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Consumer Confidential: IPod earbuds, higher airline fares, fiery dehumidifiers

January 4, 2010 | 10:20 am

Here's your nifty-New Year roundup of consumer news from around the Web:

-- A federal appeals court doesn't want to hear any more about claims that iPod earbuds can hurt your ears. The court has dismissed a class-action lawsuit claiming that earbuds for the Apple devices can damage your hearing if you listen to tunes at full blast (which is probably a dumb idea in any case). The court upheld earlier rulings that the plaintiffs in the case failed to prove their claims, saying that iPod users have the choice not to use the gadgets in a risky manner.

-- Major airlines are ringing in the New Year by -- gasp! -- jacking up fares. Most of the big boys are boosting round-trip ticket prices by about $10, according to That's exactly what travelers want to hear amid reports that tightened security measures are adding hours to the trip.

-- Heads up: The Consumer Product Safety Commission has announced the recall of about 98,000 portable dehumidifiers manufactured by LG Electronics Tianjin Appliance Co. of China. The devices may suck moisture from the room, but they also pose a risk of bursting into flames.

-- David Lazarus