Nov 16, 2012

More fake news

Both an email and online ad use the logos of CNN, CBS, and MSNBC and claim that Janesville stores can't keep a wonderful new diet pill on the shelves. But lucky you can buy it online. Despite the news logos and a photo of an attractive woman holding a microphone, this really isn't a news story. In fact, a concerned Wisconsin TV news anchorwoman along with Janesville residents contacted me about the misleading ad. I exposed this kind of questionable ad in the video below. The video is about work-at-home schemes, but the fakes news ads promote many products.

Survey: Store Gift Cards Are Better Deals / But my advice is don't buy any gift cards. Your recipient will appreciate cash which has no strings attached and is spendable to the last penny.

Stanton Optical Makes Blurry Glasses For Undercover TV Producer, Blames Doctor

 The Consumerist

Business Opportunity Scams


If Gooey Blobs Of Mold Count As Vitamins We’ll Have To Pass On That VitaminWater

 The Consumerist

We Never Knew The World Needed Caffeinated Cracker Jacks, But Here They Come

 The Consumerist

7 Busted Myths To Weatherize Your Home |

Survey: When It Comes To Free Checking, Small Banks & Credit Unions Do The Best

 The Consumerist:

Oct 5, 2012

Hold on now. I am not dead!

Over the years I've had a lot of my younger friends in broadcasting do impersonations of me. I have never really understood why.

At first they do it with each other behind my back. Then it is funnier to them when they work up the courage to do it in front of me. I've worked in TV newsrooms where reporters, producers, and photographers would have contests to do the goofiest me. And they did it in front of I wasn't there.

For example, if you were with me and I happened to run into an old friend who is now an important TV news director in Washington D.C. he would immediately do an impression of a dopey, self-important me with a southern twang. He would do it right in front of me and get me laughing. He would do it in front of my wife. The same thing goes with Rob Starbuck who anchors the morning show on WISC-TV in Madison, WI.

After a career as spokesperson for Wisconsin Consumer Protection, I'm working by myself now making fun videos every week for the Janesville Gazette, and don't see a lot of media people any more. And I haven't heard anyone making fun of me in about three years. I take that 11-year-old grand daughter is working on a pretty good imitation. She lowers her voice and seriously says, "Hold on now!"

But I haven't heard any news people do it.

Until last week. I'm listening to a WIBA radio discussion about consumer protection rip-offs, and host Mitch Henck suddenly asks, "Remember Glen Loyd?" News anchor Robin Colbert responds by doing her imitation of an outraged me...It was a startling. I had never heard her do it before. I wonder how many times my friend Robin has impersonated me with her newsroom associates after interviewing me?

As I said, I have never understood this. I wish I could say here that imitation is the most sincere form of flattery, but I don't really think that is what's going on.

But it's funny and makes me even laugh.

What really concerns me is that question, "Remember Glen Loyd?"

Hold on now! I am not dead! I make videos every week...watched more than 100.000 times by people around the world!

Millions Watched Debate Online, as Numbers Increased


How To Choose An Assisted Living Facility

Reminder: Write eBay By Nov. 9 To Opt Out Of Restrictive, Anti-Consumer Clause

 The Consumerist

What's better: I bonds or TIPS?


Allegation: Burger King Has The Slowest Drive-Thrus, But Does A Really Good Job Of Hiding The Dumpsters – The Consumerist

The Consumerist

Cellphone Cramming | what to do

Green all-purpose cleaners lose out to a veteran in our tests

Consumer Reports

Robo-Calling ‘Rachel’ Still Dialing Consumers’ Phones

| Moneyland |

Sep 7, 2012

You learn something new about nature all the time when you live by a river. This time it's about dragonfly behavior. Some of the dragonflies you'll see in this video have numbers on their wings. They were part of a Harvard science project to observe how dragonflies capture prey. The dragonfly animation in the video was made with parts left over from a dragonfly swarm like the current ones around Janesville.

10 Best Value Colleges In The US

6 Small Cars You Can Park Anywhere

I would not buy any car without checking it out in the April issue of Consumer Reports. They tell you about the good cars new and used and how much you should pay for them. They also tell you the cars to avoid.

Buy or rent: 10 biggest cities - Should you buy or rent?


Parents Beware: 11 Dangerous Teenage Trends All Parents Should Know About

Parent Society

Card skimmer falls off

Employers watch, wait on reform

Retirement savings: Am I on track to retire at 67?


Aug 25, 2012

Parents Television Council Calls For Crackdown On Pixelated Nudity And Bleeped Profanity

The Consumerist

"When Tyne tagged along with Clint"

GazetteXtra Actress Tyne Daly was born in Madison and is coming to Janesville to campaign for President Obama. In 1976, Ms Daly starred with Clint Eastwood in one of those Dirty Harry Movies, The Enforcer. Eastwood has endorsed Mitt Romney. In this time of angry partisanship, you wonder how Tyne and Clint get along.

6 Ways Parents Can Save Money on Kids' Texting

 ABC News

Nearly half of mortgage borrowers under 40 are underwater


BBB Warns Timeshare Owners of Bogus Company

 BBB News Center

Suze Orman's tips to keep your personal finances in shape


How To Avoid A Family Inheritance Feud

Use Inheritance To Invest, Or Pay Off House?

Investing Lessons From The 1 Percent

How to protect your savings from inflation

 Personal Finance

When CD rates get personal

A Chance To Call 15 Friends to Video Chat in High Def

Jul 20, 2012

Rock River Cleanup

My family and I waded across the Rock River at its lowest last week and cleaned up some shoreline. I personally pulled out a submerged bike, a lot of plastic bags and sheeting, and too many beverage containers. Like many of you I love the Rock. This week walking across Willard ave bridge, I spied additional junk...including more bikes.

Sony’s First Ultrabook Targets the Budget-Conscious


When A High Yield Is Too Good To Be True

Student Loan Bubble Eerily Similar To Subprime Mortgage Debacle

The Consumerist 

FCC: Internet Service Providers Are Actually Delivering The Speeds They Promise

The Consumerist

Retire, live on 20 percent less?

Scammers Use “Affordable Care Act” Ruling,


4 things to do to make your car last longer

Mortgage Rates Hit An Even-Lower Low That May Attract Families with low rtates

Allegation: Since Doing Away With Sales Didn’t Work, JCPenney Is Just Getting Rid Of Check-Out Clerks

The Consumerist 

Jun 29, 2012

Ford Developing Technology That Reacts To Calm Stressed Or Distracted Drivers

The Consumerist

A two-part series. This week, film and music from the 1920's with a brief look at immigrants pouring into America at the time. Next week is completely dedicated to our immigrant ancestors with the documentry: "Island of Hope--Island of Tears." From 1892-1954, Ellis Island was the port of entry for millions of European immigrants. Fascinating archival footage tells the moving story of families with dreams of opportunity, leaving their homes with what they could carry.

How Intel's Core i5 and i7 processors boost performance

Consumer Reports

How Will The Supreme Court’s Medicaid Decision Affect You?

The Consumerist:

9 Ways to Cool Down Air-condition Costs

6 Worst Home Fixes For The Money

Cancel Crappy AT&T DSL Service, Get Billed For It Anyway

The Consumerist 

What credit card firm attracts the most complaints? New consumer agency launches tell-all website

 Red Tape:

8 TSA Security Screeners Fired For Allegedly Sleeping On The Job At Newark Airport

The Consumerist

TSA Firings Continue With Termination Of 8 Air Marshals Suspected Of Boozing While Training

The Consumerist

Study: Nearly Half Of Consumers Fooled By “Up To” Claims In Advertisements

The Consumerist

Jun 23, 2012

Bally Total Fitness Will Never Release Me From Its Finely Toned Clutches

The Consumerist As a consumer advocate I learned that most people who sign up at fitness centers go a few times and then quit and lose their advance fee payment. Always ask for a low-cost trial membership. File a complaint with consumer protection if you are mislead or overcharged.(See online complaint form on lower left.) And don't sign up at a fitness center until you check them out at consumer protection for complaints. My advice is to walk to get in shape. It's free and you just walk out the door at any time and you are there. You don't use any gasoline, either. Bad weather? Head for the mall and feel superior by going faster than old people like me.

May 4, 2012

Summer Airfares Climbing Right Into The Sky Along With The Planes

The Consumerist

Swan babies near Janesville

5 ways to get best travel deals - Book really early (1)


FTC Wins Judgment Against Makers Of 3 Get-Rich-Quick Infomercials

 The Consumerist:

Perfect Prom on a Budget: 13 Ways to Spend Less, Still Shine


4.5 Billion Spam Texts Sent To U.S. Cellphones Last Year

The Consumerist

FCC Approves Anti-Cramming Rules For Landlines, But Nothing Yet On Wireless

 The Consumerist

In our TV test labs, lower-cost 3D sets and expanded Internet access

Consumer Reports

Loving the retired life

Allegation: MasterCuts Gives You Bald Spot, Doesn't Tell You

 The Consumerist:

10 Signs Your Used Car Is Really A Rebuilt Wreck

 The Consumerist:

How Google Tries to Catch Scam Advertisers


FTC Seeks to Halt 10 Operators of Fake News Sites


Apr 13, 2012

Mark Twain's Blue Jays From "A Tramp Abroad"

Like many journalists, I owe Mark Twain. When your story is tepid, turn to a Twain qoutation. To illustrate my dependence on him, I started off my own memoir with his words:
Glen Loyd On Your Side In Wisconsin
Mark Twain said he admired an older journalist he knew who wasn't going to "inflict" his memoirs on the public. "If there is anything more uncalled for, it is one of those tearful, blubbering, long-winded "valedictories" when a man who has been annoying the public for years, cannot take leave of them without sitting down to cry. He feels that the country is saved. His satisfaction over it, something enormous."
When Twain asked the admired writer why he was going quietly, he replied, "I am journalistically dead, at present, ain't I?"
"Well, wouldn't you consider it disgraceful in a corpse to sit up and comment on the funeral?"
Knowing that I risk being perceived as a self-serving, egotistical, and disgraceful corpse, I inflict my memoir on you.

Having so much fun with Mark Twain over the years, I decided to make videos of some of his works.

Tough law enforcer retires

Over the years, I've seen a number of heart-breaking wedding photographers take thousands of dollars from young couples and not produce the pictures.
Most of them got away with it.
One of the things I like about Elmer Prenzlo is--he put one of them in jail . "That guy didn't even get time off for good behavior," says Elmer.
When skunks committed crimes in his territory, Elmer took it personally. He just retired after many years supervising the Milwaukee Office of the WI Dept. Of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection. Elmer also was responsible for locking up contractors who took money but didn't do the work.
Elmer was tough law enforcer, but he told the crowd of colleagues attending his retirement party that he loved them all.
Right back at you, Elmer!

Elmer Prenzlow advises consumers to give as little money as possible upfront for future services like photography and construction.

Mar 23, 2012

QVC Bundles Some Accessories With iPad 2, Doubles The Price

The Consumerist

Apple's Siri not as smart as she looks, lawsuit charges


Why Working More Than 40 Hours a Week is Useless

Janesville kids to see Cleopatra. See her yourself here

Folks in the Midwest--including students from Van Buren School in Janesville--are flocking to the Milwaukee Public Museum to see “Cleopatra: The search for the last queen of Egypt.”
Milwaukee is just one of five cities hosting the world-wide tour of newly discovered artifacts related to the ancient queen.
Video List:

Following are two very good news video reports about Cleo from WLUK-TV in Green Bay and a TV station in Ohio where the exhibit was located before coming to Wisconsin. I've also included a video from the Milwaukee Public Museum and one I made of Mark Twain’s visit to Egypt accompanied by a young woman from Janesville who send back stories to the Janesville Gazette. (After the videos, I tell about an Egyptian curse on me!)
Cleopatra: The Search for the Last Queen of Egypt will close on April 22, 2012

Egyptian’s curse on me

These videos brings back a lot of memories for me. When I was an investigative reporter at the CBS-TV affiliate in Dallas, Texas, in the late 1970s, I helped to expose an Egyptian selling fake antiquities. And that’s how I met Henry Wade, the famous local district attorney immortalized in the Supreme Court decision Roe Vs Wade.

The Egyptian opened a shop in an expensive North Dallas mall. Riding the popularity of the King Tut exhibition touring the United States, He was selling Egyptian artifacts he claimed were from King Tut's time. Some items such as bows and arrows sold for as much as $7,000.

But a woman who had just come back from vacationing in Egypt called me at KDFW-TV and said something was wrong. She had been told that there are no Egyptian artifacts for sale and hadn't been for hundreds of years. I checked with an expert at Southern Methodist University who confirmed what the woman said. I also called legendary Dallas District Attorney Henry Wade to let him know what was going on. I was invited to his office.

The courthouse is just a few blocks from KDFW-TV so I set out on foot. This was the route taken by President Kennedy's motorcade when he was assassinated in 1963. The Texas Schoolbook Depository, where Lee Harvey Oswald waited for the motorcade, is across the street from the courthouse. When shots were fired, CBS reporter Dan Rather ran to KDFW-TV, a CBS affiliate, and began phoning the latest information to his anchorman Walter Cronkite, broadcasting live in New York to the entire country. Eventually, the news came from the KDFW that President Kennedy was dead at Parkland Hospital.

As I was ushered into Henry Wade's office I was aware of the history hatched here: untold assassination investigations; prepping for the prosecution of Jack Ruby for the murder of Oswald; and strategy that failed in the landmark abortion case Roe vs. Wade, which made abortion legal in the United States.

The Chief, as Wade was known in the Dallas County Courthouse, had a big office and his desk was elevated on a wooden platform so he looked down at me from on high. Wade told me he was on to the Egyptian, and asked me to hold off on my story until they could arrest him.

"We'll let you know when we are going to get him and you can come along and have an exclusive," Wade said.

He asked me about other stories I was working on. As he listened, Wade rocked back and forth in his office chair. At the side of his chair was a tall wastepaper basket that seemed to have a black garbage sack in it. I couldn't figure out what it was for until Henry Wade turned to the basket, bent over and spit tobacco juice into it.

When I left Wade, the deal was set. His men would call me when they were ready to arrest the Egyptian merchant.

I was the only newsperson to have the story of the Egyptian’s arrest. They handcuffed him at his shop and led him through the mall crowd out to the police cars. I asked him if he was selling fake Egyptian artifacts, and he said, "No!"

To keep me out of the courtroom, his attorney claimed I would be a witness and invoked the rule that I couldn't be there before I testified. Henry Wade brought in Egyptologists from Cleveland and New York City museums. Examining the Egyptian’s wares, the experts said they were not authentic.

As a memento, the woman who had originally called me about the fake artifacts gave me a beautiful jade carving of a beetle regarded as sacred by the ancient Egyptians. The scarab as it is called was supposed to bring me good luck, but the day after the Egyptian was convicted of felony theft, he filed a lawsuit against me (which eventually fizzled out).

He was appealing his case because of the threat of deportation, and my attorney felt that the lawsuit was an attempt to keep me quiet.

Marketers to pay $1.5 million for fake news hawking a├žai berry products

Consumer Reports

Fuel-efficient cars test finds winners and losers from Chevrolet, Hyundai, Kia, Nissan, and Toyota

Consumer Reports

Sell the house now or wait?

How To Do House Walk-through Before Closing

As Cars Are Kept Longer, 200,000 Is New 100,000

Cash: Where to Find the Best Rates

Saddled with college debt a decade later

The Washington Post

5 Travel Scams Every Traveler Should Watch Out for This Summer


Senate Passes Weakened Version Of Bill To Prevent Lawmakers From Insider Trading

 The Consumerist:

'via Blog this'

Mar 16, 2012

10 outrageous travel fees to avoid

Be on the lookout for pelicans on the Rock River and surrounding areas this spring!

Email from Tom Eighmy, a new friend of mine who lives on he Rock River between Rockford and Byron:
"We saw the Pelicans ... every day for a week or so [in the past several years]. It was amazing, they would come by at about the same time every day and if you weren't watching you would miss them since they were silent (not like the geese!)"

The pelicans stop there in the spring on their northern journey. And some have been spotted flying over Janesville, too.

Thanks to Tom Eighmy's photography, you will see those Rock River pelicans in my video along with more pelicans on the river in Horicon Marsh, and Ixonia and on Beaver Dam Lake. In addition to Horicon, the pelicans have also started colonies on or near Lake Winnebago and Green Bay.

The journey up the Rock River after exiting the Mississippi flyway can treacherous for these birds. In the past few years, Hoo Haven animal shelter just over the state line in Illinois has taken in at least three pelicans apparently burned or mangled colliding with utility wires. Director Karen Herdklotz says they have been seeing more pelicans on the Rock River since Hurricane Katrina. Herdklotz gives talks to Scout groups and schools in Janesville and other Rock County communities. When I spoke to her a few weeks ago, she was still caring for one of the injured pelicans.

Wikipedia vs Encyclopedia Britannica

 Slate Magazine:
I like Encyclopedia Britannica for nostalgic reasons. My wife was a subeditor there when we were young in Chicago. I worked down the street on Michigan Ave. for The Lion magazine.  In the summer, we lunched together by the Chicago River.

Today, though, I use Wikipedia virtually every day. And I was glad to read in this article that it matches up well with or better than Encyclopedia Britannica.

Keyboard Shortcuts That Make It Easier To Use Facebook

The Consumerist

In 1991, 11% of workers said they expected to retire after age 65. Today, that number is 37

60% of workers say their total retirement savings is less than $25,000

Early Retirement Without A Fortune

Huggies Trumpets New Lower Price, Doesn't Brag About Box Having Less Diapers

The Consumerist

5 Tips To Shine In Investing In Gold Coins'

Discount airlines, luxury hotels top service survey by J.D. Power

Racine couple allegedly scammed out of $10,000 by purported roofers


Top 10 best new car deals for March

Consumer Reports:

FTC Goes After Car Dealers For Lying To Customers About Trade-Ins

The Consumerist

Judge Certifies Class-Action Status For Abercrombie & Fitch Gift Card Lawsuit

The Consumerist:

Mar 9, 2012

Hacked my Glen Loyd Twitter account and sent fake endorsement of questionable work-at-home (online trading) ad

A Twitter link to a questionable ad looks like it's coming from me. It isn't. My Twitter account was hacked.
Questionable ad which is not endorsed by Glen Loyd
This hack may be retalitation for my article exposing fake news stories that are automatically localized with the viewers' computer zip code.

Rock River native making National Geographic movies

Since the French brought the written word to the Midwest in the 1600s, we have an impressive list of world explorers and famous leaders who have graced the Rock River--starting with the French explorers, themselves.
I've made videos of some of these men who left foot prints along the river: Chief Blackhawk, Abraham Lincoln, Ronald Reagan, and dinosaur hunter Roy Chapman Andrews of the American Museum of Natural History.
But there are current men of the world associated with the Rock, too. I have also done a video with archaeologist Steve Lekson, who attended Beloit college and went on the to study and write books about the ancient people of the desert Southwest.
And here is a video I made with Jon Bowermaster of National Geographic Magazine who grew up on the Rock River. Jon's visit to Beloit was made possible by Paddle and Trail

(Notice the birds in the background of my Bowermaster interview? I did a video of them a few weeks ago entitled "Rock River air show." In the video, the late afternoon sun reflects off the Paddle and Trail store which is right on the Rock River by the John Rose Canoe & Kayak Launch and the Beloit Bike Path.)

As New iPad Debut Nears, Some See Decline of PCs<