Can you trust testimonials posted in WSOs?

222 replies
After having bought a few WSOs and online guides, I do not buy any of these (except for the rare WSO that offers some real value). I believe it is a waste of money to pay for info or products which is available for free on the web.

Almost always, the testimonials sing praises even when the product is useless or sub-par. Today, I have some idea why you find all great testimonials. A person contacted me for posting a comment on his WSO thread.
i need a favor bro
i have launched a wso
i just need you to post in my wso thread

"Hi XXX

Just ordered Transaction ID: 02643078BN517620R - please confirm and let me know if any issues

Thanks"

can you post it bro ?
It makes me more negative about WSOs that sell magic tricks for making money online.
#testimonials #trust #wsos
  • Profile picture of the author Jill Carpenter
    You need to report that PM (if it was a PM) as that is really not cool.

    And no, that is not the "norm" but I'm not surprised to see it.

    I go by testimonials of others here on the forum that I recognize or can see a history on.
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  • Profile picture of the author Danny Woolard
    A lot of the WarRoom members seem to blindly support each other. Just try to read between the lines before buying anything. Im sure some still have value.
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  • Profile picture of the author Tarismo818
    That is not a norm? I have seen it over and over, while i just joined the forum to post.. ive been lurking for years
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    • Profile picture of the author Lance K
      Originally Posted by Tarismo818 View Post

      That is not a norm? I have seen it over and over, while i just joined the forum to post.. ive been lurking for years
      It's NOT the norm in the sense described above. Most people who post a transaction ID actually bought the product. Jill was saying that it's not the norm to PM people and ask them to post fake transaction IDs, etc.
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  • Profile picture of the author liindsay
    get used to it
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    • Profile picture of the author JEasy
      If you indeed bought the wso, then it seems they just want you to post in the thread so others know someone else purchased. I just say this because there's a transaction id shown. It doesn't seem like there's any type of testimonial regarding the value of the wso involved here at all.

      If you didn't buy it and they are asking you to lie and say you did, well that's different.
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  • Profile picture of the author Dan Allard
    I've never seen it before, it's too bad that people try to take that route. All you can do is report them. I trust testimonials from warriors I know and trust, and usually if they have a higher post count and joined more than a year ago I'll trust them at first. Whenever someone gives a good review for a terrible product I remember the warriors who recommended it and don't trust their opinion in the future.
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  • Profile picture of the author tpw
    A lot of WSO's have legitimate testimonials in the thread.

    But with time, you will start to recognize the fakes. There are a few people who give good reviews for every POS that comes down the pike. And if the vendor is offering review copies in the thread in a way that seems desperate, many of the reviews will be questionable.

    The most reliable test is the credibility of the person giving the review. Some people strive to demonstrate incredible integrity when they review of product. As you learn who those people are, you will be able to discern the good reviews much more easily.
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    • Profile picture of the author twersk
      Originally Posted by tpw View Post

      A lot of WSO's have legitimate testimonials in the thread.

      But with time, you will start to recognize the fakes. There are a few people who give good reviews for every POS that comes down the pike. And if the vendor is offering review copies in the thread in a way that seems desperate, many of the reviews will be questionable.

      The most reliable test is the credibility of the person giving the review. Some people strive to demonstrate incredible integrity when they review of product. As you learn who those people are, you will be able to discern the good reviews much more easily.
      This is probably similar to what happened above and it got me thinking...so I'm just curious what everybody's take is: An offline product (WSO) came out a few days ago and one of the first reviews after the sales page ended was posted by someone who is one of their affiliates. (I searched for the product on the Forum when I got the non-Forum email from this same IMer.)

      Just curious if a review can be considered impartial if he is also an affiliate?

      bt
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  • Profile picture of the author Carlton Johnson
    Yep, I don't think that is the norm either; however, I do take testimonials with a pinch of salt, whether they be on a WSO thread or else where. You do need to try and take not of the integrity of the person posting the review. Yes, you do see the old "Hi I just bought this product Transaction ID 89o89898hh or whatever, but they often might be genuine.

    Please report anything else, especially if it was a PM so that there is proof.
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    • Profile picture of the author alfid
      Originally Posted by Carlton Johnson View Post

      Yep, I don't think that is the norm either; however, I do take testimonials with a pinch of salt, whether they be on a WSO thread or else where. You do need to try and take not of the integrity of the person posting the review. Yes, you do see the old "Hi I just bought this product Transaction ID 89o89898hh or whatever, but they often might be genuine.

      Please report anything else, especially if it was a PM so that there is proof.
      I originally thought this thread was going to be about testimonials on websites. It's hard because you don't want to have the comment fields left empty but customers also need real experience.
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  • Profile picture of the author blillard
    I sometimes look at the best testimonial and ask the OP who made how was his experience with the product. It pays to do little extra research and I also check out the vendors past post to see whats up.
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  • Profile picture of the author Lightlysalted
    Well done for raising this as an issue. I've seen quite a few reviews following that format!
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  • Profile picture of the author johnben1444
    I will say yes not because i promote here but because my promotion here opened my eyes to the reality. I use to think testimonial on WSO are all fake but that was a mistake.

    There is no way some one can have lots of people say positive thing about there service.

    Most of the testimonials often come from WF members here, on the testimonial you will have a ">" sign that will actually lead you to the person who commented on the thread.

    Try to see the reputation of the member's that participated, if it's high then that is one good sign.

    Authentic reviews do not come at a time, the reviews should be spread through months, that way you will have a good judgement of what is been offered because good product does not sleep.
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  • Profile picture of the author RedShifted
    The problem with WSOs is I don't think any product should be reviewed for free. Its like handing someone a free pizza and asking them "how did you like it?"

    They are 20xs more likely to say "it was good" just because you gave it to them for free. Now if you record that testimonial to show to paying customers, thats pretty manipulative if you ask me. Its only obvious that a person will be more critical when paying for something.

    Thats why when I read for testimonials I make sure of 3 things.

    1) The testimonial is coming from a paying customer.
    2) The testimonial is coming from an older account.
    3) There are lots of testimonials in the thread and most of them are all good.

    When those 3 factors are present you can usually feel a lot more confident about buying a wso.

    -Red
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    • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
      I think this is too closed a group to get away with a lot of "Blindly say my product changed your live" kind of testimonials. I want to see how they answer questions from prospective buyers. I ignore the reviews that are part of their sales page. Complaints don't change my mind, but ignoring questions does.

      On Amazon? I've seen the first 50 reviews from fellow authors who review each other's books. It's rampant.
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    • Profile picture of the author Tarismo818
      Originally Posted by RedShifted View Post

      The problem with WSOs is I don't think any product should be reviewed for free. Its like handing someone a free pizza and asking them "how did you like it?"

      They are 20xs more likely to say "it was good" just because you gave it to them for free. Now if you record that testimonial to show to paying customers, thats pretty manipulative if you ask me. Its only obvious that a person will be more critical when paying for something.

      Thats why when I read for testimonials I make sure of 3 things.

      1) The testimonial is coming from a paying customer.
      2) The testimonial is coming from an older account.
      3) There are lots of testimonials in the thread and most of them are all good.

      When those 3 factors are present you can usually feel a lot more confident about buying a wso.

      -Red
      great point. lots of people gettin something for free will feel like they must post a positive review.
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  • Profile picture of the author michaeljcheney
    You shouldn't make a buying decision on testimonials alone but when there are pages and pages of them from long-standing Warriors then it stands to reason the product is good.

    Also, that is also where you want to take advantage of any guarantee period offered to dive in and judge for yourself...
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    • Profile picture of the author Jill Carpenter
      Originally Posted by denutza View Post

      A lot of the WarRoom members seem to blindly support each other. Just try to read between the lines before buying anything. Im sure some still have value.
      Really? You want to blame this specifically on War Room Members? :rolleyes:

      Perhaps you can PM me some actual statistics.
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    • Profile picture of the author Bryan Zazz
      Originally Posted by michaeljcheney View Post

      You shouldn't make a buying decision on testimonials alone but when there are pages and pages of them from long-standing Warriors then it stands to reason the product is good.

      Also, that is also where you want to take advantage of any guarantee period offered to dive in and judge for yourself...
      I recently became a member on this forum because I am preparing a WSO myself. But I personally find testimonials a bit spammy and read them with a grain of salt. Now, when you say "pages and pages of testimonials", now that would be pretty annoying. I'd rather go this way: if you don't have real value to add to the discussion (beyond saying a simple "thank you" or "this sucks"), maybe silence is golden. The point is to add "real value" to the discussion. The question is "at which point does too many testimonials become ambient noise?". Just my WF-newbie opinion...
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      • Profile picture of the author jacktackett
        Originally Posted by Bryan Zazz View Post

        I recently became a member on this forum because I am preparing a WSO myself. ...

        This statement points out how the WSO forum has fundamentally changed over the years. WSO = Warrior Special Offers - special offers warrior members made to other warriors. Now it has morphed into a market place....people join just to be able to use the WSO forum.

        --Jack
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        • Profile picture of the author Bryan Zazz
          Originally Posted by jacktackett View Post

          This statement points out how the WSO forum has fundamentally changed over the years. WSO = Warrior Special Offers - special offers warrior members made to other warriors. Now it has morphed into a market place....people join just to be able to use the WSO forum.
          --Jack
          very true. But isn't this a sign of success? What if WSO is WF's "killer-app" ?
          (besides, you just won yourself a prolific poster ... when I'm not too busy with other concerns)
          --------
          In marketing terminology, a killer application (commonly shortened to killer app) is any computer program that is so necessary or desirable that it proves the core value of some larger technology, such as computer hardware, gaming console, software, a programming language, software platform, or an operating system. In other words, consumers would buy the (expensive) hardware just to run that application. A killer app can substantially increase sales of the platform on which it runs. [Wikipedia]
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  • Profile picture of the author Alminc
    Testimonials are marketing tactic that can be abused. I once purchased seo services from one guy only because he had unusually big number of glorious testimonials on his wso sales page. I mean really huge number of testimonials.

    I was shocked when his wife emailed me and, among other things, offered additional free backlinks if I give them my testimonial. I then understod the mystery behind the loooooong list of testimonials on his wso sales page - they were most probably offering additional backlinks to everybody behind the scenes in exchange for positive testimonial.

    I reported that case to admins, but I never got any response from them.

    By the way, if you want a few useful tips on how to approach wsos as a buyer you can read it here.


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  • Profile picture of the author laurencewins
    I only write positive testimonials if I believe in the product. If I don't, I will pm the writer and give them my negative feedback privately because it will only help them improve. I won't write a public negative testimonial because that benefits nobody.
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    • Profile picture of the author Anoosh Kashefi
      There are some extremely horrible WSOs out there. Somehow the sales page is riddled with positive reviews.
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    • Profile picture of the author d0de
      Originally Posted by laurencewins View Post

      I only write positive testimonials if I believe in the product. If I don't, I will pm the writer and give them my negative feedback privately because it will only help them improve. I won't write a public negative testimonial because that benefits nobody.
      It benefits everyone who is considering buying the product and is looking for an honest appraisal of quality.
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    • Profile picture of the author agmccall
      Originally Posted by laurencewins View Post

      I only write positive testimonials if I believe in the product. If I don't, I will pm the writer and give them my negative feedback privately because it will only help them improve. I won't write a public negative testimonial because that benefits nobody.
      It benefits potential buyers.
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  • Profile picture of the author wolfmmiii
    The problem I see with lots of testimonials is that many (maybe most??) of them are posted before the buyer ever uses the product. You tend to see lots of "Haven't implemented yet, but WSO looks great and the seller is a swell guy!" type "testimonials".
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    • Profile picture of the author CallOfTheMild
      And sometimes those testimonials come from newbies, such as myself. I don't have a long track record here, no one knows me, I barely have any posts...I guess if people don't want to believe my testimonials, (and I will NOT say something is good if I don't believe it. I don't spend money that I worked my tail off for just to blow wind up someone's skirt), then I guess they won't.

      I have given ONE testimonial so far.

      I may very well be giving another one soon....just want to wait a little bit of time to make sure....but by the end of the day, if it continues as it has been in the very short time it took to start working, it's going up.

      I wouldn't dismiss a new person's testimonials, what I would do is add that to the pile of other testimonials and see if the good outweighs the bad, overall.
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    • Profile picture of the author Formal Shorts
      Very shortly after launching my WFH thread I got a pm offering a review for a review. The person who sent it had a WSO with loads of positive reviews - most of them from members with very few posts. I just deleted the pm and made a note on my thread that I had no interest in hearing from those kind of people.

      How would one go about reporting it? I haven't received one since, but if I did I wouldn't be sure about the correct protocol.
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      • Profile picture of the author rosetrees
        Originally Posted by Gene.Gerwin View Post

        There must be an underground market somewhere for fake WSO reviews... some kind of black hat forum...
        I think it's called fiverrrrrrrrrr.........

        Originally Posted by Formal Shorts View Post

        Very shortly after launching my WFH thread I got a pm offering a review for a review. The person who sent it had a WSO with loads of positive reviews - most of them from members with very few posts. I just deleted the pm and made a note on my thread that I had no interest in hearing from those kind of people.

        How would one go about reporting it? I haven't received one since, but if I did I wouldn't be sure about the correct protocol.
        There's a little red triangle on PMs (I think it's at the top) - it's like the one at the left of all these posts. You click that to report a PM
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        • Profile picture of the author Tina Golden
          Originally Posted by laurencewins View Post

          I won't write a public negative testimonial because that benefits nobody.
          Um... don't you think it benefits the person who is thinking of buying? That's what honest reviews are supposed to do, whether positive OR negative.

          I won't send my negative feedback privately anymore. I thought like that at one time but you know what? Not one person ever made changes based on my feedback. Instead, they just didn't use my comments.

          Now if I get someone who wants me to review a product for them, I let them know upfront that I'm dead honest and I will post my feedback in public. That's cut down on the number of products I get asked to review considerably - and THAT should tell you something about some sellers.
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    • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
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      Originally Posted by denutza View Post

      A lot of the WarRoom members seem to blindly support each other. Just try to read between the lines before buying anything. Im sure some still have value.
      Really? That's a lot of people to put under one umbrella. Of the people that I actually dislike or choose to ignore on here, many are in fact War Room members. So much for the blind support theory.

      Originally Posted by wolfmmiii View Post

      The problem I see with lots of testimonials is that many (maybe most??) of them are posted before the buyer ever uses the product. You tend to see lots of "Haven't implemented yet, but WSO looks great and the seller is a swell guy!" type "testimonials".
      I love these testimonials, you know right away that you can ignore them .
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      • Profile picture of the author wolfmmiii
        Originally Posted by Joe Robinson View Post

        I love these testimonials, you know right away that you can ignore them .
        Good point
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  • Profile picture of the author KEKilpatrick
    There are shady people in all aspects of business... rules of thumb (just a couple)

    1. Make sure the offer "makes sense"

    2. If it sounds too good to be true...

    3. Sit it out, unless there will only be 5 copies of this "magic bullet" sold and you just HAVE to have it, wait it out for a few days and let others who just can't say no buy it and review it. If it's junk people will start calling the seller out on it.

    4. Know who you can trust (easier said than done sometimes). There are people on here that I feel that I can trust by how they carry themselves on and off the forum. A few that I've done business with have really earned my trust (they worked to earn it and I respect them for that).

    5. Don't judge reputation solely by post count... EVER
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  • Profile picture of the author imgeek2727
    There are usually some telltales signs if the reviews are fake.

    Here are some ways to pick apart reviews/positive comments:

    Look for patterns
    Do the comments look like they were written by the same person
    Do they all mention the same element of the product or are they all being vague and broad?
    Do none of the reviews focus on the core of the product?

    Look up the past posts of the persons doing the reviews, do you see a pattern?
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  • Profile picture of the author scottiek
    I always trust reviews more that say something negative about the product, even if the overall review is very positive. Nothing is 100% awesome...a little balance helps.
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  • Profile picture of the author SocialMediaOwls
    Rule number 1 in IM:

    Trust NO one

    Rule 2. See rule 1
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  • Profile picture of the author ImamHariyanto
    As long as I know, many WS* seller have their own big forum/chatting group. They usually make an agreement to others before lauch their product. This agreement may includes a decision to give comment/post on that WS* seller's thread. They hope that it can improve their sales.
    It also has an idea to make several WF dummy account, so when the seller build a WS* thread, they make a post by their dummy accounts.
    But, not all of the WF sellers like that. I think the honest seller number is larger than the "liar" seller. This forum still become a one of trusted forum for IMers.



    Disclaimer : I only guess, not judge
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  • Profile picture of the author rontheitguy
    While anyone would love to have lot's of positive feedback & reviews, shouldn't the more pressing matter be that of actually providing a product that has real value? I'm pretty new to the whole WSO thing having only sold one of my own so far and I wouldn't have dreamed of going and getting a bunch of false reviews. Seems to me that's just a recipe for disaster since you'll likely end up with lot's of returns anyway once people realize the product isn't all that! Too bad there are people out there using such tactics though.
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  • Profile picture of the author RichieM
    Nope I no longer trust WSO testimonials, seen too many bad products getting great reviews :-(
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  • Profile picture of the author TheSalesBooster
    A lot of people are in a big circle jerks on here so they all help each other out with testimonials.
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  • Profile picture of the author WillR
    You should definitely report that person.

    Reviews are definitely not the only thing you should look at when considering a purchase. After a number of purchases you start to get better at separating the wheat from the chaff.
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  • Profile picture of the author rahulrockerdwor
    trust the reviews in the marketing forum...for they i have found are totally legit but dont go for any of the testimonials in the wso area...they are all so fake...
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  • Profile picture of the author xxxJamesxxx
    It's sad people are doing this as now I just totally ignore ALL testimonials whether their real or not.

    James Scholes
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    • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
      Banned
      Originally Posted by xxxJamesxxx View Post

      It's sad people are doing this as now I just totally ignore ALL testimonials whether their real or not.

      James Scholes
      It's not exactly a "new" thing and it isn't limited to just WSOs or even the internet. You can find ulterior motives behind the endorsement of almost any product around.
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      • Profile picture of the author Alminc
        I think that it would help a lot if the wso section had 2 subsections:

        - Hall of Fame (sellers with a lot of wsos with top quality products)
        - Hall of SHAME (crappy products, scams, false testimonials,...)

        People would be scared of ending up in the Hall of SHAME!
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        • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
          Banned
          Originally Posted by Alminc View Post

          I think that it would help a lot if the wso section had 2 subsections:

          - Hall of Fame (sellers with a lot of wsos with top quality products)
          - Hall of SHAME (crappy products, scams, false testimonials,...)

          People would be scared of ending up in the Hall of SHAME!
          The clusterf**k that would come with people complaining about being shunned from one or put into the other would make for better TV than Jersey Shore. Would never happen.
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      • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
        General comments...

        If you get a request like that regarding a product you haven't bought, please report it. Same with anyone offering extras in return for comments in a sales thread.

        As far as "fake" testimonials... Not a really common thing, but it does happen. If you suspect it, report it. We went through a period when that was much more common than it is now, and the drop is largely because members told the mods, and the mods started nuking offers - and sellers.

        Word gets around.

        Fake negative reviews are more common than fake testimonials these days. That and "refund requests" posted in threads from people who never bought the product in question. Neither happen all that much, though.

        A more common thing is people reviewing something without the experience to properly assess it, or without having used it.

        Example: If I reviewed a product on almost any kind of non-fiction writing, you could put some stock in those comments. If I reviewed a product on SEO, you'd better look for statements about my having used it, along with specific results. I don't know enough about SEO to properly review a beginners' guide at this point.

        That's a two-way street. Buyers should reserve comments to things they've either tested or about which they have enough clue to offer sound advice. Because that's what a review is, ultimately: Advice.

        People considering a product need to keep their own experience in mind, along with whatever they can know about the experience of the reviewer. If you can't properly assess either of those, you should ignore reviews entirely, aside from comments about support or delivery of service.

        And to the folks making generalized allegations about how the reviews are mostly fake... Put up or shut up. Spouting negative garbage with no basis is a good way to develop a reputation as a destructive schmuck. Especially if you're an anonymous non-entity with no other apparent purpose here.

        If you see so much of it, report it. Be specific, and you'll get our attention and proper action. If you can't point to something specific to support your allegations, maybe you should rethink your position.

        Red,
        They are 20xs more likely to say "it was good" just because you gave it to them for free. Now if you record that testimonial to show to paying customers, thats pretty manipulative if you ask me. Its only obvious that a person will be more critical when paying for something.
        If you want to avoid problems, you need to be careful to differentiate between comments from paying customers and those who got something free.

        That's not just good ethics. It's the law.

        Shorty,
        How would one go about reporting it?
        There's a little red triangle above the PM and to the right. Click that, and fill in the necessary details. Once you submit it, it will go to the mods for review.

        Claude,
        I want to see how they answer questions from prospective buyers. I ignore the reviews that are part of their sales page. Complaints don't change my mind, but ignoring questions does.
        Amen to that.

        We have a few sellers who think the mods should delete tough questions. They report them, claiming they're attempts to harm their sales, rather than dealing with them like grown-ups. And they can never figure out why their threads tend to blow up into fights and accusation fests.

        I can tell you that I give a lot more credibility to people who give straight answers and acknowledge their products' weak points along with the strong ones.

        Oh yeah... Don't buy anything the seller doesn't describe in useful detail. Especially if they try to claim that giving a simple outline or description would be "giving away the method." Sorry, goys and birls, but anything you can't describe clearly without giving it away is too thin to be called a product.


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        • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
          Oh yeah... Almost forgot.

          It's true that a lot of reviews are from people who haven't used a product. You need to keep that in mind, but you should also keep in mind that if it takes more than a few days to see results, most people aren't going to come back and comment. They've forgotten about the thread, or are just busy doing business.

          Things tend to move quickly in the WSO section. That has good and bad sides, and you should keep BOTH in mind when looking at offers there.


          Paul
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  • Profile picture of the author xtrapunch
    If you read the testimonials, you will find that most of them leave great reviews by just reading it. It is rare to find a testimonial from people who actually implemented the tactic and had success with it.
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  • Profile picture of the author iammiles
    Some feedbacks are legit and some are not. That's just how it works
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  • Profile picture of the author career21st
    I have joined for more than a year, learnt my lessons about 'false' testimonials. But there are good stuff too.

    We have to be careful
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  • Profile picture of the author Oliver Williams
    I have looked at so many offers that usually I can get a feel for the WSO or offer by looking at the big picture, read every post, every detail and form my opinion based on the whole thread not on any individual post or testimonial.

    How many people here actually read EVERYTHING?

    Most of the posts on WSOs are people asking questions that have already been answered, had they read the thread.
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  • Profile picture of the author YourProfessional
    The problem with positive reviews, is that a lot of people DON'T actually put the WSO into practice.

    I've negatively reviewed at least 10 WSOs that have stellar content, simply because I put them into practice and they DON'T WORK.

    So, no, don't trust positive reviews.

    Find someone who you trust, in the Internet Marketing field, and listen to their reviews and promotions.

    Jovana
    Wait30days
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    I test products... before I give my final review.
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    • Profile picture of the author WillR
      Originally Posted by YourProfessional View Post

      So, no, don't trust positive reviews.
      You can't just make a blanket statement like that since it is NOT true.

      There are plenty of people giving their honest reviews on the WSO forum. Sure, some (maybe even a lot) of them have not put the information into action when they review the course but do you honestly expect that to happen nowadays?

      It doesn't mean what they are saying is untrue. A lot of them are commenting on the delivery of the product, the quality of the product... things like that. Whether someone chooses to leave their feedback immediately after accessing the product or waiting until after they have implemented the product, is totally up to them. It's not for you or I to say what is right or wrong.

      Take your service for example. You provide reviews after 30 days? What's to say that given the same product as someone else, you would have the same results after 30 days as they would? Yes you have tested the product for longer but even if you had no results with that product after 30 days, it's still not to say the product will not work for other people.

      A lot of the success of a product has to do with the person implementing the product not the actual product itself. That's why you will see the same old people buying and commenting on WSO's over and over again. They are buyers who love to keep buying the dream but never implement anything they read. Then there are the other people who come here and buy a couple of WSO's, work out a game plan and put it into action, and they never look back.

      Two people implementing the same WSO are almost ALWAYS going to have very varying results. That goes to say the real success of most WSO's is down to the person who bought it.
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  • Profile picture of the author faisalmaximus
    Don't judge all the WSO's through only that user. I think Warrior Forum authority should take action against these fake reviews. I got some WSO where a lot of persons are commenting on the thread who have posts less than 5, I believe some persons are making fake reviews from fake accounts. These should be strictly prohibited.
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    • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
      This really only applies to this forum;

      Most offers I see (that would apply to my business) are so cheap that, if I get one solid idea, I'm a happy camper. I have bought maybe 50 WSOs here. 90% of them were at least worth the money paid, and a few were outstanding.

      The testimonials? The problem in a forum like this is that some people become friend...of course they will give a good review, unless the product is truly worthless.

      I like the reviews that come in after a few complaints. That way the "Buddy" reviews have already been posted.
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    • Profile picture of the author goindeep
      Although most reviews are legit there will be a number of fake reviews or in my opinion something which is just as bad -paid reviews. Paid reviews are just as bad as fake reviews in my opinion because they will always be positive, always. So in essence the reader is not getting an honest opinion of the product but instead a review driven by monetary gain on both parts.

      I never go buy reviews anyway.

      Not in the I.M. niche at least.

      Even if they are good reviews, rarely if ever do they actually review the product and it's claims properly.

      I used to own a well ranking product review site and I had the simple rule that I would never write or produce a review for anything that I had not actually reviewed. When I could not do this I would curate reviews.

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    • Profile picture of the author ss442
      Rosetrees is correct, a marketer can buy all the testimonials they want on video from "Fiver", even on video!

      So watch out.
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  • Profile picture of the author Eduard Stinga
    While some testimonials are definitely "fishy", you can't go wrong with WSOs that have tens of testimonials posted in the thread.

    In time, you also get some experience in seeing which ones are good, which users you trust to review, etc. Just use your common sense
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  • Profile picture of the author Deepak Media
    The user who posts the WSO, his post count and thanks count is more important for me. Then I trust the testimonials too which is an icing on the cake.

    Some user with just 100 post count and no proper avatar is not very appealing to me.

    However if the offer is irresistible then I am gonna buy it.
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  • Profile picture of the author BIG Mike
    Banned
    A better question to ask is, "Why would you trust testimonials from people you don't know well?"

    You can't possibly gauge the accuracy of a testimonial without being able to put it into the proper context, which means understanding the perspective of the person making it.

    For example, my buddy recommends a movie he saw, raving about it. Since he and I both share similar tastes in movies, I'll probably go see it. Conversely, when I mention to my sister we're going to see it, she tells me she saw it and it sucked. But, since my sister and I disagree about a lot of things, I'll ignore her opinion about it.

    When it comes to testimonials, my rule of thumb is to ignore them entirely. The only exception to this is when I see one from someone I know and trust - then I'll ask him or her directly for more information.

    You should NEVER base your buying decision on testimonials from people you don't know.
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  • Profile picture of the author ImWendy
    I never read the testimonials anyway. 9 out of 10 times, they talk about how well written and laid out the report (or whatever) was. That doesn't turn me on to buying anything. Not that I buy warrior special offers anymore. I stopped a while back.
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  • Profile picture of the author Trivum
    99% of all WSO testimonials go like this:

    Just bought this. Looks FANTASTIC!!! Can't believe the value here. I have never actually put this into practice, and no doubt never will, but BUY THIS WSO BEFORE THE PRICE GOES UP! It's the best frigging thing I've seen on the net since 9:30 this morning!
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    • Profile picture of the author tpw
      Originally Posted by Trivum View Post

      99% of all WSO testimonials go like this:

      Just bought this. Looks FANTASTIC!!! Can't believe the value here. I have never actually put this into practice, and no doubt never will, but BUY THIS WSO BEFORE THE PRICE GOES UP! It's the best frigging thing I've seen on the net since 9:30 this morning!

      I take it that the 99% was determined through true scientific-type analysis?

      LOL

      Blatant generalizations like this one only serve to prove your bias or ignorance. The public will decide which of the two -- bias or ignorance -- your comments more closely reflect.
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      • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
        99% of all WSO testimonials:
        The only statements I would be comfortable making after that opening are:

        1: Exist on the Warrior Forum, and
        2: Are posted in English.

        I'm not all that certain about #1. I got plenty of great testimonials when I was selling things through the WSO section that were sent via email and never appeared on the forum. I seriously doubt I'm the only one.

        Still, I'm pretty confident about the second point.
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      • Profile picture of the author Trivum
        Originally Posted by tpw View Post

        I take it that the 99% was determined through true scientific-type analysis?
        It was actually 99.3%. I rounded down.


        Originally Posted by tpw View Post

        Blatant generalizations like this one only serve to prove your bias or ignorance. The public will decide which of the two -- bias or ignorance -- your comments more closely reflect.
        I'm guessing you weren't real strong in literature class.

        My bias is against worthless reviews like most WSOs are filled with.

        Here you go, champ: https://www.google.com/search?q=site...ient=firefox-a
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        • Profile picture of the author tpw
          Originally Posted by Trivum View Post

          It was actually 99.3%. I rounded down.

          My bias is against worthless reviews like most WSO's are filled with.

          Here you go, champ: https://www.google.com/search?q=site...ient=firefox-a

          LOL Champ...

          That link does not prove 99% or 99.3%.

          Take the first WSO in your search results. It contains 17 posts, only 2 of which are reviews, and the first review was less than "rah rah":

          Originally Posted by Mr Bill View Post

          I just bought this. My review:

          The good: It's a clever simple concept that should work. I like how it involves the personal touch and my guess is that it will get the attention of any business owner.

          Could be improved: A little long on "story" - took a while to get to the meat but still, it's only a few moments out of my life so not really an issue. This would be just as good if it were shorter on "story" and quicker to the method. Even though it's good when you get to it I can see it leading to some frustration which is an unnecessary emotion to experience just after you bought something...even for just two bucks.

          On the plus side: I like old things and this is a plain and simple idea that uses old world charm with new world sense to get straight to the heart of a businesses owners main problem.

          I look forward to trying it. In fact I'm heading out today to grab a...oops, don't want to give anything away. 2 Bucks well spent.


          The second search result has 71 posts, 10 "just bought this" comments, only 3 of which are testimonials.

          The first testimonial says, "Nice plugin," then asks a question about the plugin.

          The second testimonial says, "Awesome support."

          The third testimonial says that this plugin is better than a competitors plugin.

          And the other 7 people are complaining about not getting what they purchased.



          Do I really need to continue?

          Since you are so adamant that you are right, how about showing us how you reached your 99.3% conclusion?
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          • Profile picture of the author Trivum
            Originally Posted by tpw View Post


            That link does not prove 99% or 99.3%.
            I think this line says it all. Again.
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          • Profile picture of the author xtrapunch
            Originally Posted by tpw View Post

            And the other 7 people are complaining about not getting what they purchased.
            If you read the original post, you will see that the ridiculous request was for a similar post. The "not so honest" guy wanted me to pretend that I bought the WSO. Some clever folks might also post fake "bought but no download" posts to make the WSO thread look hot.
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            • Profile picture of the author tpw
              Originally Posted by xtrapunch View Post

              If you read the original post, you will see that the ridiculous request was for a similar post. The "not so honest" guy wanted me to pretend that I bought the WSO. Some clever folks might also post fake "bought but no download" posts to make the WSO thread look hot.

              If you were paying attention, I answered your OP in post #8.

              The post you are quoting now is a response to someone else's use of a wide paintbrush in order to taint the majority of testimonials on this forum.
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              • Profile picture of the author Trivum
                Originally Posted by tpw View Post

                The post you are quoting now is a response to someone else's use of a wide paintbrush in order to taint the majority of testimonials on this forum.
                Bill,

                I just want to be clear -- I don't think the majority of reviews are fake, but I certainly do think the majority are pretty worthless.

                Saying you've read a WSO and you think it's great doesn't equate to actual USER experience (which is what a real review should be).

                These people are not USERS.

                They may be honest. And they may be well-intentioned. But until they've put the WSO into action and gotten results (or not), then their reviews are *practically* worthless. Not completely worthless. They certainly have the experience to comment on how the information was structured, whether they thought it was complete or not, etc., but when review after review after review is nothing but these types of comments, it becomes noise.

                And you can agree with this or not, but I stand by my position that the VAST VAST VAST majority of reviews are exactly this. If you would like to take the position that the majority of WSO reviews are by people that actually took action on the product, then that's fine by me. I guess we disagree.

                p.s. Didn't mean to get so snippy before. I appreciate your contributions here, and I regularly make sure to read your posts.
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                • Profile picture of the author tpw
                  Originally Posted by Trivum View Post

                  Bill,

                  I just want to be clear -- I don't think the majority of reviews are fake, but I certainly do think the majority are pretty worthless.

                  Saying you've read a WSO and you think it's great doesn't equate to actual USER experience (which is what a real review should be).

                  These people are not USERS.

                  They may be honest. And they may be well-intentioned. But until they've put the WSO into action and gotten results (or not), then their reviews are *practically* worthless. Not completely worthless. They certainly have the experience to comment on how the information was structured, whether they thought it was complete or not, etc., but when review after review after review is nothing but these types of comments, it becomes noise.

                  And you can agree with this or not, but I stand by my position that the VAST VAST VAST majority of reviews are exactly this. If you would like to take the position that the majority of WSO reviews are by people that actually took action on the product, then that's fine by me. I guess we disagree.

                  p.s. Didn't mean to get so snippy before. I appreciate your contributions here, and I regularly make sure to read your posts.

                  Thank you for posting again. I do appreciate it.

                  If you feel the VAST majority of testimonials are without value, then I might suggest that you and I are looking at different WSO's.

                  I would agree that just reading the information and reviewing it without testing the information is generally not of real value to most people, who are considering a purchase. BUT...

                  But there are others who offer reviews who have real-world experience doing exactly what was spoke of in the product. In these cases, it is not necessary to put the information to the test to know its value. If the reviewer has already proven to themselves that the information is solid and actionable, then that is a valuable testimonial.

                  This leads back to what I said at the beginning of the thread...

                  If you understand WHO is doing the testimonial, then you know how to value the testimonial.

                  If we don't know the testimonial-giver, then neither you or I are really qualified to judge the value of their positive or negative review.

                  The best way for us to understand how to read a testimonial is to take the time to get to know the person who has written it.
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  • Profile picture of the author xtrapunch
    Some random active WSOs and their problems in my opinion (I have not reviewed all the threads in detail):

    1. A Proven 12 Step System That Spits out $800-$1000/month Cash Sucking Affiliate Blogs on AutoPilot!

    Problem/Suggestion: Too much sensationalism.

    2. [INSANE] Newbie Turn Key AUTOMATED System That Is Banking $1500 A Day. NO JOKE. Proof Inside!
    Problem/Suggestion: Has any buyer been able to make the claimed amount or even a fraction of it?

    3. [350+ SOLD] Got 30 Minutes a Day & a Small List? You Can Be Making $3,000.00 Per Month GUARANTEED!

    Problem/Suggestion: Is the income guaranteed or just a big "CAN"?

    4. Google Rank #2 in 38 Minutes FLAT!

    Problem/Suggestion: The ranking is not of the target site but of the press release site. As far as I understand, you want own site in Google #1.

    5. (Coaching) 90 Days to $1k a Day - Impossible to Fail or I pay You!

    Problem/Suggestion: If you are going to pay me when I fail, why not charge me when I succeed? It makes more sense to me as a buyer. If your system can make $1,000, why charge just $10, $25 or $95? I want to pay you $1000 when I make hit $1K a day using your system.

    I actually tried the last suggestion once when I asked one WSO creator to teach me the method and help me make a fraction of what he was claiming. After a couple of Skype mentoring sessions, he stopped mentoring. I was never able to find if his system actually worked

    Maybe, some new rules can be introduced to make the WSO section more "special". Some suggestions:

    * All testimonials should be from WF members with XX posts and/or YY days old.
    * No "great read/resource" testimonials for systems that teach money making methods.
    * Such testimonials should be from buyers who actually put the system to use.


    These are just my observations and suggestions. I might be wrong. More experienced warriors would be able to provide correct analysis.

    Thanks,
    Pritam
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  • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
    Banned
    *Grabs popcorn, but not the popcorn .gif*
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    • Profile picture of the author tpw
      Originally Posted by Joe Robinson View Post

      *Grabs popcorn, but not the popcorn .gif*

      Does this mean that we are going to let Michael Jackson finally die? :p
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      • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
        Banned
        Originally Posted by tpw View Post

        Does this mean that we are going to let Michael Jackson finally die? :p
        I had switched to Colbert personally. Liked the 3D glasses better.
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  • Profile picture of the author greenowl123
    I usually ignore the first 2 pages of reviews for WSOs - when you get to the 3rd or 4th page is when the reviews start to "keep it real" and you get the real deal Holyfield on how good or bad the WSO is.
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  • I personally never even read testimonials, either on WSO or elsewhere, because I *know* how often they get abused.
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  • Profile picture of the author drewdude
    I will never trust testimonials again. I searched Fiverr the other day and found actors selling their services to create fake testimonials.
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    • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
      Banned
      Originally Posted by drewdude View Post

      I will never trust testimonials again. I searched Fiverr the other day and found actors selling their services to create fake testimonials.
      You mean people lie? On the internet?! What a world.
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      • Profile picture of the author tpw
        Originally Posted by Joe Robinson View Post

        You mean people lie? On the internet?! What a world.

        Or that people are willing to sell out their integrity for a few bucks?

        Please say it ain't so!!
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      • Profile picture of the author drewdude
        Originally Posted by Joe Robinson View Post

        You mean people lie? On the internet?! What a world.
        Haha, I know! I just didn't think people would be so blatant as to post that they want people to fake testimonials.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rod Cortez
    I take any and all testimonials with a grain of salt. From people I trust, probably two grains. Ultimately, it's my responsibility to do the research to learn about the person or company selling the WSO and if there are any red flags, I simply don't buy it.

    Testimonials are way too easy to obtain and most people are afraid to give objective testimonials and negative testimonials never get posted. So by their very nature, they're not reliable. But in terms of conversions, they work, but that's for a different thread entirely.

    RoD
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  • Profile picture of the author JayVance
    I've given 1 review for a WSO and it did provide some decent value, a lot of video tutorials which I thought was nice. So I gave a good testimonial for it. But I agree with ya, there is a lot of fake testimonials out there and marketers team up with each other no matter how crappy their product is.
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  • Profile picture of the author David Keith
    The truth is that the vast majority of wso's that include testimonials are in direct violation of the current FTC guidelines. Here is a snippet straight from those guidelines.

    Under the revised Guides, advertisements that feature a consumer and convey his or her experience with a product or service as typical when that is not the case will be required to clearly disclose the results that consumers can generally expect. In contrast to the 1980 version of the Guides – which allowed advertisers to describe unusual results in a testimonial as long as they included a disclaimer such as “results not typical” – the revised Guides no longer contain this safe harbor.

    The revised Guides also add new examples to illustrate the long standing principle that “material connections” (sometimes payments or free products) between advertisers and endorsers – connections that consumers would not expect – must be disclosed.
    Essentially, every testimonial that is displayed that comes from a person who received a free copy, a discount, or has an affiliate relationship with the product must have a disclosure attached to each review stating that relationship.

    The ftc is trying to create transparency so that consumers are aware of any alternative motives and conflicts of interest that may accompany any particular testimonial.

    Why folks are allowed to get away with not following the law is beyond me, but that only lasts for so long. Eventually the laws of the land catch up to people.
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      David,
      Essentially, every testimonial that is displayed that comes from a person who received a free copy, a discount, or has an affiliate relationship with the product must have a disclosure attached to each review stating that relationship.
      That should definitely be applied to testimonials the seller re-posts or incorporates into their sales material. I'm not sure how it fits with comments posted independently by customers, especially given the fact that they can also post negative reviews.

      We implemented the "no bonuses for posting comments" rule to help make things more transparent and, as much as we can, to do away with the stuff that was compensated but not disclosed.
      Why folks are allowed to get away with not following the law is beyond me
      From the forum's perspective, it's simple. We do what we can, but we have no way to know who bought and who got a freebie, or who is an affiliate and who is not. Given that a number of the moderators also sell stuff here, it would probably not be appropriate for us to have that information.


      Paul
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      • Profile picture of the author David Keith
        The truth is that affiliates are required to disclose their relationship and the fact that they are being compensated. Another interesting thing is that virtually all current legal precedent does indeed hold merchants responsible for the actions of its affiliates.

        The only significant cases to go against this precedent are when the merchant can prove they did not know the affiliate was violating the laws. In the wso section there is no way that claim holds water regarding testimonial disclosures. The merchant knows who is affiliates, who got free copies, who got discounted copies and who leaves testimonials in the form of forum posts.

        Current legal precedent seems to hold the merchants responsible if the affiliate chooses to promote their program using illegal methods. Including not disclosing their affiliate relationship.

        Unfortunately in this format, the merchant does not have full control to edit other peoples posts, but that does not remove the merchants liability. The merchant choose to use the wso format so they must figure out a way to legally comply or face the consequences.

        The WF is making a good deal of money by allowing such illegal actions to go on, so I don't see any way the FTC is going to give WF a free pass. The WF is choosing to be complicit in allowing the illegal testimonials to be routinely posted in large part because it is good for business.

        Take a pawn shop for instance. Just because a particular pawn shop does not have a reliable means for identifying stolen goods, that does not give them legal cover to sell stolen merchandise. Its their problem to figure out how to comply with the law.

        The WF is in the same boat. just because there is not currently a system in place to figure out how to make people comply with the law does not give WF the right to allow illegal testimonials to be posted. Turning a blind eye is not a solid legal defense.

        Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

        David,That should definitely be applied to testimonials the seller re-posts or incorporates into their sales material. I'm not sure how it fits with comments posted independently by customers, especially given the fact that they can also post negative reviews.

        We implemented the "no bonuses for posting comments" rule to help make things more transparent and, as much as we can, to do away with the stuff that was compensated but not disclosed.From the forum's perspective, it's simple. We do what we can, but we have no way to know who bought and who got a freebie, or who is an affiliate and who is not. Given that a number of the moderators also sell stuff here, it would probably not be appropriate for us to have that information.


        Paul
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        • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
          The WF is making a good deal of money by allowing such illegal actions to go on
          Turning a blind eye is not a solid legal defense.
          Ah, David...

          There are rules in place concerning this, along with a reporting system people can use to let the mods know when violations occur. And we act on those reports.

          Failure to be omniscient is not the same as "turning a blind eye."


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          • Profile picture of the author David Keith
            Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

            Ah, David...

            There are rules in place concerning this, along with a reporting system people can use to let the mods know when violations occur. And we act on those reports.

            Failure to be omniscient is not the same as "turning a blind eye."


            Paul
            It is not the responsibility of customers/members to let the WF know when they are violating the law. It is the responsibility of WF to police itself or have some other regulatory agency do that for them.

            Also, WF rules do not supersede legal precedent and laws. Just because its the way WF does things does not at all make it legal. According to current laws and legal precedent the merchants do have the responsibility to police its affiliates.

            Currently the WF is complicit in allowing illegal behavior to continue despite knowing it is very prevalent. That will not be allowed to go on. The regulators will come knocking...when, I don't know. But those facilitating illegal behavior will face the consequences.

            The truth is that if this were regarding something like spam the WF would be all for regulating it. But the clear conflicts of interest are making the WF unwilling to take measures to comply with the law.

            WF is currently looking for every possible reason not to enforce the law rather than looking for ways to enforce the current laws of the land. Its not hard to figure out why either.

            That is profit driven, and I surely would not want to be sitting in a room trying to explain that position to some FTC investigator types. My experience is that they really don't care much about anyone's (WF) opinion.
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            • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
              It is not the responsibility of customers/members to let the WF know when they are violating the law. It is the responsibility of WF to police itself or have some other regulatory agency do that for them.
              This is not a traditional advertising venue. We have MORE rules in place to police advertisers than newspapers and magazines, including real-time systems for members to make violations known.
              The truth is that if this were regarding something like spam the WF would be all for regulating it. But the clear conflicts of interest are making the WF unwilling to take measures to comply with the law.
              First thought: Re-read the rules in the WSO section, paying special attention to the ones regarding reviews and testimonials.

              Then, if you have specific suggestions of ways to improve the way these things are handled to make them more effective, PM me. You know better than almost anyone that I read those suggestions and consider tham seriously. I don't own the place or make the rules, but I will push for changes that make things better for the members. Not that it usually takes any real pushing.
              Currently the WF is complicit in allowing illegal behavior to continue despite knowing it is very prevalent.
              Ummm... I'll leave the arguments about the meaning of "complicit" in this context for the lawyers. I will, however, suggest that you ought to present something more than an assertion before claiming that it's anything like prevalent. From my observations, it isn't, but I don't see everything that goes on.


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  • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
    Banned
    I've never received a request like that, but I've received requests to check out their product and provide a review. Nothing wrong in that. Many testimonials in WSOs are legit, particularly when you see a popular WSO and you read past the first page, they tend to get real and not the result of receiving a review copy.
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    • Profile picture of the author tpw
      Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post

      I've never received a request like that, but I've received requests to check out their product and provide a review. Nothing wrong in that. Many testimonials in WSOs are legit, particularly when you see a popular WSO and you read past the first page, they tend to get real and not the result of receiving a review copy.

      Strangely , sometimes I get review requests, and when I tell them that I won't promise a good review but only an honest review, then they tell me to forget it.
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      • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
        Banned
        Originally Posted by tpw View Post

        Strangely , sometimes I get review requests, and when I tell them that I won't promise a good review but only an honest review, then they tell me to forget it.

        Yeah ... I usually just tell them I don't do reviews unless I decide on my own to buy a product. I really don't want to be in the position of handing out bad reviews, but I wouldn't hand out a good one that wasn't deserved.

        I accepted one .... he was fairly new and pretty sincere and I caved. I read his report and it was bleh .... not much to it. I just never pm'd back or left the review. That was the one and only I've accepted from someone I didn't know.
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  • Profile picture of the author yukon
    Banned
    I make it a point to not buy from anyone that includes a testimonial in their copy.

    I don't care If 10 million people like the product, all I need to know is what am I getting & how much.
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  • Profile picture of the author brett301005
    The problem with WSOs is you don't see any NEGATIVE reviews.

    1. The WF doesn't allow someone to post a negative review, you run the risk of having you account banned.

    I can see why they don't allow the negative comments, the site would just end up a big b*tch session and no one would want to visit.

    It follows along the line of a 10:1 ratio, in that a negative comment will create 10 times more noise that the positive comments, they just want to tell everyone, its human nature.

    But it doesn't provide a balanced view of the product, a few negative reviews are normal. Take Fiverr gigs for an example, if the gig provider has less than 5-10% negative reviews its fine with me, especially when they have 100 comments.
    Most of them are 'didn't deliver on time' as they probably ordered over the weekend.

    You learn just as much from the negative review (maybe more) than the positive, the Fiverr gig example above may not be delivered on time.

    2. The reviews are from people who purchased the WSO a few minutes earlier and haven't put the course to the test and implemented anything, they reply with 'looks great'.

    3. A cheap $37 course is not cheap when you take 2 weeks to put it into place and it lacks to produce the results, add up 2 weeks salary + the $37 and that's the real cost. Choose carefully and stay on your niche/product until its finished, don't start something off your niche because its cheap.

    Yukon - just made a great point.
    I won't buy a software product unless they provide a video demo of it in use.

    Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

    especially given the fact that they can also post negative reviews.
    Paul
    I just read this after I posted, I'm certain that I read in the Terms of Service (ToS) that no negative comments can be posted. Happy Days....Got to go, I have a bone to pick with someone


    Brett
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    • Profile picture of the author tpw
      Originally Posted by brett301005 View Post

      The problem with WSOs is you don't see any NEGATIVE reviews.

      1. The WF doesn't allow someone to post a negative review, you run the risk of having you account banned.


      especially given the fact that they can also post negative reviews.
      Paul

      I just read this after I posted, I'm certain that I read in the Terms of Service (ToS) that no negative comments can be posted. Happy Days....Got to go, I have a bone to pick with someone


      Brett

      Sorry dude... You did not read that in the Terms of Service for this forum.
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    • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
      Banned
      Originally Posted by brett301005 View Post

      The problem with WSOs is you don't see any NEGATIVE reviews.

      1. The WF doesn't allow someone to post a negative review, you run the risk of having you account banned.Brett

      This isn't true. If you provide a fair and objective negative review, it stays. Maybe you haven't seen a lot of WSOs through to the last page, but there have been quite a few that I've seen that are a train wreck. I've seen plenty of negative reviews.

      What doesn't stick are reviews that just slam the product or the seller in a personal way. There's no need for an inflammatory review. Fair and objective. That's the key.
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    • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
      Banned
      Originally Posted by brett301005 View Post

      1. The WF doesn't allow someone to post a negative review, you run the risk of having you account banned.
      Here are the parts of the WSO rules (stickies on top of the section that you'd do well to read and not make assumptions about) that pertain to reviews:

      After making a purchase please post your review. Since the forum does not review, recommend, or confirm the content of WSOs, and disclaims all responsibility for whether they live up to their promises, your truthful evaluation is important for all members considering a purchase.

      Clarification: You may review the product if you've purchased. You may not debate about the sales process. If you feel something is deceptive, use the little red triangle to report it to the moderators. Include details of what you believe is misrepresented, and why. Be specific, and remember that "I don't like this" is not the same thing as "This is unethical."


      Analysis: They want your review, good or bad, as long as it is honest. They want you to have actually purchased a product to leave a review about it. None of the language here even hints that they will delete a review because it is negative.

      Do not argue about them, or make statements beyond the list of what is offered.

      Analysis: If you have something to say about the product that is less than savory, you need to keep it about the product. You don't get to attack the seller, call them a scammer, or call out their mother. That stuff gets deleted. It is extremely easy to leave a negative view while acting like an adult. At least, that's what one would hope for.


      Please keep your reviews objective and remember there is a full spectrum of experience by our worldwide membership.


      Analysis: Note the word "objective". Negative reviews that get deleted don't adhere to this. That simple.
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  • Profile picture of the author Greg71
    I got a review copy of a graphics pack recently on the condition I post a review if I like what I saw (and got).

    It was great. Really good graphics and heaps of it. So I posted a review saying that.

    My post was honest and positively in favour of the product. Even if I had of paid for it, my opinion would have been the same.

    However, I do get the feeling that some wso's have a cheerleading squad that fill the first page with "awesome product, thanks man, you continue to overdeliver" etc.

    Not all, but some.
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  • Profile picture of the author ebiz1
    This is something that happens on every market. It is not unusual. Someone should not take a buying desision based only on reviews, unless there is a lot on that specific product or person. And you should put a stop on this matter by just pm that person.
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    • Profile picture of the author WillR
      Originally Posted by David Keith View Post

      The truth is that the vast majority of wso's that include testimonials are in direct violation of the current FTC guidelines. Here is a snippet straight from those guidelines.
      Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

      David,That should definitely be applied to testimonials the seller re-posts or incorporates into their sales material. I'm not sure how it fits with comments posted independently by customers, especially given the fact that they can also post negative reviews.
      David,

      Paul is right. If you are referring to all the posts in a WSO thread then that rule does not apply. They are forum posts from people, they are not testimonials as such. They are written by a third party and the WSO vendor has no control over what people say in their own posts on a public forum.

      The issue comes when people then use some of those posts in their sales copy as reviews or testimonials. I'm not sure what the rule would be there, it's a little tricky if people are just quoting the posts from their thread like most people do. Maybe that's borderline.

      But if you are copying and editing those posts and using them as testimonials in your sales material then yes, you should have some disclosure if those reviews were obtained through other means than a regular paid customer.

      Either way, it is not up to the forum mods to keep people in check. They are simply providing a marketplace but it is up to you to make sure your listing inside that marketplace adheres to all the relevant rules.

      It's no different to selling stolen or replica goods on eBay. If you get found out to be doing that it will be YOU who gets into trouble not eBay.
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      • Profile picture of the author xtrapunch
        Originally Posted by Greg71 View Post

        I got a review copy of a graphics pack recently on the condition I post a review if I like what I saw (and got). It was great. Really good graphics and heaps of it. So I posted a review saying that.
        WSOs that sell products such as graphic packs and templates are not the main culprit. When it is a graphic pack, you can see it all. Problem lies with "make $$$ in XX days" WSOs.

        Originally Posted by ebiz1 View Post

        This is something that happens on every market. It is not unusual. Someone should not take a buying desision based only on reviews, unless there is a lot on that specific product or person. And you should put a stop on this matter by just pm that person.
        When I joined this forum, I didn't know anyone. So I relied on reviews by members with decent amount of posts/thanks. Despite this caution, I eneded up buying useless products.

        Originally Posted by tpw View Post

        Strangely , sometimes I get review requests, and when I tell them that I won't promise a good review but only an honest review, then they tell me to forget it.
        Seems like every active warrior has received such proposals requesting reviews.

        Warrior Forum is one of the best resource that I have discovered online. It has helped me gain knowledge and make money. However, I rarely look at the WSO section. Except for a few WSOs selling tangible products and not 'get rich' dreams, I haven't gained much.

        Thanks,
        Pritam
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  • Profile picture of the author Anoopchawla
    Just take the reviews with the grain of a salt. You must always read what other warriors are saying but always use your common sense.

    As said by other warriors there are many more aspects you should consider other than testimonials.
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      Brett,
      The problem with WSOs is you don't see any NEGATIVE reviews.
      What prompted you to post such a ridiculous comment? A few minutes perusal of the WSO section will show you how wrong that is.
      I just read this after I posted, I'm certain that I read in the Terms of Service (ToS) that no negative comments can be posted.
      Ahh.

      You may have misread the part of the WSO rules that says you can't comment on a product you haven't bought. Or maybe the various restrictions against bashing people.

      You are allowed to say "This product sucks. It promises to do X, Y, and Z, and does none of them well." You are not allowed to say "This seller sucks. He's a scammer." Well, not publicly. If you feel someone is scamming the members, report them using that little red triangle and give the mods evidence to work with.


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  • Profile picture of the author TomYevsikov
    When you see a product that you like to purchase simply ignore the testimonials and simply read the sales page and notice any money back guarantees.

    The testimonials are almost insignificant, they are just a tool to sweaten the deal, the art of selling was never focused on testimonials, it was always about giving the market what the market wants.
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  • Profile picture of the author joona
    Frankly, I don't trust basically any testimonials online UNLESS they come from very reputable source that I trust. And even in that case I always look for affiliation between the seller and the person giving the testimonial.

    Many people just give testimonials to their friends because they want to help them, not because they would have actually paid of the product/service and used it.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jeffery
    Concerning the FTC.. why not prohibit testimonials in the WSO sales copy? That is to say testimonials or reviews posted in the thread by customers are not prohibited.

    Also, a seller could always post a link to testimonials and reviews on the seller's own domain. Then the seller is responsible to the FTC and not the Warrior Forum?

    Jeffery 100% :-)
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    • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
      Banned
      Originally Posted by Jeffery View Post

      Also, a seller could always post a link to testimonials and reviews on the seller's own domain. Then the seller is responsible to the FTC and not the Warrior Forum?
      As of February, it would seem that this would be against the rules:

      10. (Added February 6, 2012) Do not link to off-site reviews from within a WSO thread.
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      • Profile picture of the author Jeffery
        Originally Posted by Jeffery
        Also, a seller could always post a link to testimonials and reviews on the seller's own domain. Then the seller is responsible to the FTC and not the Warrior Forum?


        Originally Posted by Joe Robinson View Post

        As of February, it would seem that this would be against the rules:

        10. (Added February 6, 2012) Do not link to off-site reviews from within a WSO thread.
        Good catch Joe.

        Still prohibit testimonials and reviews in the seller's sales copy would solve some of the FTC laws?

        Jeffery 100% :-)
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        • Profile picture of the author David Keith
          Originally Posted by Jeffery View Post

          Originally Posted by Jeffery
          Also, a seller could always post a link to testimonials and reviews on the seller's own domain. Then the seller is responsible to the FTC and not the Warrior Forum?




          Good catch Joe.

          Still prohibit testimonials and reviews in the seller's sales copy would solve some of the FTC laws?

          Jeffery 100% :-)
          That would help, but not eliminate things at all. As I have stated above there is a lot of legal precedent holding merchants responsible for the illegal actions of affiliates if they know of the behavior. Thus in a wso thread, the merchant absolutely knows who got what free and who is an affiliate. If the proper disclosures are not in place in each testimonial post the merchant absolutely can be help liable.
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          • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
            If the proper disclosures are not in place in each testimonial post the merchant absolutely can be help liable.
            For a post they didn't request and can't delete? I'm not at all sure of that. That's one for the lawyers.

            The forum, however, is not the merchant. It is not a party to any WSO transaction other than the payment for advertising space.

            Note: Edited to correct an error, based on a previous misreading of the comment.
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            • Profile picture of the author David Keith
              Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

              For a post they didn't request and can't delete? I'm not at all sure of that. That's one for the lawyers.

              The forum, however, is not the merchant. It is not a party to any WSO transaction other than the payment for advertising space.

              Note: Edited to correct an error, based on a previous misreading of the comment.
              There is a lot of legal precedent holding merchants responsible for affiliates who use illegal tactics the merchant had no control over... Promoting a merchant via spam is the most common one.

              Just because a merchant chooses to use a system that allows them less control over its affiliates does not mean they get to use that as an excuse in court. There are several cases of merchants being held liable for spam email lists. What make you think a merchant is not going to be held liable for violatons that are being done right in Front of each merchant.

              Also, it's not my job or any members responsibility to provide WF with suggestions on ways to comply with the laws. The FTC won't be knocking on my door over this so I don't mind one bit. But WF and it's mods who approve such things should care.

              As for how many wso threads are in violatin of some FTC requirements.... It is a lot. A whole lot. If I though it would change things, I would hire a VA to go over them and report all the violations.

              The wso section has been sliding down a slippery slope for a long time. It won't change course until WF either decides to make the hard choices of policing itself or until WF finds itself in the crosshairs of an FTC investigation.
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              • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
                What make you think a merchant is not going to be held liable for violatons that are being done right in Front of each merchant.
                Did you notice I said I wasn't sure, and that it was a question for the lawyers? Do you always argue with people when they say, "I don't know?"
                Also, it's not my job or any members responsibility to provide WF with suggestions on ways to comply with the laws.
                If you are going to bandy about accusations like "turning a blind eye," you might consider trying to see if they're true, or if you're simply talking out your hat.

                We actively look for ways to make things work better. I regularly get involved in these threads in order to see if there are suggestions for improvements we might have missed. I listen especially closely to you and a few others, because you're smart and have offered comments in the past that have led to substantive changes.

                But if you're going to start lobbing baseless allegations, you might as well be just another of the folks who bash for no reason. That's actively and deliberately destructive. No amount of "not my responsibility" comments will make it anything more.


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                • Profile picture of the author David Keith
                  Then do I have permission to take screenshot of wso threads and post them directly into this thread to prove my point and to avoid as you say "talking out my hat". i will also screenshot emails from affiliates of said merchants/products.

                  In under 1 hour I can show direct violations with screenshot proof of FTC violations. With your permission I will gladly take the time to do that.

                  However, my guess is that your response will be that that would violate WF policy and not be allowed because even though people are breaking the law I would be violating rule 1.

                  Btw. I am not arguing. I am pointing out facts. Most of this stuff is not a matter of opinion. Either a person who gives a testimiponial discloses their affiliate status or they don't. That's not a grey thing regarding FTC compliance.


                  Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

                  Did you notice I said I wasn't sure, and that it was a question for the lawyers? Do you always argue with people when they say, "I don't know?"If you are going to bandy about accusations like "turning a blind eye," you might consider trying to see if they're true, or if you're simply talking out your hat.

                  We actively look for ways to make things work better. I regularly get involved in these threads in order to see if there are suggestions for improvements we might have missed. I listen especially closely to you and a few others, because you're smart and have offered comments in the past that have led to substantive changes.

                  But if you're going to start lobbing baseless allegations, you might as well be just another of the folks who bash for no reason. That's actively and deliberately destructive. No amount of "not my responsibility" comments will make it anything more.


                  Paul
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                  • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
                    Banned
                    Originally Posted by David Keith View Post

                    Then do I have permission to take screenshot of wso threads and post them directly into this thread to prove my point and to avoid as you say "talking out my hat". i will also screenshot emails from affiliates of said merchants/products.

                    In under 1 hour I can show direct violations with screenshot proof of FTC violations. With your permission I will gladly take the time to do that.

                    However, my guess is that your response will be that that would violate WF policy and not be allowed because even though people are breaking the law I would be violating rule 1.

                    Btw. I am not arguing. I am pointing out facts. Most of this stuff is not a matter of opinion. Either a person who gives a testimiponial discloses their affiliate status or they don't. That's not a grey thing regarding FTC compliance.
                    Unless you work for the FTC, what other people do really isn't any of your business. Posting screenshots of other people's WSOs that you feel violate an agency that you aren't affiliated with most likely won't fly here. I imagine that the report button works fine on any of those WSOs that you feel violate something or other.
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                    • Profile picture of the author David Keith
                      Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post

                      Unless you work for the FTC, what other people do really isn't any of your business. Posting screenshots of other people's WSOs that you feel violate an agency that you aren't affiliated with most likely won't fly here. I imagine that the report button works fine on any of those WSOs that you feel violate something or other.
                      lol... that is exactly why i have not posted them. But then when i don't show "proof" I am accused of "talking out my hat"...as if the violations do not exist.

                      Sadly, I think its going to be a bit sad to look back on discussions like this and see that many knew the direction the current trajectory is taking the wso section and the WF in general without anything meaningful being done to change its course.

                      I just can't believe that we have all these smart people here who actually read the ftc guidelines and turn a blind eye to this stuff. The culture of WF to accept illegal behavior amazes me.
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                      • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
                        I just can't believe that we have all these smart people here who actually read the ftc guidelines and turn a blind eye to this stuff. The culture of WF to accept illegal behavior amazes me.
                        You're easily amazed, it seems. Fiction often entertains me, but rarely amazes.

                        Unless you can explain to me, in rational terms, how actively and regularly soliciting suggestions for improvements constitutes "turning a blind eye" to something, you should expect to be ignored on this subject in the future.


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                  • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
                    However, my guess is that your response will be that that would violate WF policy and not be allowed because even though people are breaking the law I would be violating rule 1.
                    Nice twisting of the intent of the rules. Almost clever. However, your interpretation is not the same thing as "proof." Evidence, yes, but I always ask for that to be sent in private. Largely because I understand the difference between evidence and proof, and the damage that improperly interpreted evidence can do to someone's reputation.

                    If you have evidence that someone is not disclosing a material connection properly along with a review, do what other people do: Use the "report post" button. Then we'll do what we do: Check it out and, if the evidence is sufficient, remove the post and possibly take further action if it seems warranted.

                    BTW... None of what you just offered to do has one bloody thing to do with supporting the allegations you made about the forum or its policies. You seem to have a real problem distinguishing between the seller of ad space and the actual advertisers. I have never claimed that some problems don't exist with some sellers or reviewers. If I thought they were non-existent, I wouldn't be asking you for suggestions on reducing them.

                    I do believe they're a lot less "prevalent" than you claim.


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                    • Profile picture of the author David Keith
                      you right Paul I am just an dummy. I clearly don't know who the merchants are and who the ad space seller is...lol... you can't be serious.

                      First day on the job please excuse my nonsense. I clearly have no idea what I am doing. Let the flaming begin and the WF wso games continue.

                      I am not interested in personally policing the wso section 1 by 1.... thats crazy.

                      I don't have a dog in that fight...but others here do. It is interesting how the sides always seem to align with those who have a dog in the fight on one side. My guess is that eventually the FTC will notice the same thing.

                      Paul... how about a friendly wager. I will have my VA go over 1 full page of wso threads and find any and all violations possible. I will deliver them to you personally via PM and you can check them out. What percentage do you think would contain 1 or more violations? What are you willing to bet on this?

                      Edit in response to pauls last post: I don't mind being ignored one bit. it won't hurt my feelings paul. Just be sure the only voices you want to hear are from those who have much less experience dealing with people like the FTC than I do. I have no dog in that fight buddy...you know that. Ignoring me won't make the violations go away.

                      Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

                      Nice twisting of the intent of the rules. Almost clever. However, your interpretation is not the same thing as "proof." Evidence, yes, but I always ask for that to be sent in private. Largely because I understand the difference between evidence and proof, and the damage that improperly interpreted evidence can do to someone's reputation.

                      If you have evidence that someone is not disclosing a material connection properly along with a review, do what other people do: Use the "report post" button. Then we'll do what we do: Check it out and, if the evidence is sufficient, remove the post and possibly take further action if it seems warranted.

                      BTW... None of what you just offered to do has one bloody thing to do with supporting the allegations you made about the forum or its policies. You seem to have a real problem distinguishing between the seller of ad space and the actual advertisers. I have never claimed that some problems don't exist with some sellers or reviewers. If I thought they were non-existent, I wouldn't be asking you for suggestions on reducing them.

                      I do believe they're a lot less "prevalent" than you claim.


                      Paul
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                      • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
                        How much would I be willing to bet on your interpretation? At this point, not a single penny. Prior to this thread, I'd have bet rather a lot you'd be right much more often than wrong.

                        You know - from actual experience - that we're not doing anything like "turning a blind eye" to problems. You may not agree with the responses you've gotten, but you also don't have the experience of the situation behind the scenes that we have. That's fair. But accusing us of ignoring problems is, on your part, more than a little disingenuous.


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                        • Profile picture of the author David Keith
                          Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

                          How much would I be willing to bet on your interpretation? At this point, not a single penny. Prior to this thread, I'd have bet rather a lot you'd be right much more often than wrong.

                          You know - from actual experience - that we're not doing anything like "turning a blind eye" to problems. You may not agree with the responses you've gotten, but you also don't have the experience of the situation behind the scenes that we have. That's fair. But accusing us of ignoring problems is, on your part, more than a little disingenuous.


                          Paul
                          Paul, I never said WF was ignoring the problems. what I did say was that they seem to be more willing to "turn a blind eye". Let me clarify what I meant by that. I meant that WF seems to be more willing to error on the side of doing nothing rather than erroring on the side of holding merchants to a higher standard than might be fully necessary.

                          So my statements that I fully stand behind is that the WF has chosen to allow stuff to go on and protect sellers rather than buyers. It is not lost on me or others that sellers are who pay WF... not buyers.

                          As for interpretation of the FTC guidelines. I am more than willing to go line by line with you personally or in this forum to discuss exactly what each line means.

                          On that same front, during that part of the discussion we will only be talking about what the ftc requires not who is responsible for enforcement.

                          Then we can take those guidelines and look at each wso. My point is that many are violating various aspects of things.

                          Who is responsible to police such things is an entirely different matter than "are violations present". That is where the debate gets more heated. judging by our prior conversation, that is really where you and I disagree more than what actually constitutes a violation.

                          All this testimonial disclosure stuff is not really arguable. The ftc puts it in black and white. The only legal argument the WF has is whether or not they have any responsibility to police that. But thats a much different position than to say the violations don't exist or are very rare.
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                      • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
                        Banned
                        Originally Posted by David Keith View Post

                        I don't have a dog in that fight...but others here do. It is interesting how the sides always seem to align with those who have a dog in the fight on one side. My guess is that eventually the FTC will notice the same thing.

                        Paul... how about a friendly wager. I will have my VA go over 1 full page of wso threads and find any and all violations possible. I will deliver them to you personally via PM and you can check them out. What percentage do you think would contain 1 or more violations? What are you willing to bet on this?

                        This is why I responded in the first place. That's a lot of effort to expend, at least on your VA's part, for someone with no dog in the fight. I sell services and don't have any affiliates, so I really don't worry much about the FTC, but in particular, I never worry about other people's violations.

                        I don't like fake income claims, fake testimonials, false claims in general any more than most people do, so I'm not aligning myself with them or against them. For one, I wouldn't be able to verify those claims or testimonials and thinking about policing the WSO forum honestly gives me a headache.

                        But I don't think that saying the WF is complicit in any violations holds any water. The newspaper classifieds aren't held responsible for scammers who advertise in their classifieds and that's all the WSO forum is ... an advertising platform. They probably do a lot more policing than the average newspaper does.
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                        • Profile picture of the author David Keith
                          Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post

                          This is why I responded in the first place. That's a lot of effort to expend, at least on your VA's part, for someone with no dog in the fight. I sell services and don't have any affiliates, so I really don't worry much about the FTC, but in particular, I never worry about other people's violations.

                          I don't like fake income claims, fake testimonials, false claims in general any more than most people do, so I'm not aligning myself with them or against them. For one, I wouldn't be able to verify those claims or testimonials and thinking about policing the WSO forum honestly gives me a headache.

                          But I don't think that saying the WF is complicit in any violations holds any water. The newspaper classifieds isn't held responsible for scammers who advertise in their classifieds and that's all the WSO forum is ... an advertising platform. They probably do a lot more policing than the average newspaper does.
                          one major difference is that the WF wso threads are actively moderated to discourage and eliminate scams. However at this stage they are choosing to enforce certain things and not enforce others.

                          Apple got into a similar situation over moderation of content regarding allowing adult content on its app store. They are trying to over reach when it comes to some things and under reach when it comes to enforcing others. They lost a few legal battles regarding this stuff already and more are still pending.

                          BTW, I hope none of you take this stuff too personal. I am not out to attack anyone personally. This stuff gets so heated because in many ways enforcement of the laws would directly impact the pocket books of many. I recognize that, but I try not to let that be the driving factor when I decide to give my thoughts on the topic.
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          • Profile picture of the author Jeffery
            Originally Posted by Jeffery
            Also, a seller could always post a link to testimonials and reviews on the seller's own domain. Then the seller is responsible to the FTC and not the Warrior Forum?
            Originally Posted by Joe Robinson
            As of February, it would seem that this would be against the rules:

            10. (Added February 6, 2012) Do not link to off-site reviews from within a WSO thread.


            Good catch Joe.

            Still prohibit testimonials and reviews in the seller's sales copy would solve some of the FTC laws?

            Jeffery 100% :-)
            Originally Posted by David Keith View Post

            That would help, but not eliminate things at all. As I have stated above there is a lot of legal precedent holding merchants responsible for the illegal actions of affiliates if they know of the behavior. Thus in a wso thread, the merchant absolutely knows who got what free and who is an affiliate. If the proper disclosures are not in place in each testimonial post the merchant absolutely can be help liable.
            Looks like two solutions:

            1) Seller must make proper disclosure(s) in each testimonial that is posted by a customer within the thread.

            2) Testimonials and reviews in the seller's sales copy are prohibited.

            Would those two additional rules suffice?

            If I understand you correctly, there needs to be a system in place to check the WSO before it is approved and also after it is approved for FTC violations (lack of better term)?

            Where the answer is yes, I suppose that might be outside the WF scope given the limited resources. And if that is the case then I would think paid outsourcing may not even catch any and all violations. Well, I suppose Sellers could be required to use a mandatory format integrated into the sales copy that would suffice for the FTC?

            Jeffery 100% :-)
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            • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
              Jeffery,

              "Free copy" reviewers and affiliates are already required to note those connections in their comments. The sellers don't have any way to enforce that.

              Forbidding testimonials isn't likely to happen. I'm agnostic on the question, personally. As long as we allow them, though, we will also allow negative reviews, which I think does more to balance things than forbidding testimonials entirely.


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          • Profile picture of the author jacktackett
            Originally Posted by David Keith View Post

            That would help, but not eliminate things at all. As I have stated above there is a lot of legal precedent holding merchants responsible for the illegal actions of affiliates if they know of the behavior. Thus in a wso thread, the merchant absolutely knows who got what free and who is an affiliate. If the proper disclosures are not in place in each testimonial post the merchant absolutely can be help liable.

            Are you a lawyer in the US?
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            • Profile picture of the author David Keith
              Originally Posted by jacktackett View Post

              Are you a lawyer in the US?
              No, I am not a lawyer. I have never claimed to be. I can also read the FTC guidelines. They leave very little open for interpretation on this stuff.

              I have done business online for over 16 years. I have also had several direct meetings directly with the FTC while acting as a consultant to several rather large us based companies. Not fortune 500 large, but companies that do tens of millions in sales each year.
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    • Profile picture of the author The 13th Warrior
      The problem is 98% of purchasers do not USE or IMPLEMENT the product.

      This is both good and bad, because, a) it is either a bad product with wrong or theory based information that product maker NEVER implemented...,

      b)....or the methods is simply not in the methodology, time restraints or preference of the buyer or buyers mode of operation...,

      c)......or it is a product that does not fit at all with purchaser's overall business or that can add to it in any way and is way too busy, in addition to purchaser having better methods to get profitable results with current business.

      The only reviews worth looking at are as follows:

      1) By an experienced, trustworthy , reputable Warrior that you can bet your aunt's right arm was and is a profitable entrepreneur. And usually, they don't have time to posts because they are too busy making money, running their business, so good luck on finding these.

      2) Someone who actually used the product and have a result whether profitable or not.

      3) Someone who has not used the product, but has experience and results in most of the methods instructed by the product, and gives a balanced, objective review on the product, both positive and negative.

      These 3 types of reviews , if you are lucky, you may find one on average......, but mostly, THAT'S out of every 15-20 or so WSO's, these are usually simply not there, which makes the scanning of reviews fairly quick.

      Professional reviewer type posts make's the scanning even quicker, I just run past'em without reading them.

      But if it has record breaking buyers with 20-40 pages, and even then, it is usually a ton load of newbies asking questions and the thread becomes a ticket support forum.

      At that point, when the thread becomes a support forum, usually with NO posted RESULTS from anyone, the administration here should either delete further posts with no results or lock the forum so that product maker can consult via email, pm or he has to create his own support forum for said product.

      But I also understand that these type postings can further Warrior Forum financial interests, after all, it is a business.

      "Can you trust testimonials posted in WSOs?"

      Boy, that's the question of both the 20th and 21st century.


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  • Profile picture of the author Marcus Rockey
    Easy to find out, which you should - contact the person who left the testimonial, if its a higher price product contact them all, look at their histories, check and check again.

    It's also worth a mention that we check our motives before buying a WSO.

    i.e will it add value to my business or is it a shot in the dark?

    how old is the WSO? Is it still relevant?

    Check out the seller, you can look at every thread and post they have ever been involved in.

    If you run a business you make strategic moves to benefit the business. If you have no business then I wouldn't buy a WSO at all but look into a genuine coaching program etc.
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  • Profile picture of the author ELVISTHEPELVIS
    It really depends on the situation. If I see a testimonial from a new member with 3 posts I will brush it off, but if I see one from a reputable member it will have an impact.
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  • Profile picture of the author flamewave
    I don't count, and ignore, most testomonials. Unless its from someone with a buck ton of rep
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  • Profile picture of the author ErikS
    It all boils down to what we call social proofing, and even marketing experts can fall for it.

    No, I don't trust reviews of others when I have a chance to think of it.
    Yes, it affects me in a manner when I see positive or negative reviews (even if they are rebuked)
    and Yes, if a true acquaintance of mine recommends something, I'm much more inclined to buy.

    So, if you think a product shouldn't be bought, do post a negative review, even if it gets an answer. Only do so if you have a concrete reason, not out of spite.

    Do post a positive review, but when I consider that we're in a business that is all about marketing, don't be surprised if hype about something isn't real. That's just business, you do it everyday - get people to buy things they wouldn't necessarily buy without you.
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  • Profile picture of the author Anomalous
    I don't even read testimonials any more. They are universally the result of bribes, in some way, shape, or form.

    Forums are the only way to find legitimate reviews, and even then you have to be careful.


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  • Profile picture of the author artion
    Fake testimonials will never go away...testimonials are a form of proof that the program works, that is what they are supposed to do...if a claim in a testimonial seems too good to be true, or answers an objection you may have about a program, chances are it is fake... one claim was that a person made $50,000 in 2 weeks and another $150,000 in 6 months...hm...anyway...this dosnt apply for all.. some are offering a copy of their product in return for a testimonial.. i'll go for the WSO's with a high number of testimonials.. they can't fake them all..
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      I am going to respond to this, and then I am going to go do the things that actually pay the bills and constitute my real life.
      I meant that WF seems to be more willing to error on the side of doing nothing rather than erroring on the side of holding merchants to a higher standard than might be fully necessary.
      A: We already require more than any other advertising venue I know of in those regards.

      B: I regularly and actively solicit suggestions for improvements, and act on the useful and practical ones within my purview. I submit the rest to Allen, who makes decisions that are beyond my authority.

      C: That usage bears almost no resemblance to the normal meaning of the term "turning a blind eye."
      So my statements that I fully stand behind is that the WF has chosen to allow stuff to go on and protect sellers rather than buyers. It is not lost on me or others that sellers are who pay WF... not buyers.
      You're very mistaken. The moderators are charged with one - and only - one thing: Protecting the members. Buyers are given a much higher priority than sellers in that formula. If it were appropriate to do so, I could provide you with the names of many sellers who have been slapped down for balancing the wrong way.

      Policies are a two-pronged thing: Statement and enforcement. Allen makes policy and the mods enforce it. In the decade plus that I've been a mod here, I have never known Allen to reverse a decision a moderator has made to protect the members. Not one time. I have personally banned a number of sellers who spent thousands a month - each - here for advertising, and never even gotten a "what's up with that" over it.

      The operating philosophy has always been, "Get rid of the jerks and there's more room for the good guys."
      Who is responsible to police such things is an entirely different matter than "are violations present".
      I have never said that there are no violations. Not once. What I have said is that they're not nearly common enough to be called "prevalent," and I have asked for specific suggestions to reduce them. We do more to reduce or prevent violations than any advertising medium I know of. And we keep looking for ways to improve. We're also up against challenges, in terms of anonymity, that no medium before the Internet has ever had to face. And very few places other than this forum have had to fight the same level of push from those people.

      We're not perfect, but we've never claimed to be. We do the best we can, and we keep looking for ways to do better. And, for most of us, every minute of that effort is an expense.

      For someone like you to then come in here and accuse us of "turning a blind eye" to problems is more than insulting and defamatory.

      It is unproductively and casually rude.

      Combine that with the baseless allegations against several of my friends, and...

      Okay. You don't know me well. The very few people online who do would have a hard time politely explaining the responses those things engender in me. And all 5 of them are remarkably literate people.

      You probably don't want to know. I certainly don't care to expend the effort finding a civil way to express it at the moment. I have productive things that require my attention.


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  • Profile picture of the author Robert M Gouge
    I honestly can't remember the last time I saw a poor review in a WSO thread. Granted I don't go in there much anymore (and this is one of the reasons why).
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    • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
      Banned
      Originally Posted by Robert M Gouge View Post

      I honestly can't remember the last time I saw a poor review in a WSO thread. Granted I don't go in there much anymore (and this is one of the reasons why).
      Well, you won't see them if you don't go in there much. I've seen quite a few.
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      • Profile picture of the author Tina Golden
        Why would we legally have to disclose being an affiliate if we post a review for a WSO? Our links aren't allowed in the post so it's not like we make anything off doing so.

        From what I understand of the FTC regulations, disclosure is only necessary in the event that someone actually may make money.
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        • Profile picture of the author David Keith
          Originally Posted by Tina Golden View Post

          Why would we legally have to disclose being an affiliate if we post a review for a WSO? Our links aren't allowed in the post so it's not like we make anything off doing so.

          From what I understand of the FTC regulations, disclosure is only necessary in the event that someone actually may make money.
          Does the fact that a person is an affiliate have a likely affect on the review in positive or negative way?

          How likely are you to write a negative review about a product and then promote it?

          Obviously leaving a positive review does not mean a person is an affiliate, but being an affiliate does have a significant ability to impact any persons review to the positive side. Thus the required disclosure.
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          • Profile picture of the author Tina Golden
            Originally Posted by David Keith View Post

            Does the fact that a person is an affiliate have a likely affect on the review in positive or negative way?

            How likely are you to write a negative review about a product and then promote it?

            Obviously leaving a positive review does not mean a person is an affiliate, but being an affiliate does have a significant ability to impact any persons review to the positive side. Thus the required disclosure.
            Why does it matter in the thread though? I wouldn't be making any money for myself. It would seem pointless to me to leave a rosy testimonial that I did not mean when I would see no monetary benefit.

            Either way, I don't know about other people, but I affiliate with products that I like. When I leave a review on a WSO thread, it's based on either a review copy because I was asked to review it (in which case, I state that) or I actually bought it for myself. When I post my review, it is as a consumer of that product.

            I have gone on to affiliate with some of the products that I like and think my subscribers could benefit from but rarely am I affiliated at the time of the post. I doubt that I'm the only one, either.
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            • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
              Banned
              Originally Posted by Tina Golden View Post

              Why does it matter in the thread though?
              That's something I would wonder about as well. If it's not included in the actual sale copy, does it really matter? Does the FTC consider responses after the fact to be part of the sales copy (and thus under their jurisdiction), or is it just conversation that the seller doesn't really control (and can't be expected to)?

              And note that this is not an endorsement or condemnation of testimonials period, I just want clarity on some semantics . I don't want to be pulled into this fight when I don't know which side I want to be on.
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              • Profile picture of the author tpw
                Originally Posted by Joe Robinson View Post

                That's something I would wonder about as well. If it's not included in the actual sale copy, does it really matter? Does the FTC consider responses after the fact to be part of the sales copy (and thus under their jurisdiction), or is it just conversation that the seller doesn't really control (and can't be expected to)?

                And note that this is not an endorsement or condemnation of testimonials period, I just want clarity on some semantics . I don't want to be pulled into this fight when I don't know which side I want to be on.

                It should be considered that David is right in at least one thing he said...


                Originally Posted by David Keith View Post

                There is a lot of legal precedent holding merchants responsible for affiliates who use illegal tactics the merchant had no control over... Promoting a merchant via spam is the most common one.

                I have seen evidence of this... (If links need to be provided, that can be arranged)

                If the FTC holds merchants liable for what an affiliate does when promoting its products -- and they do -- then it stands to reason that the FTC could hold the merchant responsible for what an affiliate does or does not do in a WSO sales thread, even when the merchant does not have editorial control over those comments.




                p.s. Tina

                I mail my lists a recommendation for a product, then I copy my review to the sales thread frequently.

                Even though I have not included my affiliate link in that review, I potentially benefit financially in two ways:

                1. It gives my readers confidence in what I told them, because I was willing to say the same in public as I did in my email, within the thread.

                2. My readers who discover my review in the thread might decide to buy based on my recommendation, and they might go to their email box, in order for them to be able to buy through my affiliate link rather than the link they followed to find the product.
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                • Profile picture of the author Tina Golden
                  Thanks, Bill, for giving me a reason for affiliates to post in threads. I had never looked at it like that. I have rarely already been an affiliate when I give my review of the product. At least this makes sense to me why people would bother.

                  However, I'm still wondering if that is something that is required by the FTC rules. In order for me to post disclosure, I'd have to go back through all my threads to find the WSOs that I may have commented on before becoming an affiliate. It doesn't happen often lately as I rarely promote WSOs now, but I used to promote more of them.
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                  • Profile picture of the author tpw
                    Originally Posted by Tina Golden View Post

                    Thanks, Bill, for giving me a reason for affiliates to post in threads. I had never looked at it like that. I have rarely already been an affiliate when I give my review of the product. At least this makes sense to me why people would bother.

                    However, I'm still wondering if that is something that is required by the FTC rules. In order for me to post disclosure, I'd have to go back through all my threads to find the WSOs that I may have commented on before becoming an affiliate. It doesn't happen often lately as I rarely promote WSOs now, but I used to promote more of them.

                    With my understanding of the affiliate disclosure rules from the FTC, we must indicate any financial relationship with the offer, if such a thing exists, when we write a review of that offer.

                    So, my understanding is yes, we should reveal that when we review the offer within the WSO sub-forum.

                    I will admit that I have not gone all the way back to reveal such a relationship in all of the reviews I have for offers in the WSO threads, but I have gone back and made a notation on more than 50 of the WSO's where I have left reviews.

                    In most cases, I have also revealed whether I got a review copy or purchased the item, but going forward, I will definitely be including that when I leave a review on the WSO thread.
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                  • Profile picture of the author Dan C. Rinnert
                    Originally Posted by Tina Golden View Post

                    However, I'm still wondering if that is something that is required by the FTC rules.
                    From the FTC: 'Advertisers also must disclose any material connection between a person endorsing a product and the company selling the product. A "material connection" is defined as a relationship that might affect the weight or credibility of the endorsement. For example, if an endorser is an employee or relative of the advertiser, that fact must be disclosed because it is relevant to how much weight a consumer would give to the endorsement. Similarly, an advertiser must disclose if a consumer has been paid for giving an endorsement.'

                    Link: Advertising FAQ's: A Guide for Small Business | BCP Business Center

                    I would think that an affiliate would have a material connection to the advertiser, even if their affiliate's link does not appear in the WSO thread.
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                    • Profile picture of the author cjreynolds
                      Originally Posted by Dan C. Rinnert View Post

                      From the FTC: 'Advertisers also must disclose any material connection between a person endorsing a product and the company selling the product. A "material connection" is defined as a relationship that might affect the weight or credibility of the endorsement. For example, if an endorser is an employee or relative of the advertiser, that fact must be disclosed because it is relevant to how much weight a consumer would give to the endorsement. Similarly, an advertiser must disclose if a consumer has been paid for giving an endorsement.'

                      Link: Advertising FAQ's: A Guide for Small Business | BCP Business Center

                      I would think that an affiliate would have a material connection to the advertiser, even if their affiliate's link does not appear in the WSO thread.
                      At least it seems like the reviewer/affiliate would be guilty of conflict of interest...
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                • Profile picture of the author Alminc
                  I think that David's observations regarding violations of FTC requirements are on the spot.
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            • Profile picture of the author Karen Blundell
              if I'm really interested in a WSO, I'll look to see if there are testimonials from people I know or trust. But in general, I take testimonials with a grain of salt.
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  • Profile picture of the author David Keith
    And the wso section will continue down the slippery slope until regulation is forced upon WF by the only guys who really have any say about this stuff... The federal regulators.

    Based on numbers I know, The WSO section is somewhere around a 15-25 million dollar a year marketplace. That is plenty big enough to attract the attention of those who will have the final say in all this.

    I truly hope you are right in your way of thinking Paul. But my experience in dealing directly with the FTC tells me the WF and wso section are in for serious trouble at some point unless major changes are made.

    You don't have to like what I am saying but trying to make my words sound like a personal attack on you and others does not really change things. If you read the thread you are the one who is making far more personal attacks towards me than the other way around. I am a big boy though. I don't mind one bit.

    You made this into a personal thing when you took it from my position of "many testimonials in wso's violate the ftc guidelines" to a discussion more about who's responsibility it is to enforce such things. If you read back my 1st post in the open forum on this thread never claimed WF was responsible for policing this stuff. That came later after you took it there.

    lets discuss one problem at a time. If you are willing when you return, lets talk about just the FTC rules. Do wso testimonials violate those rules? forget who should be policing it for a bit. Lets only talk about whether the violations are rare or prevalent.

    In my opinion WF is not overly interested in policing these things because they have not really taken a hard look at what the law really requires from merchants regarding disclosures, income claims, and other stuff. It is just my opinion that if a really hard look was taken at all the stuff that is required, you would realize there are many more violations than you think. Some of them a bit petty for sure, but FTC violations none the less. Thats where you get into more of a culture of how things are run. The FTC absolutely looks at that stuff.

    Whether or not WF should be held responsible for this stuff legally or morally is a whole other topic from "if violations are prevalent".
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  • Profile picture of the author Victor Edson
    You simply CAN'T trust the testimonials provided in the WSO sales copy. Affiliates promote these offers and provide GLOWING reviews so people will buy what they're promoting.

    A recent WSO for a mobile site builder was FULL of testimonials from "real users" lol, only to see in the comments that the majority of people weren't buying a finished product but a newly released beta version of the software... even tho 50 marketers had already explained how they USED the software in their business.

    The truth isn't in the sales copy testimonials, it's down below from the people who aren't making a buck off recommending it.
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  • Profile picture of the author Palusko
    Fake testimonials, fake reviews, fake income claims, fake Likes, fake credentials... unfortunately, I am not describing WSO, but what appears to be present state of marketing done by many marketers. But then again, there's also real testimonials, real reviews, real Likes.... and that too describes present state of marketing as done by many marketers.
    There always will be scams and shady marketing. But I think there will always be an honest marketing as well. The bottom line is, you have to be careful and do your homework.
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  • Profile picture of the author Fawxkitteh
    it depends. dont judge the product from testimonials as majority of them are fake just to promote the product but you cant say the product is not good. obviously some one is doing business and is surely providing some thing beneficial.
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  • Profile picture of the author wackiin
    That is why I have slowed down on buying Wso's most are rehashed garbage with fake reviews.
    You see one with 20 reviews and everyone is just registered with 10 posts are been here from 10 years ago with 50 posts.
    There is various groups here that run around posting reviews on there groups wsos its a money game.
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    • Profile picture of the author tpw
      Originally Posted by wackiin View Post

      That is why I have slowed down on buying Wso's most are rehashed garbage with fake reviews.
      You see one with 20 reviews and everyone is just registered with 10 posts are been here from 10 years ago with 50 posts.
      There is various groups here that run around posting reviews on there groups wsos its a money game.

      I forgive you.

      According to your profile, you are just, "dazed and confused". :rolleyes:
      Signature
      Bill Platt, Oklahoma USA, PlattPublishing.com
      Publish Coloring Books for Profit (WSOTD 7-30-2015)
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  • I personally believe David Keith's observations on the WSO violating some FTC guidelines are truly worth considering, and if I was the WF owner I would immediately look carefully into the matter before the suits knock on my door.
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  • Profile picture of the author shintaiguy
    Its a shame that this kind of thing is happening but there seem to be a lot of underhand tactics used by many on this forum. Me personally I do get asked by friends to post on their thread but they have let me see the product well before launch and to bre frank if it is not up to scratch then there is no way I am going to tell people it a great product.
    If you take the time to comment on the thread of a product you have purchased and liked the better chance there is of this being reciprocated whaen you launch something yourself.

    Best rule of thumb is dont put your name near any crap.
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  • Profile picture of the author Juhkhar
    This is informative. Who is David Keith?
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    • Profile picture of the author tpw
      Originally Posted by Juhkhar View Post

      This is informative. Who is David Keith?

      The Pissed Off Texan. :p
      Signature
      Bill Platt, Oklahoma USA, PlattPublishing.com
      Publish Coloring Books for Profit (WSOTD 7-30-2015)
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      • Profile picture of the author Tina Golden
        Originally Posted by Anonymous Affiliate View Post

        I personally believe David Keith's observations on the WSO violating some FTC guidelines are truly worth considering, and if I was the WF owner I would immediately look carefully into the matter before the suits knock on my door.
        The point that some seem to be missing is that the Warrior Forum is NOT the advertiser. It is only the venue. The forum does not have to do anything more than your typical newspaper, magazine or television station does.
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        • Profile picture of the author David Keith
          Originally Posted by Tina Golden View Post

          The point that some seem to be missing is that the Warrior Forum is NOT the advertiser. It is only the venue. The forum does not have to do anything more than your typical newspaper, magazine or television station does.
          The moderation of posts on a case by cases basis in the "ad" thread by WF itself changes the legal liabilities a ton. Its either all or none. Even things like rule 1 gives WF an ongoing editorial right to silence people. That changes the potential liabilities a great deal.

          WF waves many of their rights to be just an advertising venue when the silence criticism based on arbitrary factors. When they decide not to let people post in a thread unless they purchase something even though they don't even really have access to that info, they are interjecting control over the sales process to a significant degree. That level of involvement in the sales process is vastly different than most advertising options.
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        • Originally Posted by Tina Golden View Post

          The point that some seem to be missing is that the Warrior Forum is NOT the advertiser. It is only the venue. The forum does not have to do anything more than your typical newspaper, magazine or television station does.
          Good point, Tina.
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          • Profile picture of the author The 13th Warrior
            Originally Posted by Angela V. Edwards View Post


            Good point, Tina.




            Yeah, true, but WSO part of The Warrior Forum is a good chunk of the forum.

            It is also a good chunk of the impetus of subjects here, or subset subjects/ offshoots thereof.

            That can't be ignored or taken lightly.


            The 13th Warrior
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        • Profile picture of the author WillR
          Originally Posted by Tina Golden View Post

          The point that some seem to be missing is that the Warrior Forum is NOT the advertiser. It is only the venue. The forum does not have to do anything more than your typical newspaper, magazine or television station does.
          Hasn't Youtube been in trouble before for allowing their users to upload copyrighted songs and movies? But Youtube are only the 'venue' right?

          Did Napster not have a multi million dollar court case brought against them because their software was being used to transfer copyrighted materials between users? Yet Napster were again only the 'venue' right?

          I think the place where things would start to get a little blurry here is because WSO threads have to be moderated and approved before they go live. That means someone has had a look at the thread and it's contents and approved them to go live on this forum. So if the thread went live with questionable testimonials and the like, by approving the thread the mods have basically said that content is ok to be shown on this forum.

          This is why Clickbank have finally taken a stance and are being a LOT more strict as to the offers being shown in their marketplace. They have strict rules on most stuff now including testimonials. Why are they doing this? They realize that this argument of "we are only the marketplace, not the seller" will only get you so far.
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          • Profile picture of the author R Hagel
            Just one tiny point...

            Originally Posted by WillR View Post

            This is why Clickbank have finally taken a stance and are being a LOT more strict as to the offers being shown in their marketplace. They have strict rules on most stuff now including testimonials. Why are they doing this? They realize that this argument of "we are only the marketplace, not the seller" will only get you so far.
            Actually, in Clickbank's case they ARE the seller (or reseller, to be exact). This is spelled out in their legal documents, so vendors also need to agree that CB is the seller.

            From CB's legal:

            At the time of purchase by a customer, ClickBank purchases the Product from the applicable Vendor at a wholesale price, which can vary by Product type, price, and currency, and resells the Product to the customer.
            In other words, CB has always been really clear and upfront about the fact that they are, indeed, the seller.

            OK, carry on...

            Becky
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        • Originally Posted by Tina Golden View Post

          The point that some seem to be missing is that the Warrior Forum is NOT the advertiser. It is only the venue. The forum does not have to do anything more than your typical newspaper, magazine or television station does.
          Don't get caught up in the technicalities, because the suits will CERTAINLY don't care about them.

          The truth is that the WF profits from the products being advertised, promoted and sold via WSOs (the more transactions, the more WSOs will be published, the more fees for WF), and since those WSOs are hosted in this medium, some nasty lawyer might -rightfully- feel that the WF is responsible for ensuring that whatever is published in the forum complies with the FTC rules.
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  • Profile picture of the author David Keith
    Guys, let me be clear on somethings.

    1. how much real legal liability the WF itself has regarding any and all violations is very/somewhat debatable. And truthfully, no one's opinion on those things will matter except the FTC if it were to ever come to that. My experiences tell me that the WF would have some/ a lot of liability, but again that is not a fact, that is my educated opinion. From my experience, how prevalent violations are would play a major part in how liable the WF is ultimately charged with.

    2. I would think its in the best interest of all involved (except those in violation) for some smart warriors to have a very close look at the real FTC guidlines regarding some of the stuff that possibly affects the wso forum. Like I mention in point 1. A few violations are not going to drag this place down. But in my opinion I see a lot of violations of laws that are not debatable. Black and white violations are not good for anyone (except scammers). Maybe we could try to have a discussion about just the rules, not who is responsible for enforcing them. I think we would find a lot more violations than some would like to think, but I wouldn't mind eating a little crow so to speak if things are not as bad as my experience tells me they are.

    3. I fully understand change is not fun nor easy, but its a hell of a lot easier to change without the help of some FTC guys breathing down our neck. Trust me, I have dealt with companies and FTC guys. No one wants that and neither side of this little debate will WIN in an argument with the FTC. They make the rules, change rules, enforce the rules...its their game. We had better play by whatever rules they give us or this game won't be much fun.

    4. I am damn sure not a WF hater. Most know I am one to give solid no nonsense advice on a pretty wide range of marketing and business stuff. This just happens to be one of the most controversial topics i get involved with because it hits so close to many peoples wallet. That is a soft spot for most of us including the WF itself.

    5. this is not personal to anyone on either side of this debate for me. Me and paul may have a few words but we are both Men and we are more than capable of dealing with these things like men. Please don't take it personal if I debate anyone's understanding of this sort of stuff. Who knows, we both just might learn something. I surely don't mind having my understanding of things challenged.
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  • Profile picture of the author xtrapunch
    [DELETED]
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  • Profile picture of the author wackiin
    there is quite a bit of fraud as far as reviews go look thru the wso's for certain posters and you can pick most of them out.

    And far as TPW no reason to forgive me for anything you have been around awhile it seems to and know whats what.
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  • Profile picture of the author StevenBernard
    The admins should start reviewing the actual products before they approve them. That would weed out alot of the low quality wso's
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    • Profile picture of the author The 13th Warrior
      Originally Posted by StevenBernard View Post


      The admins should start reviewing the actual products before they approve them. That would weed out alot of the low quality wso's

      Most admins here have their own business ventures and endeavors, they simply do not have time for this.


      The 13th Warrior
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    • Profile picture of the author goindeep
      Originally Posted by StevenBernard View Post

      The admins should start reviewing the actual products before they approve them. That would weed out alot of the low quality wso's
      That sound's awesome in theory! Especially if you are a buyer not a seller.

      You have to see things from all sides sometimes.

      But that will never happen. Too many reasons to name.
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    • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
      Banned
      Originally Posted by StevenBernard View Post

      The admins should start reviewing the actual products before they approve them. That would weed out alot of the low quality wso's
      Yeah, and the Washington Post should buy every service or product before they run a classified ad, including check every used car and house for rent, etc. Do you actually believe that there are enough hours in a day to check out and try every single WSO that is advertised here and do you realize that some "methods" that are taught may take months to implement correctly. :rolleyes:
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    • Profile picture of the author Rod Cortez
      Originally Posted by StevenBernard View Post

      The admins should start reviewing the actual products before they approve them. That would weed out alot of the low quality wso's
      Let me pose this question to you: what if it's a product that's on a topic they are not experts in? How would they be able to evaluate it then? This sounds good in theory, but practically speaking it's a lot harder to implement.

      RoD
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      "Your personal philosophy is the greatest determining factor in how your life works out."
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  • Profile picture of the author kawaii
    That's just a few worm that ruin the meals.
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  • Profile picture of the author WillR
    Wow, this is like watching a game at Wimbledon -- my neck hurts.

    Ok, so here is a simple fix for one of these problems.

    I do agree that more disclosure is needed. We have all seen those WSO's being launched over and over where the first half of the page is just reviews from the same old guys who post right after the WSO has launched... and they all do it to one another's WSO as soon as they are launched. That little 'boys club' know exactly who they are so there's no need to point any fingers. But it is clear as day and I'm sure we have all noticed it.

    This is something that would need to be manually coded and implemented into the forum but I do think they would have the funds and resources to get this done very quickly.

    When anyone goes to add a post in the WSO section from now on, there is an extra and REQUIRED drop down box that asks you to select your Affiliation/Connection to the product on which you are commenting.

    The options would be something like this:

    - Vendor
    - Affiliate
    - Paid Customer
    - Free Customer
    - Pre-Sale Customer

    Everyone has to select ONE of those options before their post will submit. That field then displays at the bottom of every post in the WSO section so we all can see the connection that person has to the seller.

    But here's the catch. Obviously some people who are affiliates could then go and buy the product and argue they are a paid customer instead. No, not here you don't. The hierarchy remains as I have listed above and you must select the upper-most affiliation you have to the product. So if you are a paid customer and then turn around and decide to promote that product, you need to select 'Affiliate' as your connection status.

    Now obviously there is room for people to do things such as post a review as a paid customer and then choose to promote the product later, at which stage they should come back and edit their posts to reflect they are now an affiliate. The great thing about this is that even if people do try to milk the system, they would get caught out by people very quickly. If I was told about a product and I went to the thread and saw that person had written a review as a paid customer then I would report them immediately and I know others would to.

    It also puts the responsibility back on to the person posting. If they want to try and milk the system and post as a paid customer when in fact they are an affiliate, they are the ones who are in direct violation of the law and that's their own problem if someone decides to report them to the FTC. So those who choose to cheat the system are really only cheating themselves.

    To make this even better it should be made that any posts WSO vendors want to use in their sales copy as reviews or testimonials, they can ONLY do so by quoting the post with that 'Affiliation Disclosure" field intact.

    Am I trying to overcomplicate the problem?

    Is this something you guys think would/could actually work?

    As like most others I am all for making this a better and fairer community.

    Edit: I know I have done WSO's in the past where I have offered discounted paid review copies for sale and if we think banning that practice would help things as well, I am more than willing to comply with that. Whatever helps the forum prosper and grow even more so.
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    • Profile picture of the author The 13th Warrior
      Originally Posted by WillR View Post


      The options would be something like this:

      - Vendor
      - Affiliate
      - Paid Customer
      - Free Customer
      - Pre-Sale Customer

      Now that's some out the box thinking.

      Yeah, there will always be ways to get around the system , but I think every now and then adding stuff like this maintains the integrity of the overall forum.

      People don't come to the Warrior Forum to read testimonials like those fake audience reaction, cheesy infomercials.

      A whole lot of forums have started out or turned into a "shameless plug-products-for-product" type forums, which is not necessarily bad, but one must have something in place or have that "something" updated occasionally for the times to fortify/maintain the integrity and trust of said entity.

      I believe that The Warrior Forum could continually be that shining light in the distance, especially in this uncertain economic times when bottom feeders breed and feed at a more quickening pace.


      The 13th Warrior
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    • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
      Banned
      Originally Posted by WillR View Post

      The options would be something like this:

      - Vendor
      - Affiliate
      - Paid Customer
      - Free Customer
      - Pre-Sale Customer
      It wouldn't work for the obvious reasons. You're talking about people who intentionally use fake testimonials. So now, the buyer simply asks his fake reviewers to choose Paid Customer when posting his fake review.
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      • Profile picture of the author WillR
        Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post

        It wouldn't work for the obvious reasons. You're talking about people who intentionally use fake testimonials. So now, the buyer simply asks his fake reviewers to choose Paid Customer when posting his fake review.
        No, we are not talking about them specifically. We are talking about a better and compulsory disclosure of the material connection between the product vendor and the poster. This would achieve that.

        Anyone who wants to then cheat that system are only cheating themselves because if they get found out for intentionally deceiving people it will be no one's fault but their own.

        And if a product vendor asked me to do that I would report them right away... as I am sure most sensible people would. Besides, those cheating thf system usually get found out eventually. It's only a matter of time before they slip up.
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        • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
          Banned
          Originally Posted by WillR View Post

          No, we are not talking about them specifically. We are talking about a better and compulsory disclosure of the material connection between the product vendor and the poster. This would achieve that.

          Anyone who wants to then cheat that system are only cheating themselves because if they get found out for intentionally deceiving people it will be no one's fault but their own.
          The people who are the problem are already gaming the system and don't give FTC regulations a second thought. They will have no problem with continuing to game the system. People who use fake testimonials and fake income claims in spite of FTC regulations, won't lose any sleep over choosing Paid Customer for their fake testimonials. That little button won't do much to ensure credibility.
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          • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
            Banned
            Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post

            The people who are the problem are already gaming the system and don't give FTC regulations a second thought. They will have no problem with continuing to game the system. People who use fake testimonials and fake income claims in spite of FTC regulations, won't lose any sleep over choosing Paid Customer for their fake testimonials. That little button won't do much to ensure credibility.
            This is the first thing I thought of too Suzanne, but I don't think that is what Will's ideas is supposed to stop. If I understand correctly, he is suggesting this system to alleviate the WF's responsibility for any FTC violations that occur. It would mean that the affiliate/testimonial giver chose to do so knowingly, or that the seller chose to let them do it.

            Would it be effective? *Shrugs* Meh. I guess it will catch some people. I tend to agree with you though on how it will be abused, not only by fake testimonials but by those those who potentially want to trash a thread too. They can point to their answer and say "hey I'm a paying customer!" How do you prove it? Same problems that already exist, just with a new form and a few extra lines of text at the bottom of their post.
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            • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
              Banned
              Originally Posted by Joe Robinson View Post

              This is the first thing I thought of too Suzanne, but I don't think that is what Will's ideas is supposed to stop. If I understand correctly, he is suggesting this system to alleviate the WF's responsibility for any FTC violations that occur.
              I'm unconvinced that the WF has responsibility as an advertising platform to see that ads are FTC compliant. Until I see a case where an advertising platform was held responsible for things like fake testimonials and not divulging the relationship between the testimonial giver and the seller, fake income claims, etc. (and not cases regarding copyright infringement), I remain unconvinced. I've never heard of a single case of newspapers being sued for the classifieds they run, and I see no difference between newspaper advertising and forum advertising.

              As Becky already distinguished, Clickbank is the seller, so they most likely do have liability.
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              • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
                Banned
                Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post

                I'm unconvinced that the WF has responsibility as an advertising platform to see that ads are FTC compliant. Until I see a case where an advertising platform was held responsible for things like fake testimonials and not divulging the relationship between the testimonial giver and the seller, fake income claims, etc. (and not cases regarding copyright infringement), I remain unconvinced. I've never heard of a single case of newspapers being sued for the classifieds they run, and I see no difference between newspaper advertising and forum advertising.

                As Becky already distinguished, Clickbank is the seller, so they most likely do have liability.
                Im in the same camp as you on that one, just rewording what Will was saying for you because it seems you were arguing separate things. Another backup for the medium not being responsible: TV networks. If a product in an infomercial isolates FTC regulations, do they go free the studio? Nope, they go after the seller.
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                • Profile picture of the author David Keith
                  Originally Posted by Joe Robinson View Post

                  Im in the same camp as you on that one, just rewording what Will was saying for you because it seems you were arguing separate things. Another backup for the medium not being responsible: TV networks. If a product in an infomercial isolates FTC regulations, do they go free the studio? Nope, they go after the seller.
                  WF is not just an advertising platform...they are moderating things as the seller would like to. They are just a third party in the middle of the moderation trying to play both sides.

                  The second WF steps in to moderate what can and can not be posted is the second they lose the right to claim just being and advertising platform. If thats all they want to be then they can't tell me or others what can be posted in the rest of the thread.

                  BTW...the ad space being sold is only the original post. the rest of the thread does not cost money for me or anyone else to post in. That is WF property and is not sold.
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  • Profile picture of the author David Keith
    @will

    I think for the most part your suggestion seems to make a good deal of sense. There will always be ways to "game" the system. But this does sound like a very workable solution that at the very least begins to add more transparency to things. Essentially force people who post in a wso thread to qualify their post. I like it.

    If nothing else it would be a reminder to people that they need to disclose their relationship or lack there of to the product. Making people make a conscious decision to be deceptive will do nothing but help the cause.
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    • Profile picture of the author WillR
      Originally Posted by David Keith View Post

      @will

      I think for the most part your suggestion seems to make a good deal of sense. There will always be ways to "game" the system. But this does sound like a very workable solution that at the very least begins to add more transparency to things. Essentially force people who post in a wso thread to qualify their post. I like it.
      Dave,

      Yeah, but at least if they milk the system in this way they are really only milking themselves because they would be misrepresenting THEIR affiliation with the vendor which could come back to bite them on their backside.

      Anyway, was just a thought. I believe most people would use it properly. No matter what way you try to 'solve' this issue there is almost always going to be room for manipulation. Those very few people are going to find a way around any rules you put in place but that's not a reason to put some good rules in place.
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      • Profile picture of the author David Keith
        Originally Posted by WillR View Post

        Dave,

        Yeah, but at least if they milk the system in this way they are really only milking themselves because they would be misrepresenting THEIR affiliation with the vendor which could come back to bite them on their backside.

        Anyway, was just a thought. I believe most people would use it properly. No matter what way you try to 'solve' this issue there is almost always going to be room for manipulation. Those very few people are going to find a way around any rules you put in place but that's not a reason to put some good rules in place.
        I like it for another reason as well. It shows the WF is trying to make a serious effort to force FTC compliance. That is a positive thing for everyone involved (except scammers). But I don't think a single one of us in this debate are trying to protect those folks.
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  • Profile picture of the author boxoun
    What about Matts seo service where he is allowed to use old testimonials on a product or service that no longer resembles old service?

    Last name not used to protect innocent.
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  • Profile picture of the author The 13th Warrior
    Originally Posted by 1ronman View Post


    If I see reviews made by senior members (<1000 posts), I tend to take them more serious than from other members.

    Thousands of posts don't make you senior or trustworthy, thats just the automated title you get when you hit a certain number of posts, don't be fooled.


    The 13th Warrior
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    • Profile picture of the author WillR
      Originally Posted by 1ronman View Post

      If I see reviews made by senior members (<1000 posts), I tend to take them more serious than from other members.
      I think you then mean >1000 ??

      Originally Posted by The 13th Warrior View Post

      Thousands of posts don't make you senior or trustworthy, thats just the automated title you get when you hit a certain number of posts, don't be fooled.
      Exactly. Remember that every person who has hundreds or thousands of posts once had just 1 post. So should you listen to them now anymore than you should have with 1 or 2 posts? They are still the same person with the same knowledge and skills, for the most part.

      Originally Posted by boxoun View Post

      What about Matts seo service where he is allowed to use old testimonials on a product or service that no longer resembles old service?
      Haha, no last name needed. But that's his choice. If someone makes a complaint about him falsely representing his offer then it will be for him to defend to the FTC.
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  • Profile picture of the author towhidzaman
    Hi,
    Its not like that. Think about you. You're disclosing the message & you're not doing it. Other warriors do the same. Its doesn't work like that. Anyway, Report the PM.
    Originally Posted by xtrapunch View Post

    After having bought a few WSOs and online guides, I do not buy any of these (except for the rare WSO that offers some real value). I believe it is a waste of money to pay for info or products which is available for free on the web.

    Almost always, the testimonials sing praises even when the product is useless or sub-par. Today, I have some idea why you find all great testimonials. A person contacted me for posting a comment on his WSO thread.


    It makes me more negative about WSOs that sell magic tricks for making money online.
    Signature
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    [Solo Ad Group] >> The Solo Ad Cartel
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  • Profile picture of the author paulpower
    Sadly, people like this are really beginning
    to give the whole IM niche a worse name.

    I always say I would trust a warrior I either know, or has
    plenty of posts as this is a person who has been around a
    while, and can normally be trusted.

    As for this person, report him, as we certainly
    don't need this.

    Paul.
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    • Profile picture of the author BackLinkiT
      It's not just about fake testimonials though is it.

      A lot of the testimonials are from real people who have bought the WSO and leave a glowing report on it even when it is complete and utter garbage.

      I have seen this time and time again and I reckon some people leave a review before they have even read a WSO, let alone implemented it.

      I never read them anymore other than to try to get more of a hint what the WSO is about. Some inadvertently reveal it completely!

      My decision making process is based on the value I perceive to be had not the opinion of someone I don't know.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ryan David
    I can’t believe that anybody would even pay attention to testimonials in IM, especially knowing how it works.

    1) IMer emails someone offering a review copy.
    2) Person emails back saying they will accept, but they will be brutally honest.
    3) 99% of the time, the review comes back glowing because the “customer” isn’t really treating the review as a customer would. In other words, they didn’t spend any money to buy it. I don’t know about you, but I’m a little more forgiving about the flaws when it’s free.
    4) On the off chance that the person trashes the product. You think that the product creator will ever let that review see the light of day? Or that the reviewer will post in the WSO thread with their “honest” review?
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  • Profile picture of the author David Keith
    WF is much more than just an ad space seller. They are routinely interjecting themselves in the sales process, customer support, and forum ad moderation which is unlike any other adverting venue people like to compare them to.

    Imagine a newspaper moderating customer complaints/concern about an advertiser. That is what is happening here.

    In fact, WF itself says I can't give an opinion on any product unless I purchase it. What other advertising networks do that?

    As far as Will's idea. I have a few thoughts.

    1. This is as much about protecting WF as it is customers. Much like the "are you 17" splash pages in the adult industry. That simple step changes the legal responsibility by miles. Those splash pages mean that a person had to break the law and lie about their age to view adult material. You have a similar thing here. Forcing people to disclosure their relationship puts the onus on them to tell the truth. At that point WF can say "we tried and they lied to us" Thats a much much better legal position to be in.

    2. The truth is we have a lot of honest merchants who just don't know the laws and are not even aware they are in violation of these things. This is not just about "cleaning up" the wso's. It is about making sure honest merchants and affiliates are not making mistakes that get them and others into hot water with the FTC. It goes back to the old thing of ignorance of the law not being a defense. We have a lot of newish business owners selling in the wso marketplace that simply don't have the understanding of all the legal implications. A compulsory system would help them be compliant.

    3. Will people fake it? Yep. 17 year olds get fake id's everyday in the USA to buy cigarets and beer, but we still think ID's are a good thing for society. Most are not faked. People are going to fake being a customer more than any other one so just require a transaction id. If you don't provide that then you don't get to leave a testimonial as a customer.

    Yes, that can be faked, but warrior+ and jvzoo could setup a manual pass/fail check page to check for authentic transaction id's in well under an hour. The only concern is privacy, but this would just be a pass/fail test. no info released. WF could add 1 line saying that "transaction id's may be checked for authenticity" and that alleviates the privacy stuff. A person would have to give others the right to check the transaction id (pass/fail) or they don't get to post their review as a customer.

    4. In my opinion lots of good steps are not taken because we know that some will be able to fake them and scam others. There really is no way to prevent 100% of that...not in this niche especially. But something like this would add a lot of transparency and make it just a little harder to game the systems. Not to mention it would be a good thing to do from a legal liability standpoint of all involved.
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    • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
      Banned
      Originally Posted by David Keith View Post

      WF is much more than just an ad space seller. They are routinely interjecting themselves in the sales process, customer support, and forum ad moderation which is unlike any other adverting venue people like to compare them to.

      Imagine a newspaper moderating customer complaints/concern about an advertiser. That is what is happening here.

      In fact, WF itself says I can't give an opinion on any product unless I purchase it. What other advertising networks do that?
      They don't interject themselves into the sales process or customer support unless a scam is reported and then they act and ban the seller if it is proven. As for having rules for advertising, nothing new in that and none of that gives them liability as the seller. In fact, it proves more that they are consumer focused (which the FTC likes), and watches out for scams when it's brought to their attention.

      Classifieds and places like Craigslist also attempt in a small way to reduce the likelihood of being scammed with notices over their adspace about things to look out for such as Western Union scams with Craigslist, etc. Having advertising rules is just part of an advertising business. Just show me one case where the FTC held a newspaper or TV station liable for violations of their regulations. All of this WF liability is pure speculation on mostly ... your part and not backed up with a single line of legal code.
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      • Profile picture of the author David Keith
        Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post

        They don't interject themselves into the sales process or customer support unless a scam is reported and then they act and ban the seller if it is proven. As for having rules for advertising, nothing new in that and none of that gives them liability as the seller. In fact, it proves more that they are consumer focused (which the FTC likes), and watches out for scams when it's brought to their attention.

        Classifieds and places like Craigslist also attempt in a small way to reduce the likelihood of being scammed with notices over their adspace about things to look out for such as Western Union scams with Craigslist, etc. Having advertising rules is just part of an advertising business. Just show me one case where the FTC held a newspaper or TV station liable for violations of their regulations. All of this WF liability is pure speculation on mostly ... your part and not backed up with a single line of legal code.
        Just out of curiosity, how many times have you personally dealt with the FTC?

        of course all this is some speculation. I dont work for the FTC. But it comes from someone who has had many interactions with ftc people. The only one who can answer this is the FTC and the only way they are going to answer it is going to be by showing and saying we don't like what you are doing.

        Is that your suggestion...wait and see. hope they are ok with lots of ftc violations being hosted at WF. Hope they can't find a way to legally hold WF responsible for FTC violations in places they routinely moderate? Good luck with that. Its their game, they make the rules, they change the rules, they enforce the rules. Good luck beating them at their game. Do you have any experience actually trying to do that?

        When fighting a group like the FTC is not me suing you and some court who is impartial deciding who is right. These guys can do things that will blow your mind. They are just not the kind of group to have a legal argument with. You comply or they make your life hell.

        Trust me from a bigger business standpoint that ain't the way to play legal games with people like the FTC. If I advised my clients to respond like that I and others would probably be in jail right now.
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        • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
          Banned
          Originally Posted by David Keith View Post

          Just out of curiosity, how many times have you personally dealt with the FTC?

          of course all this is some speculation. I dont work for the FTC. But it comes from someone who has had many interactions with ftc people. The only one who can answer this is the FTC and the only way they are going to answer it is going to be by showing and saying we don't like what you are doing.

          Is that your suggestion...wait and see. hope they are ok with lots of ftc violations being hosted at WF. Hope they can't find a way to legally hold WF responsible for FTC violations in places they routinely moderate? Good luck with that. Its their game, they make the rules, they change the rules, they enforce the rules. Good luck beating them at their game. Do you have any experience actually trying to do that?

          When fighting a group like the FTC is not me suing you and some court who is impartial deciding who is right. These guys can do things that will blow your mind. They are just not the kind of group to have a legal argument with. You comply or they make your life hell.

          Trust me from a bigger business standpoint that ain't the way to play legal games with people like the FTC. If I advised my clients to respond like that I and others would probably be in jail right now.
          I don't play legal games with the FTC and I don't care if the FTC is your mama. Show me a case where the FTC held the advertising platform responsible for FTC violations. Cite the portion of their regulations that hold advertising platforms responsible for the actions of their sellers. Show me a newspaper, TV station or any advertising platform that has been held responsible for FTC violations. Just one will do.

          As for FTC violations, I tend to my own business. It takes up a large portion of my time (although I still have time for futile debates like this one) and I let the WF and the other sellers take care of their businesses, including compliance with FTC regulations.
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          • Profile picture of the author David Keith
            Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post

            I don't play legal games with the FTC and I don't care if the FTC is your mama. Show me a case where the FTC held the advertising platform responsible for FTC violations. Cite the portion of their regulations that hold advertising platforms responsible for the actions of their sellers. Show me a newspaper, TV station or any advertising platform that has been held responsible for FTC violations. Just one will do.

            As for FTC violations, I tend to my own business. It takes up a large portion of my time (although I still have time for futile debates like this one) and I let the WF and the other sellers take care of their businesses, including compliance with FTC regulations.
            The WF is not just an advertising platform. The FTC will not view them as such. You might think thats what they are, but that is just not the truth.

            The banner ad at the top of WF is an ad that would fall under those rules. somebody pays $100 bucks and they get an ad. Thats it...that is where the relationship and control ends for WF.

            The wso forum threads that are actively moderated and speech is controlled by WF rules / representatives is not JUST an advertisement. It is an extension of WF. good luck convincing the only people who would matter that it is just an ad.
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            • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
              Banned
              Originally Posted by David Keith View Post

              The WF is not just an advertising platform. The FTC will not view them as such. You might think thats what they are, but that is just not the truth.

              The banner ad at the top of WF is an ad that would fall under those rules.

              The wso forum threads that are actively moderated and speech is controlled by WF rules / representatives is not JUST an advertisement. It is an extension of WF. good luck convincing the only people who would matter that it is just an ad.
              As I said... that is only your opinion. You have failed to back it up with a single case or line of code, and yes, everything in the WSO forum, Complete Sites for Sale, Warriors for Hire and Classifieds and banner ads are nothing more than ads...

              The Rules:

              1. All WSOs Must Comply With Forum Rules, US Laws, and the Laws of Your Location. Keep in mind the forum cannot possibly review and evaluate WSOs. Legal compliance is strictly your responsibility. Do not ask me or a moderator if what you are offering is legal.
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              • Profile picture of the author David Keith
                Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post

                As I said... that is only your opinion. You have failed to back it up with a single case or line of code, and yes, everything in the WSO forum, Complete Sites for Sale, Warriors for Hire and Classifieds and banner ads are nothing more than ads...
                If you owned this place would you be willing to sit in a meeting with the FTC and make the arguments you are making now?

                Putting a silly rule in WF policy does not remove their legal responsibilities.

                Dump trucks put the bumper stickers on their trucks "not responsible for broken windshields" but they still are responsible. The fact that they put a sign up on their truck that says they are not responsible doesn't mean they are not still legally responsible. The law still says that if a rock falls off their truck and busts my windshield they are responsible.

                WF rules do not supersede FTC regulations. In fact just the opposite. FTC rules supersede any rule/disclaimer that WF has.

                Claiming you have no liability does not mean you don't have legal liability.

                As far as the ads. if the WF stopped at just selling the thread ad space they could claim exactly what you are saying. But they don't they go on to enforce their rules and actively moderate the ad and prospects/customers responses to the ad.

                Show me another ad vendor that does that?
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                • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
                  Banned
                  Originally Posted by David Keith View Post

                  If you owned this place would you be willing to sit in a meeting with the FTC and make the arguments you are making now?

                  Putting a silly rule in WF policy does not remove their legal responsibilities.
                  Like I said ... all you got is opinions so debating any further on this topic is fruitless. You continue to state and restate the same opinion over and over and there's no nada zero evidence that the FTC holds an advertising platform responsible for seller FTC compliance. So what if the WF moderates it's threads? That's just another little piece of non-evidence you have to substantiate your non-facts. I'm done. Got work to do.
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                  • Profile picture of the author David Keith
                    Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post

                    Like I said ... all you got is opinions so debating any further on this topic is fruitless. You continue to state and restate the same opinion over and over and there's no nada zero evidence that the FTC holds an advertising platform responsible for seller FTC compliance. So what if the WF moderates it's threads? That's just another little piece of non-evidence you have to substantiate your non-facts. I'm done. Got work to do.
                    Does it not seem interesting that the WF does try to moderate posts into compliance with other laws?

                    Take copyrights. Just last week Paul made an announcement that copyrighted images are not allowed. He made people aware that infringing on images rights and violating those laws is something the WF is going to try to prevent.

                    So they obviously realize that allowing violations of laws to go on unchecked is not a good thing. Yet that is exactly what you are arguing for. You are saying they don't have any responsibility on that front yet the WF already behaves as if they know they do in many other areas.

                    The WF would not allow copyrighted material to be posted or sold here because they know that is illegal and they want no part of engaging or enabling illegal behavior.

                    This is just another area where there is illegal behavior going on that has gone unchecked for a long time. Honestly largely due to ignorance of the laws and over site in all likely hood.

                    I don't believe for a second the WF, Paul, and other mods are actively trying to facilitate laws to be broken. But some things just get overlooked sometimes.

                    This is just an area where we have tons of posts that are breaking the law by giving testimonials without disclosing their relationship. The posts break laws the same as posting a copyrighted image breaks the law.
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                    • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
                      Banned
                      Originally Posted by David Keith View Post

                      Does it not seem interesting that the WF does try to moderate posts into compliance with other laws?

                      Take copyrights. Just last week Paul made an announcement that copyrighted images are not allowed. He made people aware that infringing on images rights and violating those laws is something the WF is going to try to prevent
                      You are aware, aren't you that the poster of each and every post here owns the copyright to that post and not the Warrior Forum? That's a fact, so even in the case of posting copyrighted images, the poster is responsible. The WF does what it can to create rules to disallow infringement but that in no way makes them liable for the post.

                      I do think that to be in the clear completely, that they need a DMCA notice and email for copyright complaints to be sent to.

                      http://www.lacba.org/Files/LAL/Vol31No3/2483.pdf

                      Passed in 1998, the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) protects
                      copyright holders from technology that facilitates piracy while
                      offering protection to certain ISPs by limiting their liability in cases in
                      which their customers are found guilty of copyright infringement.4 More
                      specifically, Section 512 of the DMCA governs the relationship
                      between certain ISPs and individuals who upload content on their sites.5
                      While there is some ambiguity associated with what constitutes an ISP,
                      generally, an entity owning or operating a Web site that does not alter
                      the content uploaded by its users is likely to be considered an ISP for
                      Section 512 purposes, provided the ISP implements certain notice
                      and takedown procedures. Under Section 512, if an ISP qualifies for
                      the safe harbor exemption, only the infringing user or creator or
                      uploader is liable for monetary damages. The Web site through which
                      the infringing user engaged in the alleged infringing activities is not.
                      Section 512 is particularly important for online services such as
                      YouTube and MySpace, and the virtual worlds such as Second Life,
                      where users upload third-party content (including clips from movies,
                      television shows, record albums, and concerts) without proper authorization
                      from the copyright owner. Without the provisions of Section
                      512, an ISP that hosted such infringing content would find itself liable
                      as a direct copyright infringer (e.g., for displaying allegedly infringing
                      works) or as a vicarious or contributory infringer—analogous to being
                      an accomplice of the infringer—and subject to large damages awards,
                      statutory fines, and other liability. However, despite the safe harbor provided
                      by Section 512, ISPs that comply with Section 512 have still found
                      themselves the subject of litigation by aggressive copyright owners.6
                      Takedown
                      At the core of the protection that ISPs enjoy from Section 512 are its
                      notice and takedown provisions. In general, Section 512 provides that
                      an ISP will not be liable for damages associated with copyright
                      infringement if it develops notice provisions and takes down allegedly
                      infringing materials upon receiving the proper notice. However, the
                      notice and takedown steps are not as simple as they might seem: Even
                      if an ISP complies with the safe-harbor provisions of Section 512, the
                      ISP will not obtain safe-harbor protection from claims of copyright
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                      • Profile picture of the author tpw
                        You are aware, aren't you that the poster of each and every post here owns the copyright to that post and not the Warrior Forum? That's a fact, so even in the case of posting copyrighted images, the poster is responsible. The WF does what it can to create rules to disallow infringement but that in no way makes them liable for the post.

                        Yet, I can quote you and use your words as the foundation for my post, without giving you credit for your words, and no one considers to to be Copyright Infringement for me to do so.
                        Signature
                        Bill Platt, Oklahoma USA, PlattPublishing.com
                        Publish Coloring Books for Profit (WSOTD 7-30-2015)
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                      • Profile picture of the author David Keith
                        Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post

                        You are aware, aren't you that the poster of each and every post here owns the copyright to that post and not the Warrior Forum? That's a fact, so even in the case of posting copyrighted images, the poster is responsible. The WF does what it can to create rules to disallow infringement but that in no way makes them liable for the post.
                        I am very aware of that. However, if warrior forum creates a culture of acceptance where violating the law is common place that does absolutely bring them into the liability discussion.

                        WF knows this and understands that making a solid effort to NOT allow people to post illegal material be that copy written material or testimonials that don't have the correct disclosure is in their best interest.

                        The warez / file sharing type sites are sites who built their business on allowing massive amounts of known illegal behavior to go on unchecked. Any idea how that business model is working out for them?

                        I think it would be foolish to suggest WF follow in their footsteps of claiming "its not me" its my customers who are doing the illegal stuff. So far that defense has not fared well in dealing with the FTC and other regulators.

                        I should be clear WF is no where near the level of warez sites at this stage. But the principals at work are the same.
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                        • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
                          Banned
                          Originally Posted by David Keith View Post

                          I am very aware of that. However, if warrior forum creates a culture of acceptance where violating the law is common place that does absolutely bring them into the liability discussion.
                          But they have not and are not creating said culture. Whenever a feasible rule is offered up to prevent things forum wide, it is implemented. See: the image rules from last week that you mentioned. I bet if someone came up with a viable system for handling testimonials that could actually be implemented, they'd be on it like white on rice.

                          In the meantime, they catch what they can and depend on members to point out the rest. That's hardly a culture of acceptance. The way I see it, it's a culture of "hey guys, we're getting as much as we can. If you'd like to help us out that'd be just swell."
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                          • Profile picture of the author David Keith
                            Originally Posted by Joe Robinson View Post

                            But they have not and are not creating said culture. Whenever a feasible rule is offered up to prevent things forum wide, it is implemented. See: the image rules from last week that you mentioned. I bet if someone came up with a viable system for handling testimonials that could actually be implemented, they'd be on it like white on rice.

                            In the meantime, they catch what they can and depend on members to point out the rest. That's hardly a culture of acceptance. The way I see it, it's a culture of "hey guys, we're getting as much as we can. If you'd like to help us out that'd be just swell."
                            It is not about a "feasible rule" as i said earlier, just because a particular pawn shop does not have the necessary systems in place to identify stolen merchandise efficiently does not mean they can buy all the stolen goods they want and sell them in their store.

                            WF simply can't allow illegal activities to go on and choose to not take action to curb such behavior.
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                            • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
                              Banned
                              Originally Posted by David Keith View Post

                              WF simply can't allow illegal activities to go on and choose to not take action to curb such behavior.
                              Where's the proof that they aren't taking action? When violations are reported, post goes away. Paul was in this thread earlier saying that if anyone had serious suggestions that they would be taken into consideration. How in the world is that twisted into choosing not to take action?
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                          • Profile picture of the author tpw
                            Originally Posted by Joe Robinson View Post

                            But they have not and are not creating said culture. Whenever a feasible rule is offered up to prevent things forum wide, it is implemented. See: the image rules from last week that you mentioned. I bet if someone came up with a viable system for handling testimonials that could actually be implemented, they'd be on it like white on rice.

                            In the meantime, they catch what they can and depend on members to point out the rest. That's hardly a culture of acceptance. The way I see it, it's a culture of "hey guys, we're getting as much as we can. If you'd like to help us out that'd be just swell."

                            Here is the deal.

                            The forum may not be deliberately creating said culture, but if they are not proactively addressing the problem, they are endorsing it by inaction.

                            The FTC acts a lot more like the accuser, the judge, the jury, and the executioner than most people realize.

                            Take for example the Frank Kern case. He had sold a package with Master Reprint Rights (MRR). People were selling his package, AND using his name to sell their services.

                            When the FTC came knocking at Frank Kern's door, they froze all of his assets.

                            For those of you who don't like to click links, here is the important part of Frank's comments about his FTC run-in:

                            My lawyers asked the FTC for copies of all consumer complaints filed about Instant Internet Empires.

                            And remember that company I told you about? The one where they would call the customers and say they were me?

                            Well, almost ALL OF THE COMPLAINTS were actually about that company. …Not me!

                            They even listed that company’s name on the complaints and everything!

                            When I discovered this, I thought my troubles were over because:

                            A: I have absolutely no connection to those guys.

                            B: I had copies of the cease and desist letter I’d sent them long before the FTC ever entered the picture!

                            C: That other company had a lot more money than I did and would make for a much better “target” than me … a 31 year old guy in Georgia working out of his house.

                            When I excitedly called my lawyers about this, here’s what one of them told me: “It doesn’t matter. You created the product in the first place …and more importantly, they’ve already issued a press release about you and they’ve convinced a federal judge to freeze your assets. There’s no way they’re going to go back and say they went after the wrong guy.”

                            Out of all the stuff that happened, that’s what shocked me the most. My guess is they got a gazillion complaints against “Dip****, Inc.” for selling Instant Internet Empires and simply assumed that I was the guy in charge …mainly because my name was on a ton of websites. From the outside, it probably looked like I was the “Kingpin” behind a major spam operation which then called customers and sold them bogus coaching products. Why they never shut down the guys who actually were hosing people will always be a mystery. (Those guys are still hosing people to this day.)

                            But here’s the point: IT DOESN’T MATTER. I believe that once the FTC even thinks you’re a bad guy, you’re screwed. You can technically even be “right” and still get into trouble.

                            Here’s what I mean: out of all the consumer complaints we received, only EIGHT mentioned my company. The worst complaint was “I didn’t like the product”. No kidding. And because I’m totally OCD when it comes to customer records, I was able to show that all eight of the people who actually did business with me had received full refunds …and one of them even thanked me for having good customer service.

                            And guess what? THAT DOESN’T MATTER.

                            The FTC is the FTC. Your best course of action is to try to be obnoxiously compliant with their regulations. If you get on their bad side, YOU WILL NOT WIN.

                            2: Disclaimers Don’t Matter

                            A popular misconception about my FTC lawsuit is that I didn’t have the correct disclaimers on my website.

                            While I probably didn’t have the right disclaimers on my website, having the “right” ones wouldn’t have mattered much.

                            In fact, since all that stuff happened, I’ve actually become friends with a former FTC lawyer and here’s what he told me.

                            “The FTC pretty much thinks that if you have to have a disclaimer in the first place, you’re probably doing something wrong.”

                            Here’s what this means to you.

                            You can’t have a website that says “You’ll get rich if you buy this product.” …and then hope your disclaimer that says “not really” will keep you out of trouble.

                            It won’t.
                            Signature
                            Bill Platt, Oklahoma USA, PlattPublishing.com
                            Publish Coloring Books for Profit (WSOTD 7-30-2015)
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                      • Profile picture of the author David Keith
                        Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post

                        You are aware, aren't you that the poster of each and every post here owns the copyright to that post and not the Warrior Forum? That's a fact, so even in the case of posting copyrighted images, the poster is responsible. The WF does what it can to create rules to disallow infringement but that in no way makes them liable for the post.

                        I do think that to be in the clear completely, that they need a DMCA notice and email for copyright complaints to be sent to.

                        http://www.lacba.org/Files/LAL/Vol31No3/2483.pdf
                        Just to be very clear. It is your legal opinion that it is in the best interest of the WF to allow copywritten material / images and posts that contain illegal testimonials that lack the disclosures they are legally required to have.

                        Now, for the second question forget legal or illegal. Is it your opinion that it is in the WF best interests to allow all such posts?

                        Are you saying that people should be allowed to post images with watermarks that have been stolen from reputable sellers and that WF has no legal or at the very least moral responsibility to attempt to discourage such posts?
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                • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
                  Banned
                  Originally Posted by David Keith View Post

                  Show me another ad vendor that does that?
                  That's the thing though. It's an entirely unique situation. So drawing on precedents would be kind of foolish. As you point out, pretty much no other marketplace/ad space/whatever you want to call it operates like this.
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            • Profile picture of the author agmccall
              I absolutely hate wading through the posts on a WSO

              So many "IF Joe made this product is has to be good"

              or "For that price, I'm in"

              or a someone asks a question and the person offering the WSO responds with "I just sent you a PM"

              or the WSO offerer is very active on the thread and someone asks a really good question and it goes unanswered.

              I have almost never found a post from someone that actually bought the product, used the product, and gave an actual review with the good, the bad, and the ugly.

              just my 2 cents

              al
              Signature

              Broken promises don't upset me. I just think, why did they believe me?
              ~Jack Handey~

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  • Profile picture of the author daddykool
    Bring in some form of cannot leave a review until XXX posts or something maybe? PM's like can you post a fake "it is good" are what give the WF a bad name elsewhere...

    All our reviews are plain and simple to the point, if you cannot make money, learn or evolve from a WSO posted we will "Say What We See!" for the good or bad of the thread, that way at least *some* new warriors will not get caught!
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  • Profile picture of the author kojakeugenio
    WSO testimonials are not 100% accurate. Some of them are secret review copy testimonials even if they mentioned in their sales thread that they are not giving review copies.
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  • Profile picture of the author jamiller
    I am friends with quite a few long time members here on WF, and I can honestly say that they would never do anything as shady as this. Neither would I. The truth is, if your product is good the customers will flock to give it rave reviews. And when some heavy hitters leave good reviews, you can "take it to the bank" that it's a good product.

    JM2C
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    INSTANTLY INCREASE CONVERSIONS >>DOWNLOAD NOW<<

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  • Profile picture of the author Marhelper
    In regards to original question, no I would not trust testimonials here or anywhere else. I have found phony testimonials in newbies and vets as well. I have posted a few WSOs years back that brought PMs from some well respected Warriors basically saying they would give me a positive testimony if I would do something for them. Not my style but I get that's how it so often works in the world. Personally, I don't even read the testimonials. I do however consider the person selling the product/service. If I know them or know they have a pattern of standing by their product then I am more apt to purchase it.
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  • Profile picture of the author nasuryono
    Yes, need to be careful with what you are buying today in WSOs.

    Also, I would search further outside WF to see if there are any people commenting on the WSO (possibly on someone's blog or other forums).
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  • Profile picture of the author tpw
    If the mods take seriously WillR's idea, which I think they should seriously consider it, then I would request that they made two radio button sets with each post.

    1. Considering offer, bought offer, got review copy, or vendor;

    2. Affiliate relationship, vendor, vendor partner, customer, pre-sales question.


    Please allow people to be completely transparent.

    Some people will abuse it, but as Paul has often said, "Give em some rope. It is their choice how they use it -- as a ladder or a noose."
    Signature
    Bill Platt, Oklahoma USA, PlattPublishing.com
    Publish Coloring Books for Profit (WSOTD 7-30-2015)
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