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What can we do about Skyride?

 

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ChasingBlueSky  (D License)

Oct 22, 2004, 8:44 AM
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     What can we do about Skyride?  

There have been plenty of threads on here about Skyride and their unethical and even illegal tactics. The Capital Commentary stopped short of using their name this month.

Is there anything we, as a community, can do to shut this down before they cause lasting damage to the industry? Before the find a way to steal student business from the real dropzones and cause them to eventually shut down?

The only idea I have ever heard someone willing to take was to google bomb them using blogs. I've heard of photographers and instructors saying they can't afford to sue them, maybe we can put together a fund to help with the costs of a lawyer?

Any ideas or anyone willing to do this?

Added by slotperfect on 8 November 2007: Thanatos340 has compiled a list of dropzones by state that accept (or don't accept) Skyride Certificates. You can find that list here


(This post was edited by slotperfect on Nov 8, 2007, 6:12 PM)


weegegirl  (D License)

Oct 22, 2004, 8:49 AM
Post #2 of 2276 (93310 views)
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     Re: [ChasingBlueSky] What can we do? [In reply to]  

Dropzones need to stop honoring their certificates. Many dropzones buy into their bullshit. Target DZOs. Unimpressed


mr2mk1g  (C 103449)

Oct 22, 2004, 8:52 AM
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     Re: [ChasingBlueSky] What can we do? [In reply to]  

If everyone stopped accepting their certificates they wouldn't get any money. It only requires a little solidarity to make it work. On the other hand it only requires one DZ to keep taking referrals to screw up that plan.

Is the USPA on board? What do they think? Do they feel sufficiently placed to send round a circular or are they too afraid of being sued by Skyride? (a real possibility).


ChasingBlueSky  (D License)

Oct 22, 2004, 8:55 AM
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     Re: [mr2mk1g] What can we do? [In reply to]  

Skyride is now opening up DZs with the money they have made from the certificates. Given enough time, there will be no use in talking to DZOs about it...they will be the DZO.

It seems that USPA is talking about it. I know that Jan has kept a web site logging the sites, etc.


weegegirl  (D License)

Oct 22, 2004, 8:58 AM
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     Post deleted by weegegirl [In reply to]

 


diverdriver  (D 19012)

Oct 22, 2004, 8:59 AM
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     Re: [weegegirl] What can we do? [In reply to]  

In reply to:
In reply to:
Skyride is now opening up DZs with the money they have made from the certificates. Given enough time, there will be no use in talking to DZOs about it...they will be the DZO.

It seems that USPA is talking about it. I know that Jan has kept a web site logging the sites, etc.

Well, if that happens, experienced jumpers need to NEVER go to Skyride dz. Yes, they will still be tandem factories, but they won't be able to support large aircraft. Then, our dropzones can advertise our otters and king airs and whatnot.

Just some thoughts. Brainstorming. Those guys really piss me off. Mad


Many people go to the DZs that have been known to be involved with Skyride for a long time. I doubt you'll convince them to actually stop going there. If they aren't outraged by now they won't ever be.


ChasingBlueSky  (D License)

Oct 22, 2004, 9:00 AM
Post #7 of 2276 (93266 views)
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     Re: [weegegirl] What can we do? [In reply to]  

In reply to:
In reply to:
Skyride is now opening up DZs with the money they have made from the certificates. Given enough time, there will be no use in talking to DZOs about it...they will be the DZO.

It seems that USPA is talking about it. I know that Jan has kept a web site logging the sites, etc.

Well, if that happens, experienced jumpers need to NEVER go to Skyride dz. Yes, they will still be tandem factories, but they won't be able to support large aircraft. Then, our dropzones can advertise our otters and king airs and whatnot.

Just some thoughts. Brainstorming. Those guys really piss me off. Mad

Whuffos don't usually care about the plane that is used. Did you for your first jump? I know most people I talk to never ask that.

Once Skyride has a few DZs up and running, they can use the pre-existing (and successful) marketing infrastructure they have to push tandem biz in their direction. Thus killing off DZs that survive off of that portion of the sport.


(This post was edited by ChasingBlueSky on Oct 22, 2004, 9:02 AM)


mr2mk1g  (C 103449)

Oct 22, 2004, 9:01 AM
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     Re: [weegegirl] What can we do? [In reply to]  

tandems don't go to a specific DZ because they have an otter or king air.

dz's don't make money of fun jumpers - the money is in the tandems


mr2mk1g  (C 103449)

Oct 22, 2004, 9:07 AM
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     Re: [ChasingBlueSky] What can we do? [In reply to]  

I don't see we can do anything about nor can we complain about their opening up their own DZ's - it's a free country, they're entitled to do so.

What they cannot do is advertise using cloned websites, fake locations, misleading adverts as they are doing. Those are the unlawful aspects (if any - I'm no expert on the law they're subject to) of their activities.

The USPA has a legal fund. Perhaps they should consider using it. Perhaps DZ's should consider putting in some money to the fund. Perhaps in order to fund the action (and also as an incentive to take the action) they should not only be looking for injunctive relief but also for damages in lost revenue because Skyride is stealing their custom.

It really isn't far from reality to expect to recover damages against these shisters given the blatant cloning that is going on and the ease with which documentary evidence could be obtained of the loss of buisness their activities represent.


(This post was edited by mr2mk1g on Oct 22, 2004, 9:07 AM)


weegegirl  (D License)

Oct 22, 2004, 9:07 AM
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     Re: [mr2mk1g] What can we do? [In reply to]  

eh... nevermind... this place can be tougher than speaker's corner sometimes. have fun debating. i'm out. TongueLaughWink


(This post was edited by weegegirl on Oct 22, 2004, 9:20 AM)


mr2mk1g  (C 103449)

Oct 22, 2004, 9:09 AM
Post #11 of 2276 (93231 views)
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     Re: [weegegirl] What can we do? [In reply to]  

the problem with that would be that given skyride's current advertising ethos all they would do is steal the photo's of the otter from the website of the orriginal DZ and pass them off as the experiance you would get at their DZ. That's exactly what they're currently doing.


pilotdave  (D License)

Oct 22, 2004, 9:09 AM
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     Re: [weegegirl] What can we do? [In reply to]  

Quote:
you need fun jumpers to support a plane larger than a C182 or so

Why? I'd say you need tandems to support a plane larger than a 182.

Dave


(This post was edited by pilotdave on Oct 22, 2004, 9:11 AM)


Praetorian  (B 27234)

Oct 22, 2004, 9:10 AM
Post #13 of 2276 (93225 views)
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     Re: [mr2mk1g] What can we do? [In reply to]  

Funnie when I did my first tamdem I made part of the decision on the aircraft.. (I wanted to be able to go on the same load as my friends doing their first, that ruled out the cessna DZs) but I'll agree that MOST people wouldn't know a fuzzy river creature from a twin turboprop plane


AggieDave  (D License)

Oct 22, 2004, 9:15 AM
Post #14 of 2276 (93220 views)
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     Re: [weegegirl] What can we do? [In reply to]  

Quote:
Dropzones need to stop honoring their certificates. Many dropzones buy into their bullshit. Target DZOs

See, that's the paradox.
If a DZ 1 doesn't accept the certificates then DZ 2 most likely will. Why? Simply because if they don't someone will and as much as we hate Skyride, they do bring in new jumpers to our sport.

So its going to have to be an all or nothing approach to not honoring the certificates.


(This post was edited by AggieDave on Oct 22, 2004, 9:31 AM)


Praetorian  (B 27234)

Oct 22, 2004, 9:22 AM
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     Re: [ChasingBlueSky] What can we do about Skyride? [In reply to]  

Pardon me while I put on my devils advocate hat:
What about the other services Hot air balloons, warbird rides biplane.. gliders ... bla bla bla
anyone have any knowledge how they handle these things, is it possible that they are unintentionally being unethical talking with their management, discussing our concern... ok end of cute and fuzzy bunney answer

The real problem is even if we could freeze them out of OUR DZs they already have one or more of their own AND they have other buisness that generate income; freezing them out would only give them more incentive to use the profits from their other ventures to open DZs. So maybe we NEED to talk with them, get them to change their pratices a little, enough to make the bad things they do to the sport balance with the promotion and intorduciton of new tandem thrill seekers (some of whom will continue and become studnets and as I understand it skyride isnt in the instruction biz .. yet).


pilotdave  (D License)

Oct 22, 2004, 9:28 AM
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     Re: [ChasingBlueSky] What can we do about Skyride? [In reply to]  

How about start with the source.

1800skyride.com is registered by CASC, Inc (skydive123.com)

Skydive123.com is registered to:

Quattrocchi, Cary
1732 Pamela Circle
Marietta, GA 30060

...who also owns:

The National Skydiving Association, which apparently certifies only the safest dropzones. Uh huh.

More info: http://www.makeithappen.com/...eview/cedartown.html

So do something about it.

If you don't think this person is a scam artist, do some research. Read the testimonial letters at http://www.skydivingalabama.com and http://www.skydivecenter.com/

Some of the same people made their first jump in alabama and atlanta? And Nashville for that matter too. I think not.

So who jumps at ASC and knows this guy?

Here's a pic: http://www.skydivingalabama.com/staff/s800cary.jpg

And what the hell is the Eastern US Skydiving Championship that is hosted in both georgia and alabama?

Dave


(This post was edited by pilotdave on Oct 22, 2004, 9:48 AM)


bbarnhouse  (D License)
Pixie
Oct 22, 2004, 9:29 AM
Post #17 of 2276 (93152 views)
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     Re: [AggieDave] What can we do? [In reply to]  

It comes down to a couple of things.
Call your USPA rep and voice your concerns. Email the USPA and voice your concerns.
Its all well and good that we can complain about this (which we have in several threads) but you have to take action.
Remember that they USPA is suppose to listen to its Membership. Thats you and me.
Do talk to your DZO/DZM and approach them with the facts.
Don't spend your money at their DZs. Don't honor their certificates.
Skyride may very well bring folks to the sport, but how many stay in and better yet...how many leave with a really bad taste in thier mouth?
Talk is cheap...stay informed, and take action.


mr2mk1g  (C 103449)

Oct 22, 2004, 9:29 AM
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     Re: [Praetorian] What can we do about Skyride? [In reply to]  

Personally I don't have a problem with them being in the market place - they have just as much a right to be there as anyone.

My only gripe is with some of the appalling marketing strategies they've adopted, examples of which have been posted here in the past.

Things such as stealing copyrighted material, stealing websites lock stock and barrel, passing themselves off as genuine provincial DZ's, lying to potential customers about where they operate, lying to potential customers about who's on their staff, lying about what planes they use, using photographs of planes belonging to other DZ's and claiming they're their own.

Whoever it is doing things like that, it tends to leave a bad taste in my mouth.


AggieDave  (D License)

Oct 22, 2004, 9:30 AM
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     Re: [pilotdave] What can we do? [In reply to]  

Quote:
Why? I'd say you need tandems to support a plane larger than a 182.

Exactly.

That tw-otter isn't there because the DZ has 30-50 dedicated fun jumpers, its there because of the need for the student operations. If people ask the folks who are in the aircraft business for dropzones, they would generally agree with that statement.

Which is a neat paradox. You have to have a large student operation to support and need a large aircraft. Those students will become your fun jumpers (some will atleast), and you'll need the aircraft to continue to support your students and keep your fun jumpers. You need a larger base of students to justify another large aircraft, but you don't have a fun jumper base to help support it, so what do you do? You need a larger aircraft so your fun jumper base isn't battling for slots with the student jumpers, so what do you do?

That's why its really hard for 182 DZs to grow into turbine DZs, it can be done and it has been done, but its not easy to do with out some large finacial backing and the understanding that the investment will be invested at a lost initially (first few years).


AggieDave  (D License)

Oct 22, 2004, 9:35 AM
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     Re: [bbarnhouse] What can we do? [In reply to]  

Quote:
Skyride may very well bring folks to the sport, but how many stay in and better yet...how many leave with a really bad taste in thier mouth?

My point isn't that they bring people into the sport.

My point is that if DZ 1 doesn't accept the certificate DZ 2 will. Simply to get the business and they know they have an in on the business since their competing DZ neighbors don't accept the certificate.

For instance, in Texas central/south region of Texas there are 6 DZs I can think of off the top of my head, all within 5 hours drive of each other. Lets say every DZ stopped taking the certificates (I don't know who does and who doesn't for sure), except for one of the DZs. How much business are the other DZs going to loose and that one DZ going to get?

Everyone likes their large turbine at their DZ, but without the student base its impossible to keep that plane.

So to me, it seems like the answer isn't in individual DZs refusing the certificate, its going to have to be an all or nothing if this route is taken. Negotiations with Skyride by the USPA would be an even better option, but I really don't see that happening until atleast after the elections this year.


ChasingBlueSky  (D License)

Oct 22, 2004, 9:39 AM
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     Re: [mr2mk1g] What can we do about Skyride? [In reply to]  

In reply to:
My only gripe is with some of the appalling marketing strategies they've adopted, examples of which have been posted here in the past.

Things such as stealing copyrighted material, stealing websites lock stock and barrel, passing themselves off as genuine provincial DZ's, lying to potential customers about where they operate, lying to potential customers about who's on their staff, lying about what planes they use, using photographs of planes belonging to other DZ's and claiming they're their own.

Exactly. It's not the business we have issues with, its how they operate and the domino effect that will have for other DZs and (selfishly) us.

The idea of this thread was to find a way to stop bitching about it and actually DO something about it. Dave posted who to contact at Skyride and Betsy was right about contacting the USPA. If we flood them with complaints, they will have to put it on the Agenda - but knowing how that works, that will take time and would have to wait until after the next election and we would have to write to the new members of the USPA as well.


(This post was edited by ChasingBlueSky on Oct 22, 2004, 9:40 AM)


bbarnhouse  (D License)
Pixie
Oct 22, 2004, 9:41 AM
Post #22 of 2276 (93111 views)
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     Re: [AggieDave] What can we do? [In reply to]  

In reply to:
Negotiations with Skyride by the USPA would be an even better option, but I really don't see that happening until atleast after the elections this year.

I think it makes for an interesting platform...but that is better left in another forum.

Its fraud. Its theft. Its unethical. Its bad for skydiving.

For those that arent aware...do a search on skyride. There are several threads.


mr2mk1g  (C 103449)

Oct 22, 2004, 9:43 AM
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     Re: [ChasingBlueSky] What can we do about Skyride? [In reply to]  

So go for it. How about someone who really knows the in's and out's of the "scam" writes a stock letter to the USPA voicing concern and asking them to do something about it.

Make the letter available to everyone - maybe here as an attachment and invite people to print it out, sign it, stick their USPA number on it and mail it.

I may not live in the US but I'm a fully paid up USPA member - you'd have my signature.


AggieDave  (D License)

Oct 22, 2004, 9:43 AM
Post #24 of 2276 (93100 views)
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     Re: [bbarnhouse] What can we do? [In reply to]  

Quote:
Its fraud. Its theft. Its unethical. Its bad for skydiving.

BB, I agree with you 110% on that, definately they've gone well above and beyond what would be considered ethical and have broken some laws while doing that.

Its going to take a team of DZs working together or better yet the USPA to bring the legal issues to bear, simply due to the costs involved, though.

I just wanted to make a point about individual DZs accepting or not accepting the certificates and that how I don't feel like its the best solution at this point.


mr2mk1g  (C 103449)

Oct 22, 2004, 9:46 AM
Post #25 of 2276 (93092 views)
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     Re: [ChasingBlueSky] What can we do about Skyride? [In reply to]  

Another option would be to look at whatever national advertising ombudsmen you have in the US. I wouldn't have a clue to start looking for the US, nor am I aware of what rules businesses must abide by.

If Skyride were operating in the UK they would fall fowl of half a dozen or so laws prohibiting what they're doing and would be stomped on for doing so by one or two non governmental organiseations.

The evidence is there for everyone to see in the form of websites. A couple of letters to your advertising ombudsmen would get them looking into the matter.

Depending on what the US system is swift fines and a reprimand could follow together with Skyride being required to take the offending websites down.


(This post was edited by mr2mk1g on Oct 22, 2004, 9:47 AM)


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