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How Bad Guys Use Google as a Weapon to Silence Journalists and Investigative Reporters and How You Can Fight Back


This article is going to revel a lot of secrets that bad guys use to silence investigative reporters like myself. But these tricks are already being used now by some and unless we can talk openly about these issues they will only get worse and more reporters and bloggers will find themselves silenced by bad people who don’t like what they publish.

The research for this piece was painful on the job training. You see this site and myself have been the targets of such attacks. People can say what they want about the reality of the use of the web to punish and silence journalists, I’m here to tell you it’s a real threat and it happens.

As an investigative reporter who writes to protect consumers from getting ripped off, undoubtedly I piss off some bad guys. I get it. I’m willing to take those hits to stand up for consumers so they don’t have to get ripped off. 

How Bad Guys Use Google as a Weapon to Silence Journalists and Investigative Reporters and How You Can Fight Back

But the difference is reporting is based on verifiable facts and truthful. The attacks that target journalists, like myself, are based on lies and fear. It’s a virtual mugging.

The way I look at it is my reporting helps protect your grandmother from getting conned. The folks on the other side just want to try to silence the journalist and hide their message to maintain their opportunity to con and lie to your grandmother to take money from her.

But those bad people who want to mute journalists have strong tools they can use and have learned how to weaponize Google to stop consumer advocates like me. And if it is happening to me, it is happening to other sites and reporters as well. Maybe it is already happening to you and you just don’t know it yet.

I have been told by insiders in the debt relief industry I report on, they know how to silence investigative reporters like me by using Google as the weapon. All they have to do is trigger the automated processes at Google to get an account suspended or terminated and with little human interaction for me, or anyone, to respond to a human, their plan works. And punishing sites in the search rankings, well that remains easy to do as well. More about the process known as Google Bowling, in a bit.

At least one debt relief industry entity is reported to now be selling services to alter the online record and attack information for consumers.

“Fight back against unethical and or unfair internet postings and increase your bottom line! Morgan Drexen Integrated Systems is expanding its support services to include public relations, video production, online reputation management and website design. Let this team of award winning staffers clean up and boost your online profile. When you decide to take action against erroneous online information that’s costing your company, potentially, millions of dollars… give Morgan Drexen a call.”

FM Weekly said the services would be focused on silencing online criticism, “Official Release: Morgan Drexen Integrated Systems is now fighting online rip-off and scam blogs that are ruining business reputation and potentially costing businesses millions of dollars in revenue. Join the Fight.”

Attacking fair and accurate investigative reporting that is critical seems like an unwritten extension.

You can read more on that story here.

If you don’t think it’s easy to be a target of such an attack. Think again. As one negative SEO expert said, “but I was able to get him filtered for a little while on his name for maybe 120 seconds of my time and less than $50,” hardley a big budget effort. – Source

The Guardian reported the ease of these attacks. “There used to be much debate surrounding the issue of whether or not a competitor could attack your website in such a way that it could have such a hard-hitting detrimental effect on your search engine rankings. It is now a harsh reality that negative SEO practices can cause your site to drop in ranking and even be removed from Google altogether.” – Source

The Attacks Against Me Primarily Used Google as a Nuclear Weapon

On June 15, 2013 my Google+ account was suspended for posting spam. I don’t post spam. I post information and articles my 695 followers at the time wanted to be aware of. – Source

Obviously this suspension was another fake spam reporting wave. It’s not the first time I’ve seen this type of organized effort and I’m confident it won’t be the last.

I’m actually not that prolific of a poster on Google+. None of the stuff could even be classified as spam. As of the publication of this article, my Google+ profile is nowhere to be found and now generates a 404 error. 

How Bad Guys Use Google as a Weapon to Silence Journalists and Investigative Reporters and How You Can Fight Back

But targeting Google+ also hurts my authorship ranking and further hurts my search positioning for the stories I write.

The suspension of my Google+ account also harms consumers since I host a free virtual debt support group meeting to help people suffering with problem debt. The group uses Google Hangout and since my Google+ account was suspended I can no longer use Hangout.

I have no direct evidence this was a coordinated fake spam reporting attack to target my Google+ account, but it is highly suspicious and follows on the heals of other similar efforts.

However I do have evidence that my site, GetOutOfDebt.org, was a target of paid fake spam reports and then I subsequently lost my page rank which has now been restored. See this story.

The Paid Fake Spam Report Job Posting Screenshot

How Bad Guys Use Google as a Weapon to Silence Journalists and Investigative Reporters and How You Can Fight Back

And the GetOutOfDebt.org site continues to be the focus of a negative SEO attack with new spam links posted daily against it. There are hundreds of intentional links posted using the terms “porn pornography”, links about payday loans, links from fake payday loan sites, and a flood of links about companies I’ve written about, possibly in an effort to discredit the stories and bury them in the search rankings.

How Bad Guys Use Google as a Weapon to Silence Journalists and Investigative Reporters and How You Can Fight Back

And most of the top referring domains to the site come from Poland. That’s certainly odd as well.

How Bad Guys Use Google as a Weapon to Silence Journalists and Investigative Reporters and How You Can Fight Back

Last year my YouTube account received one strike in a three strike policy and was instantly terminated without the chance for me to defend the video reported as a problem. Because of the termination I lost access to all the many educational videos I had produced. Stupidly I had not downloaded backups of them because at the time I believed nothing like that could happen. I was wrong. I lost everything.

How Bad Guys Use Google as a Weapon to Silence Journalists and Investigative Reporters and How You Can Fight Back

This and other alleged copyright violations are problematic for journalists since it has been reported Google takes such accusations into consideration when it comes to search engine rankings. – Source

Keep in mind, there was nothing improper about my video.

The video and alleged infraction was wrong and incorrect but there was no good mechanism for appeal at the time. The video was simply me speaking the title of an article and in that title was the name of a company the article was about.

The use of the name in the article and video is not a copyright violation and is permitted under “fair use” since the title falls squarely under the exemptions of Section 107 of the copyright law.  I wrote about the experience and there is a copy of the video that led to this misfortunate, here.

§ 107 . Limitations on exclusive rights: Fair use

Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 106 and 106A, the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies or phonorecords or by any other means specified by that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright. In determining whether the use made of a work in any particular case is a fair use the factors to be considered shall include—

(1) the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;

(2) the nature of the copyrighted work;

(3) the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and

(4) the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.

The fact that a work is unpublished shall not itself bar a finding of fair use if such finding is made upon consideration of all the above factors. – Source

Without a person someone can deal with at Google when these things happen, the bad guys win and they have successfully learned to weaponize Google to silence consumer advocates and journalists like myself.

Scammers who harm people financially and take money from people in trouble have a lot of resources to use against journalists and investigative reporters because they basically stole from consumers by lying and cheating and used that money to hire smart people to use Google as a weapon to bury the messages from journalists. Consumer advocates like me don’t generally have such resources. The bad guys automatically win.

If you think the internet is an innocent and safe neighborhood for journalists and investigative reporters, unfortunately you are wrong.

More Negative SEO Tools

Anyone unhappy with any article or story an investigative reporter publishes has easy access to tools to launch a negative SEO attack.

The list below is an example of how easy it is to do this but I’m not divulging anything here that can’t be easily discovered. I’m also not publishing some very specific tricks I’ve uncovered that are not easily found yet.

  • Spam Trigger Links – Thousands of links using spam topics can easily be generated against your story. Using spam keywords can flag the site with the links pointing at it as spam and telling the search engines the story should be disregarded. Think “porn pornography.”

  • Comment Spam – Negative SEO attacks can take the form of spam links from low quality sites, typically in comments. These links can be generated automatically by the thousands at a time and be virtually untraceable.

  • Scrape Your Content – Content can be scraped and posted over and over again to create a duplicate content penalty against the site. There are sites out there that have at times scraped every story I have posted and have ranked higher in the search engines than my own original story.

  • Report the Article to Google – Requests to have links removed from Google is an exploding occurrence. If we look at just the 2012 data, you can see how this has become a hot thing to do as well to try and get content removed from Google.

    How Bad Guys Use Google as a Weapon to Silence Journalists and Investigative Reporters and How You Can Fight Back

  • Google Bowling – Earlier I mentioned this term. The Google bowling process is nothing more than creating hundreds or thousands of links from low quality website to your story. Easy automated tools are available to launch massive numbers of such links anonymously. In the chart below the dashed green lines indicates new links found. As you can see there were waves and bursts of new links generated as these attacks were unleashed.

    How Bad Guys Use Google as a Weapon to Silence Journalists and Investigative Reporters and How You Can Fight Back

  • Ripoff Report and Other Such Sites – I am very familiar with the tactic of people filing fake reports with complaint sites in an effort to discredit me so people will not believe what I write. In my case people have filed many fake reports against me in an attempt to discredit me and my work. These accusations have included all sorts of bad acts including selling kids into prostitution, doing things on school busses, etc.

    A recent fake report even named one of the media outlets I work for in an attempt to harm me there as well. Thanks to some excellent people at Ripoff Report, a journalist can take action when this happens. But it takes a lot of work and some connections.

    How Bad Guys Use Google as a Weapon to Silence Journalists and Investigative Reporters and How You Can Fight Back

  • Denial of Service Attacks – These attacks result in waves of web traffic that is intend to overload your server or host to take your site offline. They also try to overload your web usage quotas or get your hosting company to terminate your account because of the attacks. My site has been the subject of several of these attacks.

    One site reported a denial of service attack took their site and others on the same server offline for a day and a half.

    How Bad Guys Use Google as a Weapon to Silence Journalists and Investigative Reporters and How You Can Fight Back

    “On the morning of 14 January 2013, a DDoS attack was directed at Noblego. Because they share a server with other webshops, all of the shops on the server were offline for 36 hours.” – Source

    This is not an exhaustive list, but you get the idea. Anyone unhappy with anything you write, who has a pulse and at least one finger can launch an attack against you, your employer, your media outlet, or an article and try to bury them all online.

    Reporters Have Some Tools as Well to Fight Back

    The bad news is there appears to be little opportunity for reporters to fight back against automatic spam triggers with Google. But don’t despair, there is a little bit of good news.

    This year Google launched a new appeal process for YouTube accounts. I feel confident if that process had been in place last year I might have been possibly been able to have rescued that account. At least I would have had a better chance to respond.

    And Google has launched a new tool that sites can use to fight back against intentional link spam. The disavow links tool. It can sometimes feels like you are using a slingshot to fight back against a cannon but it’s a free tool you can use to fight back.

    Search Engine Watch has a very good article about How to Use Google’s Disavow Links Tool the Right Way.

    The video above from Google web spam expert Matt Cutts talks about this new tool. While Matt appears to feel there are very few people that actually launch negative SEO campaigns to hurt sites, I’m here to tell you it does happen.

    I have spent hours creating my disavow links file and uploaded it to Google and along the way I discovered some additional tools to use I wanted to share with you.

    Google Webmaster Tools

    If you login to Google Webmaster Tools you can download a list of recent links to your site. You’ll want to do that and use that list as a starting point to identify spammy links back to your site.

    It’s the best initial list to use because it’s the listing of links Google is using to judge your site with.

    To find the list you have to login, on the left click on Traffic, then click on Links to Your Site. You will see the heading below, click on Download Latest Links.

    How Bad Guys Use Google as a Weapon to Silence Journalists and Investigative Reporters and How You Can Fight Back

    Link Research Tools

    Link Research Tools has a very nice product called Link Detox. You can upload your latest links from Google Webmaster Tools and run the links to find risky links in a minute or less. You can also run a report using Links Research Tools that will identify additional links you’ll want to disavow.

    How Bad Guys Use Google as a Weapon to Silence Journalists and Investigative Reporters and How You Can Fight Back

    ahrefs.com

    There are a number of sites you can use to find sites and links to your site. Tools like Moz, Cognitive SEO, and Majestic SEO are great tools. Personally I happen to prefer ahrefs.com for its ease of use and more affordable pricing.

    Their site has a very good tutorial that explains how to performa a link analysis.

    How Bad Guys Use Google as a Weapon to Silence Journalists and Investigative Reporters and How You Can Fight Back

    If you want to quickly spot problematic anchor text that is being used to link to you, ahrefs.com makes it so stupid easy to do and the process takes less than two minutes.

    How Bad Guys Use Google as a Weapon to Silence Journalists and Investigative Reporters and How You Can Fight Back

    Identifying Which Sites Link for Porn

    Dump It

    Once you’ve evaluated the bad links being placed against an article you’ve written the bad guys are trying to hide online, using the tools above you can quickly update your Google Disavow Links file and upload it to neutralize the impact the bad links have against you.

    There are Lawyers that Specialize in Negative SEO Attacks

    There are even attorneys that specialize in going after people and entities that engage in such actions. For example, one site says:

    The good news, is that organizations such as the Circle of Legal Trust, have specially trained attorneys who know how to seek out and mitigate these attacks, and even sue the offenders. As we have discussed before, it is almost impossible for the offending webmaster to not leave a digital footprint. You can sue the offending website networks linking to you, conduct discovery and get IP addresses of the people trying to hurt you. – Source

    Free Google Alerts

    You should setup a Google alerts for your name or column name and be notified as soon as new material about you is published so you can deal with it as soon as possible. It’s free.

    DMCA Takedown Requests

    As an on again off again member of the National Press Photographers Association I have nothing but praise for the NPPA. They also have a very good online examples that can show you how to create a Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) notice to have illegally copied work removed.

    But DMCA takedown requests work both ways. Back in 2010 I was the subject of a DMCA takedown request by one of the entities I had reported on. They managed to get my server shutdown for a few hours after claimng I had used the name of the company in an article in violtion of their copyright. See this story.

    But what I learned from that experience is there is an easy process to deal with such false requests. The Chilling Effects Clearinghouse has an excellent tool to create a DMCA counter-notification letter to have material put back online.

    CloudFlare

    CloudFlare is a great service which buffers traffic and helps to stop many denial of service attacks or strange waves of traffic and security threats. It is a relatively inexpensive service and works exceedingly well. I can’t recommend them enough. There is no investigative reporter who manages their own site who should not be using the service.

    As an example, CloudFlare has defended my site from 9,835 attacks and threats in the past 30 days.

    How Bad Guys Use Google as a Weapon to Silence Journalists and Investigative Reporters and How You Can Fight Back

    The Tools Are Great, But Google Can Do Better

    As it stands now, there is no resource I am aware of at Google to help journalists like us who are the subject of such deliberate attacks.

    It would be great if Google launched a support line where people could pay $500 to speak to a senior level department and get some attention and action when issues like this happened. Why the big fee? Simply to stop the wave of people who are not serious and have a legitimate need to reach the right person for real help.

    Back in the 1990s when I was doing a lot of Microsoft server babysitting, Microsoft offered a service back then where you could pay $300 a talk to a senior engineer at any time of the day or night. When you ran into problems you could not solve there was a lifeline you could reach out to in an emergency and speak to an expert. As far as I am aware, there is no such service offered by Google. Heck, you can pay Facebook $100 and send Mark Zuckerberg a message. – Source

    Investigative reporters and journalists need to be aware of the risks of having their work buried online, learn how to take take proactive action, monitor the attacks being launched against them and fight back regularly.

    If you have any other tips and suggestions on how you fight back or tools you love to use, post them in the comments below.

    How Bad Guys Use Google as a Weapon to Silence Journalists and Investigative Reporters and How You Can Fight Back
    Get Out of Debt Guy – Twitter, G+, Facebook

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    About Steve Rhode

    Steve Rhode
    Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.
    • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

      Just found a whole new run of comments against the site trying to discredit a link to Tim McCallan at http://getoutofdebt.org/tag/tim-mccallan/ Loads of links from medical marijuana site posted under the name Elizabet Leriche. Poster is using the Tim McCallan link as their avatar/profile link.

    • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

      It occurred to me overnight as I thought about your comment, it sounds like you think I have some sort of business plan or target the article that appear on the site for readers. I don’t.

      Bottom line is I write articles that interest me and I have no desire to increase the financial value of the site or company.

      While the site makes money from the ads that appear, that is almost an accident. I don’t write any articles based on whatever ads may appear because I have no idea of what ads may appear.

      I’m happy for my work and articles to stand on their own merit and find their own audience but when negative SEO efforts are used to prevent people from finding those articles what would lead you to believe a different approach would not have the same results?

      • Neg Seo Expert

        Steve- I am calling the bullshit flag on you and your comments above. If you have the audacity and balls to say you don’t write articles to self serve the purpose of more visitors and more traffic for making money off of the ads on the site you are fooling no one.

        If you want an example…. Most of the articles you write have a TITLE that is specifically driven to a keyword or set of keywords that will increase the traffic to the site.

        Please don’t treat everyone as a fool. You have no right to do that.

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          How in the world would you write a title that described the article that was not relevant to the topic?

        • Jason

          Neg Seo Expert, how does that differ from ANY OTHER news or blog site? What you perceive as keywords are exactly that in the mind of the reader. If no one understands what the article is about by the title, then why would they read it? Your arguments are time and time again just trolling.

    • AA

      Steve has done a great job of helping consumers avoid being ripped off and should be applauded for pointing out the bad guys, scammers and loopholers.

      Unfortunately, it’s guys like Damon, Jared and Charles to name a few who have hijacked just about every post with long winded, fact twisting, unsubstantiated claims that paint EVERY debt relief company as a scam (except of course their own companies or those they refer to).

      While these self serving scare tactics create more business for themselves, Steve is unfairly labeled guilty by association.

      Best advice one could offer would be to 1) expose the bad players without bashing the industry and 2) distance yourself from those riding your coat-tails with their own personal agendas.

      • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

        Hey, someone has to point out your bullshit. Might as well be me.
        If by fact twisting you mean making logical statements that nobody can refute, then guilty as charged.

        • AA

          Damon not listening and claiming every debt settlement company is a scam….take two! or is it take 100? You proved my point, thank you Damon.

        • Neg Seo Expert

          AA- Don’t dance with Damon… His Go-Tee will eventually eat you. Damon is a world class douche bag that acts as Steve’s puppet.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Good advice. You seem to have been around long enough to know that nobody can dance with this action without resorting to personal attacks. Facts are stubborn little bastards aren’t they?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Neg Seo, it’s foolish to engage with someone who’s opinion is that every single debt settlement company is a scam. Darren has never been able to distinguish/separate the good players from the bad. He spins every conversation into a long winded bashing with no direction or ending.

          Maybe, once he is capable of separating the good from the bad more readers will participate but this has been going on for too long and I dont see that happening anytime soon. I was simply trying to point out why so many readers have turned away from the site and he certainly proved my point….again!

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Damon, not Darren…my bad

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Angelo, are you really that dense?

          First of all, after several years, you would think you would know my name.

          Second, show me one instance where I have ever said all settlement programs are a scam.

          Third, you want me to distinguish good guys from bad guys?

          Fine.

          Your program is bullshit. How about them apples?

          You routinely come on here and talk about how great 3 and 4 year debt settlement programs are because you upsell consumers some bullshit “attorney protection package.”

          Here is a tip. Why don’t you provide a solution that makes it unlikely that your consumer would ever find themselves in court? Um, oh, cause you wouldn’t make as much money.

          You know, for years I have given you the benefit of the doubt. I fealt that you were a good guy, just misguided. Because of that I haven’t called you out on your bullshit Veritas crap.

          But you, in your infinite wisdom want to keep poking a stick at me for some unknown idiotic reason.

          So there you go. How is that for distinction?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          lol…you can dance solo on this one Damon.

          You just proved my point…again. Engaging with you is like trying to convince Monsanto that GMO’s are harmful. I’ve provided the data that backs my claims while you continue to talk trash.

          For those reading this…here is where our opinions differ….

          Damon is of the belief that if you cannot settle your debts within 24 months then you should file for bankruptcy and I have plenty of data and testimonials that shows my 36 and 48 month settlement program has a higher completion rate than chapter 13 bankruptcy. And because our opinions differ Damon feels attacking and name calling is the way to shut down the debate.

          How’s that bankruptcy network your building going? Kind of explains why you push BK so much.

          Thank you once again for proving my point.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Angelo’s “consumer focused” business model in a nutshell.

          Step 1.
          Sell some bullshit that will get client sued.

          Step 2.
          Upsell perceived insurance to try and protect client from the bullshit they were just sold.

          Step 3.
          Conveniently ignore the obvious fact that if the first bullshit wasn’t sold to the client, the second level of bullshit would not be necessary, and therefore could not get sold.

          In sum…

          To to be profitable, bullshit must get sold.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Dude, you are making this way too easy. So now its the debt settlement program that gets people sued?

          Silly me, and here I thought it was defaulting in the first place that creates that risk.

          Damon’s “consumer focused” business model.

          1) Scare consumers into believing that everyone but him is a scam.

          2) Lie, and get consumers to believe that lawsuits are a result of being enrolled in a settlement program

          3) Then contradicts himself by claiming lawsuits received before 24 months are somehow different than lawsuits after 24 months.

          4) Once scared, convince consumers into cashing in their IRA’s to complete their settlements within 24 months.

          4) If unable to scare consumer into cashing in their IRA, he will scare you into filing bankruptcy and earns a commission from referring consumers to the attorney.

          5) Bash anyone who calls him out and post a picture of the middle finger

          If what you say is true I would have a lot more complains than NONE and I wouldn’t have an “A” rating with the BBB.

          Damon’s long winded, name calling rant, followed by unsubstantiated claims in three….two…one….

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Silly you indeed. The defaulting creates the risk, but your “solution” grows the risk exponentially. Then you make additional profit by selling something that is supposed to help mitigate the additional risk that you just put them in.

          Does that just not compute in your brain, or is it that if you admitted this stubborn fact, you would no longer be able to sell your bullshit?

          You claim I scare people to sell them bankruptcy. But then you also claim I scare them into cashing out their IRA’s to settle their debt, but then you also claim that I said all debt settlement programs are a scam.

          I am confused.
          Am I fear mongering in favor of bankruptcy or debt settlement?

          I never posted a picture of a middle finger but I found one just for you XOXO :-)

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Nice, two middle fingers…you must really be getting desperate. Its like you have diarrhea of the mouth with nothing solid coming out and you are all over the place.

          Id ask you to show any kind of data or proof that backs the claim that being in a debt settlement plan causes more lawsuits but we all know there is none because that’s simply not true.

          And, if you actually took the time and knew what the prepaid legal plan does, how it works and its benefits then and only then, would you be in a credible position to state with certainty that its bullshit or not.

          To make those emotional reactions and unsubstantiated claims just shows your ignorance.

          Unsubstantiated claims, emotional reactions followed by verbal attacks. Think about it, that’s exactly what I was talking about that started this and why so many people that I know in the industry have stopped participating and commenting on the site.

          Not having the ability or open-mindedness to separate the good from the bad is your downfall and why you have lost credibility. I think you just like to hear yourself talk trash.

          Unfortunately, I dont see you changing your position anytime soon so my advice to Steve stands, distance himself from you or at least put a muzzle on you. Either of those might bring back some readers and open real dialog that can be helpful instead.

          Unless you have proof or facts of the claims you make this is the part of the conversation where I walk away; its getting monotonous and you proved my point more times than needed so thank you!

          Good luck to you Darren, Damon…whatever.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Leaving so soon?

          Are you not able to defend what you do because I am rude or because I am right?

        • 18yr.collector

          “a basic understanding of how creditors operate” hmmm??

          What is basic in collection is – initiating suit against a debtor is time consuming and expensive and even if we are successful and get judgment this is no guarantee we will collect anything, most judgments don’t result in payment. Most often launching a suit will result in the debtor running directly to bk and we get nothing! If we do not sue and let the program that the debtor chooses as an alternative to bk to work through we at least have a good chance of recovering some of the debt owed.
          Creditors and collectors don’t rush to sue.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Um, thank you for making my point.
          “Creditors and collectors don’t rush to sue.”
          Exactly.
          But eventually they will.
          That is the point I have been making that seems so far beyond Angelo’s understanding.

          Also, if your contention is that creditors rarely sue regardless of how long a consumer doesn’t pay, perhaps you can help me to understand why Angelo finds it necessary to up sell all of his clients an “attorney protection package?”

        • 18yr.collector

          “Thank you for making my point”? Are we both speaking english? You think that eventually all creditors or collectors will sue? That is just not so, as I said it is time consuming and expensive and the results are not guaranteed to to lead to collection of any amount of the debt. Collectors just want to collect on the debt, they are not interested in sueing, obtaining judgment and still having to collect the debt.

          If a debtor is sued it would be advantageous to them to have attorney representation and a pre-paid legal plan does provide for this and I think the debtor may see real value in the cost of this insurance for the peace of mind it will bring while working through a debt relief program. There are a lot of people like you that are telling debtors that for sure they are going to get sued, helping create more demand for a pre-paid legal plan.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          When did I say all creditors will sue?

          Maybe you should read Angelo’s site before you try and defend him. On his own site he claims that 38% of the accounts enrolled in his program experience legal activity.

          Also “Lawsuits are likely and Active Debt Solutions will continue to negotiate on the client’s behalf to reach a settlement”

          So you are saying lawsuits don’t happen because it doesn’t make financial sense for the consumer, and Angelo is saying that “they are likely”

          So which one of you is right?

          Is Angelo selling needless “insurance” knowing that creditors don’t really sue that often as you claim?

          Or is he putting people in a higher risk situation than necessary by dragging out a settlement strategy without properly informing the clients of other, and usually better options, just so he can then turn around and sell his insurance, which is only needed because people followed his dumb ass advice.

          I have asked this question in English, several different times and in several different ways, yet neither you or Angelo are willing to address it.

          Maybe this is the real reason Angelo took his ball and ran home.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          I left because you are unable to back your claims and you continue to contradict yourself. Come back when you have some data to back your claims instead of vomiting your antiquated opinion in absolutes and I’ll be glad to continue to prove you wrong.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          OH, are we still pretending that is the reason you can’t justify or defend what you are doing when you are talking to someone that understands it and is willing to call you out?

          Can you answer the simple question I have asked several times?

          My claim is that your program is bullshit. You give bad advice and then up sell “protection” that your client will need for taking your bad advice.

          You refuse to explain that.

          Schooled indeed.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Id take you serious but here’s the funny thing. We have known each other since 2009, have had plenty of conversations and agreed on a lot of similar issues yet you never seemed to have a problem with the way I do business or the prepaid legal plan.

          It wasn’t until I called you out for hijacking posts with your rants that you call my program a scam. I know you are but what am I? What kind of H.S. chick bullshit is that? I think its pretty obvious you are only making those claims because I hurt your feelings.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          I guess your memory sucks about as much as your program (which you still haven’t been able to justify by the way)

          Here are three examples where I was pointing out the same obvious problems with your approach in the comment threads.

          http://getoutofdebt.org/45163/heres-why-a-401k-loan-to-pay-off-debt-can-cost-you-a-massive-amount-in-retirement

          http://getoutofdebt.org/44600/debt-settlement-myth-6-its-safe-to-take-36-48-months-to-settle-my-debts

          http://getoutofdebt.org/52472/cfpb-suit-against-debt-relief-company-should-make-industry-very-afraid

          I was a lot nicer to you in those because at the time, I didn’t realize you were such a douche.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Dude, stop smoking that shit, you just keep making my point for me. Those are 3 articles of me asking for data to back your claims while offering data to back my claims and those are the examples you use to show where you called my program is a scam? Do you read over your posts before submitting them?

          Article 1: You scare consumers into thinking if they dont cash in their IRA;s they are doomed. We just disagreed on the strategy of cashing in retirement accounts to settle debt which I still think is a bad idea. There was not mention of my program or the prepaid legal plan being a scam, not until I hurt your feelings :(

          Article 2: The data I provided Steve, Jared and Scott debunked this theory but you are still unable to accept data as facts so you’ll continue to live in denial.

          Article 3: Same answer as article 2. My data shows a better completion rate than a chapter 13. I am a huge fan of chapter 7′s but we do not know the rate of 13′s that convert to 7′s.

          And yes, my program success is all due to “properly qualifying” consumers before enrolling them. You are not the only person capable of doing the right thing.

          ….what else you got?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Oh, you properly qualify consumers? Do you understand that there is a difference between someone who meets “your qualifications” to take money from and someone that would be better off doing something else?

          Before you enroll a consumer into a 3 or 4 year debt settlement plan you always refer them to a local BK attorney so that they have a very clear understanding of what that option would look like before enrolling in your program, right?

          Or do you just give them your version of why a bankruptcy is not a good option for them, so that they never actually check it out?

          After all, this isn’t about you, it is about the consumer making the best decision for themselves and their families.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Once again, unsubstantiated claims. You speak with pure emotion simply because I hurt your feelings.

          If you didn’t bundle all settlement companies together as a “Scam” then you would know that I have offered every solution since 2007 and if you weren’t such an emotional train wreck hell bent on hearing yourself talk shit and simply asked, you would know that I refer more consumers to BK and DMP’s each month than I actually enroll into a settlement plan……dumbass.

          You can continue to attack me from every angle but seriously, you are only making yourself look more and more foolish.

          Ssshhhh, its ok…. let it go and call me when you are capable of being more open-minded.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          I didn’t make a claim. I asked a question, which you predictably dodged again by saying I am just emotional.

          Ok, you got me. I am human. It pisses me off when people in bad situations are taken advantage of. So we can agree on that.

          Now, that we agree that I am emotional, can you try to actually respond to any questions without just saying I am emotional?

          Do you have every potential client talk to a bankruptcy attorney before you enroll them into a drawn out debt settlement plan and sell them some attorney protection on top of that?

          It is a simple yes or no to a very straight forward question.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          “Drawn out debt settlement program”? A chapter 13 bankruptcy is a much longer repayment plan than a 36 or 48 month settlement plan, what the hell are you talking about?

          First of all, your emotional because I hurt your feelings which explains all the attacking. Stop trying to play the superhero and pretend your attacks are because you are “pissed when people in bad situations are taken advantage of” …stop your lying.

          I want all the readers to say this out loud and share your opinion: “A bankruptcy attorney who sells ONE product will give a more objective opinion over a company that offers ALL available options (DMP’s, Negotiation and BK)

          Sounds silly when you say it out loud, doesn’t it?

          The needs of the client both financially and emotionally are taken into consideration so to answer your irrelevant question meant only to divert from how foolish you are looking…no, we do not have them speak with a BK attorney – BK attorneys have to make a living also and most are clueless about settlement because there’s not as much profit as in BK for them.

          When we qualify, WE are determining if we can help them or not. WE are CHOOSING to enroll them, NOT convincing them to enroll. I will not make money if I enroll someone who will not complete the program, think about it dumbass, it takes 7-8 months just to break even.

          I have debunked all of your false claims so now you answer my question. I already know the answer so its more for the readers……What data or proof do you have that backs your claim that a chapter 13 BK is better for consumers than a 3 or a 4 year settlement program?

          More importantly… what data, proof, complaints or consumers feedback can you provide that backs your claim that my settlement program and the prepaid legal plan is a scam?

          What do you think folks…. will Damon spin, lie and twist his way out of answering or will he man up and admit that not all settlement companies are a scam? Stay tuned ….

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Wow, Christmas in July. Who woulda thunk.

          As you stated, the reason you do not refer a potential client to a bankruptcy attorney is because you are worried the consumer would be “sold” bankruptcy. And therefore would not buy what you are selling. I guess the irony that you are doing exactly what you are accusing all BK attorneys of doing is completely lost on you.

          You can jump up and down about qualifying consumers all you want, but I got you so riled up that in your emotional rant (see what I did there) you accidentally proved my point.

          Your business model requires you to sell rather than educate and you are using some illogical, self serving and ridiculous notion that your program is “always” a better option than a chapter 13 bankruptcy to discourage your clients from getting another point of view before making a decision. (how is this helpful to them?)

          Therefore, I stand by my original statement that, your program, and most others like it, are indeed total bullshit. .

          Game…Set…Match

          Thank you very much. I will be here all night signing autographs in the back. :-)

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gu5JdmsLWVk

        • Angelo Anzalone

          My last question was rhetorical Damon, I knew you wouldn’t answer my questions and instead spin, lie and twist your way out of answering. Dont take your bows just yet, your toupe might fall off.

          Are you seriously trying to make the argument that I am a scam because I dont have everyone speak with a BK attorney ? Since when? That’s the spin of the century!! According to your logic then, a BK attorney should only suggest BK after they have sent a consumer over to a settlement company to ensure BK is truly the best option? Explain to me and all the readers exactly how a BK attorney is more qualified to make that determination?

          Hey dumbass, I make money regardless of which program a consumer chooses where a BK attorney only makes money by soliciting BK so who’s going to be more objective?

          Even with no complaints, an A rating with the BBB and a proven higher completion rate than a chapter 13 BK, not a single complaint written up about me on this or any other site yet you continue to spin,twist, lie, and attack with nothing to back your claims.

          Just man up. I’ll tell you what, I feel bad that I embarrassed you so much that I’ll let you get the last work in. Anyone who is reading this knows why you are attacking and they are laughing at you like I am.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Actually I am saying that before you subject your clients to a strategy with a likely risk of litigation (your words). You should have enough respect for your clients to encourage them to explore a strategy that doesn’t carry those risks, and allow them to decide for themselves what is best for them.

          Seems reasonable to me.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          There you go twisting my words again. Defaulting is what increases the risk of getting sued, not being in a settlement program. Ive been saying that this entire time and I have been asking you for proof or data that backs your claim that a settlement program increases the risk of lawsuits which you have still not provided.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          I copied this from your website. Not sure how I am twisting your words…

          “Clients must be made aware of the possibilities of lawsuits. Active Debt Solutions clients experienced legal activity on 38% of accounts. Average client enrolled had 7 accounts, please note this number does not reflect 38% of all clients but 38% of accounts. Depending on the state, some clients receive lawsuits on more than one account enrolled.

          Lawsuits are likely and Active Debt Solutions will continue to negotiate on the client’s behalf to reach a settlement.”

          I am genuinely confused by your continuing insistence that your program does not increase a client’s risk of being sued.

          Is it your belief that the longer you wait to resolve your debts with your creditors does not in any way increase the chances of getting sued?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Whats wrong with you? Are you seriously still stuck on your belief that its not the default that creates the risk of being sued?

          Im genuinely confused how you can claim being in a settlement program is what causes the risk of being sued even after multiple requests for any kind of proof or data to back that claim.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Maybe a simple example will help you to be able to answer a simple question.

          1. Consumer A defaults on credit cards (creating a risk of lawsuit), however he is able to raise money and resolve the debt within 1 year of default.

          2. Consumer B defaults on credit cards (creating the same initial risk of lawsuit as consumer A), however he is unable to raise much money and 3 years later has still not resolved all of his debt.

          Which consumer is more likely to deal with a lawsuit? Consumer A or Consumer B?

        • 18yr.collector

          Damon, your dumbest reply yet!

          The answer is neither is more “at risk”, a good collector knows when a debtor is able to raise money whether it’s 1 year by any means or 3 years accumulating in a settlement plan.

          Again law suits are time consuming, expensive and don’t come with a guarantee of payment so if a debtor is working on a plan to make some payment of the debt the best road for a collector is to work with the debtor rather than sue.

          You should walk away from this conversation, you are looking dumber all the time, are you stuck in 2009?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Oh, I wasn’t aware that a consumer could just let the nice debt collector know they are working on a plan. We don’t have any money yet, but in 3 years, I will definitely, maybe have something for you.

          I am so glad you informed me that creditors won’t sue if you tell them you might have some money some day. I feel so much better. Why should anyone purchase Angelo’s “attorney protection insurance”?

          Angelo can just tell them that his clients will eventually maybe have some money and they will just wait right?

          I guess I will just have to let common sense prevail on this point if you won’t even concede the fact that people who remain in default are sued more often than people who resolve the default.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          OMG Damon, this is too easy… how can you sit here and argue both sides? Which is it, does a settlement program increase the risk of receiving a lawsuit or does no one need the legal plan protection?

          How many times do you have to be called out on your twisting and spinning before it ends? Or do you just keep digging a deeper hole?

          You clearly and obviously have never negotiated settlements for consumers because that’s exactly how it works. Creditors are pinned against each other and lowest settlements are accepted first, the others wait till its there turn unless there’s a lawsuit which then take precedence.

          Regardless, lawsuits are an effective method of collecting and they occur in about 12-15% of consumers who default, period. That’s an undeniable fact that I can and have proven so please for the sake of your credibility and dignity, take a position and stick to it.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Interesting. You say that lawsuits occur 12% to 15% of consumers who default. Ok, well on your website you claim 38% of your enrolled accounts receive a lawsuit.

          So are you saying that your clients are 2 to 3 times more likely to get sued than other consumers in default?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          That makes no sense,what are you talking about?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day
        • Angelo Anzalone

          Wow, you are so retarded. So first you claim consumers should be referred to a BK attorney prior to enrolling into a settlement program and now you are saying that if a consumer is not able to settle their debts within a year they should file for BK because of the risk of getting sued? And this is why you label all settlement programs a scam?

          Lmfao!! Your twisted logic and inability to admit when you are wrong continue to amuse me. You’re funny…, yes, like a clown!

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          I think I would be better off trying to explain this to a wall.
          I was giving you a simple example hoping that you would be able to wrap your brain around a simple concept.

          I guess I was just to optimistic on that.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          It was a bullshit question. Of course anyone with no debt is not at risk of getting sued. What exactly did that prove?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          It proved what everyone but you and your debt collector friend seems to already understand, that not paying your bills for several years is a great way to get sued.

          It proves my original point that you are knowingly selling something that puts your client at a higher risk, but claiming that it does not.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          It proved that you are a flip flop and have no idea what you are talking about. It also proved you are incapable of listening. As much as you continue to spin I will continue to bring to the surface that I can back my claims with data, you just keep proving over and over again that you have nothing to back your claims. Hell, you keep changing your claims, it just proves you’re a babbling idiot

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Well, either that, or you are not capable of answering very simple questions for fear of exposing your program.

          Consumers can make up their own mind on that.

        • Does Steve still work there?

          12/24 Recent Comments from Damon…1/24 from Steve…whose blog is this?

          Angelo was right Steve you have allowed your blog to be hijacked by others (Damon) and I believe this is why most industry insiders (I have spoken to many) have abandoned following you, no longer any balanced discussion here just the same worn out rants.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Um, actually most industry insiders don’t like me because I am looking out for consumers, not their bottom lines.

          How am I supposed to have a balanced discussion with a guy that takes a week to admit that consumers are more likely to get sued if they wait four years to resolve their debt situation?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Put your listening ears on Damon because this is the 3rd time Im stating this claim. My data shows consumers receive more lawsuits in the first 24 months vs. after. What part of that do you not understand and why do you continue to twist my words?

          The more logical question is how can anyone have a balanced discussion with someone who forms an opinion without taking data into consideration and then continues to flip flop on his own argument.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          I am glad to see you are finally coming around to my side.

          So since consumers receive even more lawsuits in the first 24 months in addition to all the lawsuits they receive after that, doesn’t it just make even more sense to have them meet with a local bankruptcy attorney to fully explore that option?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Im not on the side of ignorance. You’re delusional, not for a 12-15% risk, no. Lawsuits can be negotiated .

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          What is a 12-15 percent risk? You state that your clients get sued on 38% of the accounts enrolled. Why are your clients sued more often than others?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Do you even read my replies or are you too busy thinking of your bullshit replies? Do I really need to explain the difference between accounts and clients?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Actually yes, I would like you to explain what 38% of accounts equates to in terms of the percentage of your clients who are sued please.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Now youre just being a dick.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Is Ashton Kutcher about ready to jump out at me?

          I can’t win. I ask a simple question in a very nice way and even say please and I am still a dick. Your personal feelings aside, I think any of your potential clients would also like a simple answer to this question.

          How many of your clients experience at least one lawsuit in your program?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          To your point about me not understanding. Let me use another ‘example’ so you can understand my thought process.

          2 guys swimming in shark infested waters. 1 guy is rescued within 2 days. The other guy is floating for 8 days.

          While it is true that during the first two days, they both have an equal risk of getting eaten, The odds of the first guy getting eaten after day 2 drop to zero while the second guy is still out there floating.

          So you say that more lawsuits occur within 24 months. Ok fine, I won’t dispute that, but that is not an argument that supports the idea that a 3 or 4 year program is not putting the consumer at more risk than a program that settles out their debt within 24 months. So whether your data is accurate or not, doesn’t even matter. The bottom line is you are trying to argue that the guy floating in the shark infested water for 8 days is not at any more risk than the guy that was saved in 2.

          Your argument fails on its face unless you can figure out how to crack the space-time continuum.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Misleading as usual. Your argument falls flat on its face because you are leaving out the fact that the guy out there for 8 days has a legal protection plan that provides an attorney like Greg Fitzgerald to defend the lawsuit and handle any FDCPA matters. So that you understand my logic, its kind of like that guy being out there for 8 days is IN A BOAT and out of harms way :)

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Bingo. Except it isn’t a boat out of harms way. It is a shark suit at best. You push the 8 day floater so you can sell the guy a shark suit and tell him no worries, it will be fine.

          But you refuse to let him explore an option that would prevent him from being in the water in the first place because you are afraid the client might like that option better than floating in the freaking ocean for 8 days with your stupid shark suit you want him to pay several thousand for.

          Exposed.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          You say shark suit, I say boat. Huge difference and if you knew more about the plan and actually read the part where I said that I do refer to BK attorneys more often than I enroll into settlement you might have a different opinion and a clue.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Now I am really confused. You spent a week telling me that you won’t refer a consumer to a BK attorney because they will just be sold bankruptcy, you continually jump up and down about how “your success rates” are better than chapter 13 bankruptcy, your website makes no mention of bankruptcy under the solutions you offer except to say how bankruptcy can be avoided.

          Now all the sudden after I have clearly pointed out the very obvious conflict of interest you have by discouraging people from meeting with a local bankruptcy attorney before enrolling in your program, all of the sudden you claim to refer people to BK attorneys more often than you enroll them into settlement.

          So, I guess readers can take away what they want from that.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          With all the egg on your face you are still coming at me with twisted logic. OK simpleton, let me speak to you like a child so it doesn’t get lost in translation AGAIN!!!!

          My success rate is as high as it is because I wont enroll someone who is a better fit for BK.

          Lets see how you twist that statement…..

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          What if I just quote Angelo from Tuesday and then Angelo from Thursday? If I just use your quotes, lets see if you still accuse me of twisting your words.

          Angelo Quote On Tuesday

          “to answer your irrelevant question meant only to divert from how foolish you are looking…no, we do not have them speak with a BK attorney – BK attorneys have to make a living also and most are clueless about settlement because there’s not as much profit as in BK for them.”

          Angelo Quote On Thursday

          “if you knew more about the plan and actually read the part where I said that I do refer to BK attorneys more often than I enroll into settlement you might have a different opinion”

          And you wonder why I am confused.

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          First off, I don’t think anything has been hijacked. It looks to me like two commenters are having a discussion back and forth. There is no reason for me to jump in and interject myself in that.

          Second, the number of subscribers has never been higher. People who bailed have done so to their own detriment. Any industry person who left, turning their back on a discussion or participating does not help to present different sides of an issue to have their point represented. That is their choice to do. I wouldn’t force anyone to subscribe and I do encourage all points of view to participate.

          Third, while I might not agree with the tone of either party at times in the comments I do think a more cordial discussion is still in order, the issue has not been resolved and I would prefer to see this moved over to http://getoutofdebt.org/53516/why-most-debt-settlement-companies-and-credit-counselors-are-bad-medicine where the guest post seems more on target than my post about negative seo.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          I agree, no reason for Steve to get involved.

          My initial point was not referring to lost subscribers, wrong word choice. It was referring to readers not engaging in discussion anymore and that is because of the way Damon hijacks conversations by calling everyone a scam, twisting truths, making unsubstantiated claims and talking in absolutes.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          You keep saying that I call everyone a scam. Can you please scour the entire internet and find one instance where I have said every single debt relief program is a scam?

          I open my big mouth all the time, so you should have no problem finding that.

          Until you do, try to refrain from using that as a smokescreen to avoid answering specific questions that clearly illustrate my initial assessment of your program (which you asked for) was spot on.

          I have no illusions that I am going to convince you of anything, that was evident after about the 3rd comment in.

          We have an impasse that will never be connected.

          My position is simple. I believe that consumer should explore all the options available so that they can make informed decisions.

          Your position is that consumers should only buy the things that you are selling. This has been evidenced several times in this conversation when you admitted you won’t refer a potential client to a BK attorney because they will just sell bankruptcy.

          So, you are deliberately trying to prevent people from exploring an option that you don’t think is good for them. However you are not qualified or legally able to make that judgment, but you do it anyway. It might be because you are ignorant to the potential benefits of a BK filing or you just don’t want to lose a sale.

          But regardless of whatever argument you make, you cannot make a convincing argument that preventing consumers from getting other points of view from other professionals is in their best interest.

          So you have nothing but to call me an emotional dumb ass, and all that. I get it, what else are you supposed to do. You are in a no win situation. And that really sucks, but most industry people are smart enough not to engage me on an issue they can’t possibly win. I guess you missed the AFCC meeting on that day.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          What part of “every option is made available” do you not understand? Seems every answer I provide is twisted, every fact I offer is ignored, your stories change to suit your insults and all of your claims are nothing but unsubstantiated rants. You seem to think that anyone who disagrees with you is a scam, who made you judge, jury and executioner? Shit, even Fitz sees the value in the legal plan but you keep claiming Im pushing an unnecessary product and all the while not knowing anything about it. I have more intellectual conversations with my 15 year old.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          How about you address my last comment. A quote from you saying you don’t refer consumers to BK attorneys, then another quote from you two days later claiming you do refer clients to BK attorneys.

          I was careful to use your specific quotes so you wouldn’t just cop out and cry about me twisting your words.

          Why can’t you keep your story straight about whether or not you have your potential clients meet with a BK attorney before you enroll them into your drawn out settlement plan with your attorney insurance upsell.

          By the way please share with everyone what the fees are for your veritas program and when and how those fees are charged.

          Thanks.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Such a fun discussion, I think we should continue it over at this article.

          http://getoutofdebt.org/53516/why-most-debt-settlement-companies-and-credit-counselors-are-bad-medicine

          Would love to get your thoughts on that Angelo.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Fun indeed!! If Im not mistaken this is this the same Greg Fitzgerald who attended the last AFCC conference soliciting settlement companies to handle their legal accounts and FDCPA violations.

          I know Greg, we enjoyed some deep dish pizza and have worked with together in the past so I don’t have one bad thing to say about him. He is one of the few attorneys who isnt so quick to solicit BK because he understands how to negotiate settlements for consumers who wish to avoid BK.

          I do know that he recently left the Seideman Law Firm to open his own practice and I wish him well. My thoughts on his article though… attorney advertising.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          So lets take this discussion over there since that article is much more on point to our discussion here. Which part did you think was attorney advertising?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Now you understand why I bowed out, everything Damon says contradicts the last foolish thing he said lol. All emotion, no logic.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Oh, it is the classic, “Damon is a big fat meanie pants, so therefore I am unable to defend my actions” excuse.

          Now, where have I seen that before?

          Hmm. Oh I know, everyone that can’t actually explain why their program is not a bullshit consumer rip off.

          Speaking of contradictions and no logic…

          Riddle me this. If your program does not put people at a greater risk for getting sued, why do you sell them an “attorney protection package?”

        • Neg Seo Expert

          WDDDG?
          Where did Damon Day Go?
          Came back across this link in some search results this morning and since Damon Day was deemed unlicensed he seems to have disappeared.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Still here, if you notice I have the last word on all the threads. It was Angelo that ran away after I started asking specifics about when he hits up his clients to pay for his unnecessary legal insurance plan.

          You ran away after I pointed out the rather obvious fact that you make a living hiding the truth from consumers.

          Care to respond to that?

        • Neg Seo Expert

          Funny. You didn’t have the last thread. Scroll down.

          I already responded to your question. See below.
          Did you ever get that business license?

          “To be clear we don’t hide search results, we work with companies that have fallen victim like Steve did regarding others negatively using SEO techniques to harm corporate websites with millions of daily visitors. NIKE is one of them.”

          “The issue at hand here isn’t having a license or the $50 bucks Damon. When a DS company doesn’t have a license you portray them as a scam. Following the rules everyone else has to follow doesn’t make you smarter or validate your opinions but rather keep everyone honest. If you can really say that when you work with clients you tell them you don’t have a license then the issue is mute as your customers can choose. On the other hand if your not telling them that’s a bigger issue. You are just another scum bag in the industry then. (Re-read your comments with Angelo are they really professional words from a professional? Nope.)”
          In hindsight Damon you actually inadvertently wrote comments or replied to comments that make you look bad essentially creating your own negative seo.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          So the anonymous guy hiding behind his IP address is now calling me a scum bag?

          Can you tell me specifically how my service hurts consumers?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Angelo ran away? What a jerk-off, I did no such thing Damon. I just got tired of you talking in circles, spinning my words and making false assumptions without knowing what you are even speaking about. I couldn’t help but to laugh when I read your claim that I ran away…. lets add that statement to the list of your twisted truths….that’s some funny shit Damon.

          But I didnt come back to continue this game with you, everyone reading this knows you threw this temper tantrum because I said you hijack conversations with your uncontrollable rants and as a result, those in the industry refrain from engaging in open discussion.

          You happened to prove my point several times during the conversation so there really was no point in continuing.

          lmfao…ran away…you truly are delusional Damon. Im still laughing

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Oh good you are back.
          Can you please tell everyone how much you charge your clients for Veritas and when they have to pay for that?

          Thanks

        • Neg Seo Expert

          Angelo- I took the liberty of filing complaints with the BBB, California’s Attorney Generals office and the Orange County Tax Collection office regarding Damon’s unlicensed business activities. Funny to say this but knowing from my father’s personal experience Damon will have major issues here in the future. I even took the liberty of sending a copy of this post with his comments that he doesn’t pay and is okay with that. The woman at the OC Tax office laughed at me and said “Does he really say online that he doesn’t pay his fees and is okay with that?” I replied to her “I sent you a copy of what he said.” She told me it can take 2-3 weeks to investigate and notify the person directly to resolve the issues. Unfortunately Damon has been doing business for a few years so the audit should reveal he doesn’t pay his fees to do business and if he didn’t to that then I bet he lied on his state and federal returns. Keep in mind that fees are a deduction so usually businesses like paying small fees to get small deductions. That type of misleading information is punishable and he will get what’s coming. I have never been so disgusted with behavior from a “Professional” as Damon Day.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Wow, and what could I have done to garnish this much attention… Hmm, perhaps it is that all these scams just hate the fact that I actually educate consumers and expose these rip off programs like Angelos Veritas legal insurance.

          For you to take the time to do all that, I must have really struck a nerve :-)

          All the more reason consumers should think about having a conversation with me. These annonymous people are afraid of something I am sharing.

          By the way, you never responded to my question about how my service hurts consumers.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          I dont think that was a wise decision neg seo, maybe its just the guinea in me but Im not a fan of ratting anyone out and outside of just being a dick, I dont think Damon did anything to warrant that kind of malice.

          If Im going to discredit someone its going to be on facts and the fact is that its impossible to have a conversation with him because he spins, twists, lies and makes claims without knowing what the hell he is talking about…which is why I wont engage any longer….not because Im running away lol

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Thanks Angelo,
          But it does sort of look like you are running away if you won’t state what your Veritas fees are and when your clients have to pay them.

          This all started because you complained I never got specific and just called everything a scam.

          So in order to appease you, I am trying to get specific.

          But you won’t answer straight forward questions.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          You labeled me and the legal plan a scam without knowing a thing about either including the prices and now you are asking me for the prices? Wouldn’t it make sense to gather your data first and then make an educated opinion about it?

          Im not running Damon, Im just not foolish enough to engage when you are not capable of having an objective conversation without attacking, twisting, spinning and lying just to one up and shut down conversation. That’s what started this remember?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          I know what you charge and how you charge them which is why I stick by my initial assesment that putting people on a 4 year settlement plan and then selling them protection from your bad plan is bullshit.

          Of course you keep accusing me of putting words in your mouth, so it is better if you answer the simple questions so I can use your answers to make my point. Otherwise you will just claim I don’t know what I am talking about and twisting your words etc. Hell, even when I quote you, you continue to hide behind that.

          So again, how much do you charge for your legal protection and when do you charge it?

          Or do you want to keep dancing around that question because you know what my follow up will be?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Yes, I know exactly how you are going to twist this which is why I wont engage. No matter what data I show you, you will find a way to twist and lie to try and discredit me.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          So you can’t defend your business model to someone who understands it huh?

          You are only able to explain it one on one to consumers who don’t know any better?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          I have no problem explaining my business model to someone looking to have a constructive conversation but I wont with someone with an ax to grind.

          I would have thought that after your weak attempt to include Fitz in our discussion that once he acknowledge the need for the plan that you would have been less confrontational but it seems all you want to do is argue and continue your attacks.

          Have you asked Fitz why he sees the need for the Legal Plan but you are unable to?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          So you are not able to state what your fees are and when you charge them because you are afraid of my response?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Why would I engage when this entire conversation just repeats itself…..you haven’t heard a word Ive said.

          “I have no problem explaining my business model to someone looking to have a constructive conversation but I wont with someone with an ax to grind. Have you asked Fitz why he sees the need for the Legal Plan but you are unable to? ”

          Even better, have you once picked up the phone or sent an email asking for more details? The answer is NO because you are not interested in learning about the plan to form a valid opinion, all you want to do is what you have been doing this entire conversation which is just talk smack. That has been clear from the very beginning of our pleasant conversation.

          I’ll say this one last time, its getting old but when you have gathered the details of the plan then and only then can you be in a position to make any credible claim about it. Until then, you sound like Charlie Browns teacher. You have my number, use it, you might actually learn something.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          You are really spending a lot of time avoiding even answering a simple question about your fees.

          How can any consumer trust you when you can’t defend your program out in the open?

          At what point do we just draw the conclusion that even you know your program harms consumers and is indefensible?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          lmao…says the guy who has avoided the same question in the last 3 posts.

          Im not refusing to answer your questions, Im refusing to engage with the spin master because no matter what I say or what data I show you, you will look for ways to twist what I am saying. Anyone reading this sees you have red in your eyes and wont listen to logic.

          Consumers know they can trust me because there has not been one complaint in the 7 years in the industry, not one negative article, not one regulator inquiry, an A rating with the BBB and 7 years of data that contradicts all of your bullshit claims.

          So the better question is at what point do you admit that you have done no research and know nothing about the plan that you call a scam?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          How do they know they can trust you when you are afraid to openly state what your fees are?

          You are spending quite a bit of energy trying to dance around this.

          A cynic might conclude there is a reason you are afraid to be open and honest about your legal insurance fees.

          I am not sure if I called your plan a scam. I may have, but my original assessment of bullshit, is more appropriate if I did.

          I think you are putting people in a position to be forced to buy something from you that they wouldn’t otherwise need if they got better advice.

          Whether that is a scam or not is open for interpretation.

          Maybe you think it is pretty shady also and that is why you don’t want to openly talk about it.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          There goes that diarrhea of the mouth again, still you continue to make foolish claims that you cant back. If you knew the first thing about the plan you would know that no one is forced to purchase anything, the legal plan is optional and members and very well aware of that option and can cancel at any time. This is exactly why very few in the industry engage in conversations on this site, you twist and lie way too much Damon, its pretty sad actually.

          I clearly have nothing to hide, I just wont engage when you are acting like such a a douche. Its you Damon, I cant make it any clearer that I will not engage with you. I provided my cell number and invited any regulator to reach me and you still claim I’m shady?

          You continue to avoid my questions yet claim Im afraid of engaging with you, typical Damon.

          Ask the guy you have a man crush on why he sees the need for the Plan but you still cant see it, ask every consumer enrolled in the Plan if they have any regrets, ask any performance based debt relief company if our services are harmful or not, ask any regulator if they feel the Plan is harmful, ask the BBB if there are any complaints. Is everyone shady but you Damon?

          For years, I have seen you shut down conversation by attacking and twisting statements to suit your rants. At first you would attack those who were truly doing harm to consumers and I respected you for that. You never once attacked me but now that most of those players are gone you have no one to attack in order to gain more business you attack me. The funny thing is that your attacks came only after I called you out for hijacking conversations. Is that just coincidence Damon or are your feelings still hurt?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Umm, this started because you attacked me for calling everyone a scam and never getting specific. You claim you have nothing to hide, but you are clearly afraid to get specific with me because you are afraid of an open discussion about your program with someone that can point out your very obvious conflict of interest.

          Why are you so afraid of telling me when and what you charge?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          only in your twisted world are the facts and common sense on your side. You twist statements, lie, and make false claims…damn, have you not read anything that Ive said? In fact, that’s all that I keep repeating and you keep proving me right. You are not capable of having a logical conversation and if I was afraid I would not have provided my cell number for any regulators and consumers to call.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          At what point do you think everyone knows you are just using this as an excuse because you are not able to justify your claims?

          Oops. to late.

          Angelo.. Damon never gets specific

          Damon… What do you charge your clients

          Angelo… I can’t tell you because you will use my words against me.

          That about sums up the last month.

          :-)

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Not able to justify my claims? From the very beginning of this conversation Im the one who has offered years of data to back my claims and you have been the one who has ignored the data and continue to twist the facts with unsubstantiated claims and after a month of you doing this you expect me to engage further so you can continue to twist, lie and attack? Fuck you asshole!! The better question is at what point do readers know you are full of shit and just a babbling idiot with an ax to grind?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Angelo do you like ice cream?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Not as much as Im enjoying making you look foolish.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          So it is true, you really are not capable of responding to any questions. Your response to everything is to try and redirect it back to me.

          Were you afraid I was going to twist your words about ice cream to?

          Its ok, I was bored about a month ago, but I had a goal to make this thread reach 200 comments and we just hit that mark.

          So thank you very much for your help with that even though your last 25 comments all said the same thing :-)

          By the way, what if someone else asked you about your fees? Would you be able to tell them or does everyone twist your words?

          Cheers.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          So its true, you lie, twist statements, make unsubstantiated claims and attack all for the sake of rankings. Well that explains why you’ve been such an asshole this whole time.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Oh, anyone can ask about your fees one on one but not in public where someone that knows what you are doing can call you out huh?

          If by asshole you mean pointing out the stupid shit you are doing to your clients, then yes, guilty as charged.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          No, by asshole, I mean someone acting like a jerk. You proved very early in the conversation and continued to prove that you were not here to have a civilized, logical conversation. I have always shared my data without hesitation and have always been transparent so your claims are once again untrue. Under normal circumstances, I would have no problem answering questions about my plan on a public site but you just keep being…. well, you!!

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Well whatever excuse you want to hide behind is fine.

          If by dick, you mean someone that has caught and cornered you in your own lies and leaving you no good outs, well, then guilty as charged.

          And the Saints go marching on.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          I think its a valid one. Whats your excuse ?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Of course you think it is a valid excuse. It isn’t like you can actually answer the questions I am asking you :-)

        • Angelo Anzalone

          I can answer them. You know as well as I do that if you had come to me looking to have a real discussion about the plan I would not have hesitated but why would I when you come throwing accusations and lies with guns blazing?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Ok, we will all pretend that is the reason you don’t want to talk about how much money you make when you convince a consumer to drag out settlements for four years.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          While your in your make believe world, pretend you dont scare consumers into believing that if they dont cash in their IRA’s they will get sued or worse…die!! and if they dont have an IRA, pretend the next best option is Bankruptcy. You and Obama are great at this fear mongering

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Ok, and while we are in this make believe world we will pretend your advice is never bias toward how you are paid.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Of course its biased, so is yours and same with the BK attorney you refer consumers to, but you forgot or chose to ignore the fact that my fees are earned regardless if the consumer needs debt management, settlement or bankruptcy. Oh that’s right, I forgot that you are the only (self proclaimed) ethical person in this entire industry.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          The fact that you think those 3 things are the only options available just proves your bias and my point. You are looking to sell only the options that you get paid for, not looking to do what is best for the consumer.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Oh I gotta hear this….OK, what option am I missing?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          That is your problem, you think there are nice neat little options that you can put people into. Every situation is different. But you don’t understand that concept because you are just trying to sell specific services

          You are just trying to shove people into one of your boxes, instead of customizing a strategy for that specific client and their situation

        • Angelo Anzalone

          OK, so once again…..what option am I missing?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          The option to use your brain apparently.

          You are so focused on selling, that you actually think that every problem is solved by either enrolling in a debt settlement, management or BK?

          Lord have mercy on any consumer who calls you for advice

        • Angelo Anzalone

          you said that already……lol, My brain tells me those are the available options so for the 3rd time…. besides DM, DS or BK what other option am I not offering consumers ?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          So basically when someone calls you, the only thing you know how to do is figure out which box to try to shove their problem into?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          4th and last time as it seems you are still being a dick for the sake of rankings….Can you at least name one other option you claim I do not make available to consumers?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          So now I am a dick because you have no clue how to help people without shoving them into some program?

          This is the problem with sales people. You get a lead and you try to fit them into one of your boxes because you don’t have the analytic skills, education, or the financial motivation to help them best solve their problem.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          You do realize that you are a salesman also? All the fear you create is so people pay you to refer them to a BK attorney so who are you kidding? But I cant help but to continue to call you out on your bullshit when you claim there are other options that I dont offer but yet you cant name one? Just one? Name one option and I’ll eat crow and apologize for calling you out on hijacking Steve’s site.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          I am a salesman also? No shit sherlock. That is how capitalism works.

          The difference is that I am selling advice and education to help people figure out their best course of action.

          You are selling your solution.

          There is a distinct difference, that I am sure you can understand.

          So a consumer can call me and then they can call you and determine which one of us makes more sense.

          I am ok with that, are you?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          You keep forgetting Im selling every solution, not just one so how does that make you better than me?

          And yes, I’m perfectly fine with that but you still haven’t mentioned this missing option that Im not making available? Will you please enlighten me oh great one?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          It is like trying to explain calculus to a 5th grader. You first have to understand the concept that not everything fits into neat little boxes that you can package up and sell.

          Sometimes people just need good advice based on their circumstances. They can then solve their problem without enrolling into some program that you are trying to sell.

          I understand that is a foreign concept and it is going to take you awhile to get it. But try sleeping on it and letting it sink in.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Well then explain it to me like Im a 5th grader, what kind of advice are you trying to convince me that you provide that I dont?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          I guess I gave you to much credit. A 5th grader would be able to understand the definition of a customized solution based on the client’s overall situation and goals.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Oh, I see…the option that Im not providing that makes me a scam is a “customized solution”? Why did I have to ask you 6 times? Why didn’t you just say that from the beginning?

          Im sure glad you are taking the time to teach me what I don’t know, soon I’ll be as cool as you Damon but in the meantime, now that we finally got a straight answer out of you, can you please explain what a “customized solution” would consist of?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Seriously?

          You really can’t grasp the concept?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Maybe this will help

          cus•tom•ize (ˈkʌs təˌmaɪz)

          v.t. -ized, -iz•ing.

          to modify, make, or build according to individual specifications or preference.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Man, you just love to talk in circles without actually saying anything but at the same time Im enjoying calling you out on your bullshit.

          I’m sure I’ll have to ask at least 4 more times for an example so for the sake of not having to ask over and over again I’ll get them out of the way now…..

          1-give me one example or scenario of your so called customized solution

          2-give me one example or scenario of your so called customized solution

          3-give me one example or scenario of your so called customized solution

          4-give me one example or scenario of your so called customized solution

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          I think it is clear that you have no idea how to help anyone unless you can shove them into some canned solution.

          So if a consumer wants a free, canned sales pitch, they can call Angelo. If they want real help, based on their actual circumstances, they can call me.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          5- give me one example or scenario of your so called customized solution

          6- give me one example or scenario of your so called customized solution

          7- give me one example or scenario of your so called customized solution

          Not even one Damon, you cant even give me one example of this mysterious solution that you say I dont offer that makes me a scam because you created this phrase out of thin air.

          I think what is clear is you once again making ridiculous claims and talking in circles. You are sitting here trying to justify charging consumers upfront for advice regardless if they use it or not and calling me a scam for not charging unless I provide the service. Now thats entertainment!!

        • Angelo Anzalone

          There is no concept to grab, you haven’t actually made a point. You claim there are other options besides DM, DS and BK but instead of backing your claim and actually presenting another option all you did was put together two words to create a phrase called ‘customized solutions” I have two words to put together too Damon…Dumb-Ass.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Ok, we will just leave it as Angelo has no idea how to help anyone except to shove them into a Debt Management, Debt Settlement or a BK.

          Call Angelo for a free sales pitch.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          …and I’ll just leave it that Damon charges upfront for the exact same advice Angelo provides regardless if its used or not. Unless of course you can finally …

          8- give me one example or scenario of your so called customized solution.

          Until then, you and I are offering the same exact solutions with the exception that I am ok with a 36/48 month program for those who refuse to file BK oh and you charge your fees upfront where I charge upon providing the service. Call Damon if you want to pay for the free advice any other debt relief company can offer.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Perfect suggestion. Consumers should call us both. I prefer if you call Angelo first though because if you get a sales pitch first, you will just appreciate me even more. :-)

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Great idea, get my advice for free and pay Damon to get the same advice…this way they can finally see how full of shit you really are.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Umm, clearly the advice won’t be the same. Have you been involved in this conversation Angelo?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          After 8 requests to back your claims, you have failed to provide one simple example or scenario of your so called customized solution so as far as Im concerned the only difference between the advice we offer is that my 7 years of data shows a higher completion rate for a 36/48 month program than BK and and you lie and scare consumers to believe that if they cant cash in their retirement accounts then they have to file BK.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Ok, well it is a good thing consumers are able to call both of us and determine fact from your fiction for themselves.

          I assume you encourage your potential clients to get other points of view and research everything before enrolling in your program right?
          :-)

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Yes, I charge a fee for my consultations. Angelo’s free advice will get you sued. Talking to me is a lot less expensive.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          There you go lying again. Choosing a DM, DS or BK plan is not what puts a consumer at risk of being sued, defaulting on debt is what puts consumers at risk.

          Man I am glad Im here to clarify your bullshit lies.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Well again, it is a good thing a consumer has the option to call both of us. That way they can determine for themselves which one of us is creating a strategy that makes good sense for their situation, and which one of us is putting them at increased risk for a commission.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          I have a simple suggestion.

          How about before you enroll any of your clients into a drawn out settlement program, you send them over to me for another point of view.

          If I recommend a different course of action, and they still decide to go with you, I will pay them 250 bucks for their time.

          That should be a no brainer for you. An easy way for your clients to make 250 bucks, unless of course, you are afraid of letting your clients get another point of view before making a major financial decision.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          lol, My brain tells me those are the available options so for the 3rd time…. besides DM, DS or BK what other option am I not offering consumers ?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          You’ll just scare them into cashing in their IRA’s or 401k’s or refer them to BK and I think that’s irresponsible and unethical. How about you send them to me and lets see who’s advice they follow?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Well, the problem with your suggestion is my clients actually pay me for my advice. The reason they pay me is so they don’t have to waste their time talking to sales people pushing products if they don’t want to.

          If I sent them to you and wasted their time, I would start getting refund requests.

          Your advice is free because that is about all its worth.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Well now it all makes sense….you are so good at scaring consumers into staying away from settlement companies that charge upfront fees yet you charge consumers even if you cant help them and make money regardless. Talk about a scam, thats sad man, real sad.

        • Neg Seo Expert

          Damon brought it on himself. Act a fool and you are a fool. Posting online that you won’t pay fees and your proud of it is not consumer centered behavior and that is the reason why I activated DICK-MODE. I thought about a lot of other pranks but this came down to principals.
          Damon lies to every person he speaks with if he doesn’t tell them that he is unlicensed. He has not refuted that claim because it would further damage his reputation.
          Angelo… Notice how Damon posts that he will speak with the AG and keep them busy on debt relief scams for years. Damon assumes the AG will be like “oh your a 1 man shop that didn’t adhere to the rules and you want to dime out some folks with big boy money that can hire attorney’s to fight us?” Nah… Pay us and we will do our own work is what they are gonna say.
          Regardless of what happens, Damon is aware he needs a license to do business in the county he resides in and he also needs to make sure his fees are paid when due or be setup on a payment plan according to his budget.
          I’m making popcorn right now for the finale.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          I didn’t refute the claim. I agreed with it. Yet you keep wanting to jump up and down about it because that is all you have.

          Pretty sad.

          If you are so worried about consumers why don’t you ask Angelo about his fees? He is charging thousands of dollars and foolishly putting people at risk, yet you have no problem with that?

          You are only worried that I didn’t pay a $50 dollar city fee that actually has nothing to do with the quality of my service. Hmm, sounds like you are really looking out for people there ace.

          Perhaps you have a personal ax to grind with me and this has nothing to do with consumers. You likely sold bullshit debt settlement programs at one point and this website outed your scam and cost you some sales. Of course since you don’t have the balls to use your real name, we can only make assumptions at this point.

          For the 3rd time, can you tell me what it is about my specific service that is harmful to consumers? I have told you specifically why Angelo is harming consumers. Why is it that nobody can say what I am doing that is so bad?

          The only thing you have is to attack me personally and try and scare people from speaking with me.

        • Neg Seo Expert

          Oh Damon Dumbo Day….. You illiterate degenerate. How many times do I have to repost what I already said. Re-read my comments and you will get the answer to how you harm consumers just like Steve did. If a customer pays you a fee for your service and you don’t tell them that you don’t have a license to collect those monies that is HARM. I’m sure you disagree but the authorities will not.
          Your ignorance shines bright like a diamond pal. Maybe I did sell debt settlement. Maybe I did a bang up job as a server at TGIF’s. Maybe my family has a wood chopping factory in Oregon. Maybe I did the horizontal shuffle with your wife. Maybe I am tired of people like you lying to customers and pointing the finger at everyone else. Maybe its not the license but the fact that to play a fair game everyone must follow the rules. If you say you are above the law as you have then you deserve whatever is coming.
          Keep in mind that you have had almost a month to get a license to do business.
          Why have you not gotten a license? Need the $38.50?
          Why hasn’t Steve written an article blasting you for not having a license?
          Why have a discussion with Angelo if you have already decided that you are right and he is wrong?
          Please answer those questions first before you start some rant about some other BS.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          So you admit my actual service does nothing to harm consumers, yet you are still trying to attack me.

          So sad, yet so predictable.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Another clear example of you running your mouth without knowing what you are talking about and why I refuse to engage with your rants.

          You claim I charge thousands but at the same time you keep asking me how much I charge. Quintessential Damon – attack without knowing the facts. Its sad that you are the mouthpiece for this site, you are not only making yourself look foolish but are dragging the reputation of this site down with you.

          Any consumer or regulator who wishes to learn more about the Veritas Legal Plan can call my cell directly at 561-319-4850 and I will be glad to answer any questions.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          oh, I don’t know what I am talking about? Then please enlighten me. What are your fees for veritas and when are they charged.

          It is a simple question.

        • Neg Seo Exp

          Some men just want to watch the world burn.
          While both of you argued on this playground you forgot about the services you provide to customers.
          Oh wait Damon has no customers.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Speaking of customers, I would like to thank you. I have received quite a few clients over the last few months specifically because they saw some of my comments from this thread in the recent comment section at the bottom of this website.

          So, thank you very much for helping more consumers to learn how I can help.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          lol…ditto!! and I guess now would be a good time to mention the numerous emails from insiders thanking me for making you look foolish.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Sure, good job. I don’t work to please insiders. I help consumers. By definition most insiders (bullshit peddlers) don’t like me, what I do or what I teach consumers.

          So good job buddy. Just another reason for consumers to avoid you in my humble opinion :-)

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Insiders dont like you because of your marketing style, where you relentlessly bash them on this site to trick consumers into paying you for your “sky is falling” advice. And they do engage, any possibility of a logical discussion is shot down with your lies, made up claims, twisting of the truth and made up debt options like customized solutions”. I have nothing to hide so I have no problem sticking around and calling you out on your bullshit.

          If consumers reading this entire thread still chose to go with someone who dismisses data, lies, twists truths and makes ridiculous, unsubstantiated claims then quite honestly, you can have them.

        • Neg Seo Expert

          +1
          See like I stated 2 months ago this amazing discussion needs to have a format to be even more effective for SEO purposes. We need to have a Google Hangout and have a moderator between you two.
          Let me know if interested I think we could also perhaps get some consumers to chime in and ask questions so we can see the validity of both sides.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Oh, that’s right. I forgot all these sales people pushing their debt relief programs out here are all educated financial professionals who don’t work on commission and just want to make sure that consumers are getting the best advice.

          All these state attorney general, FTC and CFPB actions are just political witch hunts. There is no fraud or scams in this industry and the thousands of consumer complaints are just made up.

          I am just out here running my big mouth about things that don’t exist. Consumers should just do what the nice and friendly debt relief sales person tells them to do.

          Helping people and exposing this industry doesn’t make me very popular among Angelo and his insider ilk, but my clients love me, and I am just fine with that.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          We stood side by side exposing the loopholers and now that I hurt your feelings and we dont agree on lengths of a settlement program, I am labeled a scam by Damon the self proclaimed financial wizard and attacked relentlessly in hopes that I will just stop engaging.

          Almost 2 months of this back and forth and you havent made one true claim or one valid point and I can do is keep asking you just so readers know how full of shit you are but how is your financial advice more trustworthy than the next guy?

          What special training do you have that qualifies you better then me or anyone else running a performance based company? More importantly, I have to ask yet again, what data do you have that backs the claim that the results of your advice are somehow better than mine?

          Once again, you don’t….your a washed up sham and this entire conversation exposed you as the blabbering idiot who will say anything to get his phones to ring.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          I don’t think you are a scam. I think you are misguided, and I think your process of giving bad advice and then upselling protection from that bad advice is bullshit.

          We are always going to disagree on that point.

          I have said several times, consumers can call you, and then they can call me for a second opinion. I am fine with that, but you keep wanting to attack me to try and prevent consumers from calling me to get another opinion.

          Are you afraid that a fully informed consumer won’t be an easy sale?

          Isn’t it better for consumers to get multiple points of view before making a decision on how they should be solve their problem?

          We just have two different approaches and consumers are free to decide what is best for them.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          See, there you go talking shit again as you squirm out of answering yet another question. Im not attacking you, Im just calling you out over and over again on your bullshit scare tactics.

          What certification, license or authority do you have to claim that my advice, which is based off actual data is bullshit but your made up claims are somehow the best financially sounds advice ever?

          You are right about one thing, we have two different approaches – mine is to present all available options using data to come up with the best solution and you simply lie to discredit your competition.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Talking shit? I merely suggested consumers call both of us.

          Why so scared?

          You are asking me about certification or authority to question your advice?

          You keep talking about your data, as if to imply that you base your advice off perceived success rates of different options rather than basing the advice on what is best for the client.

          Is this the kind of stuff they teach at Palm Beach community college?

          Why can’t consumers call both of us, use common sense and decide which one is providing better advice?

          Seems reasonable to me unless you are afraid what consumers will learn when they call me.

          If your advice is so awesome, then you should be confident enough to let your potential clients speak with me.

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Stalk much? That’s creepy dude, I must have rattled you a bit but Im curious why you would think that Im scared?

          Im asking about certification or the authority bestowed upon you that makes your advice more credible than mine or everyone else in the industry for that matter. Why is your way the only right way, and how the hell can you claim that when you have nothing to back it with?

          I reference my data because it enables me to back my claims, you should try it sometime. It’ll make your claims a little more credible and you’ll sound less like a babbling idiot.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Ok, well consumers can talk to both of us and decide which one of us gives them more viable, common sense options for solving their problems.

        • Neg Seo Expert

          Angelo your comment bothered me so I checked. It does not appear you have a business tax receipt for your company either in your town. If complaints are filed will you have issues as well as Damon?

        • Angelo Anzalone

          Which comment bothered you?

          And no, Im not worried. My business tax receipt was current in the city of Delray Beach. I did forget to transfer it over when we moved from Delray Beach to Boynton Beach but that application went in last week when you dropped the dime on Damon…thanks for the heads up :)

          Oh and yes, I also possess a business telemarketing license and each of my reps are also licences with the dep’t of agriculture in Florida.

        • Neg Seo Expert

          Angelo – Someone copied my handle and used it to post the question about your business license. If you notice their are two very distinct and very separate people using the handle the language is much different and with a different attitude. If I had to surmise one person is using it to their advantage or to keep users engaged. This is the reasoning why blogs lack real credibility. Ventures such as this result in legitimate business involved with meaningless conversation for the scheme of site use.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Oh, that’s awesome. Mr anonymous is acting indignant toward anonymous people who lack credibility posting on blogs.

          Please pass me another slice of irony.

          For the record, not that it matters, but if you are implying that was a question I posted under your fake name, it wasn’t. I clearly have no problem using my real name when I speak my mind, unlike some people who shall remain nameless.

          Further, I find it disturbing that you, who claim to be just looking out for consumers, would spend so much time and effort trying to discredit me, and you have no problem giving Angelo, or any of his insider ilk a pass.

          As Angelo stated, he made an honest mistake and didn’t get his license transferred, so it was clear he didn’t pay the exact same 50 dollar (or whatever small tax it is in his city) and yet, you didn’t go after him. You didn’t report him to the BBB, call the local tax collector, the irs, the attorney general, and even the President and beg him to suspend Posse Comitatus and send in the Marines to get that 50 bucks.

          Why?
          Looks to me that this “Negative Seo Expert” certainly resembles exactly what he claims is wrong. Non credible, anonymous people posting bullshit on the internet for their own personal gain.

          At least Angelo and I have the integrity to post our opinions with our own names and reputation on the line.

        • Negative SEO Expert

          I was busy on a MD project. You are right, I’m a gutless punk and I can’t believe I treated you that way.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          So how did that conversation with the AG’s office go?

          My name is Negative Seo Expert and I am here to report a crime?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Ya, it must be well over a 100 takes by now because there are a lot of bullshitters out there.

        • Neg Seo Expert

          Not true damon. Your commentary is horrible and you hold no license in California.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          My commentary is subjective. Over the years I have found, consumers love it, debt relief sales people really despise it.
          I am good with that.

          License? For what?

        • Jason

          Damon,

          He doesn’t even understand his own industry. Why would he understand yours? Neg, keep blowing your hot air! Keeps the content fresh and INCREASES the SEO ranking.

          Steve, fess up. This SEO guy is working for you isn’t he!

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Hey Jason,

          Neg Seo is an expert so of course he understands that adding tons of fresh content to an article really helps to boost the rankings and…. oops…oh shit.

          :-)

        • Neg Seo Expert

          Damon where did you get the idea I cared about the rankings? Did you really read my comments?

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          I don’t know who you are, or what you care about, but my comment was hilarious.

        • Neg Seo Expert

          Damon please respond to my post above. You have not show the audience that you have a license to do business.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          I don’t have a business license. How is that relevant to whether or not my personal opinions on the debt relief industry are accurate?

        • Neg Seo Expert

          In the eyes of this site. No License means you shouldn’t be conducting business with consumers. Also the portrayal of Damon Day and Associates is misleading seeing how people will think you are a business. Therefore making your personal opinions not inaccurate but unprofessional towards the rest of us. People count on you and your not serving them as you should be. Please also don’t try and tell us that you don’t need a license. I called the city you live in a few weeks ago and they confirmed that you don’t have a license, have never applied and that you are required to have one. I’d get on that.
          Second time today I have been concerned about people who claim to be for the consumer yet use that propaganda to hide things. You Damon Day are no different than any of the other less than up front people Steve writes about. Let us all know when you get that business license.

        • http://DamonDay.com/ Damon Day

          Oh that is rich. The guy who calls himself Neg Seo Expert is concerned about consumers? Dude, your flipping job is to deceive people by hiding the truth about your clients in search results so they can continue to sell more bullshit to uninformed consumers. You seriously going to come at me as using propaganda? Pot, I would introduce kettle but he is to afraid to use his real name.

          Well of course you tried to dig up dirt on me. I mean it isn’t like you can actually point to any of the problems I point out about the industry and show why I am wrong.

          My clients love me because what you see is what you get with me. Funny how none of my clients ever complain about me huh? Just the people that lose business when I open my big mouth and teach consumers the truth about how they are getting screwed.

          So you got me. I didn’t send 50 bucks to the city when I moved here. Way to sniff that one out Columbo. Of course, if I was trying to hide that for some reason, why would I tell you I didn’t have a license when you asked? Sort of blows your “me trying to hide things theory” out of the water Mr. Anonymous person.

          If I send 50 bucks to the city am I then any smarter, or more experienced, or any more qualified to help my clients? Nope. I guess I am just not professional in your eyes? Hmm, well if you haven’t noticed yet, I don’t give a shit about being professional. I care about bringing attention to my message and saving people from making major mistakes by listening to dumb ass sales people.

          I am a guy with a big mouth, a cell phone, and a laptop, and I am pretty pissed off and vocal about the majority of this scum bag industry hurting families just to make a buck. I am just fine with my unprofessional, non 50 dollar paying style and so are the families I have saved over the years.

    • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

      In that case then I have not written about any of the companies you associate with then. Right?

      While I appreciate your suggestions I don’t write to attract any particular type of reader. People can provide feedback about liking or not liking an article in the comments section, just as you have.

      Your question “Do you believe that reporter’s should contact companies before they write about them?” is particularly interesting since the vast majority of information I cover here is information in the public record. Articles are generally a report of the item of focus, not the company itself.

      And I’ve demonstrated in the one example given of how I did reach out to the company and got nowhere. That has happened time and time again.

      If you are aware of companies that will offer a response or comment I invite you to post a list of company names here and I’ll gladly contact them if they appear in a story. 99% of the time though I never hear back.

      Hope you enjoyed the 4th.

    • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

      In what must surely be the ultimate irony, members of the debt relief community both complain about the articles on the site and then use them as reliable proof to try and poach consumers from one debt relief company to the next.

      See Debt Settlement Company Sends Mailer Warning Consumers of Scheme

      • Neg Seo Expert

        This is an exact example of how you could have said “Company X Sends Mailer” instead you have specifically targeted the keywords debt settlement company sends mailer.

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          So your criticism is is I didn’t name the company? Yet before your criticism was I was intentionally naming companies.

          In this particular example did you even read the article to see why I didn’t?

        • Jason

          Steve, next he is going to say that you should have used the word Strategy instead of scheme because of the negative connotations. More trolling, more irrational gibberish. Mr Neg SEO, you do realize that you are CREATING MORE traffic for Steve during this ridiculous argument right?

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          LOL. You caught me. The funny part is I caught that I used “scheme” after I posted it. But it was completely unconscious and a result of my years living in the UK. Over there the word is not used in a negative way but to represent the operation or flow of a process.

          I did think about changing it later but then figured someone would jump on me for having some nefarious motive for changing it and get their knickers in a bunch leaving me gobsmacked.

    • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

      In related news out, according to FM News Weekly Morgan Drexen is expanding their services “Official Release: Morgan Drexen Integrated Systems is now fighting online rip-off and scam blogs that are ruining business reputation and potentially costing businesses millions of dollars in revenue. Join the Fight.”

      The article on FM Weekly said, “Fight back against unethical and or unfair internet postings and increase your bottom line! Morgan Drexen Integrated Systems is expanding its support services to include public relations, video production, online reputation management and website design. Let this team of award winning staffers clean up and boost your online profile. When you decide to take action against erroneous online information that’s costing your company, potentially, millions of dollars… give Morgan Drexen a call.”

      Could Morgan Drexen actually be engaged in negative SEO efforts against sites? Certainly they would never do that.

      You can read the full press release at http://getoutofdebt.org/52919/morgan-drexen-announces-expansion-of-services

    • http://www.mstarsinc.com/ Matthew Hearn

      Here is something to consider and I can’t believe that this discussion is taking this turn. Anything posted on ANY site that is consumer facing is accumulated into the CFPB’s sentinel system. If anyone is running a consumer financial (or pseudo-financial) firm offering said services to American consumers, posting or being involved in any tactic that would attempt to discredit sources or remove negative data on your company without fully addressing and reconciling the issue with the consumer is adding evidence against yourself in a CFPB examination. EVERY consumer complaint is logged and data-based within the CFPB’s systems. In the event you draw attention to your negative press by trying to conceal, remove, rebut, hide or fight, you have essentially “fried your own egg”. The goal is (for legitimate, solid companies), is to use these complaints to identify consumers that have potentially viable issue with their treatment by your company and reconcile it directly with the consumer whether the harm was real or perceived. I am hearing a lot of whiny BS on this post about how Steve is posting information that is biased or inaccurate. If anything he posts is addressed by the firm reported on and evidence to the contrary presented and documented, a case could easily be made that his journalism is unfair. Guys, you have to start looking at the bigger picture here. Steve’s site is not the first of it’s kind. Since the inception of this industry, there have been many sites like this that post negatives on companies based on a consumer’s issue. We personally used these sites to track complaints and reconcile them swiftly. No complaints, no negative action. If a company gets a black eye and does not reconcile it appropriately, there is probably a reason they have the black eye. Trust me when I say this, I have personally had to deal with sites that a consumer posted on. At the end of the day, my friends at the FTC (back then), taught me a valuable lesson. They told me that in the end, the consumer is always right. If they aren’t happy with your service or feel that you misled them in any way, regardless of whether you are right, their lens will prevail. Being in business is hard and asserts that you are more savvy and intelligent than the consumers you serve. You have to always take the high road. Be completely transparent, be completely honest in all your dealings,be completely consumer focused and everything works out in the end. Be smart, if there are negative remarks on any site about your company, run, don’t walk, to that site and reconcile those reports. You may not always like the rules, but like it or not, you’re in the game and you have to play it well. Steve isn’t the enemy here. The fact that a lot of people are bent out of shape on here demonstrates the immaturity level. Pull up your big boy pants and address the issues, document your evidence and handle your complaints so no one else has anything negative to say about you or your company. Truth is, the complaints lodged on here are your lens into the world and should alert you to potential problems before the CFPB does.

      • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

        Here is a point that seems so obvious but maybe you can help explain it.

        Does the debt relief industry really want to be respected?

        I’ll use myself as an example but the same issue applies to any who get anonymously attacked. How can an industry feel they are the ones being harmed. Let’s use this thread as an example.

        Negative SEO Expert and others have been vocal in support of anonymous black hat tricks to try to silence reporters who say things they don’t like. But they don’t have the guts to stand behind their words and say who they are and what specific companies engage in such behavior. If there is nothing wrong with it then why do they hide?

        I put my name on what I write and I have an open policy that lets anyone comment and offer their opinion. Attackers hide and won’t have an open conversation.

        • Neg Seo Expert

          I never vocalized or supported black hat tricks nor did I attempt to silence you. I merely pointed out that your behaviors and opinions are resulting in people harassing you. As I stated… When you lay down with dogs you are going to get bit.

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          Does the debt relief industry you know want to be respected?

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          Who are the dogs?

        • occasionally here

          And this type of response is your problem Steve, 99% of the time you react to anything said to you about how you write your articles and respond to commenters with a defensive tone and begin your attack on the commenter, many times you will call in support from an ally to picdk up the attack on the commenter.

          Neg Seo Expert only pointed out that this type of response from the subjects of your articles (negative seo) to try to quiet what you are writing about them should not be a surprise for you, if you use the names of companies and individuals in a negative light in your articles to make money from the traffic this generates and never retract what you say or appologize some of these companies and individuals may feel they should find a way to minimize the damage you cause to them (right or wrong).

          I don’t believe that anyone commenting in this thread said they “support anonymous black hat tricks to try to silence reporters who say things they don’t like”…it’s really not that they don’t like “what you say” but the always negative tone of your articles, responses to comments and how you blatently use the names of companies and individuals for profit and make no appologies for this business model of yours.

          About the anonymous comments…you make the rules here, if you don’t want anonymous comments here then don’t allow them. Don’t just say that anonymous commenters “don’t have the guts to stand behind their words”. The truth is you don’t restrict anonymous comments because they too are good for driving paying traffic to your site…do you really think readers don’t get this?

          I expect your response to this comment will be the standard “give me a specific example of an article that I wrote wher I was unfair blah, blah, blah”…giving you the final word again.

          I’m done with this discussion, good luck with your battles Steve

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          So you are taking your ball and going home. Nice.

          And while you might suspect I would ask for an example, you are correct. Without a specific example, facts, to backup your argument all you have is an unsupported opinion.

          I do keep saying if the articles are as bad, not factual and unbalanced as you feel they are, just give me an example of one. But you either can’t or won’t so either way we are still left with the same position.

          Also, your idea that I “blatently use the names of companies and individuals for profit and make no appologies for this business model of yours,” is not a factual statement as well. While the site does mention the names of companies and individuals it does so in a factual manner. It would be hard to cover a number of the debt relief topics here without mentioning or supporting the situation with the facts, which include the company names or individuals. That position is like saying the FTC should not mention names in their press releases.

          But let’s say you feel that using the company name in asking consumers for feedback about their experience is unfair. I ask people for feedback, including praise and to review any company. So is that what you object to? But how is that any different than Yelp, Angie’s List, Local Review Sites, Yahoo & Google local search reviews, etc?

          And in closing, you say I “never retract what you say or appologize some of these companies and individuals” but you still have not provided one single example where you feel I should.

        • Jason

          Steve,

          Don’t give these trolls the satisfaction of a response. They will just talk in circles until they get bored and find someone else to harass.

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          I just keep patiently waiting for a logical response.

          I’m still waiting. And if anyone gave a damn and spent way too much time going back through the comments you’d notice there still has not been valid examples given to backup the allegations the objectors have made.

          I will admit it’s hard to carry on an intelligent conversation when the request is for facts and the response is basically “you are a douche.”

    • bonnietoo

      I am glad some of you have not had astronomical medical bills and also still have jobs. Many of us have had a different experience and have found us in a personal debt crisis. The Get Out Of Debt guy offers a sound guide to what is helpful and what is a scam, and what exactly different companies do, when to file bankruptcy, etc. I feel he offers a valuable service and if he uses his site to share (and thus advertise) specific companies that are legitimate and actually help people, so what? It’s helpful. I think he is getting flack because certain people and companies benefit from people not having a place that actually tells the truth about Debt resolution solutions.

    • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

      What is the difference between negative SEO to silence a site and censorship?

      • Jason

        I find it interesting and completely and obviously transparent that the Negative SEO professionals are on this comment forum attacking Steve for using constructive, informative information to help a third party while make money when the exact goal of a negative SEO campaign is to smear all competitors and detractors in any way to push their clients site into prominence while eliminating the presence of the competition, and to what? That’s right, make money!

        Pot, meet Kettle.

    • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

      That is a great example. Those links were to source documents that I linked to as facts for previous stories written. Do you want more facts or less?

      And while we are talking about Morgan Drexen I think you are making some huge assumptions that I did not try to reach out to them. See http://getoutofdebt.org/21074/morgan-drexen-not-telling-the-whole-story-on-fees-the-most-bizarre-pr-encounter-ive-ever-had and http://getoutofdebt.org/24129/morgan-drexen-threatens-journalist-and-free-speech-demands-all-mentions-of-morgan-drexen-be-removed

      How do you suggest I write articles or answer reader questions without using the company name?

      Again, give me an example of someone who was not fairly investigated. You still have not done that.

      If that person you spoke to had a complaint posted by a consumer, did they take that opportunity to make it a good news story as I show companies how to do? Or did they just ignore it and not respond. What complaint was it, let’s look at the facts.

      I think the statement “Then to learn that our customers who were going to Steve’s site and clicking on the ads on his site earn him money from our hard work and effort was appalling” is totally unsupported. I don’t know who clicks on ads, how do they?

      You appear to be upset that the site does not try to solicit good news for the debt relief industry, but I have and continue to look for good news stories. As an example, here was an article about a positive way forward for the industry. http://getoutofdebt.org/33574/my-debt-relief-industry-forecast-for-2012 my outstanding requests for good news stories http://getoutofdebt.org/33248/looking-for-good-news-debt-relief-industry-stories or how about my efforts to publish debt relief press releases to give companies exposure?

      You attack the site for unsupported claims but don’t give it credit for reporting on a large number of stories factually and providing easy access to the source supporting documents.

      I don’t need to do a site visit to wonder why the industry is not providing data transparency, fair advertising, and fair refunds to consumers who have not received services.

      You have no idea how many times I have asked for responses and comments only to never get one. Or all the times I’ve mailed companies that had a consumer complain about them and ask for them to respond to deal with it. Or how about the instructions I provide on every consumer complaint showing companies how to respond and turn it into a good news story. See http://getoutofdebt.org/32199/how-to-handle-a-consumer-complaint-like-a-pro-and-come-out-smelling-like-a-rose Or how about the fact comments are not moderated and consumers are welcome to post positive feedback about any company, like this one today http://getoutofdebt.org/35122/can-the-delta-law-firm-and-attorney-howard-feinmel-really-make-my-debt-go-away#comment-947915641

    • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

      “With respect to giving people a chance to correct information that may be wrong I have seen a lot of people who have corrected you or given updated information but you don’t redact the wrong information you just post the new.”

      Please give me a specific example.

      “Going forward with respect to companies who you write about I suggest the following information to be discovered so that you can actually be a respected journalist and not a blogger. You should visit the companies in person, discover how they operate and what they are doing to help or harm in person. Talk to customers who have had experiences with the company. Show their processes and procedures and report on the actual flaws instead of information found online via a google search.”

      In what context would this be necessary? The articles on the site are either articles I write after doing research in which I link all my source documents for others to read and verify or answer reader questions.

      In the case of reader questions, what would visiting the offices of a company actually accomplish?

      Please give me the URL of a reader question where visiting the company would have made a difference in the answer given.

      I understand these are your perceptions but you still have not backed them up with verifiable facts. On the other hand, when I make statements about a specific issue or about a company I do back them up with facts and show the documentation and source of that documentation.

      As far as debt relief companies writing me off or not making “decisions for their customers or business based on your articles,” are you implying the debt relief companies and CEOs don’t give a damn about treating consumers fairly and transparently because that is the common thread in my articles?

    • Emily Chase Smith

      This is some scary stuff Steve. Thanks for laying out not only the scary, but the solutions (such as they are).

      • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

        Thanks Emily.

    • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

      Your actions resulted in negative seo that resulted in account suspensions with google plus and termination with youtube.

      A: How did my actions result is negative SEO? What actions are those?

      There are consumers who rely on your work as you have stated. In question 2 you said that consumers unable to attend were harmed. Then question 4 you said that you are unaware of consumers that have been harmed. Da Fuq? So how can a consumer be harmed, not harmed and then not a victim all from the result of the same action. If this were a debt relief company you would be pointing out the exact same examples that I have.

      A: How can a consumer be a victim or harmed by not attending a free support group meeting and can a consumer be harmed by not having access to such a meeting?

      The article does not start off “Dear other journalists” any regular reader would not know that this article is for other journalists. Especially when they may have came to the site for free debt help. Quite frankly this post may have been better on another site.

      A: The title is “How Bad Guys Use Google as a Weapon to Silence Journalists and Investigative Reporters and How You Can Fight Back” not how it impacts just me. The article is about the reality and possibilities that face all journalists that speak out.

      With respect to giving people a chance to correct information that may be wrong I have seen a lot of people who have corrected you or given updated information but you don’t redact the wrong information you just post the new. No offense Steve but I have been to 70+ debt companies physical locations, 11 conferences, 2 legislative panels, 4 federal/state regulatory meetings and not 1 of those has any person have ever told me that you called, visited or emailed them prior to posting an article to confirm your information.

      A: What information would that be?

      They all complained about you but none of them had a sense of instilled fear most in fact write you off immediately. I am sure you have but at some point you have to realize that just giving a fair shot is still a shot in the dark if the company doesn’t know about it. I also have never seen an article title about a company on the site that didn’t end in “Scam, Review or Praise”. Seeing how you are not afforded the opportunity to fight the negative SEO I guess maybe that is your own fault for writing articles about companies immediately thinking they are a scam.

      A: And offer praise for that company people can do. Some people do post positive feedback.

      2nd to last I believe you have said the exact item we all have been thinking. I don’t believe there is a CEO or other director in the country that makes decisions for their customers or business based on your articles. Who would want to shine on your site full of articles comprised of scams and a tone of unfair and unbalanced. A consumer who came to the site and found a fair and balanced article of any company amongst hundreds of scams may consider to walk away and not use any company.

      Lastly, and this is not a short jab but rather a ego-check/primal instinct reaction. Steve should you choose to accept this challenge I’d imagine a show on CNBC or CNN in the future. Most of your articles lack physical reporting. They also are more like a scam-wiki article than an actual attempt to do a full report. Going forward with respect to companies who you write about I suggest the following information to be discovered so that you can actually be a respected journalist and not a blogger. You should visit the companies in person, discover how they operate and what they are doing to help or harm in person. Talk to customers who have had experiences with the company. Show their processes and procedures and report on the actual flaws instead of information found online via a google search. These types of deeper investigations will bring not only a more respected audience of readers in the industry but also will help you expand your journalistic capabilities. Consider this a free coaching session.

      A: You still have not provided a link to a specific article and have only made comment with a broad brush. Give me an example of an article that you feel is in error. You still have not done that.

    • Neg Seo Expert

      Steve deleted my commentary regarding his questions. Seems like the truth and exact examples were too much to handle. Also caught him with his pants down on a few things and he deleted what I wrote. Just another UNFAIR article.

      • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

        I have not deleted any comments.

        • Fitz

          looks like the “lab” portion of our Neg Seo lesson continues as our resident Neg Seo Expert teaches us to post disinformation (in this case that steve deleted his response) and then constantly repeat the allegation. If I am wrong Neg Seo Expert, please post your deleted “elaborate response” again. As an Expert, I’m sure you know to keep your own copy…

        • occasionally here

          Fitz if you were observant enough and following this thread as closely as I have you would have noticed that the post that Neg Seo Expert was refering to “was MIA when he said it was” and magically re-appeared again (already 1 day old) when Steve replied to it, interesting!

          When this post was “missing” it was also conveniently not included in the 50 Most Recent Comments section buried deep somewhere for a day or so not gaining much attention…hmm?

          Steve makes his money driving traffic to his site by negatively naming companies in his articles without proper research and care and then is upset when he thinks he’s being treated poorly, blaming the companies and individuals that he makes his living slamming in his articles for the perceived negative seo actions .

          Neg Seo Expert is pointing out the truth in Steve’s methods, readers need to understand this.

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          The comment was caught in the disqus spam filter. I released it.

          Questions raised still unanswered. Broad brush no details.

          Still no specifics raised on how information was not researched on a particular article.
          Please post an article URL as an example so we can openly talk about it.

      • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

        Can you still not post a single past article about a company you think I treated unfair? It’s been days since my first request.

        • Pete

          this article is about the troubles you are having due to negative seo and this is not over 1 specific article that you wrote but about the tone of your articles in general, your lack of research in general, your writing style in general and how you negatively use the names of companies and individuals to drive traffic to your website to make money.

          why don’t you quit asking commenters to point to a specific article, it’s not about that this time.

          you make money posting negative articles on debt relief companies and people and now you are experiencing the consequences of your writing style and methods, you really should have seen this coming.

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          So the negative SEO attacks are “about the tone of your articles in general, your lack of research in general, your writing style in general,”

          But how can be about the lack of research in general when you can’t point to any article in which you feel the research is lacking? I’m just asking for one example. If the objection is the tone and unfair articles are pervasive then identifying one should take ten seconds.

          Again, lots of broad statements with no facts to back it up.

          All I’m asking for is an example of an article that negatively uses the name of a company to drive traffic to the site. Or can you?

    • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

      The comments by some who defend the negative SEO actions have been enlightening. After a few days of open comments nobody has pointed out any specific article that is incorrect. Instead the attacks continue to be in general and appear to be an objection to the site in general. And somehow that the site should be punished for…?

      The inference appears to be the site should not be punished for publishing articles that are allegedly incorrect (but can’t be identified) and for speaking out about the servicing and marketing side of the debt relief industry. But why? Is the idea there is something to hide?

      What rational consumer focused reason could people have to not have an open discussion about the marketing and selling of debt relief services? Wouldn’t debt relief companies be applauded for taking care of consumers that have had an issue with the service? Yes they would.

      How can consumers have trust in the debt relief industry when the solution to dealing with issues is to punish any reporter with negative SEO efforts. As one commenter said, “I think what you missing here is the fact that any company can spend $400 a year to join their local chamber of commerce. However they could also spend $400 a year to take actions against journalist who does not give them a fair shot.”

      It would informative if detractors could please identify any article that did not give “them” a fair shot, whatever that is.

      How about some specifics we can discuss?

      • Neg Seo Expert

        Steve I posted an elaborate response yesterday with some intimate details. Covered a wide variety of articles on your site and answers you have given. It was on the site for about an hour than disappeared. Did you delete my commentary?

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          No

        • guest

          The folks saying you deleted their posts are guilty of hacking your website and then hacking my emails. They also delete my posts to this site. They are mental to the max.
          Mary

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          I did not delete any comment.

    • Fitz

      wow. I had no idea there was still all the hate out there. Its amazing how an article not even about debt settlement generates such vitriol. You must be doing something right Steve.

      • -SEO Jim

        If you mean, lying. The answer is yes!

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          Again, I’m happy to discuss any past article you feel was in error, incorrect, or contained errors and discuss any issue in the article openly. But despite multiple requests in this thread, nobody has been able to point one out yet.

          So I get the issue some people don’t like me or the site but is that an emotional reaction. But if the criticism is my reporting is in error or untrue, I want to talk specifics so either you can help me correct an error or see what was wrong.

        • Fitz

          no one has because they are not about accurate reporting. Its about smearing those that shed light, any light, on certain business practices. If you were not having some effect, no one would care. The nasty, disingenuous, and nonsensical posts alone show how upset they are. I say Bravo.

        • Neg Seo Expert

          Fitz appears to be the only one with a 4.0 GPA so let’s let him gloat and be correct. The lack of open mindedness makes me think your Steve’s secretary in arms.

        • Fitz

          nah, just a guy who knows nothing about SEO, read the article, and was surprised by the personal attack unrelated to the article content. Consider my mind opened. Both you and steve gave me a lesson in negative SEO, yours was just the practical “how to” application. Sorry, I’m a slow learner and should have caught on earlier.

    • Neg Seo Expert

      No offense but when you lay down with dogs you will get bit eventually. I understand it may not be fair people do this to you but don’t you see some irony with respect to who you write about. If I had to imagine I could probably raise unlimited funds in the debt relief field and other fields to silence your site but reality is debt relief insiders understand that there is never a fair and balanced approach to your articles therefore the common readers see the tone of the site and move on anyway. Thousands of articles about scams and people treat the site like a scam. Hundreds of comments attacking debt relief companies good and bad with no real reasoning behind it other than to gain visitors for the site is just a ploy to earn more ad revenue. Let’s shake the stick but shake it in the direction of maybe starting to be a respected journalist. Just sayin’

      • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

        Pick an article you felt was unfair and let’s discuss what was unfair about it.
        I’m always happy to discuss.

        • Neg Seo Expert

          Let’s discuss this article. You created a sense of poor me and did not discuss what you have done to deserve such behaviors by individuals. Why do you feel someone would spend time and money to silence your site?
          The article is self serving and does not help people looking to get out of debt. In the article you mentioned that your Google+ account suspension directly harmed consumers.
          Can you verify that statement?
          Who exactly was harmed?
          How will they recover?
          What have you done to make sure that the consumers harmed here as a result of your reporting will never be harmed like this again? Did you disclose to these readers and/or any reader that you may be victim of attacks like this and they may be affected?
          Let’s discuss please copy the questions and answer them directly. Thanks for having an open discussion.

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          What does that have to do with you pointing out a past article you feel I was unfair in? Lets stick with my first question to you.

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          When I get more of a chance later ill happily respond further but for the moment you will notice the article is not about “poor me.”
          It is a recap of observations, experiences, tools, tips, and ends with recommendations.
          The article is directed to other journalists.

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          I’m still waiting for an answer to my request for a past article that you felt was unfair so we could discuss it. But here are the answers you asked for.

          1. In the article you mentioned that your Google+ account suspension directly harmed consumers.
          Can you verify that statement?

          I did in the article and described the impact.

          2. Who exactly was harmed?

          Consumers unable to attend.

          3. How will they recover?

          From not being able to attend?

          4. What have you done to make sure that the consumers harmed here as a result of your reporting will never be harmed like this again?

          What consumers have been harmed by my reporting?

          5. Did you disclose to these readers and/or any reader that you may be victim of attacks like this and they may be affected?

          My readers are not the victims of attacks.

          But let me now ask you an additional question.

          When I write an article, which you may characterize as “reality is debt relief insiders understand that there is never a fair and balanced approach to your articles,” I give every person an opportunity to correct any error or make any statement they want. I also allow them to post any comment to explain anything they feel might have been unfair.

          But when the site is attacked with negative SEO I am not afford any such courtesy or an opportunity to respond to have a discussion.

          Why would a company resort to negative SEO if they had every opportunity to explain their position, shine in front of consumers, and correct any error unless they simply did not want people to read that article?

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          I answered your questions so how about the answer to mine, or can you do that?

        • occasionally here

          Bravo “Neg Seo Expert” for these posts, I’m sure there are many who still drop in here from time to time that totally agree and many more who have abandoned reading this website because of what you say who would also agree with you. Maybe one day Steve will realize that he is not an “Investigative Reporter” or a “Journalist” but that he is simply an “online blogger” with a limited view trying to drive traffic to his site for the ad revenue. Seems like Google etc. agrees and Steve is getting the respect from them that he deserves, keep up the posts even though Steve always gets the final word!

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          Isn’t that what all media outlets do? That’s why television has commercials and newspapers have ads.

          I’d love to discuss any past story you felt was unfair or got it wrong. Please identify one and share what was in error with it.

        • -SEO Jim

          Props Neg Seo Expert , Rhodes if you want to pee with the big dogs you need to to have a BIG!

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          What does that even mean?

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          You will notice I’ve given those who disagree an opportunity to have a voice and state a position, as you just did. So why no afford me the same courtesy before launching a negative SEO campaign?

        • ed

          In some circles when there is a witness that can testify to the illegal activities they have perpetrated they are eliminated. Permanently. Basically these pussies who hide behind a computer think they are tough guys with a key board, not a gun. Piss with the big dogs was what one poster said. Now that is funny coming from someone who is probably a nerd who got beat up by girls in school and now with the power of a laptop and a mouse makes himself out to be a tough guy. You guys play too many video games that make you feel empowered as you live in an alternate universe. I am sure if confronted in person you would literally piss your panties. Last time I checked the 1st amendment allowed for freedom of speech. That includes the freedom to call out scumbags who lie ,cheat and scam others for a living. My bet is anyone defending these actions is employed by or owns one of these bullshit companies that screws people for a living otherwise they would not be on this site as the only people who are are those who have been screwed, are trying to avoid being screwed or are doing the screwing.

        • -SEO Jim

          Ed, you sound very educated, that must be the reason you can’t pay your bills and continue to licking Steve’s D for help! The pen or keyboard is mightier than the sword. I am lover not a fighter; the only time girls beat me up is when I ask them.

        • ed

          SEO Jim, I actually pay my bills without issue and am part of the 1%. As for what you interpret as my blind support for Steve that is far from accurate. I appreciate his efforts to help unsuspecting consumers from being scammed and for bringing to light the scammers. If he derives a living from that, so be it. Do you try to shut down a congressman or senators website when they spout nonsensical opinions that you do not agree with ? I would think not. Maybe you should focus your energy on those that perpetrate these frauds, like the attorneys who set up debt elimination scams, or land trust scams, etc. and those that own/operate these companies. Preying on the desperate is the lowest form of scumbag and it is a cowardly, despicable, immoral way that some justify because of the money they make. If you cannot agree with that then educated is not an adjective I would use to describe you.

        • Neg Seo Expert

          Why is a 1%er on a get out of debt site?

        • Neg Seo Expert

          Usually the person with the last word is the one who takes the low road. Steve is directing traffic to the site by holding the STOP/SLOW sign which is a good tactic but you are correct he is only trying to get traffic to his site via specific target based articles.

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          Stop/slow sign?

      • just some chick

        Right, because we can’t account for the possibility that the reason most of the stories are about debt relief companies preying on consumers in trouble, is because that is what they bleeping do.

        Even though these companies supposedly don’t rip people off left and right without delivering the promised help, you claim to likely be able to raise an unlimited amount of funds from the debt relief field. I believe that is probably true.

        So where does the “unlimited amount of funds come from?”

        Oh, that’s right, all the companies screwing consumers for big profit.

        • Neg Seo Expert

          ” all the companies screwing consumers for big profit.” Can you name 1 company that you have seen the Profit and Loss statement for and show us all where the companies are that are making this money? Every company in the space will tell you that the money is not good right now. Even Steve can verify that.
          I think what you missing here is the fact that any company can spend $400 a year to join their local chamber of commerce. However they could also spend $400 a year to take actions against journalist who does not give them a fair shot. Seeing how most interactions take place online the $400 towards silencing a reporter would be the easy choice.

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          But doesn’t your comment prove my point that negative SEO is a reality against reporters and journalists that speak out? You just said companies would rather pay to silence a reporter.

        • webaffiti

          There are ample examples of companies generating major revenue offering debt related services while putting the screws to consumers. The most recent being what was outlined with the NC AG injunction against World Law. The numbers are in the AG complaint. And this is one state.

          Asking if someone has seen a companies P&L is a diversion from the fact that you condone vandalism and property damage from spite. That’s essentially what is at issue here. Virtual vandalism. And it’s about as expensive as a can of spray paint.This sites issues with it appear real.

        • occasionally here

          I’m sure you know this but the case you refer to involves attorneys & an attorney model ds program which should be shut down…quite a different animal from performanced based non-attorney model of many ds companies.

        • Neg Seo Expert

          Not sure what to say here. I consult many companies and most have endured single digit profits or are losing money monthly right now. Show me a company making money as I stated. I also do not condone virtual vandalism and you sound like you are huffing the spray paint with your comments.

        • webaffiti

          I fail to see how a companies profits and/or losses, in an industry that is known to be in contraction for years, is relevant to virtual vandalism. Unless of course, market conditions are used as an absurd justification for this behavior.

          Your comments combined with your chosen screen name read, at least to me, as though you are saying “Steve, what did you expect to happen. You had it coming.”

          Are you, or are you not, a negative SEO expert?

        • Neg Seo Expert

          I am not a full expert as the morphing of Negative Seo happens daily and I don’t have the time to watch every move. With utmost certainty I can say that Steve does and will have Negative Seo coming from a variety of angles going forward from all types of people. I think its part he brings it on himself part he loves it.

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          What possible reason would I have to love it?

        • webaffiti

          Again I state that you condone virtual vandalism.

          You seem to be saying:

          “People don’t like what you say Steve, so you should be hurt.”

          “People do not like how you say what you say, so of course you should be hurt.”

          When you go there, the lines get blurry real quick.

          You speak eloquently. I read your comments in a way that I imagine you consider yourself a principled person. But how can that be? How can you be a person of ethics and principle who, as a negative SEO advocate, find it perfectly okay to vandalize and hurt people?

        • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

          I did recently see a performance model non-attorney DS company that settled a $900 account for $1,300 and tacked on a huge amount of debt as a fee.

      • just some chick

        Right, because we can’t account for the possibility that the reason most of the stories are about debt relief companies preying on consumers in trouble, is because that is what they bleeping do.

        Even though these companies supposedly don’t rip people off left and right without delivering the promised help, you claim to likely be able to raise an unlimited amount of funds from the debt relief field. I believe that is probably true.

        So where does the “unlimited amount of funds come from?”

        Oh, that’s right, all the companies screwing consumers for big profit.

    • roger

      >>be great if Google launched a support line where people could pay $500

      No it wouldn’t be great at that price. it would mean a lot of smaller operations could not afford it. Google makes a bazillion dollars a year, why should they be gouging smaller bloggers & operators just to get treated properly. They should be willing to investigate and resolve these attacks for much less, if not freely. Lord knows they’re making plenty of dough off the internet traffic from ads on these people’s sites. $50 – maybe that would be acceptable – after all, that’s how much it costs for some a-hole to launch the illegal attack on you in the first place.

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