User:GregG/Mainstream media attacks on arbitration

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Work in progress. Collecting links and quotes for future article on this subject.

  • [1]: "If you don't want to give up your right to personally sue them in a court of law and be forced into a kangaroo court overseen by a judge whose fees are paid for by the company you're suing, Cablevision will let you."
  • [2]
  • [3]
  • [4] -- misleading statement that "Arbiters are typically retired judges who fetch an hourly rate of $300 or more, a fee that's generally split between the two parties"
  • [5] -- "[Suing in small claims court] also doesn't require parties in the proceeding to keep their mouths shut after a decision is rendered, as arbitration does." -- which is false with respect to the AT&T Mobility agreement
  • [6] -- Consumerist again, citing the trial lawyer advocacy group Public Citizen and their report on post-Concepcion arbitration law
  • [7]
  • [8] -- "Arbitration, however, requires consumers to surrender their right to sue, and many consumer advocates say the process as used in financial products is biased toward banks." without further comment or elaboration.
  • [9] -- "an arbitration procedure in which there is not a judge or jury—but rather, a private arbitrator often chosen by the corporation being sued."
  • [10] -- another article which intones that the company chooses the arbitrator, also misstates that parties are generally required to keep results confidential
  • [11] -- "Generally speaking, businesses prefer arbitration because settlements are limited and because professional arbitrators, whose fees are typically paid by the company in a dispute, tend to favor businesses. It's a classic example of not biting the hand that feeds", also quotes without comment Public Citizen's dubious 94% figure
  • [12] -- "Of course, because Valve will be hiring the arbitrator in question, one can expect that the person dealing with disputes will not be completely impartial either"
  • [13]
  • [14] -- from Fox Business, which is flat out wrong about discovery in arbitration
  • [15] with respect to being able to recover from an AG action
  • [16] -- problems with arbitrator neutrality, ability to order injunctive relief, secrecy, etc. that are not reflected in the two agreements highlighted
  • [17] -- basically all the standard Public Citizen talking points, misconstrues Rent-a-Center West
  • [18] -- "Typically, the consumer has no say in who the provider or arbitrator is", also exaggerates the effect of loser-pays clauses in arbitration
  • [19]
  • [20]
  • [21]
  • [22]
  • [23] -- let us enumerate the blatant lies:
    • "Consumers are also forced to pay steep filing fees just to initiate a case—seldom less than $750 – and pay their share of the arbitrator’s hourly charges, which are routinely $400 or more per hour."
    • "arbitration clauses often allow the corporation to choose the location, regardless of how inconvenient or costly travel will be for the consumer"
    • " most arbitration clauses require that proceedings be kept confidential"
  • [24] -- a pretty egregious article
  • [25] -- blatant lies such as "The catch is that the bank gets to pick the arbitrator, and the arbitrators naturally know they’ll never work in this town again if they ever rule against the banks", also cites Public Citizen's dubious 94% figure and mentions the NAF without disclosing that it has ceased new consumer arbitrations
  • [26] -- blatant lies, such as "Arbitration panels are overwhelmingly funded by big business. Thus, to assure they keep getting the work, arbitrators almost always rule in favor of the business. They understand that decisions against the business will result in their firms not being used again."
  • [27]
  • [28] -- a very uninformed letter to the editor
  • [29] -- falsely claims that filing and copying fees in arbitration for a $1,000 claim would be prohibitive
  • [30] -- falsely reports as fact that Sprint's July 2013 terms forbid representation by an attorney in arbitration, in contradiction to what Sprint says the actual effect of the provision is.
  • [31] -- derogatory statement: "Both [suing in small claims court and proceeding with arbitration] can be long, stressful and potentially expensive processes."
  • [32]
  • [33]
  • [34] -- "And the arbitrations that consumers must resort to if they have complaints? The corporations often select the arbitrators, limit investigation of the facts, and keep the whole process secret. Worse still, the average consumer or small merchant who dares to challenge Big Business is almost certain to give up if the cost of arbitration exceeds any possible recovery -- which is another way of saying that our laws against corporate abuse, such as the antitrust statutes, will simply go unenforced."
  • [35]
  • [36]
  • [37]
  • [38]
  • [39]
  • [40]
  • [41] -- "Corporations pick and pay for arbitrators, which lets them stack the deck by selecting those who are friendly to their interests, [consumer advocates] charge."
  • [42] -- "you'll be limited to arbitration, handled often by a one-person judge and jury who is often selected by the business with whom you have a dispute. And you might have no choice", also cites a Public Citizen lawyer who said that arbitration suppresses small claims when in fact most arbitration clauses allow parties to proceed in small claims court instead
  • [43]
  • [44]
  • [45]
  • [46] -- false statement reported as fact: "Many of those mandatory-arbitration clauses actually stipulate that the business gets to choose the arbitrator."
  • [47] -- "Suing a business in small-claims court is usually a last resort. Increasingly, companies are including arbitration clauses in their contracts, which may require that a dispute be taken to a third party for private review rather than to court—including small-claims court."--mostly false
  • [48] -- see #1, makes the unsubstantiated (and probably false) assertion that in arbitration, the "'resolution' is often a pittance compared to what a plaintiff would get in a lawsuit" (scare quotes in original), also falsely asserts bias in arbitration, as well as that consumers cannot pursue a case in arbitration pro se.
  • [49] -- multiple falsehoods and misrepresentations of arbitration:
    • "If you live in Florida and have a dispute with Paypal, you will have to travel to California – at your own expense – to have your dispute heard." This has not been the case with respect to Paypal since 2003.
    • "The corporation also gets to choose the arbitrator. The consumer rarely has any choice of who will hear the dispute, but even when a choice is offered, it is from a list chosen by the corporation."
    • "corporations often reserve the right to cancel an arbitration hearing and take the matter to court"
    • more throwing around a long-debunked NAF statistic
    • quotes Steven Law out of context to suggest hypocrisy with respect to enforcement of arbitration contracts, when Law was referring to proposed government-mandated arbitration between employers and unions
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