On December 13th 2008 I responded to an ad by Google MoneyTree offering a kit for just the shipping and handling fee of $3.88 The CD arrived 3 weeks later. On checking my credit card statement I noticed a charge for $72.21 by the same company. I received no correspondence from them concerning this charge. Then again on January 19th 2009 my card was again charged $72.21. On both occasions I contacted my bank and was very disappointed with their response. I also wrote the company twice about these unauthorized charges but to date they have not responded. I called the company twice using a number the bank supplied to have my money refunded but the bastards who answered the phone hung up on me when I told them about the unauthorized charges..
These people are a bunch of scam artists baiting their prey with an offer for a Google Money Tree Kit for which a shipping and handling charge of $3.88 is charged. This is the only charge I authorized.
IThe two males I spoke with claimed that I authorized the charges and I am not entitled to any refunds. I never received any goods and services for my money and the so-called kit they sent me was returned to them un-opened the same day it arrived....two weeks after my card was charged the first $72.21.
I never agreed to any terms or conditions. I never activated any account with these bastards. I never logged into their web site. I had no trial period they referred to since the kit arrived 3 weeks later. I received no communication from them concerning these charges. If they contacted me by e-mail my system will show a request for their e-mail address to be added to my address book. My spam blocker and security system is set at the highest. If they tried to contact me via e-mail it is possible that their mail was deleted as unsolicited or junk mail. I was hoping that the so-called package would have all the necessary communication but all that came was a CD in plain plastic which was returned the same day. They lied to my bank claiming that I agreed to their terms and conditions which I did not.
I did some research on line and here is what these crooks are doing.
Google Money Tree complaints
This is just one of hundreds of complaints posted on line.
I just noticed some complaints about Google Money Tree - about some surprise charges.
1/19/2009, 2:40 Update: Important - WorkAtHomeTruth has NEVER recommended Google Money Tree and still does NOT recommend Google Money Tree.
Here is the original post about GoogleMoneyTree:
Ding dong. I was pretty sure this was an example of "hidden negative option" marketing. That's when a company ignores FTC disclosure proximity suggestions and tries to hide the fact that you'll be billed unless you cancel (for some strange reason they don't want to just tell you that up fronthmmm).
So I decided to walk through the Google Money Tree order form (using b.s. info of course) to see how they have their sales process set up.
Page 1 was the usual stuff - personal contact info but no credit card.
Page 2 - this is where the fun begins:
Right where you enter your credit card number GoogleMoneyTree puts:
Google Money Tree Kit: Free
Shipping & Handling: $3.88
This is where it gets good (or bad depending on how you look at it):
Right to the left of the form where you enter your credit card GoogleMoneyTree has this bold proclamation:
"No Hassle Money Back "Guarantee!
If you are not 100% satisfied with the kit,
simply call our dedicated customer service #
(located in the USA!), and we will immediately
refund your shipping payment no questions, no hassle!"
It almost makes it sound like the only reason why you would ever really need to contact GoogleMoneyTree's customer service about billing would be to get your shipping payment refundedwait, it actually DOES make it look that way.
But lo-and-behold. If you click on the Terms and Conditions Link - the one that states:
"I Agree With the Terms and Conditions" (which has the checkbox conveniently pre-checked for youawwwwaren't they nice?)..
And look under the "Shipping & Other Fees" section you'll stumble onto the following:
"After seven days, if you choose not to cancel you will be billed your first monthly membership fee of seventy two dollars and twenty one cents for the membership fee for the googlemoneytree.com membership."
That's coolwaitNo it's not!! Why couldn't GoogleMoneyTree just tell me that on the main page? Oh they could have.
For some "odd" reason GoogleMoneyTree didn't want to do that. I wonder why not? I really wonderwell, not really.
Can someone explain to me how this scenario is materially different than the one discussed in this recent FTC Settlement:
Free Software CD Internet Operation Settles FTC Charges
This extract spells out exactly what took place. I hereby warn everyone to beware of this scam and don't make the same mistake I made.
I will not rest until I get every penny back from these vulchers.