Have you noticed a heck of a lot of banner ads for the website RemoveMyStretchMarks.com? I sure have, so I decided to visit the site and see what all the fuss was about.
Oh, that picture to the right? Yeah, it has nothing to do with the website in question; it’s just a nice looking stomach.
The first gigantic red flag I discovered upon visiting the site was the author, Joyce Shaw, claimed to be from Spokane, WA (emphasis theirs). Really? I’m from Spokane too! That seemed kind of suspicious, so I visited the page via a proxy server, and suddenly Joyce wasn’t from Spokane anymore.
Hmm. Can I really trust Joyce? Is she even the real author of the website? A WHOIS search shows that Drew Marcin from Oshawa, Ontario in Canada is the owner of the site. That doesn’t mean that he’s the author, but maybe we can trust him. Oh, maybe not. So wait, does the owner of firstname.lastname@example.org live in Canada or Puerto Rico?
That’s 2 big red flags. The next one is “Joyce’s” product reviews. “#1 Cosmetyn! A++++-++!!!!1!1!!! Holy bananas, did this work wonders! Buy some today! And, oh yeah, I tried this other thing called Captiva or something. Don’t buy that, it sucks.” Alright, alright, those aren’t the actual product reviews, but a slightly embellished, paraphrased version. I would argue, however, that my version maintains the spirit of the original.
The verdict here is that I don’t know what to think of all of this, but I do find it difficult to believe that Joyce Shaw, 32 year old mother of 2 from Spokane, WA has the time and technical wherewithal to put this together, and then launch an expensive marketing campaign to get her banner ads everywhere on the Internet. Even if Cosmetyn works as well as this site purports (and it may, I’m not passing any judgment on the product), there’s enough dodgy stuff going on here to dissuade me from believing the site’s claims.
Postscript: I will concede that email@example.com may not be that Puerto Rican kid, as on another page of his the address is listed as firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, it’s worth noting that Joyce Shaw has both a Gmail e-mail address and AIM account. I would be interested in the results of someone attempting to contact Joyce via AIM and seeing if she can pass the Turing test (or keep her story straight).0 People like this. Be the first!