Both Bidtimelive.com and Bidtime25.com are now gone, they haven’t responded to customers in months and they haven’t shipped out owed items. Why not? When speaking with Jay at Bidtime a few months back he told us that all customers would be taken care of, it’s been over 4 months now and still there are customers awaiting items. Bidtime’s penny auctions aren’t the first to do this, there are many sites that have ripped us all off. We, as well as at least one other PAW member is out a few hundred dollars spent on won items and bids from TidBidz.com, no response ever and unfortunately that’s just one example.
Why would this be? Why do some penny auction sites think it’s ok to violate consumer protection acts? Maybe they didn’t know this was fraudulent? Maybe they’re all just con artists? This is inexcusable, something needs to be done to stop fraud. The first step for consumers would be to report it. Report it to the FTC, the IC3, the police, the Attorney’s General, congressman, senators, whoever will listen.
Consumers need to know their rights and sellers need to know the laws.
Take a look the FTC’s Internet Auction Consumer Protection presentation.
“The basic consumer protection statute enforced by the Commission is Section 5(a) of the FTC Act, which provides that “unfair and deceptive acts or practices in or affecting commerce are declared unlawful”-(15 U.S.C. Sec. 45(a)(1)).
- Multiple mail drops opened under other false names to avoid detection.
- SHILLS: Sellers use “shills” to bid on their items to drive up the price of the items.”
Also from the presentation:
“Federal Court Injunctive Action
• To stop an ongoing scam
• To obtain redress for consumers.”
If you’ve been swindled by an online auction site please report it to the FTC at ftccomplaintassistant.gov.
The FTC has even addressed shill reviewers, think you can shill post in our forum (we catch you most of the time)? Take a look at this:
“Tips for Sellers…
Know Your Legal Obligations
Under federal law, you’re required to advertise your product or service and the terms of the sale honestly and accurately. You can’t place “shill” bids on your item to boost the price or offer false testimonials about yourself in the comment section of Internet auction sites.
You’re prohibited from auctioning illegal goods; some auction sites have further prohibition on sales of other items. While many auction sites monitor to ensure that illegal items are not being offered, the responsibility for ensuring that a sale is legal rests with the seller and buyer. Some auction sites post a list of prohibited items.
You are required to ship merchandise within the time frame specified during the auction, or within 30 days, if a time frame is not specified. If you can’t meet the shipping commitment, you must give the buyer an opportunity to agree to the new shipping date or cancel the order for a full refund. To learn more about your responsibilities when shipping products, see A Business Guide to the Federal Trade Commission’s Mail or Telephone Order Merchandise Rule.”- Internet Auctions A Guide for Buyers and Sellers
If you’re committing fraud, stop it, it’s more than likely going to catch up with you one day. Stop hurting people.
Discuss penny auctions in our forum!
Photo Credits Some rights reserved by corporatemonkey
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Ron September 22, 2010, 2:18 pm
i am not really understand, why you dont fighting against the auction software makers?
if somebody thinks seriously this business, then he will invest a lot. will do custom software, site, marketing etc.
all cheaters comes from the $1k costs softwares. they will kill this biz, i am sure.
upyurs February 8, 2011, 1:47 pm
This Penny Auction Watch site is Major scam(pennyauctionwatch.com). Also known as “PAW”.
PAW is a front for these dishonest penny auction owners to make their sites look legit. Penny Auction Owners plant positive experiences on here(Complaints Board) and on the Penny Auction Watch forums(PAW) to bait people into playing and buying bid packs. Buying bid packs to bid on items? What a joke and scam!
Go to Flippa[dot]com and search “penny auctions for sale”
There you can see how these operates by the use of controlled bots on autobid to scam any real people into buying more and more bid packs until the reserve price has at least been met for that item that’s bid on. They aren’t in the business to LOSE money and will never ACTUALLY sell an item below value. If not enough real people are bidding on a particular item for a while, they will end the auction to a bot name. They will then list the bots name in the “Auction History” section to make it look as if REAL people actually win and auction is honest+fair.
You can buy your own Penny Auction from Flippa.com and start scamming also. So easy to do.
Also. Google, “penny auction website script” and see how these scams operate. The scripts are cheap to buy.
To build up traffic to your scam penny auction you must plant positive experiences on forums such as PAW(PAW is a front). You must also dispute ANY negativity or complaints on forums such as this.
For EX, tell the angry complainer that he must be crazy, use stupid bidding techniques and unlucky because you win all the time and just won a 52inch Plasma for 2 bucks. People WILL start believing you if you plant enough fake postitive experiences/reviews. JUST make sure to use different names each time you fake post. If you use same name over and over again telling everyone you win all the time, people will begin to catch on and realize it’s just a fake post planted by the Penny Site operator/owner.
They cheat you and make a killing from people like you that bought into it. Some will even go as far as to advertise on social networking sites such as “FACEBOOK” and write stories of winning items for $4 and so on to get people to join the site.
I call it their, “Fake Social Environment” where they ask and answer their own questions attempting to be perceived as an honest and fair auction. For EX they will say, “I just won 12 Lap Tops for $40 and they all arrived today in factory sealed boxes! I love this site!”
Anyone can do this… so easy to make money. MAKE sure that the server that hosts your scam auction is located outside of the USA so you can get around federal gambling regulated laws. If heat gets to much, then shut scam auction down and create a new one. Repeat process.
I tried to post that on PAW(pennyauctionwatch[.]com) to warn good honest people BUT they wouldn’t allow it to post.. I wonder why? 😉
So i’ll just post away on websites such as this.
You use to could post on PAW right away but now they have a Moderator that must approve your post first.. I wonder why that is? 😉
I think we ALL know why that is 🙂
Amanda February 8, 2011, 10:43 pm
You’re wrong. this site is NOT a front for any site. I /PENNY AUCTION WATCH does not own any penny auction site. Stop spreading libel/defamation.