Inside Opinion

What's on the minds of Tacoma News Tribune editorial writers

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Tag: ftc


Lawmakers: Please ignore the skin-radiation lobby

This editorial will appear in Thursday’s print edition.

It didn’t seem possible that anyone could match the cynical cancer-peddling of tobacco companies. But the tanning industry has been giving them a run for the money.

The tanning salon lobby has long fought legislation efforts to bar minors from their tanning beds. The reason is obvious: Teenage girls spend a lot of money in those salons.

The industry’s umbrella group, the Indoor Tanning Association, is notorious for false claims about the virtues of artificial tanning. In 2010, the Federal Trade Commission ordered it to stop. Now a similar organization – the American Suntanning Association – has suddenly materialized. Read more »


$50,000 well spent: Blocking robocalls

I don’t know about you, but I’m sick of robocalls – those automated sales pitches that invariably come in at the most inconvenient times.

Even if you’re on the “do not call list,” these calls – many of which are scams – still get through. I think they should rename it the “please for the love of God stop calling me list.”  (The list does not apply to political robocalls, which are just as irritating but considered a protected form of speech.)

Luckily I have an ancient but very effective answering machine that lets me monitor incoming messages, and many robocallers hang up as soon as my voice prompt comes on.

The government feels our pain. It’s offering a $50,000 prize to any individual, team or small company that comes up with the best way to block illegal commercial robocalls. Besides getting money, the winner would be a “national hero,” predicts David Vladeck, head of the Federal Trade Commission’s consumer protection bureau.

National hero? Heck, I’d say that would be a Nobel-worthy achievement.

For information on the contest, go to the FTC’s website.

Here’s an AP article that gives more information. Read more »