Posts tagged as:

wacky warnings

Also, your dust mask “does not supply oxygen,” and do not neglect to remove the safety cover from your spa before using it or you might drown. [UPI] Are English-speakers actually more likely to choke on pen caps than speakers of other languages? Nah, it’s our law [PoL]

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Sign spotted at Yarmouth station, UK [via @TimMontgomerie @wallaceme]


A recent anime (Japanese cartoon) portrays America as a land where pretty much any misadventure can be turned into grounds for a lawsuit. Siouxsie Law has the (funny? horrifying?) video clip, the plot line of which involves the catastrophic misuse of a microwave oven and its fictional legal consequences.


November 12 roundup

by Walter Olson on November 12, 2010

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In case you didn’t know. [California Civil Justice]

“…Use Your Own” [Maggie Koerth-Baker, BoingBoing, seen on a hardwood floor sander, with picture]


I have a bit more to say about the “warning label on the U.S. Constitution” story in Diane Macedo’s report today, which is getting a lot of readership. Original posts here and here (& welcome KTRH, Lars Larson listeners). Update: statement from Wilder Publications courtesy Distaff View of the World.

Speaking of warnings, Bob Dorigo Jones has picked the finalists for his 13th annual Wacky Warning Labels Contest (on a go-cart: “This product moves when used”) and I’ve got a post on that at Cato at Liberty.


The things you have to warn against these days [Ted at PoL]

I blogged at Cato at Liberty yesterday about a copy of the U.S. Constitution sold with a parental advisory warning (hat tip: reader Clark S.). According to the warning, it might be a good idea not to let kids read the nation’s founding document until having a discussion with them about how views on race, sex, etc. have changed since it was written. It’s just boilerplate, of course, as found on other books from the same publisher. More: Eugene Volokh and Damon Root, Reason “Hit and Run”. And reader L.S. points out that in their prefatory matter the publishers also purport to prohibit readers from using or reproducing the text of the Constitution without permission.

P.S. First Things commenter Jared: “I presume, in the interests of not being chauvinistic about the present, that which they publish written today also carries a similar warning label: ‘This book is a product of the cultural mores and prejudices of the early twenty-first century…'”


Funny warnings from Antenna Direct of Missouri [Consumerist] And Australian prawns (shrimp) are sold with a reassurance that the accompanying promotional material is “not implicitly or explicitly directed at minors, excluded persons, or vulnerable or disadvantaged groups.” [Hey, What Did I Miss? (Institute for Public Affairs)]

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Bruce Nye has a photo of a pointless new warning McDonald’s has posted in California stores to avoid litigation. The warning seems to have a side safety benefit: by the time you finish reading it, your coffee won’t be hot any more.


January 16 roundup

by Ted Frank on January 16, 2010

TortsProf’s Christopher Robinette notes the exceedingly cautious language employed by the publisher of a book on the Walther P-38 pistol. “It’s sad that the publisher can’t even ‘approve of,’ never mind ‘advise’ or ‘encourage,’ the ‘use of’ the material ‘in any manner.'”

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Coffee cup warning

by Walter Olson on July 23, 2009

From Cleveland’s Erie Island Coffee Co., which now has a shop in the city’s East Fourth St. restaurant district. Courtesy @fourgreenis who records it at Twitpic.


Britain’s Daily Mail has a pictorial feature on superfluous warning signs (via Free-Range Kids). Another peril to watch out for: “uneven surfaces” on beach sand.


They might make you uneasy in new ways [Lowering the Bar, scroll]

May 18 roundup

by Walter Olson on May 18, 2009

  • Historic preservation and habitat preservation laws can backfire in similar ways [Dubner, Freakonomics]
  • Serious points about wacky warnings [Bob Dorigo Jones, Detroit News]
  • Texas solons consider lengthening statute of limitations to save Yearning for Zion prosecutions [The Common Room]
  • A call for law bloggers to unite against content-swiping site [Scott Greenfield]
  • Drawbacks of CFC-free pulmonary inhalers leave asthma sufferers gasping [McArdle, Atlantic]
  • Try, try again: yet another academic proposal for charging gunmakers with costs of crime [Eggen/Culhane, SSRN, via Robinette/TortsProf] More/correction: not a new paper, just new to SSRN; see comments.
  • California businesses paid $17 million last year in bounty-hunting suits under Prop 65 [Cal Biz Lit]
  • Trial lawyer lobby AAJ puts out all-points bulletin to members: send us your horror stories so we can parade ‘em in the media! [ShopFloor]


Yes, it’s Bob Dorigo Jones’ annual Wacky Warning Label contest. Aside from the year’s winner, mentioned in the headline, other top entries included “Do not use if you cannot see clearly to read the information in the information booklet” (on a wart-removal product), “Always use this product with adult supervision” on a cereal bowl, and a bag of livestock castration rings cautioning, “For animal use only.” [AP/Times & Transcript (New Brunswick, Canada); Foundation for Fair Civil Justice] (more on wacky warnings)