Stock picture showing a child's room. Consumer groups want all these products to fall under the same future EU market surveillance regime.

Improving safety checks for some, but not all, consumer products flies in the face of reason

When we purchase new toys, clothes or electronics, we expect these to be safe. This is where ‘market surveillance’ comes into play: our authorities making sure products conform to our laws through controls and inspections. And as we are in...

Consumers are better off when they fight together

Successes and challenges of the French law allowing group actions

The French collective redress procedure, where consumers can go to court as a group, will soon enter its 5th year of operation. Time to have a look at what has been achieved (or not). It’s certainly food for thought in...

/ October 8, 2018
Ryanair strike

Ryanair strike: why passengers urgently need collective redress

It can be frustrating to be a passenger rights specialist nowadays. Even if at BEUC we don’t deal with consumer complaints, a task that our members fulfil, I still get a lot of questions from family/friends/colleagues asking for advice when...

/ September 28, 2018

Altroconsumo’s experience of collective redress

If the market is the carrot, then group actions are the stick. The creation of an EU-wide collective redress procedure is currently being hotly debated in Brussels. In Italy meanwhile, the Italian consumer group Altroconsumo has used this stick 14 times...

/ September 14, 2018

E-health: your every personal detail online

New technologies have flooded our lives: many day-to-day products and activities now begin with the prefixes i-, e-, cyber-, info-, techno-, m-, net-, tele-, and the list goes on. It’s easy to get lost in this carrousel of innovation! Digitalisation...

/ June 29, 2018

US-style litigation culture? Only if you like alternative facts!

  The howls of protest from business groups could be heard across Europe. On 11 April, the Commission proposed to make collective compensation claims possible when large numbers of consumers have been harmed by the same trader. Cue uproar and...

Alcohol information: label vs. screen?

Modern life is increasingly hectic. Between work or studies, family responsibilities and everything in between, consumers can feel increasingly time-strapped. The majority do not spend any more time than they have to at the supermarket. At the same time, consumers...

/ May 15, 2018

Electric cars: game changers for tomorrow’s energy offers

“Car biz is hell” Tesla CEO Elon Musk recently said in a twitter exchange. Media eagerly reported that the electric car pioneer is sleeping at Tesla’s factory, to remedy production delays on its latest model. But production delays are just...

and / May 8, 2018

Collective redress for European consumers – yes, we can

I was sitting back in a train from Strasbourg to Brussels in early spring 1998. Looking at the landscape in a train often gives you the distance you need to analyse something happening in your life. I was a young...

/ April 16, 2018

Play it again, Siri – what Apple’s acquisition of Shazam could mean to consumers

It’s Sunday afternoon and it’s raining outside. You want to relax at home watching a classic, and you go for Quentin Tarantino’s Kill Bill. In one scene there’s a song you fall in love with, so you quickly grab your...

/ April 12, 2018