OSPIRG Latest Blog Posts

Stop Web Piracy? There has been much online talk about the internet piracy act being considered by Congress. Consumer groups have thrown their hat into the ring to express concern that the bill could close off online exchanges that provide lower prices for consumers, reduce online security, and allow for anti-consumer practices by online service providers

OSPIRG’s Consumer Watch Trouble in Toyland- OSPIRG has release its 26th annual Toy Safety Report and mobile website, www.toysafety.mobi to keep toy safety at parents fingertips. DOJ Warns of Black Friday Scams– Planning on shopping this Friday in stores or online? The Oregon Attorney General has issued tips and warnings on how to avoid holiday shopping scams.

Many Willamette Valley commuters and businesses frustrated at I-5 rush hour and gas prices have longed for a convenient, reliable and speedy train between Portland and Eugene. The solutions aren’t quite around the bend yet, but some important behind-the-scenes activity in recent months might create a path towards greater transit choices for Oregon’s consumers and businesses. 

The super committee tasked with cutting 1.2-1.5 trillion dollars from the federal budget has been a hot topic in many political circles nationally and in Oregon. That is not surprising, as the national tax discussions impact Oregon taxpayers greatly. What is disappointing, however, is that much of the debate has focused in on the disagreements that Republicans and Democrats have on issues such as revenue and entitlements. Would it not make more sense to begin with our similarities, and then move on to the differences?

FTC announces new internet privacy rules for children –The Federal Trade Commission is looking at new privacy rules for children, whom they state as “very tech savvy but judgment poor”.

Rising Textbook Prices - With Oregon Universities back in class this month, it’s a great time to remind students about ways to avoid rising textbook prices.

Some decent news for health insurance consumers today. The Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services (DCBS) issued their much-awaited decision on Regence BlueCross BlueShield's proposal to raise rates over 22% on nearly 60,000 Oregonians.

Without the influence of large-scale speculative trading on oil in the commodities futures market, the average price of gasoline at the pump in April would have been $3.13 rather than $3.96.

Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon is proposing to raise rates an average of 22% on 60,000 Oregonians. This is the fifth straight year of double-digit rate hikes. But this year, something interesting is happening.

If you haven't seen the Oregonian's editorial on the Senate's health insurance exchange bill, it's worth a read. Unfortunately, the Oregon Senate decided to prohibit the exchange from negotiating with insurance companies to get consumers a better deal (which I'm sure insurers are happy about.)