0
sky1flygirl

1800skyride scam

Recommended Posts

If they're copying other peoples' websites and images, then they're not being a legit business and they're asking for legal trouble. I suggest dealing with that problem that way.

If they aren't (or, judging from what I saw, if they stop) copying other peoples' websites and images, then they would achieve "loathed mildly honest middleman" status.

The thing I dislike most is the "information management." They are a booking service, not an actual DZ (as far as I know, and I have seen nothing to make me doubt this), but it doesn't look like they're telling the customers that. Maybe they should take a lesson from Ticketmaster - they don't claim to play the songs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

Correct me if i am wrong but unless you are norman kent or someone along those lines i cant imagine someone paying a large sum just to use the photos.



Do you know who Brent Finley, Michael McGowan, Greg Gasson and Omar are? All have had images used without permission.
We have had several people turn up here trying to use coupons.
Skyride has been asked several times to remove Skydive Arizona from their lists including the facticious "approved drop zone list".
I say that if you see nothing wrong in these practices...it goes to character.
I stand by my earlier statements.








Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

They directed me to a DZ over 150 miles away when I have 3 DZ's with in 100 miles.



Wal-Mart advertizes on your TV, but I'll bet there is a store selling some of the same items closer to you.
----------------------------------------------
You're not as good as you think you are. Seriously.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

Brent Finley, Michael McGowan, Greg Gasson and Omar are?



Who that? :D

And funks, as far as I know, their business practice has no direct affect on me or the dz's I call home. It doenst change the fact that what they do is unethical, and illegal.
Remster

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

No, i would not be mad at the airport. I would be on my cell phone chewing the person who sold it to me a new asshole.



that's generally not how it works. People will vent to the most easily accessible source - in this case, it's right in front of them. Their anger, even though directed at skyride is going to be remembered as my home DZ.

Quote

How did they get a hold of the source code for the website?



They stole it basically. Modified it a little to make it appear as their own, but it's still stolen.
-----
~~~Michael

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The thing that cracks me up most is that if I look in the yellow pages they are the first DZ listed.


It shows the city as being in GA but it lists a "Milwaukee Number"


lmao... what a waste. I sure hope people aren't calling them over our DZ
~D
Where troubles melt like lemon drops Away above the chimney tops That's where you'll find me.
Swooping is taking one last poke at the bear before escaping it's cave - davelepka

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

If they were making posters out of these pictures and selling them i would understand, but they are not. Besides a small fee paid to perhaps use them on the website how are they ripping you off any money? I cant imagine the fee to use them being any more than enough to buy a couple of happy meals. Correct me if i am wrong but unless you are norman kent or someone along those lines i cant imagine someone paying a large sum just to use the photos.



You're comparing 2 apples as an apple and an orange. The website (for example purposes only) is using my pictures. They stole them off of my online photo gallery. All photos in the gallery are copyrighted. My photos are cool and lead whuffo A to lean towards calling 1800skyride as compared to the local DZ listed in the phone book. Whuffo thinks to self 'self, these guys spent some time designing their website and the pictures they have online are pretty cool. Their photographers must be world class and I want that'. The art is the medium by which the deal is sealed. 1800skyride just made money by using my copyrighted material. They did not ask, nor did they receive permission to use them. Whether they take my picture and make posters or use it in their company advertising materials (read: website), they are using my work (read: talents) to better themselves (read: make money) without compensating for others work.

Does that make it more clear?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

Don't you also need to get model releases before you can publish an identifiable picture of someone.
If they are profiting from the images then the photogs and models are due compensation.



Yes. If any of you jumped with Norman Kent at the WFFC, you'll remember that he had you sign a model release for the photos.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Is this thing still around?

Everybody is still bitching about it?

In addition to the copyright infringement (ummmm, which, if adjudicated is no small slap on the wrist), there's more going on here. I am pretty sure laws against fraud, interstate commerce, etc. are all quite real avenues of approach.

Ummm, according to the Federal Trade Commission regarding online advertising:
Quote

The Federal Trade Commission Act allows the FTC to act in the interest of all consumers to prevent deceptive and unfair acts or practices. In interpreting Section 5 of the Act, the Commission has determined that a representation, omission or practice is deceptive if it is likely to:

mislead consumers and
affect consumers' behavior or decisions about the product or service.


Quote

The FTC Act prohibits unfair or deceptive advertising in any medium. That is, advertising must tell the truth and not mislead consumers. A claim can be misleading if relevant information is left out or if the claim implies something that's not true. For example, a lease advertisement for an automobile that promotes "$0 Down" may be misleading if significant and undisclosed charges are due at lease signing.



further,
Quote

If your advertisements don't comply with the law, you could face enforcement actions or civil lawsuits. For advertisers under the FTC's jurisdiction, that could mean:

orders to cease and desist, with fines up to $11,000 per violation should they occur.

injunctions by federal district courts. Violations of some Commission rules also could result in civil penalties of up to $11,000 per violation. Violations of court orders could result in civil or criminal contempt proceedings.

in some instances, refunds to consumers for actual damages in civil lawsuits.



Surf the FTC website, there's tons of good info on there to put this fucker out of business.

Otherwise, I hear tarring and feathering is a wonderful way to eliminate unwanted behavior.

mike

Girls only want boyfriends who have great skills--You know, like nunchuk skills, bow-hunting skills, computer-hacking skills.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

And funks, as far as I know, their business practice has no direct affect on me or the dz's I call home. It doenst change the fact that what they do is unethical, and illegal.



If you really think it does not effect you, consider this. It is only a matter of time before it does directly effect you. I say this to you and any other skydiver in the US, Canada, England or Australia.

Look at Canada (only works in IE)
#1 - TorontoSkydiving.com is a bogus DZ.

Then look at Cali-Nev (only works in IE)
On this page there are links to LASkydiving and Skydive Sacramento. Both are bogus, virtual DZs. Missing from the picture are Skydance Skydiving, Lodi, Perris, Elsinore, both Cal City DZs and Taft. The legitimate DZs disappeared after they had the bogus web sites up.

The same thing will happen with the Canadian DZ map.
England and Australia are in the queue too.

I should get 'model' compensation from the Brent Finley photo used on
staff. Amazingly this same photo is used on Skydive Tennessee. I had no idea I got around so much and was on staff.

The way to stop these jerks is NOT to accept their gift certificates. In the past year, scores of DZOs have contacted me about SkyRide and their operation. The story is the same, no matter what part of the country they are in. The non-US DZOs have the complaint of their web site being ripped off. Canadian and Australian DZs have been ripped off.

SkyRide promises exclusive referrals for a geographical area. A month or so later, SkyRide says their competitor will do tandems at a lower rate, so they will get referrals unless you lower your fee. The DZO sometimes lowers their rate, then realizes they loose money. Once the DZO sees that they cannot win, they drop SkyRide. The last remaining DZO continues to accept SkyRide referrals, saying that they would not get this business otherwise. The last DZ cuts back on their advertising. SkyRide then opens their real DZ in the area and sends all the referrals to themselves. So in the end, the DZ funds the start up costs for a SkyRide DZ in their neighborhood. Once SkyRide has a real DZ in an area, all of their bogus, virtual web sites are legitimate.

USPA has sent TWO letters of disapproval of the SkyRide practices to Cary Q and Ben Butler. Nothing ever came of those.

The way to stop their deception is to not accept their gift certificates.

There is a growing quorum of people that have been ripped off or negatively effected (photos, intellectual property, people sent to DZs that do not accept the gc, etc). When this group gets together and files a class-action lawsuit is when big brother will come down and shut SkyRide down or make them operate as a legitimate booking agency.

Today, SkyRide is not a legitimate booking agency. They claim to have facilities across the US and Canada. The real DZs that they do have are at Atlanta SC, Alabama SC, Skydive PennRidge and another one between Chicago and Milwaukee.

If your local DZ accepts SkyRide gift certificates then ask them to stop it. SkyRide deceives people and steals from other jumpers.

.
.
Make It Happen
Parachute History
DiveMaker

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

Funks....you really have no idea how much photo rights go for, do you? We're talking hundreds to a few thousand dollars per photo!

That's the average going rate out in the world. Quade can give better numbers but it's not cheap by any means.

It's not a small matter and what they are doing is completely illegal.>:(



If the right to use someones picture costs so much then why bitch about it? Go get a freakin attorney. Save the screen shots from their website and take them to court. If they are in fact an illegal operation and doing illegal shit then it should be an open and shut case.

Someone mentioned that the little amount to gain by suing wouldnt be worth the hassle. Well, if the right to use a picture really goes for as much as you are saying then why wouldnt it be worth the trouble?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Got the $5000+ needed for a retainer for a lawyer specializing in intellectial property?

Only way the lawsuit would be affordable is to someone that lived in GA since the fees for interstate lawsuits are very expensive.

One other thing you can do if you don't support this is not to go to their DZ. Any of them. Also don't support businesses that align themselves with them. Tell the businesses why you are doing it.
Yesterday is history
And tomorrow is a mystery

Parachutemanuals.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

Unless you can prove to me that this company is directly causing harm to you by using your photos or cheating you out of any compensation that is due by using your photos then i just dont understand the problem.



OK.
My DZ is in Manitoba, a stones throw away from North Dakota.
A lot of our customer are from North Dakota.
We have spent thousand of dollars advertising "Adventure Skydiving" on the radio and on campus' as well as spending time driving down to do displays and so on.

Our website looks like this www.339jump.com

They put up this website www.northdakotaskydiving.com

People from Northdakota who enjoyed our service tell their friends who find that site instead of us.
The money we pour into advertising our name in North Dakota send potential jumpers to the nonexistant DZ website.

You don't think that's theft?
You think that people know the difference between us and them?

They are stealing the marketing, hard work and effort we put into promoting our DZ.

And all in cost them was a domain name and 5 min. of cut and paste!>:(>:(>:(>:(>:(>:(

You don't think I have a right to be a tad pissed?

ps THATS MY FREAKIN LOGO!

I would rather be a superb meteor, every atom of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy and permanent planet.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

Teason said there were just two DZs, not eight.



I was using those number to illustrate a point. The reality is that there are hundreds of DZs and skyride own 300+ websites and the number is growing.

What make thing worse is that to launch a lawsuit, I have to do it in another country, in a state that would take me about 40 hours to drive to!
I would rather be a superb meteor, every atom of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy and permanent planet.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Or you could just contact the United States Department of Justice, outline your list of complaints to illustrate internet fraud (including theft of intellectual property) and let them handle it.

DOJ usually goes for the throat on stuff like this.

edit: Has anybody here actually contacted any government agency about this deal?

mike

Girls only want boyfriends who have great skills--You know, like nunchuk skills, bow-hunting skills, computer-hacking skills.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
You should TM your logo....if Cary didn't stop using it then, the FTC would shut him down, or at least the sites that use your logo.

Here is the deal - people have been bitching about this guy and what he does since I have been in the sport. Maybe its time that we find who has the best case against him, and anyone that is losing money against him throw in some cash to help pay for the lawsuit. Otherwise he is making cash on a daily basis from these sites, and from what I hear, its a good amount of coin.

Jan, care to help with that?
_________________________________________
you can burn the land and boil the sea, but you can't take the sky from me....
I WILL fly again.....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

You should TM your logo....if Cary didn't stop using it then, the FTC would shut him down, or at least the sites that use your logo.



The FTC will not help with copyright or trademark violations. The FTC can help with companies that present false, misleading or unsubstantiated claims about their product or service.

To get the FTC involved, you need the consumer to file a complaint. Many consumers will not take the time to do this. One - they do not care. Two - they often end up doing a jump that they thoroughly enjoy, so what is there to complain about?? They forget about the extra cost, long drive times and other misleading tactics that took them in. Three - whuffoes really do not understand the scam (portraying of virtual DZs as real DZs) The DZ they end up at does not have the same name as what they thought it would be.

There are first time jumpers that have as part of their first jump story 'Oh I went to Acme DZ. They said they would not take the coupon. What a rip-off. Then the guy explained the scam to me.'
These people have a 'How I was ripped off by skydivers story' as part of their first jump story. They tell their friends about this too. This is not exactly good PR for our sport.

There are first time jumpers that go to a DZ that accepts the gift certificates. They have a wonderful time. The DZ cuts back on advertising and one day SkyRide opens up a nearby DZ and sends referrals to their DZ. It boggles my mind that DZOs can be so naïve, especially since it has happened three times so far. I suppose it is more naivete about the internet than running a business. The DZO says they do not mind competition, but when that day comes and they have already cut back on their advertising they will be in a disadvantaged position. The DZOs may think they would not have gotten these customers without SkyRide. If they used Google Ads and Overture Ads, they would have these customers.

Quote

Here is the deal - people have been bitching about this guy and what he does since I have been in the sport. Maybe its time that we find who has the best case against him, and anyone that is losing money against him throw in some cash to help pay for the lawsuit. Otherwise he is making cash on a daily basis from these sites, and from what I hear, its a good amount of coin.

Jan, care to help with that?



I hope you are not suggesting I use my money to help other businesses stay in business.

Here is what I have done so far:

- Summary of the original scam (pre-SkyRide days) [2001-2002]
- Summary of SkyRide [2003]
- Agenda item on GM Comm and Full Board [2004 USPA Winter Mtg]
- Agenda item on GM Comm [2004 USPA Summer Mtg]
- On-going - email or phone calls with DZOs across the US [2002-2004]
- On-going - public postings of SkyRide practices - search rec.skydiving, other glider and balloon newsgroups and here.

I have suggested to several DZOs that they should contact their local (state level) District Attorney. About 6 months ago I contacted the Los Angeles DA. Four months after that I got an email saying it was forwarded to some other division. Nothing concrete has come from that inquiry. It is possible to get a 'cease and desist' order in place against a booking agency that has no contracts with DZs for booking in the state.

Keep in mind that many of the DZOs that have dealt with SkyRide are embarrassed that they did and made such foolish business decisions. They do not want to come forward publicly and they do not want to ask their customers to file a complaint with the FTC.

In the meantime, I suggest the following:

1. If a customer shows up at your DZ with a SkyRide gift certificate and you do not accept them, tell the customer they can call the credit card company and ask that SkyRide produce a signed receipt. If they cannot supply that (in 7 days I think) then the charge will be dropped. If the booking was done online or over the phone then there is no signed receipt.

2. Sell the customer a tandem jump directly.

3. Explain to the customer that there is an unscrupulous booking agency, pretending to have DZs across America and that they should file a complaint with the FTC.

Many people do not realize that there is also about a 25% windfall of un-redeemed gift certificates. This happens when Joe Schmoe buys a tandem jump for his Mom and she never redeems it. The money for the jump has already been paid and then never jumped. The issuer of the gift certificate keeps the money. Many DZs offer gift certificates directly and cash in on this. A skydiving gift certificate is not like a Macy's gift certificate. You have to jump out of a perfectly good airplane to redeem a skydiving gift certificate. Many people do not want to do that, no matter who buys the certificate. You do not have to put your life on the line to redeem a Macy's certificate.

For future help, all I can offer is to coordinate the people that have copyright or intellectual property violations. I can set up some email contacts and maybe an informal meeting at the PIA Symposium next year.

.
.
Make It Happen
Parachute History
DiveMaker

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
>>>>>Is this thing still around?

Everybody is still bitching about it?<<<<<<<

Bingo!!!!

Looks to me that there's been 2 pages from folks wasting their time trying to debate with "Funks" over the the merits of "Questionable business practices"

Save your time folks:|:o

R.I.P.
IMO you all have been had

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Copyright is implicit upon creating the work.
Litigating for copyright infringement is made easier by having REGISTERED your copyright soon after publishing the work (when it hits the web). It make a difference between suing for lost revenue (license fees you would have charged) or being able to go straight to Statutory damages (up to 150,000 dollars) if the judge feels the infringement was purposeful.

Skyride has recently told me that they bought the images on a Royalty Free CD from "harvester Graphics" that is now defunct.

They also told me that they will NOT take the images down because it will cost them money to rework their web pages. AND they said they would not compensate me for the images either.

Nice guys.
www.brentfinley.com
brent@brentfinley.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

0