• Report: #201427

Complaint Review: POPCORN - MOVIELAND

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  • Submitted: Mon, July 17, 2006
  • Updated: Tue, July 18, 2006

  • Reported By:Nashville Tennessee
POPCORN - MOVIELAND
P.O. BOX 821650 Vancouver, Washington U.S.A.

POPCORN - MOVIELAND FALSE ADVERTISING, FORCIBLY BLOCKING COMPUTER INTERNET ACCESS, ATTEMPTED EXTORTION, HARASSMENT, COMPUTER DAMAGE ripoff Vancouver Washington

*Consumer Suggestion: MovieLand, MoviePass, MuviPaz removal directions

*Consumer Suggestion: Info for Steve - Nashville

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Movieland.com popcorn.net

whois info:

Digital Enterprises, Inc.
23705 Vanowen St #119
West Hills, CA 91307
US

Registrar: DOTSTER
Domain Name: MOVIELAND.COM
Created on: 29-AUG-95
Expires on: 28-AUG-09
Last Updated on: 23-JUN-06

Administrative, Technical Contact:
Master, Dns contact@movieland.com
Digital Enterprises, Inc.
23705 Vanowen St #119
West Hills, CA 91307
US
866-284-9766

These companies use false advertising to make customers think they are getting a free trial period for their online movie service.

If you do not cancel within 3 days for their "free" service they download software to your computer that generates "reminders that block most of your computer screen" that you must pay for the service that you never ordered or wanted.

They claim that they have the right to collect on their "bill". Apparently this includes illegally making it almost impossible to use your computer on the internet because their large display reminders block about 80% of the screen. The reminders cannot be moved aside or taken off because they have altered software on your computer to keep it on.

If they think they have a valid claim which they do not because they use false adverstising that they are offering a free trial when in fact they try to force you to pay for it and bill you as well as threaten to ruin your credit if you don't pay them for the free trial period.

They still must abide by legal rules for collecting on bills. This does not include blocking your computer screen making it virtually impossible to use the internet while their reminder is on the screen indefinitely.

THIS IS HARASSMENT, BLOCKING INTERNET ACCESS ILLEGALLY, ILLEGAL AND EXTORTIONATE PREDATORY ACTIONS TO FORCE PEOPLE TO PAY FOR UNWANTED SERVICES.

THEY SHOULD BE SUED BY ANY INDIVIDUAL HARASSED IN THIS MANNER AS WELL AS A CLASS ACTION STARTED AGAINST THEM NOT TO MENTION CRIMINAL CHARGES BROUGHT AGAINST THEM FOR EXTORTION, DAMAGING COMPUTERS THROUGH THEIR DOWNLOADS AND INTERFERING WITH ONES INTERNET ACCESS.

Steve
Nashville, Tennessee
U.S.A.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 07/17/2006 06:45 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/POPCORN-MOVIELAND/Vancouver-Washington-98682/POPCORN-MOVIELAND-FALSE-ADVERTISING-FORCIBLY-BLOCKING-COMPUTER-INTERNET-ACCESS-ATTEMPT-201427. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Consumer Suggestion

MovieLand, MoviePass, MuviPaz removal directions

AUTHOR: Lorraine - Geek Consumer Advocate :-) - (U.S.A.)

Hi Steve-B. Haven't put this up for awhile, so I'll paste a copy on the report for Steve-N to read thru.

What stood out to me is the word 'Popcorn' that Steve-N used. This sounds like a strategy change after we kicked Legal's butt on this site. Now they seem to be offering a 'freebie' on popcorn of some sort and having victims go to them. This way they don't have to lie, the victims really did intentionally download their bad trojan code to their computer.

Can anyone reading this report give us a clue? Can you post a rebuttal Steve-N and explain where you got the popcorn they advertized on? Was this grocery store bought, from a video rental type store, a real movie theater or some other type place?

Steve-B, did you get my info passed on to you by ED? Drop him a line if not and point him to this report to see I have ok'd him to do that. Get with me and let's work closer on nailing these guys for good!

Steve-N, here is the removal directions you need to read:

http://profend.com/answers/moviepass.html

MovieLand, MoviePass and Muvipaz are all the same scam. Do NOT pay these people a penny if you end up with their trojan on your computer. You can remove it yourself and the above URL gives directions for beginners to experts. I have permission from the site's owner to reprint some of his site here in a rebuttal to help those infected with MovieLand, MoviePass or Muvipaz.

INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE MANUAL REMOVAL OF MOVIEPASS

STEP 1 - BEFORE STARTING

If you're unfamiliar with computers and prefer to work from a more detailed set of instructions please go here (http://profend.com/answers/moviepass1.html). Alternatively, if you're familiar with computers and want just the instructions with no explanations then go here (http://profend.com/answers/moviepass2.html).

These pages refer primarily to Moviepass, but the instructions also work for Movieland and Muvipaz.

The instructions require files and programs to be deleted. In most cases this means they'll end up in your recycle bin and can be retrieved if you delete the wrong thing by mistake. To be on the safe side you may want to make back-up copies prior to deletion.

If in doubt please refer to a computer technician, repair shop etc.

STEP 2 - CANCEL YOUR ACCOUNT

If the pop-up style window provides you with a phone number for Moviepass you may wish to avoid phoning it. I'm told that this is an automated system which will charge the monthly subscription to your telephone account. Such services usually cost more when paid for in this way, e.g. a $30 subscription could add $60 to your phone bill. Far better to phone the toll-free number and speak to a customer services representative.

Before phoning Moviepass make a note of your Customer ID number which you'll find on the pop-up window and also your IP address.

An IP address is a unique number that identifies your computer from the millions of other computers on the internet. You can find your IP address from this website (http://www.whatsmyipaddress.com), if there 2 IP addresses reported write them both down (the site may include a pop-up ad).

Phone Moviepass customer support on 866 431-7720 (001 866 431-7720 if calling from outside the US) and cancel your account. You may have to wait some time for your call to be connected.

STEP 3 - AUTOMATICALLY REMOVE MOVIEPASS

If you've already run spyware, adware and anti-virus programs then skip this stage.

Some adware and spyware removers and some anti-virus programs will detect and remove Moviepass. Run these programs now and see if they detect and remove Moviepass, if they do then you might want to stop at this point. However, it's likely that some parts of Moviepass will remain so it's recommended that you continue to the next step.

Free adware and spyware removers: One of the most popular adware removers is Adaware which can be downloaded free of charge from Lavasoft (http://www.lavasoftusa.com/ click the Personal Edition link on the menu). Spybot Search and Destroy is a popular spyware remover which is also free and can be downloaded from Safer Networking (http://www.safer-networking.org/en/download/index.html).

Anti-virus software: There are several programs including Computer Associates (http://www.dpbolvw.net/click-1989272-10400981), Panda (http://www.jdoqocy.com/click-1989272-10371647), StopZilla (http://www.dpbolvw.net/click-1989272-10407336), Norton (http://www.symantec.com/index.htm) and McAfee (http://www.mcafee.com/). The programs aren't free but they do let you run a free scan of your computer and alert you if any viruses are found. Computer Associates have a variety of security products that you can try for free for a month. Several Internet Service Providers (ISP's) now include some form of anti-virus software as part of their package.

STEP 4 - CONSIDER DOING A SYSTEM RESTORE

You may decide that you don't want to do a system restore in which case skip this step.

What is it? System Restore lets you restore your computer to a previous state, if a problem occurs, without losing your personal data files (such as Microsoft Word documents, browsing history, drawings, favorites, or e-mail). System Restore monitors changes to the system and some application files, and it automatically creates easily identified restore points. These restore points allow you to revert the system to a previous time. They are created daily and at the time of significant system events (such as when an application or driver is installed).

Please note: When you perform a System Restore you will lose any programs, updates and customizations that have occurred after the date of the system restore point. If the changes made to your computer since installing Moviepass can easily be redone, or you can make back-up copies of these files, then it's advisable to perform a System Restore.

Instructions: To access the System Restore Wizard, click Start, point to All Programs, point to Accessories, point to System Tools, and then click System Restore. Follow the instructions in the System Restore Wizard to restore your computer to a date prior to when Moviepass was installed. The pop-up window you receive from Moviepass will tell you the installation date.

When completed: Restart your computer and if there's no more pop-ups then reinstall any programs that were deleted and go to step 8. If you're still getting pop-ups there are two possible reasons: One is that the date you chose for the System Restore Point was a date after Moviepass had been installed, in which case perform another system restore but this time choosing an earlier date, the other possibility is that Moviepass has installed itself in such a way that even performing a system restore doesn't remove the files. If you've performed a system restore and you're still getting pop-ups then work through the rest of the instructions...

STEP 5 - RESTART YOUR COMPUTER IN SAFE MODE

If you know how to start your computer in safe mode then go to step 6 otherwise read the instructions below.

Restart your computer and as it's starting up press the F8 key repeatedly until a black screen with white text appears. Select the Safe Mode With Networking option and press Enter. Another screen will appear, select your usual operating system from the list (usually there's only one thing on the list) and press Enter again. Ignore all the stuff that flashes up on the screen and wait for the Windows Login screen to appear (it will look different to normal). Login as Administrator or as a user who has administrator rights. You'll get a message advising that 'Windows is running in safe mode'. Click the Yes button. Don't worry that the screen looks different (it will revert back to normal next time you start the computer).

STEP 6 - DELETE THE MOVIEPASS PROGRAMS

Open My Computer (click on Start then My Computer), Double click the icon for Local Disk (C:), if the main drive on your computer has any letter other than C then click the appropriate icon, e.g. Local Disk (D:). Double click on Program Files. If there's a message saying "These files are hidden" then click Show the contents of this folder.

You need to look through the list for anything that resembles the following, there could be any number of these listed (there might not be any). The actual names could have underscores (_), hyphens (-), tildes (~), numbers in the name, there may be variations with lowercase and uppercase and there could be variations with the names themselves...

AltBill

AltPayments

AltPayV2

DownloadManager

FileGrabber

FSupport

ITBills

LicenseManager

MPNotifier

MyAccessMedia

Notify, Notifier, Notification or anything similar (these names often have numbers with them)

OptimumOnline

P2PNetworks

WhenU

Anything with MoviePass, MovieLand or MediaPipe in the name

For each instance you come across you need to click on the name, this will highlight it. Press the he Delete button then click Yes to confirm deletion.

STEP 7 - REMOVE THE FINAL FILE

Click on the Start button, click on Control Panel then click on Add or Remove Programs. Wait for the list of programs on your computer to appear then look for something called Notification Utility, if it's there then click on the name, this will highlight it. Click on Change/Remove and confirm you want to uninstall. If there isn't a file there by this name then not to worry.

STEP 8 - CLEAN UP THE SYSTEM REGISTRY

Only one thing left to do and that's to clean up the system registry. The easiest way to do this is to get a program that does it for you. System Mechanic (http://www.jdoqocy.com/click-1989272-10383900) offers a free 30 day trial and will optimize your PC for top performance. If you want to manually tidy up the registry then go here for the list of keys (http://profend.com/answers/moviepass5.html).

STEP 9 - THE END

If you haven't already done so then close down all programs that are running and restart your computer. Hopefully your computer is restored and you can get on with things without being pestered by demands for money.

Finally, make sure you have adware, spyware and virus protection and that it's up to date (see the links in step 4 or click on the banners).

MOVIEPASS CUSTOMER SUPPORT

Customer support phone number: The customer support number for Moviepass is 866 431-7720 (dial 001 866 431-7720 if calling from outside the US). Several people have reported this number as being unobtainable, others have pointed out that if you hold the line for one or two minutes you will be connected.

Customer support hours: Representatives are available between 7am and 9pm Monday to Friday and between 7am and 4pm Saturday (times are PST which is 3 hours behind EST and 8 hours behind GMT).

Before phoning Moveipass Customer Support: When you contact Moveipass you will need your customer ID number to hand, without it they will be unable to offer support. The customer ID number will be shown on the pop-up window, also note down the date the program was installed. You may be asked to provide your IP Address, this is a unique number that identifies your computer. If you don't know your IP address then this website here will tell you.

When you phone Moviepass: Make a note of the date, time, the name of the person you spoke to and details of the conversation. If your phone has a record facility then record the conversation*. Keep copies of all correspondence including e-mails. Save copies of webpages you visit on the Moviepass website (click File on the menu at the top of your browser window then click Save As).

*You can record the conversation for your own records but for a recorded conversation to be used as evidence then all parties must be aware the call is being recorded. You can tell the representative the call is being recorded but the feedback I've received suggests they'll refuse to talk to you.

My experience of phoning Moviepass: I've phoned Moviepass on different occasions under different guises, when I phoned to cancel a membership they did so immediately. When I've spoken to people asking how the program came to be installed on a computer I was given very evasive answers or no answer at all. When I asked questions of basic technical issues such as how to remove Moviepass or what the name of the installed filed were I was given incorrect information or no information at all.

Movieland Contact Details: Movieland and Moviepass are inextricably linked. The contact details specifically for Movieland are by e-mail to support@movieland.com, by phone on US number: 866 431-7724 or by writing to Integrated Enterprises Inc, 19360 Rinaldi Street #148, Porter Ranch, CA 91326, United States.

CAN I TAKE LEGAL ACTION AGAINST MOVIEPASS?

The information below is for guidance only, before considering any legal action please consult a lawyer or other suitably qualified professional. The information has been compiled after consultation with lawyers, police officers and computer crime units.

It is an offence to place a program on a users computer without their knowledge or consent. Despite the fact that it's illegal there are very few prosecutions. Attorney Dr Ronald Standler points out that by 2002 there had been approximately 61,000 malicious programs for Microsoft Windows but there had only been five convictions.

Individuals may wish to sue in tort for 'trespass on chattels', 'invasion of privacy' and 'infliction of emotional distress'. A class action against Moviepass could also be brought.

A Temporary Restraining Order could also be sought against Moviepass followed by an injunction.

I know that many police departments and consumer affairs organisations are aware of the activities of Moviepass. You may want to use the links below to report Moviepass...

Internet Crime Complaint Center (US) http://www.ic3.gov/

National Cyber Forensics and Training Alliance (US) By phone on (412) 802-8000 (+1 412 802-8000 if outside the US) http://www.ncfta.net/

Federal Trade Commission (US) By phone on (877) 382-4357 (+1 877 382-4357 if outside the US) http://www.ftc.gov/

Metropolitan Police Computer Crime Unit (UK) By phone on (020) 7230 1541 (+44 020 7230-1541 if outside the UK) http://www.met.police.uk/computercrime/

---------------------
The following was posted recently on RipOffReport. MovieLand, MoviePass and MuviPaz just got harder to cancel. Thanks to Thor - Lincoln for passing on this information.
---------------------

New Remove MoviePass Cancellation Policy

Moviepass has changed their cancellation terms and this is causing some people some difficulty in cancelling their accounts. Their toll-free number has been removed from their website and there is now a web page you must visit to cancel your MoviePass account.

If you attempt to visit the website from a computer that is not infected, you will be told that you do not have access to the members area, and be given an opportunity to infect yourself again.

If you are infected, you will see a screen that tells you you must pay money to cancel your account.

Please remember when you contact MoviePass that you do not have to pay them anything, and do not give them any additional information about yourself even if they say they need it to cancel your account. They can't bill you at all if they don't have your information.

Thor - Lincoln, Nebraska (original report poster)
U.S.A.
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#2 Consumer Suggestion

Info for Steve - Nashville

AUTHOR: Steve - (U.S.A.)

Steve,

This stuff is easy to block. Set your Windows preferences to block all popups, and install a good anti spyware/adware program along with your good anti virus program.

Search here at Rip Off Report for Movieland and Moviepass and see the hundreds of complaints. We busted them here a few months ago and ran them off this site.

They have no legal recourse to get paid, as they have no idea of who you are. They do not want to actually sue anyone as then their personal info like real names and addresses become public information. They could not have this as they operate anonymously, or so they think.

The program they install is nothing more than a trojan.

Lorraine-Phoenix posted some good removal instructions.

Good luck
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