General Mills, the maker of cereals like Cheerios and Chex as well as brands like Bisquick and Betty Crocker, has quietly added language to its website to alert consumers that they give up their right to sue the company if they download coupons, “join” it in online communities like Facebook, enter a company-sponsored sweepstakes or contest or interact with it in a variety of other ways.
Instead, anyone who has received anything that could be construed as a benefit and who then has a dispute with the company over its products will have to use informal negotiation via email or go through arbitration to seek relief, according to the new terms posted on its site.
One of those occasions when only Mencken will do:
“Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats.”
[Editor's note 22 April 2014: General Mills has responded by making their application of this policy slightly less slimy, and for this they should be applauded.]
[cross posted at REALFOOD.ORG]