In a guest posting on ADR Prof Blog (, Professor Jean Sternlight voices her support for Consumers Count and our efforts to "help unite multiple consumers who have been wronged by the same corporate practice."  We are pleased that Professor Sternlight recognized that the purpose of Consumers Count  is also "to teach consumers and others about the negative aspects of mandatory arbitration" and create a consumer movement to end arbitration provisions in consumer contracts.

Sternlight further took note of the immediate attack on us launched by Alan Kaplinsky, a defense lawyer for many finacial service companies.  According to Sternlight, "Kaplinsky fears that the Consumers Count endeavor may allow so many consumers to bring claims that companies will be forced to pay inordinately  high filing fees in arbitration. Many companies’ arbitration clauses do require them to pay consumers’ filing fees."

Sternlight also echos one of our great concerns - mass arbitration, or crowd casing, cannot realistically take the place of most class actions.  Even if a Cause is succesful, as Sternlight points out, "the vast number of consumers will remain ignorant of the fact they have been harmed or will not spend the time and energy necessary to pursue claims with Consumers Count."

For better or worse, we can't help but agree with Sternlight's ultimate assessment of Consumers Count: "In sum, it is a great idea, and I hope it does some good, but we must not pretend that creative enterprises such as this can actually replace class actions."