Thursday, September 22, 2011

AMW Bulletin: Group Deals and False Advertisement --- Beware

Cleverbuy.com.ph
Dermaesthetique

Both companies left a bad taste in my mouth.  Let me tell you why....
A dear reader emailed me and asked me if I am affiliated to this said Clinic because she saw my before and after shot.  I clicked on the site and here's what I saw...

Perfect! From Php2,500 to Php250.00 Great deal right????


WRONG!
I saw my own before and after photo
And obviously, it was a before and after shot of a review I did
Obviously, not from a treatment from Dermaesthetique

For the Record:
I have never tried any Under Eye Circle Treatment
and never stepped in Dermaesthetique Clinic

Fast forward, I gave Cleverbuy.com.ph a call, asking them who's at fault here.  In all fairness to the manager "Wax", he admitted they were the ones who stole my photos and they apologized and told me they'll remove the photos.  

At the same time, I emailed Dermaesthetique via their FB Page.

Shared to everyone via Twitter and FB Wall, I did my part!  I hope they'll at least contact me to apologize.

Well, of course not!  That's why this post was created!  I seldom get angry for long and I actually told myself I'm not going to dwell on this issue as its just a waste of my positive energy.

Then, I got a message from a dear FB friend telling me Cleverbuy did not remove my Before and After shot on their FB page.  

Really....... seriously.........


I had to click to enlarge as I couldn't believe it.  I would know that's me as I own that face for 32 years, well, I started looking like that around 12 years old, so fine!  For 20 years!

*pissed off Nikki* I gave Dermaesthetique a call and I was told by the "receptionist" that the Dra. (who's the owner) already knew about it and asked me to call Cleverbuy instead as she knew "nothing" about the incident.

*more than pissed Nikki*

I told the receptionist I won't put down the phone unless I talk to a marketing person or anyone in-charge of dealing with deal sites.

I got a name... Dra. Emilou Eclipse, she's the owner of Dermaesthetique.

I gave her a call on her clinic, another receptionist answered, telling me she's busy.  Asked me to call back 5 minutes after.  I told her I'll wait, and I did...and it has been more than 10 minutes when the line was cut.

(okay, by this time, I should have ran out with an ax like a headless chicken)  But I didn't, I was surprisingly cool.

I called back and Dra. Eclipse picked up the phone.  I told her my concern and she insisted that she was advised by Cleverbuy that they will use "authorized" photos or stock photos sent by the company to the deal site.

Okay, my first question was:
"If you're the owner of the company, won't you at least CHECK out the deal that was pasted all over the net?  Aren't you even alarmed to see a before and after shot of someone who did not go through your treatment?"

She agreed.

Second question:
"Who's the owner of the site's FB page?"

She said she is.  I told her I sent her a message, and she said she read it but was "too busy" as she's not always in front of the computer.

I told her if I am the owner of the clinic and there's someone complaining about the stolen photo, won't she at least email me and apologize?  Okay, I don't even need apology, I just want to see what actions she will take.

Obviously NONE.

So anyway, I won't waste much of this blog space.  I'm actually not ranting, I am perfectly fine.  What I want is to tell EVERYONE to be careful with companies like these!  Imagine, how difficult it will be to talk to them if you have issues with a certain treatment done at their clinic?

I don't need to talk more, you decide and tell me if these people are worth trusting or if you would trust your hard earned money or face in companies like these.


P.S. I know companies have "stock photos", whether they are real or not, I don't care!  Just don't steal mine.
P.P.S I'm not creating this post to pull down both companies, I just want to make you "aware" and be careful with deals you purchase.  I cannot tolerate stealing of photos and using them for ads on services I did not even avail.


My friends from Malaysia have something to say about Deal Sites, read them as they're super helpful ---
My Women Stuff 
Pretty Beautiful


Keep smilin'
Stay happy!




66 comments:

  1. If there's a LIKE button here, I'll definitely click it.

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  2. sorry to hear :( i checked it just then and it's still there. hopefully it's removed soon.

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  3. Oh my.. This is just so unfair, Nikki. You don't deserve this. Cleverbuy and Dermaesthetique should have asked you in the first place and not just steal your photos. And what's worse is hindi mo naman pala un inavail sa kanila.

    Indeed mabenta ang group buying sites today pero sana naman they don't fool and use people that way. It's so irresponsible of them.

    I applaud your courage to post this, Nikki and I hope a lot of your readers will be more cautious now.

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  4. I cant imagine what pain one would go through if for example something went wrong after a treatment... with owners thata re too busy to clean up their act. grabe yan

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  5. Oh no. That was bad. Companies shouldn't be doing things like that just to earn. That is simply deceitful. Anyway, I do hope they remove your picture. Cheer up! :)

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  6. Both the deal company and the merchant are in the wrong not only for using your photo without permission but in knowingly removing your watermark as well before posting it. Its clearly fraudulent! This PSA is timely and you are right. If you faced so much trouble just over this matter, imagine the hassle you'd face if you had a bad experience at the salon. Why would anyone want to give their money to either company?

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  7. OMG! I saw ur update on Facebook before and it is absolutely disrespect!

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  8. Grabe nakakagalit nmn tong 2 companies na to! hay nako pagako nasa place mo i'll file a lawsuit agad to specially sa reaction nila na walang pakialam and the way they responded...

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  9. WTF?!
    that's so low!!!!

    definitely not a group buying site that i would be visiting...

    i want companies that i transact with to do something respectable, but to do something like stealing other photos & posting it as their own is more than a no-no, it's horrible!

    tsk tsk tsk!
    shame on these people!
    >_<

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  10. wow, this is unfair. how unprofessional of them. they are on my hate list now.

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  11. Now I wonder, does their service even work? XD

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  12. awww nikki this is just wrong.. i have availed of the dermaesthetique deals already (ipl+bleaching) but this time, i'm not sure if I'm coming back.. this is very unprofessional and it's like fooling the customers by using a photo showing of what they supposedly do but in truth was just stolen from other person..

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  13. tsk! tsk! those people are shameless. thanks for letting us know. at least people are on to them.

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  14. tsk tsk tsk. that's why i'm skeptic to try those groupon things. can i cross post?

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  15. The clinic did not even thought what would happen to them because of this, even if a 3rd party is in charge of that post their name is still on the line right? Just keep your cool Miss Nikki and try to talk to the website that stole your pictures. I'm not really sure if you can do some legal actions with what they did.

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  16. You need to write a demand letter

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  17. Grabe!!! Diba that's illegal??? They should be sued! And the nerve that they did not apologize even after you told them too. And you have the right coz it's your face! Spread the word that DERMAESTHETIQUE is a LIAR and a THIEF!!!

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  18. Their 9O % 0ff deal is already suspicious. DTI should visit this type of online deal shops and setclear rules to protect buyers.

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  19. @Jannah Aaww thanks, I wish I can put a HUGE LIKE button here :D

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  20. @domncroxd Oh yeah, they removed it already! After my call

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  21. @MariaKristela Girl, I am very careful with things I review, I have a lot of skin care companies emailing me to ask me to try their services but I've said no a couple of times, and here goes another company using my "review" photo to use for their company. Even if they did asked for my permission or PAY me, I won't agree! I don't want to be part of a false advertisement!

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  22. @Kumiko Mae Yun nga eh! Kaya I've posted this coz I want readers and buyers to be careful!

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  23. @Pammy Hi dear :) hehhe thanks, I'm not really dwelling on it, I'm ok! I was just appalled by the way things were handle! I just want a decent apology but I have to give them a call to get that! hahaha kawawa naman ako! :P

    P.S. the photos have been removed na right after my call

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  24. @Paris B I know PB! And it was just in time i read your post about these deal sites! :)

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  25. @Anastacia Thanks Anastacia, let's remove the "disrespect" on me, if they aren't using it to "sell" something, I'll be ok, no post needed or created for them. But this is just too much! As I saw the "SOLD" numbers going up, I was alarmed!

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  26. @dustbunny I hope they learn from their mistake! Thanks dear!

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  27. @~tHiAmErE~ It's just me wanting to tell the readers to be Careful! Thanks dear!!!

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  28. @Lady Stapler Well..lets be careful when we buy coupons like these! Well I'm not visiting the deal site EVER too!

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  29. @Gellie Abogado I agree, if it does work, they should have "legit" photos of before and after

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  30. @carmi I am scared to buy cheap deals for services now. I know companies uses models and stuff...it was a "given" fact, but this was stolen with MY FACE on it and I don't want people to think I'm affiliated with this company!

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  31. that's so ridiculous and..unscrupulous! I am getting more and more annoyed with this group purchase hype as i sat down and thought, i had more bad experiences than the good ones!

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  32. @Jackie my pleasure, I do not plan to dwell on this issue but since the "call" incident, I think I've given them enough chance!

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  33. @Photoescape I still think both companies are at fault, if I am the owner of the company and a deal site used a photo that's not from MY company, I would ask them to put it down immediately.

    Second, I emailed them on FB page, she told me she read it but was "TOO BUSY" to answer back, told her at least ONE WORD? "SORRY?" or "I'm Busy, I'll get back to you?" I got No response! Totally ignored! Felt like I have to give them a call to get the apology I deserve! Which was sad! :(

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  34. @Esquire Demand for another apology? :) I'm done with it, I hope they'll do their part, I've done mine :)

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  35. @Valeriecabance Yes, please help me spread the word, also,do not forget the deal site who stole my photos!

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  36. @Ria OO nga eh! and I agree, and you know what? I heard these deal sites and companies are earning so much with deals like these!!!!

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  37. The pic is gone from their FB page, replaced with some other person's pic who probably doesn't know it's being used. =\

    It's misrepresentation since the models did not undergo the treatment advertised. Anyone who availed of the service and was disappointed can sue dermasthetique and the advertising agency for false advertising under the Consumer Act of the Philippines, Republic Act No. 7394, which provides:

    Art. 50. Prohibition Against Deceptive Sales Acts or Practices. - A deceptive act or practice by a seller or supplier in connection with a consumer transaction violates this Act whether it occurs before, during or after the transaction. An act or practice shall be deemed deceptive whenever the producer, manufacturer, supplier or seller, through concealment, false representation of fraudulent manipulation, induces a consumer to enter into a sales or lease transaction of any consumer product or service.

    Art. 60. Penalties. - (a) Any person who shall violate the provisions of Title III, Chapter I, shall upon conviction, be subject to a fine of not less than Five Hundred Pesos (P500.00) but not more than Ten Thousand Pesos (P10,000.00) or imprisonment of not less than five (5) months but not more than one (1) year or both, upon the discretion of the court.

    Kind of disappointing since I was so excited about these discount things. I'll just stick to discounted buffets and hotel stays, at least those can't be faked.

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  38. wow, tapos halos deadma pa yung may ari instead of apologizing for the oversight and at least promising to rectify it or at least look into it kaysa 'i'm busy', eh lahat naman tayo busy eh, gawd

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  39. that's cyber crime! very disappointing! na pirate na nga picture, hindi pa apologetic ung dra...
    thanks for sharing this to us Miss Nikki.. I checked the site and wala na po dun ung picture mo.
    I hope ur ok na po, sna ngaun mas maingat na cla sa mga advertisements nila. :)

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  40. tsk, tsk...

    they could at least stop using your photos. that's the least they can do... i think i wouldn't visit such a clinic due to the attitude of the owner. she blatantly doesn't seem to care and i know for a fact that i wouldn't want anyone like that handling my problematic skin.

    cheer up nikki! you just have good photos. :) good enough for advertisements if i may so say. ;)

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  41. What product did you use that have the before and after picture? looks like the product worked because Dermaesthetique stole your picture..

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  42. Hi, I just want to share my two cents here.

    I don't think Dermaesthetique is at fault here, but I agree that the owner should have at least apologized to you. Anyway, the one who is at fault is Webix Solutions, the company that maintains Cleverbuy. They clearly know that stealing photos is a no-no, but they went on doing that. They could have at least asked permission, but they didn't.

    Actually, this company has approached me via FB inbox if I could share some pictures with them about some food deal. I told them that I'd post pictures on my blog, and I'll just send the link to them. I've never heard from them after that.

    There are several false advertisements around us. Even those products, e.g. shampoos that are advertised on TV. So, my say is examine what you're planning to purchase first--online or offline, particularly those that can be bought from these daily deal/group buying sites. :)

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  43. Now this made me wonder, Does that procedure actually work? Why does it seem like they cant ASK for before and after photos from satisfied clients? Thats just so wrong. Im sure they did a little research and they came up with that article that you posted with those pics, but claimed that you got those results from their under eye procedure. Thanks for the heads up Nikki, I retweeted this also. Will never purchase from that buying site and will never patronize the services of that clinic.

    On a lighter note, im glad to hear that you managed to keep your cool regarding this. <3 Stay pretty and bubbly, Nikki! I love reading your posts! :)

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  44. @Anonymous Thank you so much for the information. I know they are liable for whatever misrepresentation they've done, its rampant in the industry so all we need to do as consumers? Research , research and ask around! Word of mouth is the best form of advertisement for me!

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  45. @Marge I'm not angry at Dermaesthetique as they weren't the ones who stole my photos, but the thing is, I got no response from the company when I emailed them. Kahit man lang "I will take action immediately" kahit wala nang sorry! OK LANG!

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  46. @gerilen elinessete I know there's not a lot of people reading my site but I hope I can at least (in my own little ways) share to a group of people how we should be careful.

    And to the companies, both the company and deal site, they should learn to be careful, its their name at risk!

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  47. @sugar sugar Thanks sis! Don't worry about me, I'm not sad! Promise, this is just a tiny problem compared to bigger problems out there! gusto ko lang FAIR ang tao :)

    Awww thanks, then its a compliment to Mr. AMW for the photos! :)

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  48. @Jingkee If I have the time, I'll look for the original photo, I'm sure its eaither a foundation or BB cream review, as reviews like that, I put before and after shot. So its makeup! Nothing EUREKA MOMENT worthy! hehehe

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  49. @Charlene B. Oh I Totally agree, I told Dra. (the owner) that I am NOT blaming her for stealing my photos, it was confirmed early on that the group site did the "stealing" part. I am just not happy with the way she "brushed it off" as for me it was a serious matter and she shouldn't pay the deal site company for advertising.

    About false advertisements everywhere, YES I agree on that, but at least, those "models" "actors/actreses" who did the ad were AWARE of what they are promoting and they are get paid!

    Not that I want to get paid, even if they do, I won't accept it, but you get the drift right? At least it wasn't STOLEN photos of a review of ANOTHER PRODUCT! Not even a similar service.

    Thanks for sharing your 2 cents :D

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  50. @Dee (BabyJapRN) Even if the procedure works, now it makes people wonder just because of the unprofessional manner the deal site handled this particular promo. I hope the Dra. got my point when I told her I am not trying to ruin her business (I'm not the type), I just want her to "MOVE!" to be "QUICK" in fixing problems like these and not say "I'm very busy and no time to be in front of the computer all the time". She heard about it the day before, again...the least she could do is take huge actions to Cleverbuy, did you know that she's just going to do some action AFTER my phone call???

    :D

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  51. @Dee (BabyJapRN) OH! Forgot to add, thank you for being an AMW reader :) Appreciate it so much :X

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  52. I believe they took your pictue down on their Facebook already. I was intrigued and checked it out- your pic is gone now! whew!

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  53. Read this before and I never thought I'd be a victim of these group deals. Though the fraudulence is different, it's still very disgusting and I feel really bad for being a victim. My experience this time is about Cashcashpinoy and Dermclinic' NuLight promo. :( Still working on getting my money refunded. I blogged about the experience here: http://beautynerdery.blogspot.com/2011/09/beware-of-cashcashpinoy-and-dermclinic.html

    Thanks for sharing this information. It's really frustrating to be treated like this by companies.

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  54. @phey s yes they did! right after the call, they took it down :)

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  55. @Dardar gosh, thanks for sharing, I am sorry you have to go through all those! let me know once everything has been settled!

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  56. thanks for the warning sis! hopefully, no one will become a victim again....haaayy, kakalungkot ang daming manloloko sa mundo....

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    1. I know, I am just doing my part, small lang pero I hope it can reach to a lot of people!

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  57. Just for everyone's information, Dr. Eclipse is not a board-certified dermatologist. She has not been trained under the Philippine Dermatological Society (PDS), which is the only dermatological society recognized by the Philippine Medical Association (PMA). Be careful about consulting with these pseudo-dermatologists who claim to be "trained" but have really only undergone short certificate courses. They claim to be members of various medical societies with fancy official sounding names but are actually societies that they have invented among themselves and are not regulated by the PMA. Found these out through my med student sister. I'd rather invest in a real dermatologist, who's accredited by the PDS, since I only have one body to spare.

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  58. Im so sorry to hear this. :( And it's unfair to your part that they're not doing anything about it.

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    1. I know, if the owner was as surprised as I am and apologized, I wouldn't give a big fuss to it!

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  59. Thanks on your marvelous posting!

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