación http://ticsyformacion.com/2013/12/10/social-media-analytics-infografia-infographic-socialmedia/ Via Alfredo Vela y www.bscformacion.com

Los 9 data centers más inusuales del Mundo #infografia #infographic

Hola: Una infografía sobre los 9 data centers más inusuales del Mundo. Vía Un saludo

TICs y Formación http://ticsyformacion.com/2013/12/10/los-9-data-centers-mas-inusuales-del-mundo-infografia-infographic/ Via Alfredo Vela y www.bscformacion.com

This Bank Customer Satisfaction Chart Is A Sad Reminder Of Rampant Consolidation

(source: ACSI)

(source: ACSI)

Maybe last week’s news that there are now fewer banks in the U.S. than ever before didn’t bother you. But here’s a chart of historic customer satisfaction scores that stands as a reminder of how so many banks have been absorbed into larger banking Voltrons in just the last two decades.

The above chart is the latest banking report from the American Customer Satisfaction Index, and while it shows that people don’t hate banks as much as they used to, it also shows how few banks remain to service consumers in the U.S.

While there are 16 individual institutions listed on the chart, with data going back as far as 1995, the latest ratings only have scores for 4 banks (along with an aggregate score for “all others”) — JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, Wells Fargo, and Bank of America.

So what happened to the others on the list? With the exception of PNC and Key — which apparently didn’t receive enough data from customers to merit a score — the rest of the banks are all now part of one of the four remaining biggies.

We mentioned the fate of NationsBank in the earlier story, but the short version is that it merged with BankAmerica to form Bank of America.

Citicorp became Citigroup following its 1998 merger with Travelers Group.

First Union merged with Wachovia in 2001. When Wachovia failed following the collapse of the U.S. housing market, it became part of Wells Fargo, which had already acquired First Interstate in 1996 and Norwest in 1998.

Chemical Bank acquired Chase Manhattan in 1995, but chose to keep the Chase name intact, and then merged with J.P. Morgan to form JPMorgan Chase, which in 2004 merged with Bank One, which had previously acquired First Chicago.

These now-gone banks are just a drop in the bucket of the 10,000+ financial institutions that have disappeared (whether through merger or failure) since 1984.

Fewer options is never a good thing, especially at a time when the companies that control the market increasingly treat the average consumer like a necessary evil who should pay dearly for the privilege to have a place in which to deposit his money.

by Chris Morran via Consumerist

Sword-Wielding Would-Be Robber Demands Free Tacos At Mexican Restaurant

(Mike Matney Photography)

Another sword that should not be used to demand free food. (Mike Matney Photography)

While it’s true that the best things in life are free (Rainbows! Hugs!) there are some things we as consumers just have to pay for. It’s how the world works, and it’s how you get yourself a meal. The way not to do it, well, one of many ways, includes pulling out a sword and demanding free tacos.

A man in South Texas decided to go about things the wrong way, when he allegedly pulled out a sword at a mexican restaurant in San Antonio and threatened a waitress.

According to an affidavit (via the Associated Press) a 28-year-old man walked into the restaurant and ordered several tacos. But he then refused to pay and brandished a sword, which he of course had in a sheath because if youre going to own a sword, taking care of it is essential.

I digress. Taking a sword into any restaurant is not okay, but cops say he then threatened the waitress while sliding it out of the sheath. No one was hurt, and he walked out of the restaurant without the tacos.

He reportedly yelled something about getting free tacos or someone would die, but the restaurant and its customers remained safe as the waitress locked the door while he drove off.

Police arrested the suspect the next day and set his bail at $50,000.

Texan Allegedly Pulls Sword & Demands Tacos [Associated Press]

by Mary Beth Quirk via Consumerist

WestJet Santa Asks Passengers What They Want For Christmas, Airline Gives Gifts Upon Arrival

Everyone got quizzed by Santa.

Everyone got quizzed by Santa.

Usually if someone asks me what I want before a flight the answer is going to be something like, “The gift of no one kicking my seat back repeatedly during the flight” or “A free drink to get me through turbulence.” But a WestJet Santa Claus took it a few jolly steps further.

Passengers on two WestJet flights in Canada were asked to scan their boarding passes in front of a screen, which brought up a ho-ho-ho’ing Santa asking what they’d like for Christmas, reports CTV News.

And while kids answered readily with things like “A choo-choo train” and “An Android tablet,” Santa queried adults as well. “A big TV,” said one couple. “Socks and underwear,” said another man.

Then, while the flights were in the air, the discount airline’s staff went to work, scrambling to stores to shop for all the presents they’d taken notes on during the Santa interviews. Upon landing — ta da! Christmas dreams come true at the baggage carousel, where fliers were surprised with their personalized gifts.

“This year, we wanted to turn our holiday campaign into a tradition by doing something that’s never been done before,” said Richard Bartrem, WestJet Vice-President, Communications and Community Relations. “Inspired by the notion of real-time giving, we wanted to surprise our guests with meaningful, personalized gifts when they least expected them. Being able to show our guests how much we care with gift-giving, a tried and true holiday tradition, resonates with WestJetters as much as our guests.”

Is this a great way for WestJet to get some nice publicity? Sure it is, but it’s also kind of awesome. Anyone who says they wouldn’t be excited if this happened to them is a Christmas liar. And we know which list you’re on anyway.

WestJet guests have their holiday wishes granted [CTVNews.com]

by Mary Beth Quirk via Consumerist

Pizza Hut Puerto Rico Adds Bacon To Pools Of Cheese On Crust

pizza-hut-puerto-rico-bacon-cheesy-crust-pizzaYou might not know that the Cheeseburger Pizza that Pizza Hut has put on the menu in some of its international restaurants has an American cousin. It’s true! It’s called Crazy Cheesy Crust, and lacks the mini burger patties, but has the same vague flower-ish shape. The cheesy monstrosity also has a cousin in Puerto Rico, the with one important difference: the cheesy crust pools can come with bacon.

Yep. Bacon. Bloomberg Businessweek had fanned this particular flame when the Crazy Cheesy Crust first came out, telling us all that if the crust succeeded, the chain would consider adding things like bacon to the crust nationwide.

Is this introduction in Puerto Rico an indication of a nationwide rollout…or, as the above graphic implies, a special thing for Christmas? Feliz Navidad, indeed.

Around the World: Pizza Hut Puerto Rico Makes Crazy Cheesy Crust Pizza Better with Bacon [Brand Eating]

by Laura Northrup via Consumerist

How To Not Suck… At Charitable Giving

They say it’s better to give than to receive, but if you can also get a little something back when you give, what’s not to like? While there’s absolutely nothing wrong with tossing some cash to those bell-ringing Santas, there’s a better way to give.

You see, giving to charity is one of the easiest ways to lower your tax burden, as long as you follow the rules and do it by Dec. 31.

Here are 15 things to know to make the most of your selfish reasons for charitable donations.

1. In order to deduct a charitable contribution, you must itemize your deductions on Schedule A of your Form 1040.

2. You must give to a legitimate, qualified organization before the end of 2013 to take the donation on your 2013 return. Check that your charity is eligible to receive tax deductible contributions exempt with the Internal Revenue Service.

3. You can’t deduct contributions that you give to individuals, however needy, nor can you deduct donations to political organizations and candidates.

4. Some charities solicit bids on goods as fundraisers. If you received a benefit from your donation, such as concert tickets or merchandise, you can only deduct the amount that exceeds the fair market value of the item you received.

5. Speaking of fair market value, if you clean out your garage or closets and donate property, don’t expect to deduct what those items initially cost. Plus, clothing and household items must be in good used condition or better (who wants your old socks, anyway?) to be deductible. Refer to the IRS’ guide to properly valuing donated property.

Also make sure your targeted charity actually wants the items you’re donating.

6. If you plan to donate expensive items such as antiques, artwork or medical equipment, pay for an independent appraisal. Once you give away the items, if the IRS questions their value, it will be too late.

7. The IRS has ramped up its checks on the fair market value of donated cars in recent years. Make sure you get a proper appraisal before giving.

8. If your total deduction for all non-cash contributions for the year is more than $500, the IRS requires you add Form 8283, (Non-cash Charitable Contributions), to your tax return. If your non-cash contribution exceeds $5,000, don’t miss Section B of Form 8283, and add that appraisal.

9. If you’re giving cold, hard cash, or a check, you’re generally okay with donations under $250, but make sure you receive a receipt. The IRS expects the paperwork to show the name of the organization, the date of the contribution and amount of the contribution. You’ll need the proof of a telephone bill if you’ve given via text message donations, but the bill will have to show the name of the receiving organization, the date of the contribution and the amount given.

10. If you give cash of over $250, the IRS says you’ll need “a bank record, payroll deduction records or a written acknowledgment from the qualified organization showing the amount of the cash and a description of any property contributed, and whether the organization provided any goods or services in exchange for the gift.” And if the total of all your cash donations for the year is more than $500, you’ll need to add IRS Form 8283 (Non-cash Charitable Contributions) to your return.

11. If you give your time to charity rather than cash, there are other deductions you can take. You can deduct $.14 a mile if you drive for charity, for example, plus tools and parking costs. Make sure to keep good records. Think creatively and you may find many of your actions constitute help for charity, just know you can never deduct your time because you weren’t paid for it.

12. Rather than give cash or property, consider donating appreciated stock or mutual funds. The benefits to you are several. You won’t have to pay capital gains tax on the donation, and the funds from the sale won’t be added to your taxable income. And, you get the donation.

13. You can donate directly from your Individual Retirement Account (IRA). If you’re older than 70-1/2 and you must take Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs), you can donate the RMD directly to charity. It will count toward your RMD for the year and you’ll save on the taxes you would have owed on the distribution, but you cannot take a deduction for the donation.

14. If you’re in the money and plan to leave it all to charity when you bite the dust, consider starting a charitable remainder trust. You’d put your investments and other property in the trust, and you’d still receive income from the investments. When you’re gone, the charity keeps what’s left in the trust.

15. You can also contribute to a professional donor-advised fund, which allows you to take a tax break in the year you donate but you can dole out the money to charity later.

Before you give, make sure the charity you choose is genuine and not spending too many dollars on administrative costs rather than helping those in need. Remember the Florida charity that collected $127.8 million in donations but used only $3.2 million for the dying kids it professed to support?

Use the tools offered by CharityNavigator.org, GuideStar.org and the Better Business Bureau to do some sleuthing.

Have a topic you’d like to see covered in How To Not Suck? Or maybe you’re an expert who would like to share your insight with Consumerist readers? Send us a note at notsuck@consumerist.com.

You can read Karin Price Mueller’s stories for The Star-Ledger at NJ.com, follow her on Facebook, and on Twitter @kpmueller.


How To Not Suck… At Disputing Credit Report Errors

How To Not Suck… At Lowering Your Utility Bills

How To Not Suck… At Home Inspections

How To Not Suck… At Understanding Credit Card Rewards

How To Not Suck… At Getting Ready For Tax Season

How To Not Suck… At Picking A Retirement Plan

How To Not Suck… At Deciding When To DIY

How To Not Suck… At Getting Out Of Debt

How To Not Suck… At First Year College Budgets

DISCLAIMER: Any websites, services, retailers, or brands mentioned in the story above are only intended as some of many options available to consumers, and do not constitute an endorsement by Consumerist, Consumerist Media LLC (CML) or its staff. Per Consumerist’s No Commercial Use Policy, such information may not be used by others in advertising or to promote a company’s product or service. In addition, this policy precludes any commercial use of any of CML’s published information in any form, or of the names of Consumers Union®, Consumer Media, Consumer Reports®, The Consumerist, consumerist.com or any other of CU or CML’s publications or services without CU or CML’s express written permission.

by Karin Price Mueller via Consumerist

This Year’s Super Bowl Is Apparently Mordor (You Can’t Just Walk There), Also No Tailgating (Orcs?)

Metlife Stadium in Rutherford, N.J. is the site of the next Super Bowl. But it’s also akin to the ravaged and dangerous land of Mordor, a place where no one is allowed to sit in lounge chairs or grill sausages. The rules for the game have been set, and there’s no tailgating (orcs are attracted to cooking meat) and you can’t just walk there.

The game’s committee CEO Al Kelly explained this week that the parking lot can be plenty of fun — if you stay inside your car and the boundaries of your individual parking spot, reports ESPN.com.

“You will be allowed to have food in your car and have drink in your car,” Kelly said. “And provided you’re in the boundaries of a single parking space, you’ll be able to eat or drink right next to your car. However, you’re not going to be able to take out a lounge chair, you’re not going to be able to take out a grill, and you’re not going to be able to take up more than one parking space. And it’ll all be watched very carefully.”

There will also be three ways — and three ways ONLY — the expected 80,000 ticket holders can get to the Feb. 2, 2014 game:

1. Chartered buses called the Fan Express will cost $51 and will pick up and drop off passengers at locations around the area.

2. Fans can take N.J. Transit to the stadium stop.

3. Fans can be dropped off by vehicles that must have parking passes. That means if any fancy pants celebrities want to roll up in a hired car, that car will have to have a pass for one of the 13,000 parking spots available to fans.

“Nobody’s going to be dropped off by black car,” Kelly said. “You can have a black car, a green car, a white car, a red car as long as you have parking, and the car needs to stay on the premises the entire time.”

Should you decide it’s a great idea to park farther away from the stadium and trot in on your own two legs, if the Mordor reference wasn’t clear enough: You can’t walk to the stadium, either.

“You cannot walk to the Super Bowl,” Kelly said. “You can get your hotel to drop you off at one of the New Jersey Transit locations or get the shuttle to take you to a Fan Express location, but you cannot walk.”

It’s expected that about 70% to 80% of fans will get to the game on public transportation or the shuttle bus. All this hullabaloo is due to the need for a larger security perimeter at the game — fans will have to go through screenings at the train station as well as again at the stadium, Kelly said.

How much you wanna bet that someone comes up with a grill small enough to pack into a compact car, thus leaving space in the spot for cooking? Just watch out for orcs (or stadium security).

No tailgating at Super Bowl [ESPN.com]

by Mary Beth Quirk via Consumerist

Man Commits Suicide In Mall While Shopping With Girlfriend

b08889ac0179480392f31f960b028f30When we began to see this story from China propagating around the newsphere, we hoped that it was something from the strange imagination of the Daily Mail. It couldn’t be true: a man in his thirties argued with his girlfriend while shopping, and then jumped seven stories to his death.

That headline is where a thousand jokes about how men hate shopping began, but there’s probably more to the story than that. No one would jump to their death just because he thought his girlfriend already had enough shoes. Would he?

All we know is that according to eyewitnesses, the couple argued–possibly about whether they should continue to shop–and the man very intentionally climbed over a railing and jumped seven stories to his death.

At least he didn’t hurt anyone on the ground: the man fell onto a kiosk, smashing the counter but not hurting any shoppers or workers below.

A mall spokesperson apparently told reporters: “This is a tragic incident, but this time of year can be very stressful for many people.” Yes.

Man suspected his girlfriend shopping expensive jumped to his death (via Google Translate) [CQnews]

Harassed boyfriend jumped to his death after his girlfriend insisted on going into another clothes shop [Daily Mail]

by Laura Northrup via Consumerist

4 Beers That Americans Apparently No Longer Want To Drink

Walk into a lot of bars in this country and there’s a decent chance you’ll see the taps that once belonged to big brands increasingly being taken over by smaller operations (even if some of those “craft” brands also happen to be owned by one of the mega-brewers). This shift, along with a general decrease in beer sales, have cut some brands’ orders by more than half in just the last few years.

The folks at 24/7 Wall St took a look at sales numbers from Beer Marketer’s Insights for 2007 through 2012 and came up with a list of beers that have taken it on the chin in the last half-decade.

The hardest-hit of the bunch is Michelob Light. While Bud Light and Miller Lite have done relatively well in recent years, and Michelob’s mid-calorie Ultra is seeing improved sales numbers, Michelob Light beer has seen orders drop nearly 70%, from more than 1 million barrels in 2007 to around 350,000 in 2012. Beer Marketer’s Insight dubs it a “sinking brand” on a “sinking ship.”

Michelob Ultra may be a modest mid-calorie success, but Budweiser Select… not so much. Sales of the beer, which is only about eight years old, declined 61.5% between 2007 and 2012. That said, the company is still selling 650,000 barrels a year of the stuff, 300,000 more than Michelob Light. Though given the downward trend, Bud Select can’t be long for this world.

For those of us who somehow made it through college barely tolerating Milwaukee’s Best, the rebranding of the beer as Milwaukee’s Best Premium wasn’t exactly tempting. And the sales figures demonstrate that lack of interest, with only 650,000 barrels of the beer being moved in 2012, around 950,000 fewer barrels than the company sold in 2007. The brand is outsold by its own Milwaukee’s Best Light, which moved 1.1 million barrels last year (though that number is down about 40% in recent years).

Miller Genuine Draft is still selling nearly 1.4 million barrels a year, which wouldn’t seem like a bad thing until you realize that the brand was selling more than 3 million barrels a year only a few years ago. So while it’s the best-selling of the bottom four on the list, one has to wonder how much longer MillerCoors will let the brand linger.

You can check out the full list of nine flagging beer brands at 24/7 Wall St.

by Chris Morran via Consumerist

Sock Monkey Who Apparently Hadn’t Read TSA Regulations Will Not Get To Keep His Toy Gun


This is not Rooster Monkburn, but he could play him on TV. (boldsheep)

America, we can all sleep more soundly in our beds now that a Transportation Safety Administration agent has successfully disarmed a passenger with a weapon in his bag. His name is Rooster Monkburn and he’s a toy sock monkey that no longer has a tiny toy pistol.

The monkey — who is named after the True Grit character Rooster Cogburn — was part of a collection a woman flying from St. Louis to Seattle had in her carry-on bag. She sells unique sock monkey dolls and had Rooster, other monkeys and sewing supplies with her, as well as the tiny pistol.

She’s says she’s “appalled and shocked and embarrassed all at the same time” about the incident, reports King5.com.

She and her husband were going through the airport security screening process when she realized one of her bags hadn’t come through.

“And the (TSA agent) held it up and said ‘whose is this?’” she said. “I realized oh, my God this is my bag.”

The agent went through the bag and found the two-inch long pistol, which was immediately questioned.

“She said ‘this is a gun,’” said the woman. “I said ‘no, it’s not a gun it’s a prop for my monkey.’”

“She said ‘If I held it up to your neck, you wouldn’t know if it was real or not,’ and I said ‘really?’” added the passenger.

The gun would have to be confiscated, said the agent, and really she was supposed to call the police as well. Be my guest, said Rooster Monkburn’s owner.

“I said well go ahead,” recalled the passenger. “And I said really? You’re kidding me right, and she said no it looks like a gun.”

“She took my monkey’s gun,” she added, saying she hopes everyone she flew with rested easy because of that.

“Rooster Monkburn has been disarmed so I’m sure everyone on the plane was safe,” she said. “I understand she was doing her job but at some point doesn’t common sense prevail?”

The TSA issued a statement regarding the gunless Rooser, saying: “TSA officers are dedicated to keeping the nation’s transportation security systems safe and secure for the traveling public. Under longstanding aircraft security policy, and out of an abundance of caution, realistic replicas of firearms are prohibited in carry-on bags.”

TSA agent confiscates sock monkey’s pistol [King5.com]

by Mary Beth Quirk via Consumerist

McDonald’s Customers, Employee Call 9-1-1 On Each Other Over Missing Hash Browns

The dispute over a couple of missing hash browns escalated quickly — I mean, it really got out of hand fast — at a Mesa, AZ, McDonald’s recently, with at least three different people calling the police and claims of assault-by-tossed-food being made by employees.

The couple say they had each ordered a breakfast combo at the McDonald’s, only to realize after receiving their food that they were lacking in the hash brown department.

“It’s a meal,” the wife tells ABC15. “Just like you should get fries with your hamburger, we should have got our hash browns with our breakfast sandwiches.”

That seems like a sound argument to us, but apparently didn’t go over so well with the people at McDonald’s, who the couple claim refused to provide them the fried potato products they had ordered or give them a refund.

That’s when the wife threw her bag of food at the person behind the counter.

“And that was out of frustration which I probably shouldn’t have done, but I did,” she admits. “Fighting over $2 of hash browns is ridiculous. It is ridiculous to have to fight that hard just to get customer service.”

Oh, but it gets more ridiculous, dear readers.

The husband then decided to call 9-1-1, saying he had no choice. Meanwhile, an employee at the eatery also called 9-1-1 to deal with the upset customers.

“We need an officer here right now because I was just assaulted by a patron,” the worker tells the 9-1-1 operator. You can listen to the whole call below.

“They’re getting very belligerent up front right now,” he continues, after clarifying that no weapons were used — aside from the bag o’ breakfast food — and that no paramedics were needed. “The customer is behind the counter. We need an officer right now.”

The customer’s call can also be heard below, with the husband telling the operator that the McDonald’s employee is “basically trying to rob me,” adding that the man behind the counter refused to give back the food that had been thrown at him by the wife (or perhaps fiancee; the caller refers to the female customer using both terms).

“The customer’s not right in this store and I’ll be having a war with this damn… executive, whoever I need to talk to. This is getting crazy,” says the man involved in the incident.

“I just was barely able to hold myself back,” he tells ABC15. “And if not for the 911 call operator calling me back, I probably would have went berserk on him.”

ABC15 says that another customer at the McDonald’s also called 9-1-1, though that call is not included in the recording below.

Police did arrive at the McDonald’s and reportedly charged the couple with disorderly conduct and assault.

Here are the two 9-1-1 calls, first from the employee and then from the male customer:

by Chris Morran via Consumerist

Why Is This Man Banned From Walmart For Life?

walmartbanEveryone needs a hobby. When an Arizona man had to retire from professional wrestling due to injuries, he says that he began visiting his local Walmart a few times a day, sometimes toting sale flyers from other stores and invoking the store’s price match policy. He never expected to be hauled off in handcuffs for it.

Yet that’s what he says happened during a recent trip to his local Walmart. An employee told him that ad-matching isn’t allowed, and the man complained to store management. The retired wrestler insists that he wasn’t threatening or aggressive in any way, but something about that encounter made a Walmart employee contact the local sheriff’s office about him.

The next time he came to Walmart, three sheriff’s deputies met him. he wasn’t arrested, but they did handcuff him and present him with a letter banning him from all Walmart stores in the world for life. Just for price-matching, something that Walmart explicitly allows and is making a big deal of this holiday season?

Something is obviously missing from this story, and we’ll update you when we find out what that is. Meanwhile, the price-matcher still has to go to court, where he’s facing charges of threatening, intimidation, and disorderly conduct.

Valley man banned from Walmart for life [ABC 15]

by Laura Northrup via Consumerist

Home Depot Shopper Won’t Sit On Store Toilet Seats Without Checking For Glue From Now On

Unfortunately, there are people in this world who only want to make everything in life a bad experience for other people. Like the numbskull armed with glue who apparently smeared it all over a toilet seat at Home Depot in order to catch another unfortunate shopper.

And no, this wasn’t even glue stuck on the toilet seats on display at the store, but was reportedly spread on the seat in a restroom customers had access to, reports the Smoking Gun.

The woman was at a Home Depot in Georgia, using the restroom like shoppers often do, when she became fused to a toilet seat, police said in a report on the incident.

When cops arrived on the scene, a store manager told officers that the woman “had gotten stuck on the toilet in the female public bathroom.”

Emergency services workers were able to remove the toilet seat from the woman’s body and she was taken to a hospital for treatment.

The manager told police that in the course of the incident she’d discovered a brown paper bag on the bathroom floor, that lo and behold, held a bottle of Loctite glue. And this wasn’t a single smear and run — it seemed as if the other toilets in the restroom had also been coated in the stuff.

Emergency services workers subsequently “removed and obtained the toilet seat” from De La Keur’s “behind.”

Cops confiscated the glue and the toilet seat as evidence, and the gluing incident remains an open investigation today.

Raise your hand if you are never going to sit, hover above or even get near another public toilet without at first checking to see if it’s covered in glue. Sigh.

Police Probe How Woman Got Glued To Toilet Seat In Home Depot Restroom [The Smoking Gun]

by Mary Beth Quirk via Consumerist