• Report: #517119

Complaint Review: adultfriendfinder, alt.com

  • Submitted: Thu, October 29, 2009
  • Updated: Sat, November 28, 2009

  • Reported By: jayonezero — LA California United States of America
adultfriendfinder, alt.com
Internet United States of America

adultfriendfinder, alt.com Variouis, Inc. Fake profiles, false advertising, site does not work as advertised, made false accusations of fraud against me Internet

*Consumer Comment: The same thing happened to me.

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I signed up as a standard, single male profile on alt.com, and on aff.com.

Immediately after signing up, I received emails showing interest from other users. As a standard, single male, you cannot open emails for 30 days after signing up. After the elapsed time, I discovered that the emails were sent from fake accounts, sent by alt.com itself, for the purpose of enticing me to pay for a membership before the 30 day period was up. 

On the front page of aff.com (before signing up), the site displays photos of people (all females, of course), who allegedly have profiles on the site, and who are in your area. The truth is that these members 1) Do not exist in their database, and 2) do not reside in your area at all. No matter where you access the sites from, you see the same fake members shown as residing in your vicinity. The front page has a disclaimer that the profiles are "illustrative data", but it is not illustrative data, since those member profiles are not real people. Being fake, they are not "illustrative" of anything real, or of anyone you might encounter while you use the web site. This is false advertising; an outright lie perpetrated on new users. 

All of the sites feature a "New Member" photo gallery. Clicking on the gallery reveals a list of users, some of whom have "last visited" dates of "more than 3 months ago." How can someone who signed up more than three months ago and hasn't visited the site since, be considered a "new member"? At one time, AFF.com, did charge an extra fee for access to the "New Member Gallery". I do not know if this is still true or not, however, it is true that the "New Member Gallery" is full of dead/fake profiles of members who no longer visit the site.

Technically, the Friendfinder network of web sites do not function as advertised. Their web cam system - one of the most popular features that people try to use - barely functions at all. Web cams frequently fail to connect, and randomly stop broadcasting and disconnect from the cam/chat system. Video quality is hit & miss, and the broadcast is often grainy and choppy. 

This is not a technical problem, and not under the immediate control of Various Inc., but as a potential paying user of the site you should be aware that *many* member webcam broadcasts contain no picture, or (for example) couple profiles where only the male half is broadcasting. Female webcam broadcasts are frequently prerecorded ads for other paying webcam sites. You will not find any warnings about this in any of the pre-signup disclaimers.

When users attempt to contact each other via the "instant messenger" system (assuming the page goes through at all), the chat window opens but users cannot see what the other person types. There is a private web cam invite button on the chat window, but clicking it does nothing. In fact, all you have to do is sit in a chat room for some time and watch the users ask each other: "Are pages working today?" "Can anybody see my cam?" "Why isn't the IM working?" And so on. The site's own user forums reveal literally hundreds of dissatisfied users who are experiencing these problems and many more. Various Inc. and the FriendFinder family of sites will not fix them. 

Both alt.com, and aff.com use "plants" -- users who sit in chat rooms and who feign interest to get members to pay for higher levels of membership. 

Finally, as an example of how members are treated: A false "abuse" report was made against me by another user (a fake profile, by the way). My account was deleted without warning and without explanation. When I created a new account to use only to report the incident, I was informed by alt.com's "abuse" team, that they had "acquired an email, traced to my account, that was an "obvious attempt at fraud." Furthermore I was banned and if I attempted to sign up again I would be prosecuted. 

The alleged email containing the "obvious attempt at fraud" was not produced. There is no way I could have sent such an email to the user in question, nor to any user for that matter, because as a standard member I cannot send emails unless I am contacted first. The fact is that I did not send *any* email, and the accusation of "obvious fraud" is false. 

As for the user who made the false allegation against me, I was informed the user had been investigated, but I would not be told the outcome because of privacy concerns. I never asked the abuse team for that user's name or contact information. I didn't (and don't) want it. Alt.com's "abuse" team said that "appropriate actions would be taken", but they would not even tell me what "appropriate actions" means. All I ever wanted was for that user to be investigated and banned. Instead, I was the one being intimidated and falsely accused of fraud.

Bottom line: Do not give money or pay for membership on any web site owned and operated by Various Inc., i.e. any of the "FriendFinder" family of web sites, including the new one, "Getiton.com" .  They are all the same, all run by the same parent company. That people are duped into paying for these web sites, which make their owners multi-millionaires, is a travesty. I hope one day justice is done, and a class action lawsuit takes these liars and scammers off the air for good. 

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 10/29/2009 07:50 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/adultfriendfinder-altcom/internet/adultfriendfinder-altcom-Variouis-Inc-Fake-profiles-false-advertising-site-does-not-517119. 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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#1 Consumer Comment

The same thing happened to me.

AUTHOR: litakitty - (USA)

I too have received this exact same canned response from AFF/Passion and just like you the accusation was comletely false.  When I asked for proof of this supposed fraudulent email of course non was produced.

What I found ironic is that I am an attractive woman that got the attention of many people on the site.  I am a real person, I am not promoting a paid web site or any other service.  People on there like me make paying members happy, one would think.  I was just going through a phase of wanting to be watched and get attention.  Bad break up, long story...

Anyway, I believe that Various Inc, does this willy nilly if you will.  It has happened to me before.  I had an earlier account where they did the same thing and it was right after I deleted my first account due to someone threatening me and I just wanted him away from me.

I made a new account and asked a technical customer service question.  I wrote them from another email not associated with the account.  Their response was to please reply back with my username and email that was associated to the account in question.  When I did, their response was "We have recently acquired an email, traced to your account, that is an obvious attempt at fraud."  I had done nothing wrong.

So, I made a new account and they deleted this one too after about a month, once again, I had done nothing wrong and was not warned as their policy states.  I had emails and contact info on their that I wanted access to and now I will never get it.

Many people do not report their horrid customer service because the site is about sex and people get embarassed.  I decided "not this time."  I have reported them to the local BBB where the company is headquartered, this is the Silicon Valley BBB.  I wrote that I have a right to this so called fraudulent email that I supposely wrote and since there wasn't one, I wanted them to restore my profile and leave me alone.

If they do not resolve this I will take it to the CA Attorney General and the FTC.  It is ridiculous and they should not be allowed to treat people this way.

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