Better Business Bureau Launches Search Plugin

The Better Business Bureau has partnered with Azigo, (a leader in user-centric technologies), to help consumers find businesses they can "trust" when they search and shop online.

The downloadable browser plug-in is free and displays the “BBB Accredited Business” seal whenever consumers search for products or services using popular search engines such as Google, Yahoo! and Bing.

According to the BBB, their seal indicates that a business is safe and reputable and the new search plugin will offer one-click access to the BBB report for that business. Only thing is... that BBB seal is NOT Free. So, what meaning does it really have?

The Better Business Bureau - a few FACTS...

Fact #1). The BBB DOES NOT report consumer complaints which are under investigation, even when they know the business is under criminal investigation and is about to be shut down.

Fact #2). Most BBB offices do not report any past history of a business, even when that business continuously victimizes different consumers.

Fact #3). The BBB is in the business of collecting fees from the very businesses they monitor. That's like the fox guarding the hen house.

And, by the way... if you want that Seal, it's gonna cost ya!

It costs over $500.00 a year to have their seal. They take credit cards, or check. Oh, and by the way, if you pay more than the above, your business gets a better rating! Is this beginning to sound like a major frickin' SCAM or what! The BBB is in a constant conflict of interest position. It is paid to exist by the very businesses it recommends, or condemns. It is very similar to a protection racket in that as long as you keep paying them, they keep recommending and supporting you, (assuming you don't do anything too terrible). If the payments stop, you become a business which is, "no longer recommended by the BBB."

Most people believe that that the BBB is a government-run organization, funded by our tax dollars. Many believe it is a neutral observer of business standards and practices, a place where one can get information on a legitimate business, or where one could lodge a formal complaint against a shady one. None of this is true.

The BBB is not run by the government! They are a non-profit, charity organization. Whatever money you donate to their cause is tax-deductible. The money that you donate is supposed to go into programs and charitable causes. The organization is supposed to report their income, report their board of directors, report about their programs, and so on.

Turns out, they report no income, no board of directors, no contractors who earn over $50,000 per year, and they have no programs. All they appear to have is -$849 in assets. This is, to say the least, shady!

One final irony: if you have a complaint against the Better Business Bureau, you can't file it with the Better Business Bureau. And, just as Groucho Marx once quipped, "I would never join a club that would have me as a member," the Better Business Bureau is not a member of its own organization.

Maybe it's all a big joke?

Good luck with your stupid search plugin. I won't be using it!

Kevin Curtis - Winnipeg Report


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