ED Magedson – Founder
the playground los angeles1801 Avenue of the Stars #611 Los Angeles, California United States of America
This company has changed its name again due to all the bad press about him. Google Gary Spatz Scam and you will find the truth about this company and its owner Gary Spatz and Eric Rottman.
The Playground Los Angeles Gary Spatz Scam!
Scams like this have been going on for a long time.
Approached in Target or at a kiosk in the mall? SCAM! There is no such job description as a talent scout of any kind in Hollywood. Rather these are front men and mostly women of acting school scams and rip-offs.
The first rule of thumb is to understand that in this industry is that more expensive doesnt equate to better. If someone could buy success everyone would be a star. Sometimes the most expensive services actually provide the least benefit.
These scams committed against children and their families are very common as they prey on our love and pride for our children. That is one consistent across all scams they all say everything a parent would ever want to hear about how great, talented, beautiful, star in the making their child is. That is closely followed by playing on the guilt for a parent who might not be allowing their child to follow their dreams.
So how does a parent spot a scam?
LISTEN. One step is to really listen to your instincts. What seems too good to be true usually is.
RESEARCH. Researching every company you are going to work with is of paramount importance. Use Google and check the names of the businesses as well as the names of the people you meet. Ask other parents. Look for common red flags. Some red flags of a scam or rip-off include:
Being approached in a mall, family store or other public place
Name dropping such from shows LIKE The Suite Life of Zack and Cody, Hannah Montana or the use of Disney and Nickelodeon logos (call the studio and let them know your experience with the scam school and how much they charge)
Promising work or access to talent agents through show cases or agent auditions
Using several different names for their business on the internet to confuse people and load up the search engines so all the bad reviews wont show up first. (luckily it cant be done)
Putting pressure or time limits on the offer such as we only bring back 10-20% of the kids we see, not everyone makes it, we can only hold the spot for 3 days, etc. You can cancel if you dont like it.
Long term contracts that must be paid for in advance. Legitimate acting classes are offered for 6 weeks or less at a time, with professional level group acting classes costing around $45 per class. Anything longer, or costing more is a red flag.
Exceedingly nice sales people.Predators have to be nice. If they weren't, they wouldn't get their prey.
"But some people say it is OK."
Of course every story has 2 sides, and you may find a former client vouching for a business because they *felt* successful or they had fun.
Getting an agent can be accomplished for under $100 via picture submissions. Really. Just get a list of agents that handle children and send them a photo. That simple. Of course you will be told that having these expensive classes will almost guarantee a top agent.
We understand why parents want to see it otherwise - but after hearing many of stories from people who experienced this, you need to be safe rather than sorry.
This place is a complete fraud and do your research. Dont be onother victim of this company.
This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 01/09/2011 08:13 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/the-playground-los-angeles/Los-Angeles-California-90067/the-playground-los-angeles-SCAM-the-playground-los-angeles-Gary-Spatz-SCAM-Gary-Spatz-L-680757. 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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