24 May 2005

A Very Nice Reply

(Postscript added - see end of blog)

John, who owns and runs Psychic World (link to my previous post, the link to his site is on that), has backtracked and found me and sent me a very polite reply.

Since I was bold enough to publish the information that the 'Psychic501.com' link is a total con (whether or not that makes Mr Sutton either culpable or remiss), the very least I can do is publish his reply.

Sent : 24 May 2005 14:50:50
To :
Subject : Mad Baggage


You kindly posted my photograph on your blogger site and made some observations about me that are basically off the mark.

1. The programme you refer to is an affiliate scheme run by a USA based company and that is how they market their services. If you look on my A-Z of The Psychic World pages you will find lots of informative links, look under intuition and follow that link if you enjoy tests.

2. You assume I make a fortune as the number one website for PSYCHIC on Google but you know nothing at all about me or my website, other than a cursory visit.

3. All of my website is free to the reader to view and it consists of hundreds of articles, features, poems, short stories etc. I work on this site on a daily basis and hope that it brings people some enlightenment and enjoyment.

4. What Derek Acorah may or may not think about my site is hardly material. I wrote his book and the publishers are offering a reduced purchase price for this title from the links on my site. So I imagine that Derek would be well pleased as he gets sent cheques every six months as royalty payments, me too.

5. If you have a look at the many articles on my site I feel certain you will understand that the creation and maintainance of this website must cost money. I am currently editing a series of filmed psychic investigations that will be free to view on the site. Each such investigation takes time and there is cost involved in travel, edit suite etc. Also this site is pretty big and hosting it is not free. So it has to pay for itself.

If all that seems unreasonable then maybe I am mistaken in thinking that a Limited Company has a duty to perform effectively. But I usually find that the feedback I do get is positive and if negative then I do my best to rectify this. The afiliate schemes methods are not my own, I have no control and they change these from time to time without reference to me.

I also read your blogger account of that thing you tried with the bunny on. That was amusing. Hope you have more luck next time.

Best wishes

John G. Sutton
John G. Sutton

Oh dear, we appear to be at crossed purposes here. The link to fraudulent claims, whoever they belong to, appears twice on the front page of the website, both times directly under Mr John Sutton's own details, in his role as Dylan. It says it's a link to Psychic501.com, which doesn't exist. It appears to be hosted on Mr Sutton's own site because clicking the link does not change the URL in the address bar.

The small print says it is copyrighted to OnlinePsychic.com, a Softec Online Inc. Company, which does appear to be American and if you are sucker enough to rush headlong into ordering a report, it starts asking you questions in dollars, not British Pounds.

THAT ISN'T the point. I was careful to reserve judgement on Mr Sutton, barring an assumption that he makes a lot of money from being the number one listing in a Google search for the word psychic. That's why all companies list on google, isn't it? I still assume that, whilst recognising, as I am so rightly reminded, that I do not know for sure.

The link is completely fraudulent and misleading, it states that you are being connected to a live reading with a person called Nancy, when you are really watching a pre-set loop. It claims belong to a URL that is not in use. It claims to be a real person, psychically establishing which card you were thinking of, in order to replace that card with another, when in fact every single card is replaced. Strangely, step two, 'hunt the sparkly thing' appears to have been cut out of the loop, at this point it now jumps directly to information on how to order, but I saved the screen prints last time I tried.

THE POINT IS that if Mr Sutton is genuine (and he may be) he does himself no favours at all by pushing this link (and I think posting it centre screen twice on his front page could be counted as pushing.) Why, if genuine, attach yourself so tightly to a misleading, fraudulent and illegal hoax?

I think my question is all the more valid now that Mr Sutton has read my blog and can no longer say it as an oversight. I don't think that needing the affiliate income is much of an excuse at all.

In my experience, there are real psychics out there, people who are genuine and who work tirelessly to help others find some peace. Then there are those who prey on the weak or the greedy, promising to alter the future, cast good luck charms, prophecy only good things etc.

It is also my experience that the first type do everything in their power to be firmly disassociated from the second, although I can glean no such intention from Mr Sutton's email. I am very worried that a person can own and manage a website, working on it every day, yet say that the affiliate scheme banners which appear on it are out of his control. Very worried indeed that any proper authority would see it that way at all, and just as worried that a reputable person could allow that to be the situation when the entire site reflects on his/her reputation.

Perhaps this is a matter for the Dept of trade and Industry? Aren't they the ones with a section for investigating internet fraud? Sadly, it probably won't be me that reports this, I have done my bit, and been noticed for it.

And yes, if the links miraculously fall off the PsychicWorld website I will be the first to shout about it - I love a happy ending.

Postscript: I Want One Of Those!

Being the nice sort I am, I finished this blog and then went to email John Sutton, to let him know. I tried twice, but his email filter is SO effective that I got bounced for using 'bad words', even when I had broken up any disparaging ones by adding ~s all over the place. No swearing, no attacks, just an email underlining my position regarding the link on his site.

Here, have a laugh:

Subject: re: re: mad baggage
Note: Message is being rejected
Reason: message contains 5+ bad words

The original message is included below. Our system has identified the message as spam / unsolicited / or unwanted. If you believe this is in error, please review the reason, listed above, and re-send your message. ********************************************
Your original message is shown below:

Second effort - bounced for bad words(?) - I can't work out which, so have added ~s in the words referencing the link on your site and any negative words used.

Dear John

Posting your photo was not meant to be kind (nor was it meant to be un~kind) but I appreciate your efforts to keep this at a pleasant level, so thank you.

It is always an in~justice when people are co~nned, moreso when they are predominantly people in need of help, and even moreso when that co~n is advertised through and lent weight by a seemingly reputable site. The fact that you are co-author of a book with Mr Acorah (one of three with your name on, I believe?) only adds to your credibility. Unfortunately, by inference, the same credibility is then granted to the link we are discussing, making the sc~am being perpetrated all the more upsetting.

I have checked with some business owner friends and some who are mediums, and believe there are strict codes of practice, and English laws, which that link breaks.

I have blogged your email. I trust that is alright with you - you did not mark it confidential. I am only out to destroy fra~uds, no-one else, and wanted my (very small) readership to see both sides.

Best wishes


Ally said...

Don't you just hate it when people you are trying to have a discussion with won't keep to the point?

Cheryl said...

Well I feel better now, at least I know if it HAD been a discussion, ie if I had tried contacting him first, I would have got bounced for bad words, like con, scam etc.


Dork said...

Cheryl wrote: "It appears to be hosted on Mr Sutton's own site because clicking the link does not change the URL in the address bar."

Not so. It is in frames and so appears like that when it is actually a different url.

As for the whole thing, somewhere else you wrote whether you thought this was immoral or illegal. I'd rather think it was the former but is in a whole gray area that is fascinatingly curious. Thak you for bringing it to attention.

Cheryl said...

Thanks for the technical hints, Dork!
Is it fraud, to delude people that they are relating successfully to a real person, as a prelude to (and influence toward)asking them to buy goods?
As a mad baggage I am allowed to say - love the nickname!

Dork said...

"As a mad baggage I am allowed to say - love the nickname!"

Thank you! I have many personalities, many strings to my bow, and it suits me to have appropriate handles for each.

As for fraud, obviously it must be but it isn't seen as such. Perhaps sleight of hand it would be considered. I don't like it either way, but rather think that complaining about this is on a hiding to nothing. At least you are bringing it to the attention of potential users but be careful that you don't end up being sued because of some stupid, illogical, legal loophole.

Unfortuneately not everyone is as ethical as you. Keep up the good work.

May the force be with you!