General Mills backed down from its controversial lawsuit policy. But the problem isn’t over.

Class action lawsuits are an efficient way for wronged individuals — who may lack funds and legal expertise — to fight back against the powerful legal muscle of big business. One very famous example is the case of Erin Brockovich, who built a class action lawsuit that successfully sued Pacific Gas and Electric over contamination of drinking water.

A lone consumer wronged by a large corporation might struggle to foot the bill to hire the legal firepower necessary to win their case in court. But hundreds or thousands of consumers claiming similar injuries or damages from the same company or organization can, by banding together in a class action lawsuit.

It isn’t surprising, then, that some firms are taking measures to limit their customers’ abilities to join class action lawsuits.

General Mills, the manufacturer of Cheerios, Betty Crocker, Green Giant, and various other grocery products has reversed a recent change to its online legal policy that would have barred customers who “liked” General Mills’ social media pages, downloaded money-saving coupons from its website, or entered any company-sponsored contests from joining class action lawsuits against the firm.


One thought on “General Mills backed down from its controversial lawsuit policy. But the problem isn’t over.

  1. “In reality, though, not everyone has hours of free time necessary to read the small print and reach an informed decision.” Quite true, and a helluva lot more important in choosing officials to wield the immense power* of government than in discouraging consumer abuse.

    While each voter SHOULD do the homework, most DO NOT, leaving them victims of politicians, biased media, pseudo-economists (not you, John), etc.

    And apathy/ignorance is not the worst sin in self-government. For example, recent polls of US registered voters showed Obama’s “approval” @ 51% while only 15% responded “Never” to “How often do you think Barack Obama lies to the country on important matters?” — 37% chose “Most of the time”, 24% “Some of the time”, 20% “Only now and then”.

    Another example. An Easter rerun of an old movie included Jesus delivering his “sermon on the mount”. As I listened, I realized that this core of Christian morality — truth, love, forgiveness, etc. — is, point-by-point, the OPPOSITE of Obama’s faith (revolution) and his messiah’s (Saul Alinsky) preaching. But almost all Hispanics and African-America are Christians!

    We who care enough to seek and spread the TRUTH must work harder and smarter!

    * Including making, enforcing and adjudicating consumer protection law.

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