Thursday, June 26, 2008

Overdraft Fees: Consumers Demand Choice

Consumer groups are pushing for banking regulations that will make overdraft protection programs optional. Banks argue that mandatory overdraft protection programs benefit and protect consumers.
In my own personal experience, I agree with consumer advocacy groups. It all just seems like a scheme to rack up fees. First, they charge you a non-optional monthly to be in the program. Then, they charge you a fee again when you use it. Go ahead, bounce my check or deny my ATM card. Don't pretend like everything is okay and then charge me for it. If payments are bouncing, it is probably because someone STOLE my card and is clueless to how little money is in my account.
These overdraft protection programs should definitely be "opt-in."
Read more here.

Monday, June 16, 2008

AP to Bloggers: Link, Don't Cut and Paste!

Although I might be in the minority with the blogging community, I think that the Associated Press is right to speak up about all the lower-quality blogs that simply cut and paste their articles. Simply re-reporting the news clogs up the internet without adding meaningful content. However, I don't think that AP's plan to set standards is necessarily the answer. If it does so and then fails to enforce them, it will lose credibility.

Those who post blogs should make use of links and quote news articles appropriately. Longer quotes are necessary in order to fully respond to the article's points. However, there are blogs that are really just plagiarizing the news by re-wording it or outright reproducing it without adding meaningful analysis or commentary. That is not fair use, but infringement.