I received a letter from storesonline.com inviting me to attend an internet business marketing seminar and free dinner for two, valued at $79 US dollars. The presentation was done quite proffesionally, although the so called dinner consisted of a ham sandwich, a bag of potato chips and a soft drink, hardly a 79 dollar value.
The true purpose of the seminar was to get me to go to an all day workshop, for which I was asked to pay a $20 fee to secure my place. There was a large number of senior citizens present, most of them have never even used a computer, they were told they didn't need a computer to start promoting their product, and a good percentage of them signed up for the workshop.
When I got home that night I did a search on the internet for complaints against storesonline.com, the results were astonishing, not only did I find dozens of complaints, but the rating by the Better Business Bureau was extremely unfavorable.
I decided to attend the workshop anyway, get my 20 dollars worth and at least try to persuade some of the senior citizens to research the company before giving them the $2,400 they were asking for. Only one hour into the workshop, we were all asked to fill out a credit check form, which included name and address, social security number and date of birth as well as telephone number.
My guest that day stood up and asked the speaker in front of everyone: Why should anyone give their social security number to a company that has been so poorly rated by the BBB and other rating organizations? The smile on the speaker's face vanished, we were asked to gather our belongings as we would not be staying, we were rudely escorted, almost pushed out of the building through the kitchen area, and directly to the hotel lobby, all the while the speaker was screaming at us, calling us dream takers and other names, and yelling out for security to make sure we didn't return to the hotel.
Luckily we were smart enough to research the company before dishing out the money, our only hope is that at least some of the 200 plus people there, had sense enough to do the same.