ALERT: Beware of Terms & Conditions

Once again we cannot remind you enough to READ, READ, READ the Terms & Conditions for the penny auction site you are registering for.  Look at the insane language in the Terms for Silvertag.com , aka The Perfect Bid:

If a Member for any reason disputes any charge from PayPal or Silvertag, the Member will be deemed in breach of this contract and will be subject to fines of $500 per hour that the amount is disputed with PayPal and the complaint is live up to a maximum of $5000.00.  The $500 per hour starts the minute the dispute is filed and continues until the breach is fixed.  The amount of the fine becomes due immediately and will be turned over to a collection agency if not paid within 5 days.

In addition, anyone who is suspected and further proven to be in breach of this contract or has engaged in any type of manipulation may immediately become liable to Silvertag.Com, LLC for the sum of $10,000 for each offense or attempted manipulation.  In short, if in Silvertag’s sole discretion, anyone tries to manipulate or cheat the system in any way, they are considered in breach of this contract and can be fined by Silvertag an amount up to $10,000 for each offense or attempted manipulation.  Failure to pay the fine will result in the Member being turned over to a Collection agency for collection.  Any decision Silvertag makes relating to termination or suspension of any Member’s Account shall be final and binding.

Read the full terms.

A reader just made us aware of this, we appreciate reader comments & contribution. Also, please feel free to join our forums!

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9 comments… add one
  • Nick July 14, 2009, 10:01 am

    That's just plain ridiculous, how will they collect on those "fines?" up to $5,000 that's totally crazy this is why you need to read the terms I know they're so long and boring but you will be bound to them, sounds pretty insane this is not regulated!

    Reply
  • bloo123456 July 14, 2009, 11:59 am

    wow… that is insane… so it seems like they could be using bots or something cuz why would they threten to almost rip off your life’s earnings like that? that is just plain BS. they are just supposed to defend their site, not be offensive… the only reason that i usually dont read terms is cuz they are just too dam long…. and filled with shit load of bullshit.. sorry for the language but its just not cool….

    Reply
  • bloo123456 July 14, 2009, 9:16 pm

    i wanna freaking sue these people outa their fortunes for trying to make OUR lives miserable.. and i am serious… i mean Crazy serious.

    Reply
  • Jeff Hansen July 25, 2009, 1:42 pm

    Jeff H. writes:

    First, let me respond to the "ALERT: Beware of Terms & Conditions" in RED type. Completely ignore the illiterate idiots. As one who is very famillier with Contractual law. They would be laughed out of court if they ever tried to excercise their Terms and conditions the way they have been written.

    For one thing, by law, they are not allowed to administer fines, only the courts can do that, secondly, if they ever tried to cash in on their terms, they would immediately be sanctioned by the court for committing fraud upon the court for filing a FRIVOLOUS COMPLAINT. Not that I would ever deal with these incompetents, but if by chance I suddenly developed brain freeze and did deal with them, only to have them hit me with that lunacy, I would have them for breakfast and enjoy every second of it. I think it was written by some THROWBACK CEREBRAL NEANDERTHAL WHO FANCIES THEMSELVES AS ONE WHO STILL BELIEVES THAT BULL …T BAFFLES BRAINS.

    NOW ONTO THE REAL REASON WHY I AM WRITING HERE. SCROLL DOWN TO VIEW.

    I have recently read HUNDREDS of (good and bad) comments on various blog forums about Swoopo and penny auctions in general. Let me give everyone a point to ponder. If one day, a company like Swoopo said ok! we will no longer list our own items on the site, from now on, anyone who wishes to list their own items for sale may do so, you can keep all of the profits you make using the Swoopo bidding method, all you have to do is pay Swoopo a listing and final value fee just like ebay charges, these fees are for use of the site.

    I can't help but wonder how many of those who are AGAINST the penny auction concept would suddenly be listing their own items for sale with the hope of pulling in the same kind of profits they say Swoopo is pulling in on theirs?

    It follows then, that for those IN FAVOR of the Swoopo method, they obviously would jump at the chance. It also follows, that for those who are presently AGAINST the Swoopo method, they also would suddenly see a clear road to make a profit on any item they list on a Penny Auction Site, but they would be wrong to think that.

    Methinks in the latter case, there will be double standards flying all over the place and the naysayers will suddenly be saying things like, "You know something, Swoopo is not such a bad deal after all." LOL.

    It appears to me that the overall mentality of the NAYSAYERS is, if it is new and has never been thought of or done before then it has to be crooked, that type of mentality is a clear demonstration of idiocy at its best. Those of you who are against the penny auction concept may not like what i have just said, but it is nevertheless true and you know it.

    Whoever it was that originated the Swoopo (penny auction concept) most definitely has the millionaires mentality, those of you who criticize the concept are demonstrating that they are economic illiterates, (special emphasis on the word economic) at least until they would be allowed to list their own items for sale, then they would suddenly become financial wizards, LOL (sarcasm intended).

    Come now you guy's, be honest and fair, tell it like it really is, you know that what I have just said is true and would happen in a heart beat if Swoopo allowed you to list your own items.

    For those of you who bad mouth Swoopo and the like, you are opening your mouths just to change feet, if Swoopo gave everyone the opportunity to list their own products for sale you would jump at the chance and not one of them would give a rats ass for all of the losers that they presently feel sorry for in their blogs.

    Now be nice people, respond to my post and admit that what I have said is true, put the sense of fair play back into your lives and start thinking of how you can make a buck instead if coming down hard on those who are at least trying to make a better life for themselves.

    If all you naysayers are so concerned that there are people out there who are easily influenced, then stop trying to be a Mother Teresa by trying to influence them.

    If you are still against it then simply keep your mouths shut and stay away, then no harm done.

    Reply
  • Alec July 26, 2009, 1:02 pm

    I own a penny auction website, and we have those terms just to scare you, so you dont request a refund.

    Reply
  • bloo123456 July 27, 2009, 7:25 am

    lol who are you jeff… i m not asking u in a negative way.. but that was some good stuff 🙂

    Reply
  • auctionwatcher July 27, 2009, 8:30 am

    Good comments guys, Thanks!

    Reply
  • Jeff Hansen July 27, 2009, 8:37 am

    This message is for Alex who said “he owns a Penny Auction site and has those terms just to scare you, so you dont request a refund”.

    Alex, My suggestion to you, is change your terms and conditions. If you don’t want people requesting REFUNDS then state in simple language in CAPS, NO REFUNDS UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES. While that statement may scare off the UNINFORMED and prevent many frivolous claims, It will not scare off anyone who feels that they have a legitimate claim for a refund as there are many circumstances that would genuinley warrant a refund. Realize this, a judge has the power to CANCEL ANY CONTRACT/AGREEMENT if he thinks it is taking unfair advantage of the other party.

    Re-examine your terms and conditions, get a lawyer to proof read them, you will be amazed at what he will tell you to change. Right now, as is the case with many businesses, they copy the terms and conditions from other like businesses without checking to see if ALL of those terms legally apply to their particular business. I have read many of the Penny Auction contracts and I can tell you there are glaring errors in EVERYONE I HAVE READ, (NO EXAGGERATION). I would hazard a guess and say your’s would be no different.

    Remember this!! Like many businesses, the only reason that Penny Auctions are still up and running, is because they have been lucky flying under the radar, The first mistake any of them make will cause a court action challenge that will reverberate throughout the whole industry. Also Remember, “PEOPLE IN BUSINESS ARE NOT NECCESSARILY BUSINESS PEOPLE”. Meaning, Just because they own a business doesn’t make them a professional at what they do.

    If you want to remain under the radar, then make sure you are running an honest operation, if someone asks for a refund and you know in your heart and soul they have a right to it, even though your terms and conditions say otherwise, THEN GIVE IT TO THEM ANYWAY, your reputation will IMPROVE because of it.

    Reply
  • Mike Scooter April 29, 2010, 7:48 am

    Hi Jeff,

    As the owner of a non-penny-auction small business, I wholeheartedly concur with your last paragraph. It is why my small business is still around after ten years and counting…the T & C is there to CYA and deflect frivolous bs from customers you'd rather not have anyway, it is *not* there to beat legitimate customers that have understandable gripes.

    Me and my partner are considering starting up a penny auction site to help promote our little business as well as diversify a little bit; we are actively researching this novel concept. This is a great site, and I can wholeheartedly echo what I've seen a number of times here…TNSTAAFL (There's No Such Thing As A Free Lunch), a.k.a., if it is worth doing and will make you money, it is going to take *work* and *capital* to make it happen.

    A question: Assuming an honest PA site owner who wants to build a legitimate business, by what mechanism can we demonstrate to potential bidders that we are not shilling, we have the inventory, etc., i.e., in what way can we be transparent to customers to demonstrate we are what we say we are? Thoughts welcome…if we don't execute, this will likely be why we don't try it.

    Thanks,

    Mike

    Reply

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