Online stores are a dime a dozen. And there are no end to services out there that offer to set up a store and host it for you. Who to trust and who not to trust, especially online, is a big deal these days. But when you find that one trusted outfit, well, you hope for the best.
Official Site Builders was one such outfit to trust. And they never let me down. Contrary to the claims of SMC, OSB NEVER implied that they were directly associated with SMC. They merely set up a store front and hosted it. SMC was one of several dropshippers that OSB directed members of OSB to where we could obtain products for our stores. But never did OSB misrepresent itself.
owever, out of greed and a desire to be the only one on the block, SMC and eMerchants decided that if anyone offered assistance to SMC members, then it was a violation of SMC rules. In fact, they decided that only they could develop store fronts for members. It is now a part of their terms of service that using any other service than eMerchants is a violation of the TOS. Add to that the apparent lawsuit by SMC/eMerchants against OSB (the results of which can supposedly be seen at one of OSB's old websites www.sellforums.com) I couldn't find the name of the supposed judge in the matter in the decision stored there. But some of the decision seems extremely questionable. Some of the site names listed in the supposed decision had abasoultely nothing to do with SMC/eMerchants (the jewelry outfit for example was a different dropshipper).
The claims of "cyberpiracy" were also clearly flase. Piracy had nothing to do with the design or hosting of the store fronts.
One also must question the legality of federal laws regarding a monopoly. Can SMC legally force you to use eMerchant as your only web site store designer?
The wording of the supposed decision also begs the question as to what may have transpired between SMC and whatever judge was arbitrating this case.
One has to question the language used in this decision. Clearly it was a one sided decision that contained much in the way of deception and misleading statements. Does this decision even exist or is this a ruse set forth by SMC/eMerchants to intimidate members? If it isn't real, then SMC/eMerchants may have hijacked at least 1, if not more, of OSB's sites. We've heard very little from OSB's owners, but whether real or faked, one has to wonder how many other businesses have been harmed by SMC/eMerchants.
Based on this and other reports about SMC/eMerchants, it is highly recommended that you avoid dealing with SMC/eMerchants at all costs.
Wilmington, North Carolina