Thursday, August 27, 2009

Pposh Claims to be in Testing Mode, Questions Remain

I received lots of angry comments (almost certainly from Pposh employees) about my accusation that Pposh is a scam. People in the comments claim the site is still in testing mode and that users were sent an email saying so. I did receive such an email, posted below in its entirety.

Thank you for signing up with We are in the middle of testing the site. We do apologize for the inconvience but can you please come back in a few days. We will of course hold your bids and will send you an email as soon as it is ready.
Thank you for your patience and we look forward to seeing you soon!!"

However, this alone does not clear the site from what I would call dubious practices if not from being an outright scam. First, nowhere on the site could I find a disclaimer saying it is still in testing mode - a huge problem. Pposh lists ended auctions with details about when they were won, who won and for how much. Pposh do you see any problem with posting over 170 ended auctions with full descriptions of the travel packages won with really low prices that were not actually won? That's false advertising if not illegal. Your blog has similar false advertising, which I took a screen shot of and posted here. If you are in testing mode why would you post on your blog "I just won a Caribbean cruise on a new website I just stumbled on and I feel they are going to be very successful ... they have just launched the site a few days ago. Check it out." So you didn't win a cruise 1. because you work at the site, 2. because there is no cruise because you are in "testing mode" and 3. you were OK with lying about this auction to potential customers.

Also, how can you claim to be giving away five "free" bids when you are in testing mode - obviously if I can't win anything because you are in testing mode you can't legitimately charge me for bids. I don't know if users can use bids they purchased at Pposh to bid on these "testing mode" auctions, but when I used all five of my "free" bids this morning I was prompted to select a bidpack and enter my credit card information (again, without ever being told I was bidding on "test" auctions). This is very, very wrong, if not, again, a huge SCAM.

Pposh, we will watch you closely when you claim to leave "testing mode" and see what is going on then. However, in an industry that already has a credibility problem you have dug yourselves a large hole with your lack of disclosure and misleading if not fraudulent information posted on the site. Everything about your site looks and feels like a fully operational penny auction site, if you are in testing mode you need to say so on the site. I really don't know why you would do live testing anyway, except in my honest opinion, to deceive potential bidders.

Pposh - I have not deleted your comments on the previous post and have no plans to do so. However, if this pattern of comments continues and you do not properly identify yourselves as Pposh employees or persons with a vested interest in the company I will delete them. I believe fully in transparency and user freedom of speech, however, if comments are deceptive in their own right than as the administrator of this site I have an obligation to filter them.

Penny Auction Insider community: Pposh has been extremely deceptive, I would avoid the site until it can be verified that they are legitimate. I am not the only one who feels this way, Penny Auction Watch had a similar story this morning. We will continue to follow this story but in the meantime, as Penny Auction Watch stated earlier today, anyone with $150 and a few spare hours can start a penny auction site and anyone with an internet connection can post a comment on this blog. We need to be careful before we spend money on any new penny auction site, unfortunately it's just too easy to defraud people online.

Even Swoopo, the largest and most credible site is getting destroyed by angry users on their Facebook page who claim to have won items and not received them or purchased bids and not received them. I think Swoopo is completely legitimate, but if even the best sites have glitches why would you trust a newcomer that is being deceptive before they even go live? If you have a Facebook account go here to read the comments on the Swoopo Facebook page, it's a mess.

1 comment:

  1. LOL. Maybe they didn't remember how to get back to your site and they thought I was you!

    "We need to be careful before we spend money on any new penny auction site, unfortunately it's just too easy to defraud people online."

    I couldn't have said it better myself!