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  1. #1
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Winter Park, FL
    Busted - StoresOnline, Galaxy Mall - selling "get rich quick" affiliate marketing
    Illinois has sued them:
    Illinois sues iMergent businesses over alleged deceptive practices

    Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan is suing two businesses operated by iMergent Inc., a vendor of e-commerce software and services, for alleged violations of the state’s Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Practices Act. IMergent denies any wrongdoing.

    In the lawsuit filed this week in Madison County (IL) Circuit Court, Madigan charges that the two businesses—StoresOnline Inc. and Galaxy Mall Inc.—misled consumers with false promises to set up online stores. Contrary to promises, products were difficult to set up and consumers with computer experience couldn’t set up the online stores, according to the suit.

    In addition, the businesses refused to cancel contracts and provide refunds within a three-day period of signing the contract as promised, the suit charges. The two businesses also failed to provide promised technical support for the products, Madigan alleges.

    The lawsuit asks the court to prohibit the two businesses from selling or promoting business products, training and other services and from further violations of Illinois consumer protection laws. It also asks the court to rescind the contracts and order the defendants to pay restitution to Illinois consumers who had paid more than $91,000 to the companies.

    Madigan also is seeking a civil penalty of $50,000 for each violation found to have been committed with intent to defraud.

    IMergent general counsel Jeffery Korn says the company is confused by the allegations. “During the past three years, over 10,000 people from Illinois have attended our workshops, resulting in nearly 2,400 StoresOnline customers,” he says. “During that same period, we have received only 11 complaints from the AG’s office—equivalent to one half of one percent—which were all fully resolved expeditiously.”


    Reminds me of Loxly's "there's no magic bullet" thread and many of TrustNo1 and MichaelColey and UncleScooter posts... people who got ripped off could have avoided it by joining ABW for free.

    Another article on these guys that reveals how much they charge victims to setup and host and maintain a mall website:
    ~~~~~~~~~part of the article~~~~~~~~~~
    You are offered to buy a web site slot (supposedly for your own store) at the Galaxy Mall. This cost something like $1,900 excluding, web hosting and several other fees. Even revising your web site later on requires a fee. In cases where you need some assistance with their customer support people, there was a per hour fee. Summarily, the cost would be somewhere between $2,500 to $4,000 to maintain that web site. The cost increases by about $3,000 if you are going to get a merchant account through them. The lady featured in the Dateline story paid a total of $7,000 to have a store up and running at Galaxy Mall.

    During the seminar, however, the participants are encouraged not only to buy one, but TWO or THREE slots. You do not have to build all the 3 web sites; instead you go and peddle those slots at your own price. They encourage you to sell it to another unsuspecting consumer, even at double the price! If you do not want to create your own web site, you can just go ahead and sell all your three slots to somebody else - and maybe even earn a percentage of the profits of your "joint venture" arrangements.

    The speakers were lively and their enthusiasm was infectious. Testimonials were presented one after the other (Dateline reported that one of those "success stories" is the daughter of the company's president -- how's that for objectivity!).

    Everyone was being "brainwashed" that the demand for slots at the Galaxy Mall was so tremendous. People were taking out their checks and paying down payments of up to $3,000 that very same day. We expected that they still made a "killing" a week after the seminar. After all, who could resist the marketing line, "Who knows, tomorrow, you wake up with people lining up to buy your slot. If you have several on hand, you are made." Of course, we did not join in the fray.


  2. #2
    Merchant & ABW Ambassador
    Join Date
    May 31st, 2006
    Houston TX
    There are a lot of get rich schemes out there and many people who are even engineers have jumped on the band wagon. I was approaced by XXXXNAME to join as one of their members, basically a pyramid scheme. I think XXXXNAME lost about US$500 when the owners decided to pull the carpet from under those members. I will find the company's name and let you guys know. That company went belly up but I have never seen a lawsuit since it went under.

  3. #3
    notary sojac Herb Ô¿Ô¬'s Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Central/Western NY State
    there are three or more companies, some based in AZ, who have high-pressured, perhaps by telephone, people into buying into some cookie-cutter designed sites for whatever $ the traffic would bear.

    And to make it worse, they have sold some of the folks "advertising" based on delivered clicks, of which hardly any ever resulted in a sale.

    then the poor souls come into the AMZN discussion forum to find out they didn't have to pay to join, just be able to make a site and promote it.

  4. #4
    Life is Supposed to be Fun! Rexanne's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Los Angeles
    GAWD - A friend turned one of his crazy girlfriends lose on me after she stated a web site that wasn't "working" for her.

    I looked at it with her on the phone and told her outright: "I can't help you ...I don't understand anything on this site!"

    Turned out to be one of these "cookie cutter/we'll build you a site and tell you how to make money online" sites.

    Clicked around and found a "join our affiliate program" link. Crazy - She had no idea she was promoting an affiliate program that she was in no way involved with or getting credit for.

    My bottom line advice to her was to kill it and start over. She's put thousands of dollars out to these wankers and is resisting the "dump and regroup" idea so I told her to call someone else. LOL - Sad but I had no idea how to help her or even how the site was set up.

    Loving Everyone's Child Creates Magic

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador
    Join Date
    January 17th, 2005
    Thanks so much for posting this Donuts.

    My aunt called and told me she had been to a computer class today. She is over 65, recovering from breast cancer and is looking to make some extra income. She starts telling me how this software company will set up an online store for her. (Bells and Whistles started going off immediately) My response was "What is this company's name and how much do they want?"

    Bingo it's the same folks. I knew I had read something about them in the ABW forum, so here I am.

    So IMergent won't be seeing a penny of my aunts money. I will help her get started in affiliate marketing the right way.

  6. #6
    Web Ho - Design B!tch ~Michelle's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    I posted awhile back about a set up called ClubShop. www clubshop com

    They are owned by DHS Club in Florida and from what I can see they are huge spammers and it is a pyrmid shopping site scheme.

    There has been an individual running an ad in our paper regarding one of these pre-built & bought sites from this company so I was trying to see if they were on the up and up or not.

    Anyone have info on these guys?
    "All I ask is a chance to prove that money can't make me happy."
    "Work to become, not to acquire." -- Confucius

  7. #7
    Full Member Travelin Man's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 17th, 2005
    Excellent post Donuts!

    I know a couple who lost a bunch of money to one of these get rich website schemes. They were spun-up at a seminar and had dollar signs in their eyes. After buying into the program and paying monthly maintenance fees for a year they finally decided to get out. They didn't even make one sale.

    My brother-in-law and I tried to warn them from the start but they wouldn't listen. They really thought they were on to something and we were just trying to keep them from making money. Too bad.

    Thanks again for posting this Donuts.
    Travelin' Man

    "If you don't know where you are going, any road will lead you there." -- unknown

  8. #8
    scams like these are pathetic. I don't believe you have to scam people to make money. Now you do have to make them believe some things that may not be exactly as they seem. as in you gotta make water seem like wine at times. but in no way does that constitute outright lying.

  9. #9
    ABW Ambassador mailman's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    There has been many of these schemes over the years. They rent a space in a local hotel, run a big ad in the paper and wait like vultures! There is a merchant here that also make statements that are not true and could be liable.

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