Consumer news and opinion

“Consumer Bits” on are articles designed to share the author’s consumer experiences with the reader where as you can learn from our experiences.

Whatsapp Disses on Your Privacy

WhatsApp And Facebook are now sharing data, ticking off their users, after WhatsApp has announced they’ll be sharing your data with Facebook. This is a little rundown on what they’re doing and how to opt out if you want to. If you want to cut to the chase, just page on down, you’ll see it.

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It was announced that WhatsApp updated their terms and privacy policies for the first time in four years (That was their spin on it.)

What they were apprising their millions of users of was that they’ve joined Facebook, with FB now their parent company. They also announced that they are looking to use your phone calls and text messages to keep you up to date on various factions of your life. Which is reflective of what FB has suggested it could do now. But now WhatsApp will now be sharing your phone number with FB to help FB ” offer better friend suggestions and show you more relevant ads,” because we all know how much we’d love to see better ads in our already “sponsor-filled” feeds.

But this announcement has yet again frustrated millions of users of WhatsApp and Facebook. When Facebook acquired WhatsApp a few years ago, they said that they would not use any of the 1 billion WhatsApp users data.

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mpc-hc, a media player replacement

Of late, my Windows Media Player is acting like a P.o.S., where it makes me wait around 30 seconds between playing videos, or that it constantly accesses my Cd drive when I start a video. How annoying.

Add that to my woes with my MS operating system and the known update snags it seems to have developed and I decided to look around at different video players.

I found the following video players via a few recommendations and a web search:

  • Handbrake,
  • VLC Media Player,
  • MPC-HC x64.

I had snagged the first two players because my Windows Media Player was not playing a 2k formatted video. I did not realize that WMP was limited in what it could play.

The first two players, “Handbrake” and “VLC Media Player” work just fine but “Handbrake” is more of a converter than a player.

“VLC Media Player” loads a touch slower because it too is known for the things it can do to or with videos.

But then I happened across “MPC-HC x64” and it seems to be a nice replacement for Windows Media Player. If you set it to be your default video player, start up is instantaneous and at least in my situation, you can start up rapid-fire videos.

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POKEMON GO And Saving Battery Juice

July 31, 2016

IF you are one of the millions who have downloaded and started playing Pokemon Go, then you have discovered how battery-sapping the game can be. The cell phone industry, specifically, the battery makers must be loving this latest trend, as folks are trying to figure out how to stay out in the field longer while […]

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Who Is 424-239-5373 Or “VR INTERVIEW?”

July 21, 2016

So who is this entity behind the telemarketer whose phone number comes up as (424) 239-5373? Who claim to be with “VR Interview?” I’ll tell you what they are. They’re rude, annoying and conducting illegal telemarketer practices. – How we came to know this phone number is that they started calling my wife. Over the […]

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POKEMON GO Tips, For Players And Non-Players Alike

July 20, 2016

Pokemon Go, has captured the imagination of millions and millions want to know what can give them the edge of gaining the experience points.

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The Danger of Blind FACEBOOK Friend Requests

July 5, 2016

Lately I’ve seen several friends put up Facebook posts that say not to accept friend requests from them because their profiles have been hacked. And more and more we’re seeing warnings about this very issue. It’s not a new practice to FB, but every now and then the warnings make the rounds and you or […]

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Could Anton Yelchin’s Tragedy Have Been Avoided?

June 28, 2016

It’s obvious we may all know about it, but in case you missed it, but up and coming actor Anton Yelchin, who played Chekov in the new Star Trek movies, has died via a tragic accident at his home involving his Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo. He has up to five movies that he’s been working […]

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I Can’t Turn On My Samsung S6, Help!

May 10, 2016

The other day my Samsung S6 froze up on me and I could not turn it on or off. Find out how I rescued myself and how I fixed by Samsung S6. – – – The other day I was watching a video that I had downloaded from Amazon (because Netflix does not have that […]

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STARBUCKS Reminds Us About Their Diminished Rewards Program

April 11, 2016

I received an email from Starbucks reminding me about the short end of the stick they’re giving their customers concerning their rewards program. I mean seriously, a while back, I wrote about how Starbucks ( Starbucks must think we are idiots ) announced that we, the customers, asked for a change to the program where […]

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Get The Best Price And Best Gasoline For Your Gas Mileage

March 17, 2016

Check out how I saved between $30 to $60 on gasoline in the last month! And how you can save around $700 a year on fuel. And what I learned along the way about gasoline quality! – I don’t know if you’ve noticed but gas prices are starting to climb again. All because OPEC or […]

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Can We Trust Hillary Clinton In Office And With Our Country’s Secrets?

February 29, 2016

Disclaimer: It’s not that I like or dislike Hillary Clinton. She’s a politician, and I’ll leave it at that. My issue is that I have zero respect for her after the debacle with the classified email server scenario on her home’s personal computer. It seems that they found thousands of emails on her computer, some […]

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STARBUCKS Must Think We Are Idiots

February 23, 2016

Starbucks is changing their rewards program. You know the one, where getting 12 stars can get you a Starbucks freebie. According to Starbucks, they are instigating the #1 member-requested update. Or an exciting new program! (For them). That update is to make us pay a hell of a lot more before we can redeem a […]

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Why Stay With Verizon When T-Mobile Offers Free Streaming?

January 20, 2016

I don’t know where my brain has been but the other night I walked past a T-Mobile cellular store here in Morgan Hill and I saw a sign on the store front that said I could get free Netflix and HBO streaming without it costing me and taking up my bandwidth, unlike my Verizon account, […]

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Facebook Like And Share Farming Helps Spread Malware

January 19, 2016

So there it was, the biggest lottery in human history about to take place, and suddenly there are a few viral posts going around on Facebook where someone posts a picture of lottery tickets, then they say if you like, comment and share the post, they will share the winnings with you. OK, let’s rip […]

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Google Maps Has Found A New Way To Get Your Location Out Of You

January 18, 2016

Over the years Google Maps has pretty much become the default mapping app that most folks use these days. So too, have I become accustomed to the process of using Google Maps. Let’s face it, compared to the other processes, they do have a smoother interaction and usually, superior results. As of a year or […]

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David Bowie Died And We Let It Happen

January 12, 2016

Embed from Getty Images – David Bowie succumbed to cancer at the age of 69 and he died because we let it. We let it because not enough people care enough to donate to the fight against cancer (The ugly C) while it continues to do its thing. What kind of cancer David died from […]

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Huge SPAM Email Source Alert Warning – Background Investigation Sites

January 8, 2016

A few weeks ago I was reading an online article talking about one online background investigation website that seems extremely thorough in the records it can dig up about you. The reporter at the time was surprised/impressed or shocked at how much dirt they dug up on his own test of the site. I got […]

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‘Dracula’ by Bram Stoker; A Book Review

January 5, 2016

This is one of the least timely reviews I’ve ever written, but I have been reading some classic books on and off, and Bram Stoker’s Dracula is one of them. After seeing so many movies about a subject, I get curious about the source or original material.  And face it, Dracula has spawned one of […]

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