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CommieGIR
Aug 22, 2006

Watch for the blue flash.
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Pillbug

There's been a major uptick in driveby robocalls lately with a lot of scammy pitches. Anyone else notice that? Lack of enforcement of Do Not Call list?

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mariooncrack
Dec 27, 2008


It's not just you.

https://mobile.nytimes.com/2017/05/11/smarter-living/stop-robocalls.html?_r=0&referer=https://www.google.com/

Sorry for the mobile link. I have no idea if those apps really do anything to prevent robocalls.

bulletsponge13
Apr 28, 2010


I occasionally get the whole, "you have a case pending in a civil trial. Please call this number to resolve." Once, for goofs and grins, I called the return number and sounded very concerned. But no fear! For 120$, they would resolve it for me. When I point out that I have never had any interaction with the fake client, and that if I did have a summons coming, it wouldn't be by loving phone, they normally hang up.

The other day that didn't happen. When I told the woman I just passed the Bar exam (not true in the slightest, but I do watch a lot of Law and Order), and that I knew she was full of poo poo, she doubled down. I filed a complaint with the BBB, not that it will do any good.

Comstar
Apr 20, 2007

But it was all right, everything was all right, the struggle was finished. He had won the victory over himself. He loved Princess Celestia


bulletsponge13 posted:

I filed a complaint with the BBB, not that it will do any good.

From my understanding, the Better Business Bureau is a scam itself? As in you pay money to them for a good grade.

EL BROMANCE
Jun 10, 2006

COWABUNGA DUDES!



CommieGIR posted:

There's been a major uptick in driveby robocalls lately with a lot of scammy pitches. Anyone else notice that? Lack of enforcement of Do Not Call list?

Yeah whoever had my cell number before me managed to get himself on a million things, as well as telling none of his friends he has a new number. I swear it must've been recycled within days. Thank god for the block button on the iPhone, if they don't leave a message and it's out of state it gets blocked immediately. If it's in state... it probably gets blocked too.

Pharmaskittle
Dec 17, 2007

arf arf put the money in the fuckin bag


Comstar posted:

From my understanding, the Better Business Bureau is a scam itself? As in you pay money to them for a good grade.

This is correct. I worked for a lovely company that really earned a bunch of bad reviews on BBB. Paid them a "registration fee" and the overall grade magically went up.

ToxicSlurpee
Nov 5, 2003

-=SEND HELP=-




Pillbug

EL BROMANCE posted:

Yeah whoever had my cell number before me managed to get himself on a million things, as well as telling none of his friends he has a new number. I swear it must've been recycled within days. Thank god for the block button on the iPhone, if they don't leave a message and it's out of state it gets blocked immediately. If it's in state... it probably gets blocked too.

I had a similar problem a bajillion years ago before everybody had a cell phone with a land line. I moved into a new apartment and had to get a new number because it was in a different town. Not a big deal; just tell some people you have a new number and get on with your life.

Turns out it was the number of the kind of people who would take out credit cards, max them out, then refuse to pay them back and make sure they were utterly impossible to get a hold of. I got constant calls from credit card companies, collection companies, and people they knew who they owed money to.

They quit calling when I started threatening to sue them for harassment. I can do exactly "gently caress all" about debts owed by people I've literally never met. Collection companies are the worst. It didn't matter how many times I said "those people don't live here and I don't know them. This isn't their number anymore. Stop calling me."

That was also when telemarketing was still huge. I eventually just turned my drat ringer off and told people to talk to my answer machine if they needed to talk to me. I'd call them back. Not long after I got my first cell phone and it finally loving stopped.

Non Serviam
Feb 25, 2006

wAstIng 10 bUcks ON an aVaTar iS StUpid

I met an autistic kid who, as I write this, is boarding a flight to Russia to go and personally give 5 thousand pounds to a girl he met who needs it for a heart transplant.

I tried to dissuade him, but apparently his mom signed off on his trip.
.

Edit. I say kid, but it's early 20s

Tunicate
May 15, 2012





Non Serviam posted:

I met an autistic kid who, as I write this, is boarding a flight to Russia to go and personally give 5 thousand pounds to a girl he met who needs it for a heart transplant.

I tried to dissuade him, but apparently his mom signed off on his trip.
.

Edit. I say kid, but it's early 20s

quick, email scam him out of his bank account

therobit
Aug 19, 2008


Comstar posted:

From my understanding, the Better Business Bureau is a scam itself? As in you pay money to them for a good grade.

I have worked for a company that took thier rating and any complaints seriously.

AlbieQuirky
Oct 9, 2012



BBB is exactly like Yelp for old people, up to and including the point where "member" businesses get negative reviews removed, or their impact mitigated. So it's worth it for a business to take negative reviews seriously, but an absence of negative reviews may not mean the company is great.

PJOmega
May 5, 2009


AlbieQuirky posted:

BBB is exactly like Yelp for old people, up to and including the point where "member" businesses get negative reviews removed, or their impact mitigated. So it's worth it for a business to take negative reviews seriously, but an absence of negative reviews may not mean the company is great.

It's amazing how a business that extorts millions of other businesses has done so without a single scrap of proof.

AlbieQuirky
Oct 9, 2012



PJOmega posted:

It's amazing how a business that extorts millions of other businesses has done so without a single scrap of proof.

Proof of what? I'm a little confused. Do you think BBB or Yelp should investigate each consumer report they receive?

Guest2553
Aug 3, 2012


Clearly he's just a BBB shill :colbert:

Teriyaki Hairpiece
Dec 29, 2006

Ask me about my dream Frasier episode where Frasier and Bulldog oil their heads and then rub them together. It's definitely not a fetish of mine, I swear!

I'm always amazed by how many people think it's some kind of government organization.

Absurd Alhazred
Mar 27, 2010

I'm the babyliberal, gotta love me!


Teriyaki Hairpiece posted:

I'm always amazed by how many people think it's some kind of government organization.

That's because it stands to reason that there should be. Also it has "Bureau" in the name.

Panfilo
Aug 27, 2011

EXISTENCE IS PAIN

Is being Diamond Certified equally scammy?

The Lone Badger
Sep 24, 2007



Teriyaki Hairpiece posted:

I'm always amazed by how many people think it's some kind of government organization.

Are there Ombudsmen in 'merica? Or an ACCC equivalent?

Teriyaki Hairpiece
Dec 29, 2006

Ask me about my dream Frasier episode where Frasier and Bulldog oil their heads and then rub them together. It's definitely not a fetish of mine, I swear!

Absurd Alhazred posted:

That's because it stands to reason that there should be. Also it has "Bureau" in the name.

But it's just so incredibly easy to find out that it's a business/scam.

Absurd Alhazred
Mar 27, 2010

I'm the babyliberal, gotta love me!


Teriyaki Hairpiece posted:

But it's just so incredibly easy to find out that it's a business/scam.

So are credit agencies, and politicians and business people all take those seriously.

spacetoaster
Feb 10, 2014




There's a scam involving your hotel reward points I just found out about.

The criminal get's into your hotel rewards account, changes the email (so you get no notifications) and then burns your points on a hotel room. Then uses your cc, that's on the account, to extend the stay.

I know there's other things that can be bought with your points too so there's that.

occamsnailfile
Nov 4, 2007



zamtrios so lonely

Grimey Drawer

The Lone Badger posted:

Are there Ombudsmen in 'merica? Or an ACCC equivalent?

I don't know what those are; a google for ACCC produces several things that are credit-related but not consumer protection.

Anyway, in the US some states have 'consumer protection agencies' of varying degrees of toothlessness, and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau which is aimed at banks, payday lenders, and other financial institutions and is very much on the chopping block. Various federal agencies do some consumer protection on things in their purview like the FDA comes down on scammy food labels but there isn't a single agency. Usually class-action lawsuits end up being the solution but they're a pain, and the courts recently made them harder to certify. The penalties gained through those also generally don't equal all the profits scam products generate. Basically one reason Yelp got so popular was that it gave people a public venue to complain about poo poo even if nothing happened.

PJOmega
May 5, 2009


AlbieQuirky posted:

Proof of what? I'm a little confused. Do you think BBB or Yelp should investigate each consumer report they receive?

Proof of Yelp extortion. BBB is pretty transparent and open about how to address negative reports, and the most straightforward way is paying in.

Yelp, on the other hand, has this weird internet consensus of being an extortion racket that promotes negative reviews and suppresses positive reviews until you pay them for advertising, then flips that as soon as you start paying. Supposedly they've done this to hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of businesses without a single bit of recorded proof. Despite supposedly cold calling businesses with an explicit extortion pitch.

Seriously, it's always "a friend of a friend of mine worked at (generic business type) and they were called at work by a guy who intimated on the phone that if they didn't advertise bad things would happen."

AlbieQuirky
Oct 9, 2012



It seems pretty well documented that Yelp advertising sales staff tell businesses that if they advertise, Yelp will push positive reviews to the top of the page. I guess that's somewhat different from what BBB does, so.

Bogan King
Jan 21, 2013

I'm not racist, I'm mates with Bangladesh, the guy who sells me kebabs. No, I don't know his real name.

occamsnailfile posted:

I don't know what those are; a google for ACCC produces several things that are credit-related but not consumer protection.

Anyway, in the US some states have 'consumer protection agencies' of varying degrees of toothlessness, and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau which is aimed at banks, payday lenders, and other financial institutions and is very much on the chopping block. Various federal agencies do some consumer protection on things in their purview like the FDA comes down on scammy food labels but there isn't a single agency. Usually class-action lawsuits end up being the solution but they're a pain, and the courts recently made them harder to certify. The penalties gained through those also generally don't equal all the profits scam products generate. Basically one reason Yelp got so popular was that it gave people a public venue to complain about poo poo even if nothing happened.

ACCC is (I'm assuming in this case) the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission. We have relatively strong consumer rights here and they look after a bunch of that. In addition to that we have industry specific ombudsmen - such as telecommunications - where any hassle you have can be directed. Given that they do have a bit of teeth it is usually taken fairly seriously.

Lutha Mahtin
Oct 10, 2010

Your brokebrain sin is absolved...go and shitpost no more!


The Lone Badger posted:

Are there Ombudsmen in 'merica? Or an ACCC equivalent?

an ombudsperson is just a government employee who advocates for the public on some issue. it doesn't necessarily have anything to do with finance/commerce/scams

PJOmega
May 5, 2009


AlbieQuirky posted:

It seems pretty well documented that Yelp advertising sales staff tell businesses that if they advertise, Yelp will push positive reviews to the top of the page. I guess that's somewhat different from what BBB does, so.

I think Yelp is mostly for supporting local shops or shits whining, but cmon. It's pretty clearly an amalgate sort by date, reviewer reliability, and how many times the review is praised with the "funny/useful/????" buttons. At most when you get an advertising package it has one of the random customer service reps page through and prune the obvious 1 star reviews from competitors or single review reviewers.

Seriously, I've done marketing work for a lot of businesses and paying for yelp didn't magically turn a 3 star business into 4.5. If it were that easy all those random Online Presence Improvement shops wouldn't exist.

Which would be nice, because their most common method is bombarding with shill accounts

AlbieQuirky
Oct 9, 2012



I think we're mostly on the same page that neither BBB nor Yelp is to be taken without a grain of salt. I will accept your argument that BBB games their system more than Yelp does as correct, since you have more knowledge of this than I do. I definitely find Yelp more helpful!

Thanatosian
Apr 16, 2013

Angrier, Bitterer Man


Grimey Drawer

Avvo (which bills themselves as "Yelp for lawyers") explicitly has their (highly aggressive) sales staff do that.

This isn't second-hand, I've received the calls myself.

PT6A
Jan 5, 2006
I am an autistic asshole that is incapable of understanding anything that isn't face value. Please consider my disability when reading my posts.

All online reviews of anything are lovely. I've been to awful places with great reviews, and I've been to amazing places with lovely reviews. You might as well just ask a loving Ouija board what's going to be any good, except when it tells you something is good it probably won't be overrun by knobs, which is more than can be said about loving TripAdvisor or Yelp.

EL BROMANCE
Jun 10, 2006

COWABUNGA DUDES!



I just read the worst reviews of the company in question, and see how they dealt with the situations.

Cyrano4747
Sep 25, 2006

Behind every great engineer is someone just hoping the "genius" doesn't bankrupt everyone.



Yelp etc. is flawed and imperfect as gently caress and if you're dealing with poo poo near you absolutely you should go by what your friends say or whatever.

BUT, if you're traveling or across town or whatever it's a pretty good rough indicator.

Josef K. Sourdust
Jul 16, 2014

"To be quite frank, Platinum sucks at making games. Vanquish was terrible and Metal Gear Rising: Revengance was so boring it put me to sleep."



How do I post a negative review of Yelp?

GreyjoyBastard
Mar 28, 2010


Josef K. Sourdust posted:

How do I post a negative review of Yelp?

Inform the BBB.

Midjack
Dec 24, 2007





Josef K. Sourdust posted:

How do I post a negative review of Yelp?

Find their corporate office on Google Maps.

Original_Z
Jun 14, 2005
Z so good

There's a version of Yelp in Japan called Tabelog which is blatant about their advertising system. Last year, every single restaurant on their platform who didn't advertise with them automatically got their rating reset to 3. Also, you literally cannot give a bad review to some "recommended" places, if you give like 1 or 2 stars then it'll give you some error message, so sometimes you'd see negative text with a positive score. How this site has any credibility left is beyond me.

EL BROMANCE
Jun 10, 2006

COWABUNGA DUDES!



Midjack posted:

Find their corporate office on Google Maps.

Speaking of Google Maps, there's actually a really interesting scam involving them and locksmiths. Reply All did an episode about it...

https://gimletmedia.com/episode/78-very-quickly-to-the-drill/

The relevant stuff starts at 16:22, but I remember the first part (about Google Ad Word scams) being a decent listen too. Reply All is always good for this kind of stuff though.

stringball
Mar 17, 2009



Isn't Yelp known to "extort" businesses by calling and asking them to setup some system to get the bsuiness noticed, and if they don't their "highly secret reccomendaton software" hide good reviews?

Cyrano4747
Sep 25, 2006

Behind every great engineer is someone just hoping the "genius" doesn't bankrupt everyone.



EL BROMANCE posted:

Speaking of Google Maps, there's actually a really interesting scam involving them and locksmiths. Reply All did an episode about it...

https://gimletmedia.com/episode/78-very-quickly-to-the-drill/

The relevant stuff starts at 16:22, but I remember the first part (about Google Ad Word scams) being a decent listen too. Reply All is always good for this kind of stuff though.

What's the scam. I'm not listening to this but am curious

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goatsestretchgoals
Jun 4, 2011

in soviet russia, you shove robot

There's a text link too: https://www.nytimes.com/2016/01/31/business/fake-online-locksmiths-may-be-out-to-pick-your-pocket-too.html?_r=0

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