Credit: frankieleon (armydre2008 on flickr) / Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic
Come on Mr. CBS
You Can Do Better
Yesterday, I read a disturbing piece on Mic (formerly PolicyMic). Jon Levine wrote about a new CBS show titled The Briefcase.
I couldn't agree more with Levine's angle: it has a sick twist. And reading through the comments on his article, I was relieved that others felt similarly.
The premise: watch while struggling families are given $101,000. Sounds like a gift, right?
Not so fast.
Now, watch as this family is told about another struggling family and has to decide whether to keep this "gift" or share it (or give it all) to the other struggling family.
Hmm, watch starving people fighting over the last piece of bread.
This is supposed to be entertaining?
Come on, Mr. Moonves. You made over $54 million dollars last year. This might be entertaining to half of the 1% that will probably never experience these hardships. But don't forget who about a third of your viewers are: people who are struggling.
Is This Just the Cost of Doing Business?
Credit: RoseWrites / All rights reserved
The Good News
I have the perfect reality show idea for you, Mr. Moonves. Because I'm living it right now.
Why not do a reality show that showcases complaints that the Federal Trade Commission receives about shady businesses who scam everyday people?
You could partner up to help the FTC (sort of like America's Most Wanted did).
In fact, the Federal Trade Commission "requests feedback from the public on proposed rule-makings, regulations, and updates, proposed settlements, modifications of existing orders, workshops, and other agency activities."
Now that's what I call entertainment:
Ordinary people get to watch as greedy, unethical, deceptive businesses are forced to pay restitution to the affected public.
Yeah, I'd tune in to that show.
And I'd love to be your modern day female Robin Hood, Mr. Moonves.
My FTC Case
On August 15th, 2014, Squidoo's Seth Godin announced that "HubPages was acquiring key content from Squidoo." There was a huge uproar among content owners (authors) since Squidoo did not own the content it was selling.
An article by Ashley Zeckman on Search Engine Watch surfaced a few days later. It details the public "spin" put on this transaction. I was the first person to comment on her article, as Rose.
As shown next, I tried to delete my Squidoo account (which would remove all of my articles as well) before September 1st, 2014.
Squidoo: Trying to Delete All My Work
Published on August 31st, 2014
The Big Lie
I was shocked that after all of my public protests
that HubPages stole my content (after I was told it would "disappear" offline).
HubPages didn't ask if they could post my identity, profile, and articles at all. They imported it
all. Later, I reported
the first email (a "do not reply" email) I received from HubPages on September 13th, 2014 to Google for phishing.
Protesting Since August 16th, 2014
For over eight months, I've been trying to get my content removed from HubPages (with no luck). I routinely post my attempts on Google plus, like this one.
Meticulously Documenting Proof
I've written 31 articles in protest about what HubPages and Squidoo have done wrong (and illegally) throughout this ordeal. I have them organized on my netboard page.
Consumer Affairs Made It Public
On November 10th, 2014, Consumer Affairs made public my complaint
(with screenshot proof). Another writer affected, who goes by the pen name TanoCalvenoa
also complained to Consumer Affairs. His complaint was made public on November 22nd, 2014.
As of June 9th, 2015, my Consumer Affairs complaint has garnered 13,932 views and 41 "helpful" votes.
Federal Trade Commission
I also complained to the Federal Trade Commission on April 9th, 2015. I have heard nothing back (yet).
I've received "do not reply" emails from HubPages. One is from an employee (I believe) telling me to "stop it" and another confirms my work has garnered 10,000 views.
HubPages Staff Demands I "Stop it already"
According to a well-known HubPages author, 10,000 views is worth (to them) about $50 in ad share revenue (not including Amazon or eBay royalties). This next letter is proof that HubPages has been profiting from my identity and content.
Now, I'm hoping to spread the word and get more writers to come forward and tell the truth. Even better, if more people who used to work for Squidoo (or presently for HubPages) would do the same.
There is a 1-800 number that the FTC provides for people to easily supply them with information. It's the California State Attorney General's Whistleblower Hotline: 1-800-952-5225.
A couple of weeks ago, Paul Edmondson, CEO of HubPages, was interviewed by CNBC's Ari Levy. In it, Edmondson complains about a 22% loss of traffic on Google. He also blames Squidoo content. I left a detailed comment on that article (under Rose Webster).
I've written about how bullied and bashed I've been during the course of eight months on my blog post titled Chronicling How HubPages Has Bullied Me.
I would like to see that 50% of any monies recovered be put towards providing safe drinking water for Californians who need it most. My most recent InfoBarrel article about this is, in fact, an open letter to the FTC
And this reality show idea of mine could be funny too. I've drawn numerous cartoons to depict how crazy my situation has become. Here is one to tickle your satirical funny bone:
Even better yet, you could get some lawyers or those who comment on legal cases to offer up their opinions.
This would be exciting to watch, since these cases are rarely settled quickly. People will tune in week-after-week to see the new updates.
Heck, if you could get Judge Judy to comment (or someone like her) that would only add to your viewership.
Yes, CBS. You can do a reality TV show that the American (and Canadian) public want to watch.
And I'm your underdog.
How-To Let CBS Know Your Thoughts
You Can Reference My Article, If You Wish:
Scroll down to my references section (Bibliography), I've provided a direct link to CBS's Audience Services Info and Feedback form (it's the last link).
To ensure your comment gets paired up with the right CBS team, scroll down about a third of the way in the "Choose Category" selection of choices. Pick "The Briefcase" and then fill in your name and email.
Tell CBS your thoughts and (if you wish) you can add a link to my article. Then just hit "submit" and you should see confirmation that your comment has been received. I took the following screenshot to show you what the form looks like.
The CBS "Send Us Feedback" Form
Credit: RoseWrites on InfoBarrel