Sellers playbook and Exposure Marketing are two companies located in the state of Minnesota. Jessie Conners Tieva, is the founder of Sellers playbook and her husband Matthew Tieva is the president, also Jessie is the president of Exposure Marketing and Mathew Tieva is the chief executive and vice president of this company which was started in 2017. These two companies are accused for deceiving people by offering courses for their clients on how to make money through Amazon shops. The company owners have offered courses to their clients by selling their course packages which cost 500 dollars and they have given advice that by watching these course materials customers will be able to make 20,000 dollars per month and a net profit of 1.2 million by selling their products through Amazon. Attorney general has said that most of the company’s clients has not earned any such amount and some even lost their money. Only few has gained profits through these course materials. Therefore, such claim that people by taking these courses will earn 20,000 thousand dollars per month is not true but Conners Tieva says its customers fault that they have not achieved this success.
This couple claim that there are more students that had successful experience by completing the course and to achieve increase in their earning but those customers who have not been successful think that “they can get the world handed to them and not work for anything”. Sellers playbook set ups a three day seminar for its customers which will cost from 500 dollars to 1000 dollars and this company offers an expensive package which costs 48000 dollars and in return clients are allowed to have access to the sellers playbook and this company have given customers advice that they will see an increase in their sales product through Amazon by 70 percent. Federal Trade Commission says that Sellers playbook has earned more than 15 million dollars from its clients between years of 2017 and 2018 and their business conduct has been stopped by a federal court until the case is solved.
These two company does not have a direct connection with Amazon and Amazon is willing to help the Federal Trade Commission for further investigation.
The Consumer Review Fairness Act is a law which safeguards people’s capability to tell their true opinion regarding outputs, services, or performances of any company, in any place, containing social networking. The Consumer Review Fairness Act was enacted due to issues that some companies had. There were some businesses that wanted to prevent customers or clients that wanted to express their opinion regarding the services or products that most of the companies they got. There were some businesses that had some rules for their customers. These companies would put in place their condition for their clients regarding that if customers give online bad feedback or reviews then these companies will be capable of instituting legal proceedings against these customers for writing negative comments or they will subject customers to some kind of punishment for putting bad ratings online.
What type of opinion does the law supports in this regard? The Consumer Review Fairness Act safeguards a general statements or opinions regarding evaluation, which contains online evaluations, posts that some people put in social websites, images, videos, etc. And it does not protect only companies’ output evaluations. Also, this assessments targets costumer overview of business’s services that they provide for the people. What type of activity does the Consumer Review Fairness Act does not allow? This law does not allow businesses to create conditions for customers which will cause people to: The inability of individuals or customers to give their opinion regarding products or services they have used or experienced. This law prevents companies from putting in place fines or any type of punishments towards people who express their concerns. This law also prevents those companies that causes individuals to disown the intellectual property rights they have in this regard. The Consumer Review Fairness Act in this case seems that the sellers playbook did not act accordingly by the this law. This is what the attorney general of state of Minnesota and Federal Trade Commission has mentioned in their action that they have taken against the couple’s company. Also, it’s the Federal Trade Commission first case that has recorded for claims against Consumer Review Fairness Act. Sellers playbook and Exposure Marketing has prevented the customers for giving opinion or comment for their services through social network which is a violation under the law in Consumer Review Fairness Act.
The final outcome of this case is that due to the company’s violations of Consumer Review Fairness Act, the Federal court in state of Minnesota has put in place a restraining order for the activity of these companies for short period of time, until case result is cleared. But still the case presents a key fact point.
- (n.a). “Sellers Playbook, Inc.” Bbb.Org, 2017, www.bbb.org/us/mn/minneapolis/profile/marketing-programs/sellers-playbook-inc-0704-1000014254/complaints. Accessed 8 Sept. 2019.
- Fair, Lesley. “First Consumer Review Fairness Case Takes on Promoter’s ‘Big Bucks on Amazon’ Claim.” Federal Trade Commission, 11 Aug. 2018, www.ftc.gov/news-events/blogs/business-blog/2018/08/first-consumer-review-fairness-case-takes-promoters-big. Accessed 8 Sept. 2019.
- (n.a). “Consumer Review Fairness Act: What Businesses Need to Know.” Federal Trade Commission, 31 May 2017, www.ftc.gov/tips-advice/business-center/guidance/consumer-review-fairness-act-what-businesses-need-know.
- Parry, Hannah. “Apprentice Star Accused of Duping Thousands with Business Courses.” Mail Online, Daily Mail, 7 Aug. 2018, www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6035741/Apprentice-star-accused-duping-thousands-15MILLION-shoddy-business-courses.html. Accessed 8 Sept. 2019.
- Huddleston, Tom. “This Ex-’Apprentice’ Star Is Accused of Running a $15 Million Amazon Scam.” CNBC, CNBC, 10 Aug. 2018, www.cnbc.com/2018/08/10/ex-apprentice-contestant-jessie-tieva-accused-of-doing-amazon-scam-.html. Accessed 8 Sept. 2019.
- (n.a) “Defendants in Sellers Playbook Get-Rich Scheme Settle with FTC and Minnesota.” Federal Trade Commission, 3 Dec. 2018, www.ftc.gov/news-events/press-releases/2018/12/defendants-sellers-playbook-get-rich-scheme-settle-ftc-minnesota. Accessed 8 Sept. 2019.