We are non-commercial, all volunteer and supported by our readers. Please help sustain the Dew by making a donation.
Retirement, by Way of Class-Action Lawsuit
I have a new retirement scheme.
As a UGA professor, I’m a part of the state’s optional retirement system, one separate from the teacher retirement plan. As an untenured assistant professor a million years ago, I couldn’t risk not getting tenure and thus losing money put into the account should I have to leave UGA for another university.
In other words, my TIAA-CREF account relies heavily on the stock market to pay for my golden years. If you have a sore neck from watching the ups and downs of the market lately, you understand how disconcerting this can be.
At UGA, “optional” means you have only the option of retiring, not actually doing so.
In a few years I’ll waddle to class behind a walker, an IV stuck in my arm to keep myself properly medicated. Or I can turn to an exciting new supplemental retirement plan that involves me as a member of several class action lawsuits that I wasn’t even aware that I was participating in to begin with. Until recently, that is. To explain, in the past couple of weeks I’ve received three emails giving me the good news – I’m part of a class action decisions that will mean money in my pocket. They are:
- Ticketmaster. Apparently I attended a concert sometime in my past. In this case, I’m part of “a nationwide class of consumers” (known as the “Class”) who bought tickets through Ticketmaster’s web site (known as “the Website”) between Oct. 21, 1999 and Oct. 19, 2011 (known as the “Class Period”) and followed by a crapload of other legalese that tells me Ticketmaster is accused of deceptive and misleading tactics in hiding costs. What do I get? A buck-fifty for some concert I don’t remember, probably in Atlanta.
- iTunes. Yep, like everyone else I’ve bought an iTunes card or two (or a million as safe holiday gifts for nephews and nieces I barely know). Some of the cards were labeled as “songs for 99¢” when songs often sold for $1.29. Bad Apple. Rotten Apple. In this deal, I get a $3.25 iTunes Store credit to buy, I suppose, songs for more than 99¢. This is a “top settlement” according to one site that tracks this stuff.
- Classmates.com. My favorite. You may have seen this online site, and my high school reunion used it, which led to me in a moment of weakness to foolishly create an account there. Among other things, the lawsuit claims that “Classmates sent e-mail to subscribers of www.classmates.com that violated the law and the privacy rights of subscribers.” In less legal terms, they annoyed the hell out of you with stuff they made up and they wouldn’t go away, no matter how often and how nicely you asked. This is a big score. I may rake in as much as $10.
If there’s a lesson here, it’s that you have to spend money to make money. Spend enough, spread it around, and somewhere somehow, some sleazy company will get caught doing dirty and you’ll reap tens of dollars in future settlements. That’s enough to help fund a retirement plan based largely on me stealing from a bowl whatever food the cat doesn’t eat.
It’s a plan.
- Photo licensed by LikeTheDew.com from iStock.com © BanksPhotos
Worthy of Comment
Also on the Dew
The Dong Fang (East Wind) Hotel was on Liuhua Road, between Liuhua Lake and Yuehsiu Park with its Chenhai Tower. Even though it was not close to the Chinese Export Commodities Fair, it was favored by the British and European traders. In 1972, the Dong Fang was a multistory non-air conditioned building set amongst what must have been beautiful gardens. It was quiet, away from the Pearl River traffic. Beside the hotel was a rough field used by the foreign traders to play rugby, soccer and volleyball during the Fair. The old China hands, who travelled to the Fair twice each Read on →
In her autobiography A Backward Glance (1934), Edith Wharton wrote: “In spite of illness, in spite even of the archenemy sorrow, one can remain alive long past the usual date of disintegration if one is unafraid of change, insatiable in intellectual curiosity, interested in big things, and happy in small ways.” I like that concept which I stumbled upon this morning in a delightful newsletter called Dr. Mardy’s Quotes of the Week — Jan 18-24, 2015. Wharton was a great stylist of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century whose books on the conflicts between societal mores and the pursuit of happiness are sti Read on →
James Holland writes: Glynn County public works is at it again. I thought my eyes were lying to me when I observed the images in my photos. Tide coming in and you can see how high it is and it is still coming. Glynn County simply has to be the most unscrupulous county in the entire state. Why is it that they continue to do this when all the science is out there about what buffers do to protect our marshes and waters? If anyone knows the name of the single individual that gave the order to do this would you please Read on →
These climate deniers are making me crazy! Every day, it's some new story about some Republican lawmaker making up the most inane justifications for why he or she doesn't believe the Earth's climate is changing or why, if it is, then it's not caused by humans. And these people are in charge!? Lord, help us! Just this week, something hit my Facebook news feed linking to a Mother Jones story proclaiming 72 Percent of Republican Senators Are Climate Deniers. Now, I'm no scientist... But, that's just nuts! Someone please stop these people!? I'm so disgusted, I need another cup of coffee. So, it's Read on →