The news about Zeek Rewards and Bidify’s shutdowns hurt. I hurt for the affiliates affected by the move. While Bidify’s shutdown seems temporary, Zeek’s is not. CEO Paul Burks of Lexington, NC, decided to settle without admission of wrongdoing and a court appointed receiver went to work on Monday. While scam business shutdowns are not new, many victims are left without recourse.
I’ve been scammed twice. I was truly scammed – I worked hard and was slowly (or quickly) shut out then considered ineligible for payment because I broke rules or the company just closed. I worked as a real estate bird dog for Ouii.com (also known as TGN Network). I found properties for a good price and shared the listings in exchange for a commission on closed sales. I found a few killer listings and noticed they were posted on the site under another independent contractor’s name. I pointed this out and was assured it would be corrected. Suddenly there were notification issues and my contract was terminated. Turns out I was one in a long line of victims. Company owner Ari Hinnant has a history of scamming telecommuters and shutting down when things get hot. It seems she may be still at it. If you see her name attached to an opportunity, walk away.
Second time I was scammed was as an independent representative with Marlo Quinn. It started out great – fantastic soaps and candles, quick shipping, and huge potential. Problems started with an incomplete order. I was told the soaps were back ordered and would receive them soon. No soap, no refund. On the company forums, posts about missing items, long turnaround between orders and deliveries, and other ‘negative’ posts were deleted instead of addressed. Then suddenly, nothing. The company shut down without an official word until founder Marcee Townsend gave an interview on Work at Home Moms Talk Radio. And still no apology to the reps or customers left holding the bag.
When I tell people to be careful and do their homework, I recognize that sometimes opportunities check out until it’s too late. With Ouii/TGN, I was so excited to find something that I didn’t do enough homework. With Marlo Quinn, everything checked out until a few months before shut down. Now I research everything to the nth degree.
I hope sharing helps some of you. Until next time, be safe.