Reviews about this and that. I am in a totally different business (Coaching). Too often, I cannot find any reviews for items I would like to have an opinion on, so that I decided that it is time to give back to the people who take the times to review things.
"Empowr" A new privacy and social media nightmare?
I believe I read about a social network called empowr a while back. I thought the idea was stupid and I generally do not dabble in "paid clicks for likes" communities.
A new/old fabricated social proof site
Today I received this message from an acquaintance: The subject line said: xxxxxx trusts you
If you trust xxxxx:
You can also:
Don't know them? Before confirming, you can view their photos
Or you can see who else you know in their circle of trust
To see how much you can trust any of your contacts, find out using trustometer
Scrolling further(!) down led me to this disclaimer (it was not positioned right under the text of the message but way below):
*By accepting this offer to try the new empowr, I stipulate that I'm 18 or older and am signing up having agreed with the product, terms and privacy policies, including the manner in which "$" and the word "earnings" are used throughout the empowr website, mobile apps and all empowr communications including this email, as defined in the product policy. This promotional email was sent to talkto@....com and may contain special notices or offers. It is for illustrative purposes only and is in no way a guarantee. You can prevent future emails here. empowr - 501 West Broadway, Suite A182, San Diego, CA 92101, USA.
To learn what kind of information someone seemed to have published on this site, I opened the "prevent future emails" link in an incognito window (I did NOT sign up or anything like this). Not incognito enough because I right away received this message:
The message has been sent from a "no reply" address and Mr. Manjot Singh forgot to mention the email address where he is available to "answer my questions 24/7".
My name is Manjot Singh and I'm what empowr calls a "success coach".
I volunteered to help new empowr citizens like you anytime you have questions.
My commitment is to always respond to your questions in less than 24 hours, 7 days a week. So why do I volunteer?
If you haven’t already, visit empowr's homepage (http://www.empowr.com/socnet/EmpowrSISU.aspx) andwatch the videos about the company. I am sure you will be inspired like I was, to learn of a company that's so highly committed to changing the world – bringing hope and opportunity to every corner of the planet. So, whenever you have questions, click "Ask me" at the top of the website; or in the mobile app click "More" then "Speak with my Success Coach".
To reply to this email, simply click this button: Reply to this message ►
Anything you ever need, please ask.
That's why I volunteer!
Manjot Singh P.S.
I know that when signing up, many folks don't read the product terms that they agreed to (here they are again for your review). I highly recommend that you take a moment to read it or watch a quick video if that sounds like more fun than reading, because empowr is a complex economy, as opposed to a simple website. Let me know if you have any questions.
My concern so far:
I generally dislike social networks that spam your contacts. I never used the function on LI or anywhere else. I do not appreciate if contacts of mine offer my email address to spammers and scammers or even legit sites.
By clicking the "prevent future emails" I have been "signed up" to Empower and had to "cancel" my "membership".
Fabricated social proof is so boring.
The email carried no implication that the site is a "make money quick" "buy social proof" site. That is beyond shady.
What is Empowr
I had a quick look around to find out what this company is about. It turns that people consider it a scam and that the company has changed their name whenever the number of complaints and rip-off reports was growing too big.
This business started as SMS.ac then changed to Fanbox then changed to Project uplift and now it’s called Empowr
The site seems to be one of the "paid to click" sites with the purpose of creating fake social proof.
My acquaintance claims that he was not aware that emails have been sent to his contacts. He said that he signed up to the site to find out what kind of information were stored about them.
It´s a pretty good click bait. The message shows as sender the person you know. "See who trusts you". Naturally one wants to find out which kind of data some site has stored.
I did not waste more time on learning about this company nor did I care to sign up or enter their intrusive site.
Just a warning: If you receive messages from your friends with the subject "xy trusts you" ... I suggest you go right ahead and blacklist the sender.