Thank you for writing to us! Although we receive hundreds of e-mails every day, we really and truly read them all, and your comments, suggestions, and questions are most welcome. Unfortunately, we can manage to answer only a small fraction of our incoming mail.
Our site covers many of the items currently being plopped into inboxes everywhere, so if you were writing to ask us about something you just received, our search engine can probably help you find the very article you want.
Choose a few key words from the item you're looking for and click here to go to the search engine.
(Searching on whole phrases will often fail to produce matches because the text of many items is quite variable, so picking out one or two key words is the best strategy.)
We do reserve the right to use non-confidential material sent to us via this form on our site, but only after it has been stripped of any information that might identify the sender or any other individuals not party to this communication.
Claim: CD purchasers can apply on a web site to claim their share of the settlement of a price-fixing lawsuit.
Status:Was true, but the deadline has passed.
Origins: So many bogus "something for nothing" promises gain wide circulation on the Internet that it was almost amusing to see one that was actually true yet largely ignored. Gullible netizens have been forwarding endless variations of the Bill Gates e-mail tracking hoax back and forth for years, but when there was a real opportunity to collect $20 simply by spending a few seconds entering some information into a web site, the public was largely been too skeptical to try it, thinking the whole thing must have been some kind of scam.
years consumers have been complaining about the relatively high prices of CDs (because they were generally priced much higher than vinyl records, even though they were just as cheap, if not cheaper, to manufacture). Finally someone did something about it: 41 states filed suit against five CD distributors and three music retailers, charging that the companies had conspired to fix minimum prices for CDs. In September 2002 the parties agreed to settle the lawsuit, and one of the terms of the settlement was that the companies agreed to reimburse customers who purchased music products between 1995 and 2000 by paying out a total of about $44 million in refunds.
Anyone who bought a CD (or a record or a cassette) between 1995 and 2000 was eligible to claim his portion of the settlement by signing up before 3 March 2003; not even a receipt is necessary. Consumers could simply go to the CD MAP Settlement site, click on the link for filing a claim, and supply the requested information. Many people balked at having to supply several items of personal information (home addresses, birth dates, and the last four digits Social Security numbers), fearing the site was a data-collecting scam, but the information was necessary in order to distribute the payment checks and ensure that no one filed more than one claim.
Update: The distribution of refund checks for up to $13.86 per person began on 20 February 2004.
Last updated: 30 October 2007
Coffey, Sarah. "Record Club Members Get Discount with Lawsuit Settlement."
Associated Press. 4 December 2003.
Mims, Bob. "CD Settlement Sweet Music to Utah Libraries, Charities."
The Salt Lake Tribune. 1 October 2002.
Queary, Paul. "CD Settlement Money Going Begging So Far."
Associated Press. 7 January 2003.
Wack Kevin. "Time Running Out for Music Fans Eligible for CD Settlement."
Associated Press. 27 February 2003.
Associated Press. "Federal Judge Approves CD Settlement."