• Report: #118545

Complaint Review: WSI

Thank You

Read how Ripoff Report saves consumers millions.

  • Submitted: Wed, November 17, 2004
  • Updated: Fri, June 15, 2012

  • Reported By:Charlotte North Carolina
WSI
Nationwide United States of America

WSI ripoff WSI's public face is perfect. It's when you sign up that things get ugly Nationwide *UPDATE.. Ripoff Report REVIEW: WSI pledges to resolve all bona fide complainants and improve any problems with customer service

*Consumer Comment: Response to Rob from Toronto (from someone who feels he dodged a bullet)

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: my experience I think that they are a bunch of overworked overzealous hypocrites

*UPDATE Employee: WORLDSITES NETWORK - SCAM

*UPDATE Employee: WSI Can Work In The Right Market

*Consumer Comment: applicant in the process

*UPDATE Employee: Beware of competitor's tactics

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: WSI will push to buy before price goes up

*Consumer Comment: RESEARCHING

*Consumer Comment: RESEARCHING

*Consumer Comment: RESEARCHING

*Consumer Comment: RESEARCHING

*UPDATE Employee: Court Docket

*Consumer Suggestion: WSI, gives refunds, I got mine

*Consumer Suggestion: WSI Franchise Troubles

What's this?
What's this?
What's this?
Is this
Ripoff Report
About you?
Ripoff Report
A business' first
line of defense
on the Internet.
If your business is
willing to make a
commitment to
customer satisfaction
Click here now..

Does your business have a bad reputation?
Fix it the right way.
Corporate Advocacy Program™

SEO Reputation Management at its best!

Ripoff Report REVIEW:

WSI, a privately-owned company is legitimately established and is forthcoming about its location, identities of theirsenior management and its franchise opportunity. The company discloses any and all information about their operations to ensure the highest customer/franchise confidence.

Most complainants investigated to date by Ripoff Report appear to be competitors or ex-employees, although 3 of the Ripoff Reports had complete, bona fide contact information. WSI is actively working to resolve those cases. In many cases IP addresses of individuals "claiming" to be from the United States or from various countries internationally, but were actually found to be posted in Toronto, Canada - indicating reports were most likely filed maliciously and falsely under various identities, but were actually from the same group of only a few individuals.

WSI has experienced rapid growth. In the past it experienced some growing pains with respect to customer responsiveness, but has overcome it with additional support capability and improved customer service, systems and processes.

They appear to be a caring company - They work with and for kids around the world showing goodwill and financial support through many charitable organizations.

The company maintains strong reputable business partners, who help them enhance their operations and support; which includes IBM, Oracle and Price Waterhouse Coopers.

They pledge to fully address each and every person who has a bona fide complaint about them utilizing recommendations set forth in the Ripoff Report Corporate Advocacy Business Remediation and Customer Satisfaction Program, which WSI is participating in fully.

Read the full report on WSI. ===================== NOW TO THE ORIGIONAL REPORT THAT WAS FILED =====================


All the literature I read on these guys seemed to paint them in a good light. And even though friends and family told me they had never heard of them before I figured it was just because they weren't very web saavy. So I forked over the money and that's when my two year struggle started.

I knew after the training period I was in trouble because when I first started working with clients I was presented with situations that confused me and the support at WSI wasn't helpful at all. I had one client actually ask me point blank why they should even bother working with me because it was clear I had no idea what I was doing.

What was I going to do? Blame WSI? That would have looked even worse. But the training didn't prepare me for everything and getting the answers was time consuming to say the least. I struggled with the business for about a year and I've spent most of this second year trying to get my investment back. But I have not been able to get anything out of these people. They dodge my calls and when I do speak with them claim that they haven't gotten any of my e-mails.

Sarah Charlotte, North Carolina
U.S.A.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 11/17/2004 07:42 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/WSI/nationwide/WSI-ripoff-WSIs-public-face-is-perfect-Its-when-you-sign-up-that-things-get-ugly-Nation-118545. 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.

Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report.

Click Here to read other Ripoff Reports on WSI

Search for additional reports

If you would like to see more Rip-off Reports on this company/individual, search here:

Search Tips
Report & Rebuttal
Respond to this report!
What's this?
Also a victim?
What's this?
Repair Your Reputation!
What's this?
REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
0Author 14Consumer 0Employee/Owner
Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Consumer Comment

Response to Rob from Toronto (from someone who feels he dodged a bullet)

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

Since you refer to WSI using the word "we", I assume you are an employee of the company. I recently started the process of applying for a franchise and stopped the process rather abruptly after starting to do some research on WSI.



I don't feel inclined to give my reasons for stopping the process to the "development director"/salesperson I've been working with, but this forum seems an appropriate place to air my concerns.



The truth is, I started getting "red flags" pretty early in the process of looking into this opportunity.



The first thing that concered me was discovering that someone is selling a WSI franchise in San Francisco (I live in the SF bay area) for $35,000.00. This is clearly not someone who's been successful and is pursuing their exit strategy or retiring. The is someone whose dream died and who's trying to get something back from the money they invested into a losing venture.



The second red flag was hearing that some sort of earnest money deposit was going to be required, to the tune of 25% of the franchise fee. If you have done such a careful selection process on me (claims of 1 in 100 applicants accepted), the fact that I jump through all the hoops, fly to Toronto and am ready to document the source of my funds should be plenty to convince you I am "in earnest". Asking for money feels like something I would expect at a car dealership, not from a future business partner.



The next incident to raise concerns for me was the "5 to 10 minute call" that was necessary before I could receive the "franchise kit" package. The gentleman that called seemed to want to do nothing more than get through the call as quickly as possible. I felt like I could have told him I was a child molester from Mars and he would have said "that's great... so, from your application I understand you'll be funding your new business from personal savings, is that correct?"



Through these incidents, I told myself that it could all be innocent. Maybe the person in San Fancisco is no good at business. Maybe the guy I talked to before getting the package just has a personality quirk. Maybe I was being too sensitive about the deposit...



The I got the "franchise kit".



I immediately started reading the "FOC". The first thing that leapt out at me is that WSI was formerly known as "WorldSites". BIG red flag. Why would a company that's been successful for 7 years (or whatever it is) suddenly change their name. Particularly when branding seems like such a focus of your sales pitch.



My next step was to start typing words like WorldSites fraud and WorldSites scam into Google. Results were pretty interesting.



I agree with you Rob, when you say that Mc Donalds probably gets sued once a week. But if you search for Mc Donalds on this site, all you get is specific reports about bad service or unhealthy food (not terribly surprising for Mc Donalds). There's no posts from franchisees. Wonder why that is? I think it might be because Mc Donalds franchises are hugely successful throughout the world.



Your company has dozens of posts from franchisees who are clearly desparate at this point. And maybe all those posts are BS, but when I combine the consistency of the theme of those posts (non-existent support, sub-standard and over-priced product, unrealistic income claims...) with the red flags that were already popping up for me, the message was clear: walk away.
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#2 UPDATE EX-employee responds

my experience I think that they are a bunch of overworked overzealous hypocrites

AUTHOR: C - (Canada)

I used to work for the company and frankly I think that they are a bunch of overworked overzealous hypocrites. They fired me because I was not willing to work more than 35 hours a week and I did not subscribe to their cult like positive attitude like they think they are somehow better than other people.



As far as I am concerned - It does not matter that they have been rated #1 - they are too indoctrinated like they are going to be the next Microsoft. Like that is a great thing to want to be Microsoft is just a Capitalist Bully that works there employees to death and they are out to crush every one of their competitors to me it's a pretty shallow goal to want to be like them.



I was a good person before this company destroyed me since they fired me 6 months ago for no good reason, my wife has left me and I will tell the world what a piece of shit company this is until the day I die.



Here is my gift of retaliation I am posting a copy of their Top Secret Project they have been working on developing as a joint project with the Hong Kong Polytechnic Institute



Workshop Contents



(((REDACTED)))

Rip-off Report REDACTED the copy that was below. According to the terms of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), allegedly the copy that was provided below infringed upon the copyrights of others. Rip-off Report will comply with these laws when put on notice that there was a violation.
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#3 UPDATE Employee

WORLDSITES NETWORK - SCAM

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

I am here in Canada, and I though that WSI would be a good deal. A business that I could control and make $ working. I don't mind putting in the hours or doing the work. When I first spoke to Robert Masson he told me there was a lot of money to be made here and a good chance that I would make in the 6 digits the first year. He also told me I could do this from home. Well, that was totally false, and once I spoke to a couple of the WSI Internet Consultants, Troy Ireland & Rene Garcia I realized that this was going to be an uphill battle. The assistance they provided was not helpful, and the few clients I worked with were quite unhappy.

Once I got involved I was told working from home was not possible. Conflicting stories worried me.



What worried me more was the lack of support, and lack of assistance, business advertising, anything.



Once I spoke to a couple of the WSI Internet Consultants, Troy Ireland & Rene Garcia I realized that this was going to be an uphill battle. The assistance they provided was not helpful, and the few clients I worked with were quite unhappy.



Also, they do make secret deduction from accounts. I noticed it after a few months, and had to fight them on THEIR ERROR!! I mean after investing over $44,000. that would have been enough for them, apparently not!



I recommend running from these people, they are scammers that are well known to by the authorities! Ron McArthur the prez is known also. He told me they were not going to give me any $ back and that was that.



Here is the company directory for you.

Troy Ireland = Internet Consultant

Rene Garcia = Internet Consultant

Ron McArthur is the President & Chief Operating Officer of WSI,

Robert Masson is the Controller of the WSI group of companies

Marcia Scott is the VP

Lou Zalany is the WSI's Chief Executive Officer

Tore Steen is the Vice-Chairman



Mr. Nigel Mayne use to be the prez



They are headquartered in Toronto, Canada = scammers, rip off artists
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#4 UPDATE Employee

WSI Can Work In The Right Market

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

I have owned a WSI franchise for one year. I have had minor success. I think this opportunity is better suited to a location with more medium-sized businesses. Companies with 10+ employees that need a fair amount of website functionality but have no internal department to develop a website are best served by WSI.



I live in a small town with a lot of "Mom and Pop" businesses. They don't have the budgets to develop the kind of websites that will make me money using the WSI system. I know other WSI franchisees that have been sucessful in larger markets. I would be willing to sell my franchise at a considerable discount from the WSI corporate office. In addition, I would be willing to provide additional product training beyond what you will recieve from the home office. If you're interested, send me an email at wsifranchisee1@hotmail.com with your contact information.
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#5 Consumer Comment

applicant in the process

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

Hi



I'm an applicant in the sales process and after doing my due diligence here is what I experienced. They do say prices go up in the sales process but I spoke to some refences that they provided me and confirmed that they purchased the franchise a lower price 24 months ago so it is quite possible prices can go up especially when it is year end. Based on my research of franching franchisors do tend to increase pricing for the new year. I'm sure McDonald's does not sell their franchises at the same price they sold them for the year before.



As for lawsuits I have a copy of the UFOC and they are required to state all their lawsuits or else they are breaking federal laws. There is no reference to any Virginia lawsuit. Lastly, none of these franchisee names are listed in the UFOC so this leaves me wondering what their intentions are to put false information out there. There is no one listed under the state of Virginia as Naiomi Lorton so I assume this is fake as well.



For all I know this is someone mixing up 2 different franchise systems.
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#6 UPDATE Employee

Beware of competitor's tactics

AUTHOR: Rob - (Canada)

Hi

I thought I'd help some of you with little to no experience in the world of franchising by stating some truths in the hope it will rise above some of the less than accurate statements being made.



First of all, never trust anything you read on the internet since anyone can write anything about anyone without having to prove or back up what they say with any evidence. Case in point - nobody seems to be able to come up with the court dockett mentioned. Why is that ? Because it's likely not true.



If you are seriously looking at this or any other franchise, at some point you will receive the UFOC which legally obligates the company to disclose all lawsuits against the company. Any franchisor you can think of will have some lawsuit or another against them. How many lawsuits do you think McDonalds gets per week? Does that make them a bad franchise?



The message, regardless of what type of franchise your considering, is buyer beware. Do your own research using first hand, credible information - not faceless internet chatter.



Also - always be wary of any messages suggesting alternate businesses when they are criticizing a franchise like the "Interland" reference in the previous message. It's usually a cheap way to bad mouth a competitor and try and sway a possible franchisee into considering them. WSI doesn't employ these tactics - we let our business model, track record, successful franchisees and awards speak for themselves.



Remember, only the top 3% of the world's web developers are Microsoft certified - WSI is one of them. That and the fact we are an IBM e-business partner should indicate that WSI is indeed a credible company with a good story to tell. Check us out at www.wsicorporate.com



Good luck to you all in your future endevours.
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#7 UPDATE EX-employee responds

WSI will push to buy before price goes up

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

If anyone is looking into purchasing a franchise from WSI I'm sure they are using the sense of urgency sales tactic that you need to purchase by the end of the year because the price is going up. I purchased a national license December of 2003 and guess what? It is still the same price today. Also you need to check out another option to see if this really is the right business and company to be involved with because this is a lot of money to spend to find out later. Check out Interland.com and there reseller program
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#8 Consumer Comment

RESEARCHING

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

Naomi Lorton,



I am in the middle of researching the WSI franchise and came accross your report. I too tried to find the information on the case through the Virginia state courts website. Can you give us a synopsis of the details or tell us where or how we can get a copy of the case and all the facts? Also - how many people joined you in the case?



Thanks, John D.
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#9 Consumer Comment

RESEARCHING

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

Naomi Lorton,



I am in the middle of researching the WSI franchise and came accross your report. I too tried to find the information on the case through the Virginia state courts website. Can you give us a synopsis of the details or tell us where or how we can get a copy of the case and all the facts? Also - how many people joined you in the case?



Thanks, John D.
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#10 Consumer Comment

RESEARCHING

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

Naomi Lorton,



I am in the middle of researching the WSI franchise and came accross your report. I too tried to find the information on the case through the Virginia state courts website. Can you give us a synopsis of the details or tell us where or how we can get a copy of the case and all the facts? Also - how many people joined you in the case?



Thanks, John D.
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#11 Consumer Comment

RESEARCHING

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

Naomi Lorton,



I am in the middle of researching the WSI franchise and came accross your report. I too tried to find the information on the case through the Virginia state courts website. Can you give us a synopsis of the details or tell us where or how we can get a copy of the case and all the facts? Also - how many people joined you in the case?



Thanks, John D.
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#12 UPDATE Employee

Court Docket

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

Naomi



If there is any hope of moving on and putting WSI behind me and getting my money back I would very much like to learn more about your court case.



I have been using a search company and they have informed me that the docket # is not coming up. Could you tell me and others how to retrieve the court docket?



Thanks
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#13 Consumer Suggestion

WSI, gives refunds, I got mine

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

Ray, Jerry Judi and any other WSI Franchise owners out there, if you have had problems with this franchise opportunity, (terms loosely used) fear not. The longer WSI ignores your requests for help, support and eventually a refund supports your claims. Ignorance is your friend in this case. WSI loosely and intentionally refuses to return pleas for support works in your favor. I joined with 8 other WSI, (former) members and won a court decision in early March 2004. Court docket # SBA44508-335A. Dated 3/22/2004, Virginia federal court. Refer to this case. Included in this public document are all the necessary facts of evidence you need.
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#14 Consumer Suggestion

WSI Franchise Troubles

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

I did all the research I felt I could before dropping my $39,700, and additional operating expences. My SBA advisor suggested I walk away from this Busines Opportunity, I should have listened. Now I am stuck, no working business, and a loan to finish paying for. I was looking to start a Home based business, to enable me to spend more family time. Entrepreneur Magazine, and their paid? report on the company, all seem fantacy at this point. I am requesting a refund at this point. I have left several messages for the President, Mr. Nigel Mayne, 1 888 678 7588. If I get no responce by the end of the month I WILL report this to my local media. Mr. Mayne, if you have cronies monitoring these sites, and there are many of them, you should act soon. Locate my file, and dial my number.
Respond to this report!
What's this?
Report & Rebuttal
Respond to this report!
What's this?
Also a victim?
What's this?
Repair Your Reputation!
What's this?

Advertisers above have met our
strict standards for business conduct.



Ripoff Report Legal Directory