Report: #911454

Complaint Review: The Hollywood Agency

  • Submitted: Fri, July 13, 2012
  • Updated: Sun, September 02, 2012
  • Reported By: cmlvngstn — Tucson Arizona United States of America
  • The Hollywood Agency
    10 Universal City Plaza 20th Floor
    Universal City, California
    United States of America

Show customers why they should trust your business over your competitors...

I received an email offer from a company called Bloomspot for tickets to a Grammy premier through some company either called The Hollywood Agency or ACCESS. I am not certain of their real name.  My teenage daughter was in the LA
area with her best friend and her mother for treatment at the City of Hope for terminal Hodgkin's and Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma. I thought it would be uplifting for the girls to attend a fun event, so I bought the tickets for the, from my
home in Tucson AZ.

The evening before the event, my daughter was contacted and told that they needed the credit card number again so the girls could attend an event where alcohol was being served. My daughter explained that they were minors and could not drink alcohol. They were then told that they could not attend without providing the credit card number to him, even though I have already purchased the tickets through Bloomspot. She called me and I asked her if it was for verification. She was not certain. She provided the number and then for the next five months they continued to charge my card for a
"membership" I did not request. It is now up to $375 and they will not stop charging me. I have no use for this "membership", as I have no interest in Hollywood and do not even live in California. I want the charges to stop and I
want the money they stole from me returned. I also want others to be warned about this company and the scam. I have seen other complaints about this fraud on the Internet, yet they appear to continue to promote this scam through places
like Groupon.

I am in the process of warning others about this scam.
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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 07/13/2012 08:52 AM and is a permanent record located here: 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. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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#1 Author of original report

I am happy that you are happy

AUTHOR: cmlvngstn - (USA)

I am happy you have had a happy experience with THE HOLLYWOOD AGENCY. Companies  SHOULD have happy experiences with the companies they do business with. And when there is an issue, it should be expected that the company would want to resolve it. I own three businesses and my efforts are always to have happy customers. If I make a mistake or if my customer is unhappy, I repair it. I should. Had this company responded to me when I inquired, we would not be in this situation now.  Apparently, their "internal systems" were not working.

I am glad to hear that this company is charitable. That is a good thing. I also donate thousands to charities. I too am a good person and a good and responsible citizen and business owner.

You fortunately did not have the same experience I had. I did not seek out a VIP membership with the company. I never asked for a VIP membership with this company. All I ever wanted was to have my 17-year old daughter have a wonderful and memorable evening with her dying girlfriend. That was all I ever wanted. I purchased passes to an event for the girls through a company called Bloomspot.

All the so-called "fine print" said was that the passes "included a one-month membership". That's all. The next thing I know, an email comes saying that they must submit a credit card in order to print the event passes and a month later my credit card was being charged. I am glad that THE HOLLYWOOD AGENCY was able to find someone to post this. I believe that it is against the rules of this site to pose and to do this. My attorney found it a bit suspect and is investigating.
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#2 Consumer Suggestion

They are clear about terms

AUTHOR: Rainee - (United States of America)

I am purchasing a membership from this company, which is the Only way you get access to their VIP tickets.

My research shows... They support charities and are a fine company. I cannot find any reason, based on my research to slam them!

We consumers must read the fine print on any deal, offer or deal site.. We cannot take the good part and not pay after we agree to the terms, or our children agree to the terms with our credit cards. In this case the kids did attend a special event that they would not have, without the access membership, which has a cost associated with it.

This is not a scam.
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#3 REBUTTAL Owner of company


AUTHOR: THA - (United States of America)

I would like to reiterate that we have absolutely no wish to charge members who don't use our service but cannot be held at fault for a customer clicking "I agree" and accepting terms of payment on a website that very clearly stipulates what they're paying for, as well as how much they are paying.

The rest of the consumer's response is quite simply irrelevant, as she goes into detail about how much she doesn't "need" the service. The bottom line is that she herself filled out (or authorized her daughter to fill out) our enrollment form requesting membership. There is absolutely no misleading wording on our site or are there any hidden conditions throughout as one can see by going to our website and beginning the enrollment process. The service detail and fee structure is extremely clearly advertised, and as stated, we go the extra mile to reinforce that the consumer understands what he/she will pay on a standalone "pop up" page that commands acceptance to the terms before completing the sign up process.

Also, our internal systems do show us the date and time of the consumer's complaints to us, and they most certainly did emerge only after her demand for a chargeback from her credit card, leaving us no power at that point to refund her at our discretion. We are instructed by the credit card companies to wait until their investigation is complete. As mentioned, the result of their numerous investigations (half a dozen in total that this particular consumer filed) each led to a win in our favor.

Furthermore, based on the consumer's response, it's quite ironic to find out that despite the fact that she blames us of "thievery", her daughter and guest did indeed attend the event in question and THEN demanded and received a full refund for the event tickets from the daily deal site, resulting in the fact that she in fact didn't pay for the event at all.  Quite ironic.
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#4 Author of original report

False accusations from THE HOLLYWOOD AGENCY

AUTHOR: cmlvngstn - (United States of America)

Yes, I am sure that THE HOLLYWOOD AGENCY is a membership service. But, I never requested to join. They automatically decided I did and began charging my credit card.

Yes, I did purchase two tickets to a Grammy event through for my teenaged daughter and her friend who found out she had cancer and was about to begin chemotherapy. It is a lie that I "authorized my daughter to make the purchase on my credit card"  THE HOLLYWOOD AGENCY fabricated this lie. I made the $98 purchase myself. I live in Tucson AZ and my daughter was in California with her friend and her friend's mother when I made the purchase from The offer stated that it "included on month membership", not anything I would ever be interested in since I live in Arizona. There was
nothing on the offer that said anything about being required to purchase a membership. My daughter received an email that said she must enter their site in order to receive her passes for the event. So, she entered the site. In order to get the passes she was required to enter the credit card number. She called me and asked me why they were requiring my card number again, after I had already paid in full. My assumption was that it was because they needed to verify that the appropriate person was receiving the passes. It was then, AND ONLY THEN, that I gave her my credit card number to submit for verification.

I never, ever gave her permission to buy a membership to an adult club.  It was the only means for her to receive the prepaid passes.

Lie #2: She was required to show a credit card to pick up her tickets from Will Call. I never made this accusation. It appears that the slanders and lies originate from THE HOLLYWOOD AGENCY.

When I began seeing the monthly charges on my credit card, I immediately called the number on the statement, which turned out to be THE HOLLYWOOD AGENCY. I asked then why they were charging my account each month. I left my name and number. A woman called me back days later and asked me it my daughter and her friend attended the Grammy event. I
replied 'yes'. That was it. She told me that was why I was receiving the monthly charges. It made no sense to me, so I contacted the credit card company and told them there were unauthorized charges being made on my card. THE HOLLYWOOD AGENCY then told them I DID authorize the charges (I did not, another lie). Before speaking to me, they reinstated the charges. I called my credit card company and went into detail, explaining that I never authorized the charges, I do not even live in the same state, I never requested the "membership", and that I never received one email or call or letter from this company for the so-called membership I had. I then sent them every email I received and they again credited my account. I also contacted to let them know what I was dealing with. They immediately credited my account for the $98 (I did not ask
them to do this) and apologized to me for exposing me to the company.

Keep in mind that the creditcard company also protects it's customers from illicit and unauthorized charges. In addition to being a consumer for this card, I am also a reputed business owner that has accepted the card for 32 years.  The most unfortunate part about this ordeal is that I DID contact THE HOLLYWOOD AGENCY immediately upon my discovery that they were
charging my account without my permission. I DID speak to a woman at the company twice. They did absolutely nothing and continued charging me. I was only after receiving no resolution that I contacted the creditcard company, then Bloomspot,
then felt it was my responsibility as a consumer to warn other. Sadly, THE HOLLYWOOD AGENCY does not have very dependable internal communication. The woman I spoke to twice let the ball drop and did not let anyone know of my call or concerns. I
really DID want to resolve this a long time ago. They apparently did not. I could not consciously let others be subject to what I went through.
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#5 REBUTTAL Owner of company

False Accusations

AUTHOR: THA - (United States of America)

The Hollywood Agency is a membership service that provides its paying members with access to events around the country and beyond. Members have access to Award Shows, Movie Premieres, Record Release Parties, Film Festivals, Sporting Events, and other Red Carpet affairs.

We have both monthly and annual membership options.

This consumer, who has been posting these same slanderous accusations on other websites claims that we have no authorization to charge her for the membership dues, when in fact the situation is as follows:

The consumer purchased one of our deals with a daily deal site, that included first month's membership, plus access to an Award Show and After Party. It should be noted here that the purchase was actually made on the daily deal site - not our website, and therefore we did not possess the consumer's credit card. 

The consumer (or her daughter apparently who she authorized to make the purchase using her card) then began the redemption process for membership on our website where the terms of membership and dues are very clearly stated. In fact, we've implemented a process where during the sign up, a standalone page agrees that clearly reiterates the fees, and the consumer MUST click on "I agree" in order continue. If the consumer doesn't click on that box that states that he/she understands the fees, then he/she can't continue the sign up process.

The consumer claims that "on the evening before the event, her daughter was contacted and told that we needed her credit card number in order to attend the event". This is completely impossible. Our company has no physical ability to insert credit card numbers for any purpose manually. Our registration process is completed exclusively online. Furthermore, there was no need to show a credit card at Will Call to pick the tickets up and there was no further fee involved other than what the consumer had paid to the daily deal site directly (not to us!).

Claims of theft etc are completely false and slanderous. And the consumer seems to also be confused between our company and the daily deal site.

Let it also be noted that this consumer has demanded chargebacks from her credit card company half a dozen times and has been denied it following the credit card's investigation. Credit card companies are known for being more than fair when it comes to protecting their customers interests and certainly don't allow for their customers to be held responsible for "unauthorized charges".

The most unfortunate part about this ordeal is that should the consumer have just contacted us regarding this matter before filing chargebacks and complaints all over the internet, and explained to us that she made a mistake allowing her daughter to make this purchase, we would have undoubtedly and happily worked with her on an amicable solution. It is advised by the credit card companies not to issue refunds to anyone in the midst of a chargeback investigation, in order to avoid a double refund should the chargeback be approved.
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