Wise Rep, Dawno says "Caveat Venditor"
This Artist's Journey picked the Sunset painted canvas pendant, put it on a simply decorated (great idea on how to use crimp covers instead of knots or actual crimps) black cord to focus attention on the pendant.
Sha-sha Handcrafted picked a bronze quote pendant and paired it with chain and Swarovski pearls and crystals for a lovely necklace.
Margot Potter, The Impatient Crafter's intern Avalon Potter made a gorgeous necklace using a different painted canvas pendant, and called it "The Siren Song"
Lisa at A Bead A Day features a jet Swarovski rivoli (and a 'big 'un' too) in her Deco style choker
Feathered Fibers - enameled copper charm (with turtle) and canvas pendant - a stunning two-fer!
Hammi Jammi Jewelry - another canvas pendant necklace - different 'painting' and fun, shimmery necklace to showcase it.
See me, the above bloggers & more, on the Artbeads blogroll, too!
Ok, so what's the title of my post about, anyway? I got this in my email today:
Caveat Venditor - Let the Seller (that's us, btw, not Wise Rep) Beware.
RE: Can we sell your jewelry through our stores?
From: David Thibos
Do you wholesale? I'm interested in selling your jewelry through our network of stores. They'd be a great fit.
We work with buyers from thousands of jewelry stores, specialty shops, department stores, large chains, mail-order catalog companies and Internet shopping sites. We need a larger variety of jewelry they can choose from, hence my email to you.
If you're interested in selling your pieces to more stores visit us at http://www.
.com We guarantee sales.
Director of Merchandising
At first I got just a little bit excited, but only for about a nanosecond, because I remembered all the literary scams I'd read about on Absolute Write Forum's Bewares and Background Checks and also on the Writer Beware! blog. There are so many predatory people out there using the internet to separate the unwary from their hard earned dollars - and in tough times, stuff like this may start appealing even more to folk who need to bring in a few extra dollars to stay above water.
The email, the promises...all looked familiar. Had many of the "markers" that those publishing schemes had.
Now, I'd have Googled the site anyway. I always check things out to see if they're legit and what the buzz around the net is - and that was quite informative. This outfit has been sending out emails for a couple of years now. There's an up-front fee involved as well as a monthly cost. It began to look a lot like some author representation schemes, as well as 'display site' schemes I've read about - they take your $$ and if they do anything at all for you, it certainly isn't effective nor worth the money you pay them.
In my reading I came across a very interesting thread on the Bead&Button forum site - starts off with a 'testimonial' - "How My Jewelry Saved My Home" but keep reading, there's some great comments later that get to the heart of the matter - Wise Rep probably has a number of folk who troll sites, blogs and forums to post stuff like this to try and get people to believe in them. Problem is, they come off sounding too good to be true - and you know how that saying goes...
Anyway, Wise Rep has also posted a poorly written press release on PRWeb (where anyone can post anything and call it a press release), I'd guess they send employees around the web to defend the "business" and use that PR link as proof...but nobody who has an actual verifiable way to contact them on any blog or forum (lots of anonymous posters or posters with empty profiles) ever posts any supporting documentation that WiseRep has really done anything to get a product into "Target, Macy's, Barns & Noble, and Petsmart". Best post of the thread is the second to last, by Christina - she did her homework!
Dave of Dave's Cupboard posted about them the other day, too - he dug a bit deeper and did a WhoIs registration check - turns out whoever owns WiseRep is hiding behind a proxy domain company. Seems to me, as with those unverifiable blog and forum commenters, if you can't find legitimate street addresses, or incorporation information or even contact telephone numbers for a company, so calls and emails go to real, accountable, people, you should steer clear of that internet "business" - they don't want to be found, or talked to, or accountable.
Anyone else get this email? What do you think? Oh, and if anyone shows up to defend Wise Rep who doesn't have a verifiable profile and thinks they can just regurgitate that press release, well, I'm going to delete those comments, not going to give them any positive Google juice here.