Michael Tsark Posted March 27, 2008 Share Posted March 27, 2008 BEWARE of PCWORLD.COM, they're big-time 3rd-party spammers. I had been receiving daily subscriptions from PCWorld.com for a number of years but yesterday I expunged them completely out of my computer because to my dismay they thoroughly convinced me beyond all doubt that pcworld.com magazine scams in cahoots with spammers which explains how come the vast majority of the time during all these years their product reviews almost always say â€œBe the first person to make a review about this product.â€ Now I know why. Earlier today I felt a little eager to try an animation-maker software for beginners since I have no experience about it and pcworld.com website had strongly recommended it as one of their â€œTOP 15 DOWNLOADSâ€. So I clicked on the link to their download webpage and clicked â€œreviewsâ€ and received the same old message that I so very often receive, â€œBe the first person to make a review about this productâ€. Next thing I did was attempt to download the software but was redirected to the autodesk.com website, next I clicked on their download link to obtain the product but was redirected to another one of autodesk.com's webpages that said I'd have to first provide them a whole bunch of personal information in order to get their free basic edition software, including stuff like postal address, phone number, etcetera. So then I returned to PCWorld download and wrote a review to warn others about the download but when I tried to submit my review I was redirected by PCWorld to another one of pcworld's webpages that said there was an error in loading my review because I was supposedly trying to use an old link? So then I tried from scratch to start all over in reaching their download page and tried again to submit my review but this time instead of being redirected to the webpage about using an old link, I was redirected to their webpage that says â€œBe the first to make a review about this productâ€ as though I had been on that webpage in the first place and as though I had done nothing more than simply refreshing that webpage? So then on my third attempt to submit my review I made a very brief one-sentence review while also mentioning that it was only a test to see if I could successfully submit a review, and lo and behold, the submission was successfully posted with no trouble whatsoever at all and there it was, I was the first user to post a review about the product. So then I tried another 4 times to submit my complete review and each time something different would go wrong where either I would be redirected to the webpage saying the link I was using is to too old or it would act like I did nothing more than refresh the download page. So then on my 8th attempt I tested it again by submitting only another quick sentence or two and it worked perfectly and flawlessly again and the product review was instantly posted but to my surprise my original brief review from my 3rd attempt was no longer posted which clearly indicated to me that someone at PCWorld website was monitoring my submissions in real-time and they were deliberately manipulating my product reviews which explained to me how come after all these years the vast majority of the time whenever I tried to look at a product's review at pcworld.com it would most times say â€œBe the first person to make a review about this productâ€. Turns out that PCWorld.com deletes the vast majority of negative reviews which means they're in cahoots with spammers as one of the 3rd-party business partners. So then I went to my PCWorld account page and erased all my personal information including trying to change the email address by giving them a new fake email address except I couldn't change the address because they would send a confirmation to the new fake address before they'd change the old address, so from there I went to spamgourmet.com to register a free account to be able to create disposable email addresses, then I went back to PCWorld and changed my email address by giving them a disposable one, then I waited to received my confirmation email and was able to confirm to PCWorld that I had changed my email address. From now on anymore email from crooked pcworld.com will be eaten and destroyed by spamgourmet since I now no longer use that specific disposable email address that I gave to pcworld.com, but just to be even more thorough I then went straight to my RoadRunner webmail account to blocked and auto-discard all and any future email that comes from â€œPCWorldâ€ incase of the event that pcworld scammers still try to send their spam to my original email address. Here's what the full product review looks like which pcworld wouldn't let me post: Reference: Maya Personal Learning Edition Review Suckers Beware: At first I was hoping to try this software but unfortunately the selling of personal information to 3rd-party business partners for the sole purpose of spamming is big business with big monies to be made. The download link for the animation-maker software leads you to the Autodesk.com website where the download is only so-called free only on the condition if you provide all of the following REQUIRED personal information in order to obtain their so-called free software: First Name (Required); Last Name (Required); Company Name (Required); Postal Address (Required); City (Required); Country/Region (Required); State/Province (Required); Zip/Postal Code (Required); Work Phone (Required); Email Address (Required); Description Of You Or Your Business (Required); Description Of Your Primary Field (Required); Description Of Your Industry (Required); Timeframe For Purchasing A New Solution Package (Required); Your Role In The Decision Making Process (Required); Status Of Your Project Funding (Required); What Is Your Primary Platform: Linux, Macintosh, SGI, Or Windows (Required); Would You Like To Receive Email From Autodesk, Including Information About New Products And Special Promotions, Yes or No (Required). The only two questions that are optional to answer is "Address 2" and "Remember Me On This Computer, Yes Or No?" They're using their animation-maker software as nothing more than bait-trappings as the equivalent of a telemarketing gimmick for spamming purposes, for example, in the trick-question of "What is your role in the decision making process" their drop-down-menu gives you 3 choices to choose from either "Decision Maker", or "Recommender/Influencer", or "No Involvement". The secret purpose for that question is to find out if you're married or not and/or if you're the husband then you're most likely the primary income provider who makes the money in the family and most likely have money in a savings bank account since you have a family to think about, or if you might be the wife or a single man or woman, or if you might be just a dependent member of the family without your own money, etcetera, and that way autodesk.com will have a better idea of what kind of priority spam to target you with. Only people with scam mentality will pretend to offer you something for so-called "free" while at the same time employ typical telemarketing gimmickry to secretly trick you into letting them gather as much personal information they can get in order to sell that information to as many 3rd-party spammers who'll pay big monies for such information. Honest legit people don't do that when they offer freeware. If autodesk.com were at least a bit honest they would simply come out and tell you the truth "Hey, we'll let you download one of our basic free edition products only on the condition that you first tell us if you're married and how much money you make and how much money you have in your savings bank account so that we can sell that information to others?" But instead they ask you about your business and what industry you're in and your timeframe for purchasing a product, etcetera, because they're attempting to determine if you're married or not and how much money you make, and if you might have a savings account and if you're the type who can be easily talked into buying things you don't need or don't want as long as a salesperson uses persuasive and/or aggressive sales tactics, etcetera. The question â€œWhat is your primary platformâ€ is also just a trick question to throw their victims off guard by asking a simple harmless question that has nothing to do with their primary objective of targeting their victims, but rather it's a tactic of using â€œmis-directionâ€ to make it seem like the last two questions are perfectly harmless and therefore make it seem like all the other questions must also be perfectly harmless. It's up to you if you want to try trusting autodesk.com but I'm compelled to tell you now, ..."I TOLD YOU SOOOOOO?" - - - end of product review - - - From now on I'm sticking with CNET's Downloads.com who post both positive and negative product reviews. In the past I've had a few interactions with a few of CNET.com Admins and I was thoroughly and absolutely convinced that CNET.com is 100% Professional and 100% Honest all the way, which is something I rarely seem to find in the cyber world. You can tell a legit company from the rest when all of their Admins have the professionalism to respond to ALL and ANY of your emails in a very prompt and professional timely manner and they always say the correct professional things that you would expect a professional and honest company to say no matter how trivial the issue may seem to be. As for spamgourmet.com it's the first time I tried using disposable email addresses but first I googled for â€œfree disposable email addressesâ€œ and then googled â€œspamgourmet complaintsâ€ and I was soon satisfied that spamgourmet.com is an honest and legit website. And it turned out to be a lot easier to using a disposable email address than I thought it would be. Spamgourmet is run by volunteers and their idea of using disposable email addresses is just another type of unique option towards combating spam. For instance, if I were to go back to autodesk.com and filled out all of the requirements with bogus personal information along with a newly created disposable email address, all I need to do for instantly making a newly disposable address is by choosing any word, followed by a dot, then a number between 1 to 20, then a dot, then my spamgourmet user name, then followed by [at]spamgourmet.com, for example, â€œautodesk.15.tsark[at]spamgourment.comâ€. The next 15 emails that autodesk.com might happen to send me will first go through spamgourmet who will auto-forward them to me. If I should happen to see an upsurge spike in spam going to my â€œautodesk.15.tsark[at]spamgourmet.comâ€ email address then I'll know autodesk.com is connected to spammers and that specific email address would already be set to self-destruct after the first 15 emails from autodesk.com or else I can opt to destroy that disposable address sooner so that anymore spam going to that specific disposed email address will get eaten up and destroyed by spamgourment.com. After I had registered for a free account with spamgourmet.com there's no need for me to go back there unless I feel like changing some settings but otherwise a single visit to spamgourmet.com to register is all that's needed. I don't plan on using disposable email addresses hardly at all but it's a nice option to have around just in case. In most instances if I'm leery about giving an email address then I'd rather not have anything to do with that company in the first place. I can already anticipate some degree of reduction in spam now that I've done what I could to close my account with pcworld.com and expunged them out of my computer. I feel sort of stupid for not realizing a lot sooner how come during all these years most of the product reviews at pcworld.com kept saying â€œBe the first person to make a review about this product.â€œ I knew it was strange but it just didn't dawn on me that pcworld.com was big-time 3rd-party scammers. I'm glad I finally know the truth about their scam mentality 'cause now I can get back to whatever it was I was doing, ...come to think of it, what the heck was I doing anyways....?... ...oh yeah, ...anybody wanna buy a REFURBISHED freeware firewall? Sincerely, Michael Tsark Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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