Offshore Outsourcing & Scammer
Blog about offshore outsourcing and scammer in the outsourcing industry
The Marketing Source - Robbie Middleton - sent a bad joke instead of a proof
by Rudolf Faix Monday, September 7, 2015 1:57 AM

In each of the articles about the Caribbean Cruise Line (CCL) – Virtual Voice Technology (VVT) is getting found that the center is guilty by themselves if they are accepting the conditions from The Marketing Source. Business is a risk and not a sandpit where nothing can happen. Even in the email from Robbie Middleton is stated gets found that this campaign “is a VERY tough campaign with tight margins”.

The campaign gets offered as none voice campaign where the agent does not need to speak. That is nothing else than a misleading promotion, because if we take a look at the article “FTC Statement Virtual Voice Technology - CallAssistant, L.C. - submitted by The Marketing Source - Vance Vogel” then we can read that the agent is free in his choice to speak or playing prerecorded messages. The background of the FTC-rule is that it has to be a life agent to be available that the live agent has to speak with the called one if a recording is not available for answering a specific question. It will be seldom happen, but it can happen.

The statement that only Lars is offering the CCL campaign is not correct. Robbie Middleton has simple forgotten that he is offering the campaign at BPO Friends by himself too. Everybody can be sure that other companies have voice systems too, which are conform to the FTC rules.  TMS is not the only company, which has access to such a system. It is only used as an argument for their rip-off. US$ 200/week system costs + VoIP (up to $ 275) for 12 seats (24 connections) are nothing else than profiteering.

We have built for an Austrian satellite TV broadcaster a similar system with click to dial, manual selection of prerecordings and a few more features like play and win, live quiz, dating, shopping, etc. in a multi-language system (German, English, French, Spanish, Polnish), for € 1,450 (~US$ 1,615) including server hardware. This system has assigned 2,200 phone numbers, on this system are working 250 agents and a few full automated services like every 50th caller goes live into the studio, each 100th caller is winning a price, etc. at the same time.

It is not forbidden to make a bad deal. Everybody, who accepting a bad deal, is guilty by himself if he lose money in such a case. It is only from a company expected to recognize a good and a bad deal. If a company defends such a bad deal then such a company is in my opinion very suspect and there seems to be a reason why they are defending such a bad deal. Mostly is the reason that they are earning by themselves.

The construction of the included proof from the email shows more that it is a fake instead of a proof.  I think that CCL and TMS have enough experience in front of the law court collected to know how a proof has to look like. In this case the proof consists of pictures (one company header, and one picture for each “invoice” line), which seems to be from different sources. Such a construction is nowhere accepted as a proof for anything. All necessary parts for an official invoice are missing. It seems even to be a secret to whom the invoice got sent.

In a fair and transparent business is it usage that as soon as a customer likes to use his own or rented systems has the customer to pay the bill for it. How the customer makes his calculation in this case is the problem of the customer and not the problem of the service provider. Already the promotion of the campaign is misleading because there is written “The base rate is $ 2.25 per transfer with additional performance incentives based on quality” (BPO Friends - Robbie Middleton, .pdf (187.38 kb)). In such a case the rate cannot be lower than $ 2.25 for the >60 seconds transfer, but if we take a look at the document VVT CPD Explanation.docx (17.84 kb) we see that the base rate can be lower too.

The email from Robbie Middleton in reaction to my article "Slavery offer: CCL VVT none Voice or Semi-Voice campaign - The Marketing Source - Vance Vogel":

On Fri, Sep 4, 2015 at 6:05 PM, Robbie Middleton <rmiddleton@themarketingsource.com> wrote:

Rudolph,

What your source neglected to tell you is that there is a list of requirements VVT sends centers at the time of campaign implementation and VVT makes NO claims that this is an easy campaign at any time.  VVT does not even recruit centers at all.  Every center VVt have has either approached VVT via word of mouth or through Lars.  Lars is the ONLY approved broker for the VVT campaign.  VVT actually tell the centers that this is a VERY tough campaign with tight margins and very clearly state all charges.  99% of all center that fail, do so because they do not follow our guidelines.  It is absolutely, positively cheaper and easier to dial using the centers own VOIP and dialer, unfortunately this is ILLEGAL per the TCPA laws as well as infractions of the Telemarketing Sales Rule that would undoubtedly occur if the call centers were not regulated.    TMS and/or VVT receives no profit Login and VOIP charges.  I have copied the most recent invoice for logins associated with 4 centers Lars has referred and feel free to confirm the same with the company that invoices us as well as Lars.  This is the actual amount deducted from the centers commissions and not a penny more.  You can see that VVT IS CHARGED $10/login.  VVT pre-pays this expense on behalf of the centers so they do not have any up-front expense of their own.  VVT provides Leads, VOIP and Logins so they can LAUNCH without investing ANY of their own money.    VVT then deducts this Login and VOIP expense from the centers earned commissions.  There is no charge for leads.  We disperse the amount VVT loads each for VOIP each week evenly amongst all centers based on their percentage of total logins.  We do not profit from this expense either.  Regarding “CPD” and what your source failed to tell you is that VVT is paid by the cruise line on a CPD (Cost Per Deal) basis.  Each centers quality is tracked separately and a quantitative measure of quality is attached to their transfers in terms of “CPD”.  We cannot let centers send calls “at will” with no concern for quality as many of them (even with the CPD +/- structure in place) send calls with no customer on the line, transfer answering machines, transfer customers that requested DNC, etc….. I will send you the complete VVT launch e-mail just as I would a prospective center so you can see the truth.  The fact that VVT must implement so many rules and guidelines is indeed most unfortunate, but don’t let your source fool you into thinking we are “screwing” them.  Rules and guidelines are in place to adhere to all applicable laws and to protect VVT from unethical centers.  We have centers that have been doing the campaign for more than 3 years now and while it isn’t easy, it CAN be profitable when guidelines are adhered to. 

The above email had the following five pictures included as shown belown: 

Invoice header of SunBridge Systems
One line of the invoice from Sunbridge Systems
Another line of the invoice from Sunbridge Systems
Another line of the invoice from Sunbridge Systems
Another line of the invoice from Sunbridge Systems

The invoice header seems to be a fake because I did not find until now one IT company frome the U.S.

  • where the office phone number is hidden for privacy reasons from the public phone directory

  • where the office phone number is assigned to Google voice

  • where tel2name.com gives the result: 727-753-9323 - Deane Arteaga Wisteria Cir New Port Richey, Florida instead of Sun Bridge Systems LLC.

  • which writes their own domain name in the heaer of the invoice wrong
    (subbridgesystems.com instead of sunbridgesystems.com)

  • which needs to hide the ownership of their domain behind a privacy service

  • which makes since 2 years and 5 months promotions at her homepage for their registrar Godaddy

  • which has since 2 years and 5 months a homepage with the amazing content
    Screenshot from the homepage of sunbridgesystems.com

  • Buzzfile.com says about SUN BRIDGE SYSTEMS LLC:
    Sun Bridge Systems is located in Oldsmar, Florida. This organization primarily operates in the Business Services, nec business / industry within the Business Services sector. This organization has been operating for approximately 2 years. Sun Bridge Systems is estimated to generate $ 49,000 in annual revenues, and employs approximately 1 people at this single location.

SUN BRIDGE SYSTEMS, LLC is really a company and is listed at Floridas Department of State Division of Corporations (.pdf (119.20 kb)). The company got founded on March 11, 2013 at 5520 Rio Vista Dr., Clearwater, FL. 33760 (Link, .pdf (43.19 kb)) and relocated on April 1, 2014 to 518 Lakewood Dr., Oldsmar, FL 34677 (Link, .pdf (3.30 kb)).

Interesting is that LookUpBear (.pdf (118.69 kb)) tell us that the company SUN BRIDGE SYSTEMS, LLC is listed "under the heading Construction/Contractors which includes businesses that may offer home improvement construction, home construction, roofers, manufacturing of building materials". I know that we all would search for a telcommunications company in exactly this category!

Screenshot from the entry Sun Bridge Systems, LLC from LookUpBear

Update Jan. 18, 2017: Link to http://bpofriends.com/profiles/blogs/vvt-free-cruise-non-voice-process removed as it already returns error 404 - not found.

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I'm since more then 35 years in the computer business (programming and technical support) and using the Internet since it has started. Since 2002 I'm programming solutions for Asterisk and since 2004 I'm in the call center industry.

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