Paul Might Need Help to Get the Plank Out
Well, this is rather amusing.
In a HubPages forum thread titled To report or not to report? some Hubbers have decided to flag 20 Hubs (articles) a day in an effort to clean up the site.
Account Inactivity = 100% Profit
In the event of Inactivity, the entire amount of an Earned Balance in Your account will be permanently forfeit by You (and You hereby waive any claim relating to the dispute of such payment and disclaim any and all interest in such funds). "Inactivity" means that any of the following have occurred:
a) There has been no change to Your Earned Balance for a period of greater than six (6) months
Does this mean that if, for example, $100, $1000, or more is waiting for you for over 6 months that HubPages gets to keep it - yes!
b) Your account has expired tax information that is greater than six (6) months beyond the date of such expiration
I never joined HubPages and I've never given them my tax information - nor will I. Does this mean HubPages gets to keep all the money from my articles? So far, they have. My reasons for not providing HubPages with my tax information are obvious - I don't trust them.
Addendum January 9th, 2015: According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), an identity thief may use your Social Security number to get a job or a tax refund. If someone uses your SSN to get a job, IRS records will show you failed to report all your income. Or, if someone uses your SSN to file a tax refund before you do, the IRS might think you already received your refund. The list goes on.
c) You have uncollected payments or unaccepted payments by the payment company into your account for a period of greater than six (6) months
Again, if you haven't collected your payments before 6 months is up - HubPages keeps it.
d) You have not responded to attempts to contact You at the primary email address listed in the contact information in Your account for a period of six (6) months from the date of the first attempt to contact You for which no response has been received.
I never gave HubPages my email address - nor did hundreds of former Squidoo writers. Yet somehow, they emailed me September 13th, 2014. Does this mean that HubPages will attempt to contact me again? They haven't yet. Although Paul Edmondson and HubPages have blocked my ability to email them via Google Plus.
September 13th, 2014
The first emails I received from HubPages
Who Sold Our User Info to HubPages?
Of course, it had to be Squidoo
I know, some people wanted their "link juice" and willingly accepted the deal that Seth Godin made with Paul Edmondson.
But it wasn't legal, nor was it in accordance with Squidoo's terms of service that stated:
b) Squidoo will never sell your email address and will not disclose personally identifying info unless specifically authorized by you...
c) Squidoo will keep your lenses [articles] and identity protected from others off the site.
The legalities are documented in my Dear Google, HubPages Is Posting My Content and I Need to File 293 DMCA Notices and Want to Leave HubPages? How to Get All of Your Earnings articles but here's the gist:
HubPages is held to the governing laws of the state of California and according to Penal Code 496:
It is against the law to buy, conceal, receive, withhold from the owner, or sell any property that they know has been stolen.
And no, ignorance of the law is no excuse.
User Information Was Sold and Bought
As detailed in my Dear Larry Page and Paul Edmondson article, this must have been going on behind the scenes for months before Seth Godin's August 15th, 2014 announcement and subsequent email the following week.
My proof? Google Analytics issued a "high priority issue" prompt early summer 2014 which stated that at least 351 pages were missing valid tracking codes for my property known as SousababySquidoo.
I never changed my tracking code and furthermore, I deleted about 50 pages with the intent of putting them (in due time) on InfoBarrel, this writing platform.
My theory: In early spring/summer 351 of my articles were moved or saved or "prepped" for a redirect to HubPages.
Oh But Author Content Was More Valuable
You might think (as I did) how appalling it was that content was sold without anyone ever asking permission from the content owners first.
None of us saw a cent of what was paid for our work.
But it seemed that our content didn't matter that much in the end.
Sure, we could remove our content and collect our "final pay" from Squidoo - but did you know that your author content can never be removed? Yeah, the screenshot proof is provided in my Dear Pinterest, HubPages Stole My Work and Identity article.
So that every comment you ever made on Squidoo will remain as a separate link online with the blurb (which sounds incredibly spammy to me):
"Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages account."
Gee, I wonder if Google also finds that spammy?
Why Look For A Speck of Dust?
The writers aren't the main spammers online
Notice that comment dates go back years
Welcome to HubPages
So, Consider How Many Comments
You made on Squidoo that now include that phrase
If you are trying to break out on your own with a blog or writing on InfoBarrel or elsewhere, can you imagine how branded you already are to the outside reader that assumes you have a HubPages account?
I mean, how else could you have commented on someone's Hub?
Outside readers will naturally assume that you "signed in to post using your HubPages account."
Don't, the truth was kept from you all along. For in Corey Brown's post he stated: "You'll have to check with HubPages on how to delete your account."
Do you think Squidoo knew that "Author Content" (user information) could not be removed once sold to HubPages?
By Posting Author Content on HubPages
You may not remove your Author Content from HP
The Power Of Words
Oh but hey, Paul Edmondson!
Some of us (many, most) from Squidoo never posted our own author content.
It's Not Too Late to Take Back What Is Yours
Before February 15th, 2015, you can file a report with the Internet Crime Complaint Center and claim losses. It's free and I talk you through the IC3 form step-by-step.
You can add to the Consumer Affairs complaints about HubPages where both TanoCalvenoa and I provide additional screenshot proof.
If Consumer Affairs determines that our complaints have legal merit, a class action suit may be forthcoming. Complaints are published, shared with the news media, and reviewed by attorneys at no cost to you (us).
Notably, hundreds of class action suits have been filed on behalf of consumers via Consumer Affairs.
The bulk of the screenshot proof you might wish to reference in your complaint can be found in my HubPages and Squidoo: 8 Lies You've Been Told and Want to Leave HubPages? How to Get All of Your Earnings articles.
Author's note: At the end of my articles, scroll through the Media section until you find the screenshot proof you need for your complaint. By clicking on them, you can reference the URL of each screenshot.
Thank you for sharing this important information with other writers online.