View Poll Results: Should merb continue to accept advertising from known B&S agencies?

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  • Yes, so long as there are no fake pictures posted in their merb advertising.

    1 3.70%
  • Yes, so long as there are no fake pics nor links to the bogus website in their merb ads or profile.

    1 3.70%
  • No, merb owes it to the membership and to its own credibility to purge dishonest operators.

    25 92.59%
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Thread: Should merb's policy that allows B&S agencies to advertise here be changed?

  1. #1
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    Should merb's policy that allows B&S agencies to advertise here be changed?

    Simply put, merb accepts advertising from all agencies regardless of their honesty. There are agencies that advertise on merb that are active B&S agencies, posting fake/stolen pictures on their website. Merb's policy is to accept their advertising provided that their posts on merb contain only accurate pictures.

    I personally feel that accepting ads from agencies that have flagrantly bogus websites, regardless of their posts here on merb, damages merb's credibility. I also think that, whenever possible, merb owes it to the membership to protect them from dishonest operators. Note, that I'm not suggesting that merb police the internet, but that merb should be proactive whenever a member aware of a violation.

    To present the other side of the story, here's mod 12's take on the issue from another recent thread. "What an agency wants to do outside of MERB is their own business. We do not monitor them or police their personal websites. They have the right to run their businesses the way they choose. What we are concerned about is that the content on MERB is genuine and pictures are not B&S. We moderators only have powers with respect to this domain and try to do what is best for our members within that realm. We don't approve of disingenuous websites, but as long as what is presented to members On this board, is genuine, we are happy. That's the best we can do, sorry."

    A third possibility would be to continue to accept ads as long as their is no link the the agency's website.
    The mounties always get their man.

  2. #2
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    No other policy is workable otherwise the Mods/Fred reduce advertising to a "Dancing With The Stars" type competition in which the objective is to prove that you are the most honest agency in town and that your dance moves are pure. This would be a farce. It would also invite shills to make bait and switch complaints so as to to torpedo the advertising privileges of a competitor. They would complain that agencies using real pics are actually using fakes. There is no way to disprove these accusations. In fact sometimes real pics are not totally representative.

    It does seem bizarre to allow the well-established B&S agencies to advertise but on a go forward basis I think such a policy where advertisers would be cherry-picked based on perceived honesty would soon become a farce.

    MERB has a system of defeating B&S agencies by inclusion of a B&S sticky thread. But nobody seems to ever read that thread and instead they read the ads first and then get burned. In my mind this is a caveat emptor situation. Everyone should be able to do their research and be rewarded or punished accordingly based on the amount of research they have done. This is how it works in any business, especially the online travel business: he who researches and finds the best deal gets rewarded.

    I can't vote in the poll because there should be a choice Yes, and do nothing else, and there isn't, so the poll is rigged, as it is stacked with choices that all change the status quo and none that preserve it.

    By the ways in 10 years of sticking to reputable agencies I have never been baited and switched that I can recall. So I don't think it is that big of a deal to the MERB regulars who know which agencies to use and which not to use. The problem that you allude to is mostly for newbies to the business.
    Last edited by EagerBeaver; 12-02-2012 at 11:16 AM.

  3. #3
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    All good points, with one little mistake, Beav. Option 1 does preserve the status quo. Agencies are currently forbidden from posting fake pics in their merb advertising.

    I'll also add that your fears are, in my opinion, overblown. The "shill" war you fear would already be underway if bogus pics were allowed in the advertising. Also, any accusations would need to be supported by links to the original location of the stolen pics, such as we're provided in the recent case that inspired this poll. Certainly, no accuser could expect the mods to do their research for them.
    The mounties always get their man.

  4. #4
    Adorable libertine
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    That's a good subject Rumple.
    Félicitations to bring it.

    If I can propose you something to extend a bit far your questions:

    Why not extend your questioning about to be sure that ladies are not badly "pimped" aka forced by others?

    Gentlemen/clients are the first ones who are meeting the ladies everywhere, you are the first who could relate of what you see in your encounters
    so, if there was an agreement and rules on Merb to fight against forced prostitution
    in the same spirit to make Merb to have higher standards
    that could be a good point.

    Just saying an idea like that.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maria Divina View Post
    Why not extend your questioning about to be sure that ladies are not badly "pimped" aka forced by others?
    A good question, Maria. I think the problem with your suggestion is that the charge would be even more difficult to prove than the one posed here. In both cases, the bar would have to be set pretty high, as in "innocent until proven guilty."

    In the recent case, the exposer provided links to matching pictures on both the website of the offending agency and the originating source. The offense was proven beyond doubt. In the case of a lady "badly pimped," I don't know how you'd proved the charge. Do you?

    In the poll above, I'm talking about consumer protection. What you're speaking about affects the young woman's life and well being. My sense is that LE or Stella would be the places to turn rather than merb.
    The mounties always get their man.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by rumpleforeskiin View Post
    In the poll above, I'm talking about consumer protection. What you're speaking about affects the young woman's life and well being. My sense is that LE or Stella would be the places to turn rather than merb.
    Humm... My suggestion was made because gentlemen-customer are the ones who visit the girls-ladies.

    If the clients don't speak and are just taking advantage of their encounters, so, they are part of the problem in this case of forced prostitution if they know it is.

    If the clients don't speak, who will? And how to stop more quickly it?

    Merb is a real proper place to talk and suggest it, because we are all participating in the same actions, one from one side and other from the other side, but we are the "two sides of the same coin".

  7. #7
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    I kind of share EB opinion. You need solid proof to reject someone. I voted for the 1st option, because the present way seemed the most workable, but of course if they have definite evidence that an agency is completely bogus they should reject it.

    In the case of pimping, since it is a criminal offense, you can't reject an advertiser for that unless they are really convicted of the crime. If they wanted they could probably sue merb for libel.
    “Truth, Justice, Freedom, Reasonably Priced Love.”

  8. #8
    Hello everyone,

    As has been mentioned many times in the past, MERB is not a regulatory body for the escort industry. No review board has or can have that status and none would want it. MERB is a review board, nothing more. It is much better to have members post their reviews of bait and switch agencies to inform other members of where not to spend their money than anything else we can do. If some of these suspect agencies spend money to advertise here, consider it to be a small justice that they are paying to support the operation of a review board that actually exposes their activities. No agency or independant SP can hide their activities behind a No Review Policy as we do not grant a NRP to any working provider so these agencies cannot use that to hide behind. The best way to fight these B&S operators is to expose them here on MERB.

    Regarding operators who do not treat their ladies properly, there is little we can do on that front. We cannot allow members to post their accusations or suspicions unless they can back them up with verifiable proof. This would be next to impossible for any client to provide. If any SP would like to post her first hand account of such things on MERB, that could be permitted on a case by case basis depending on the proof that could be provided to the moderators. In any case, such situations should be taken up with law enforcement, not an Internet review board that has no power to do anything about it.

    As far as advertising is concerned, the statement by Mod 12, which is included in the starting post, states things as they are. Moderators have no control over advertising or over advertiser's websites and we certainly do not have the time to verify every advertiser's web site. We volunteer our time to moderate MERB and the time required to do such verifications would make moderating MERB almost a full time job. The advertising policies in place have worked well since MERB first went on line and we have made improvements as time has gone on such as the requirement that all photos posted on MERB be genuine and modifications to the NRP to prevent working SPs from hiding from bad reviews. There is really nothing more that we can do.

    Mod 8

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by koyaanisqatsi View Post
    even I at first thought this poll is very poorly constructed as its rigged in favor of the poll creator and his own opinion.
    K, I must respectfully disagree. I carefully constructed the poll so as to avoid this impression. First, while my opinion is yes, two of the three choices are no. Second, I put my opinion last in the poll. Finally, in the initial thread, I made certain to make the mod's position known by posting mod 12's response from the other thread.

    mod 8. Thanks for the reply. The purpose of this thread, and poll, was to get a sense of the membership, while not expecting any change in merb policy. I do feel that current policy does, in a way, undermine merb's credibility, but I also sense that any action would have to come from Fred and not the mods.

    The ones potentially hurt by the current policy are not the regular members of merb, but the occasional visitor who might take it implicit that an advertiser's presence is an endorsement from merb. Perhaps a disclaimer to that effect in the the lounge stickies might prove valuable.
    The mounties always get their man.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mod 8 View Post
    Hello everyone,

    As has been mentioned many times in the past, MERB is not a regulatory body for the escort industry.

    Mod 8
    Hmmm,

    It is very tough to understand why members who shill or otherwise do anything to deceive for favors or profit are banned, yet B&S agencies stay. The B&S section notifications mitigate that flaw a bit, but it still does not solve the contradiction.

    Cheers,

    Merlot

  11. #11
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    Shills are only banned if they shill on merb. Same for false advertisement.

    We could post as many false reviews as we want on the other boards and still be welcomed to merb with open arms....
    “Truth, Justice, Freedom, Reasonably Priced Love.”

  12. #12
    Hello Rumpleforskiin,

    I do not believe that there are many B&S agencies who post advertisements on a daily basis on MERB. The majority of them have a banner ad and that is as far as they go. Having them advertise on MERB does not affect the credibility of this board in any way as far as we are concerned. If we prevented the exposure of said operators, then you would have a solid basis for your argument. The existance of the bait and switch thread and the ability of members to post their reviews of such operators demonstrates the credibility of MERB as a review board as far as we are concerned.


    Merlot,

    Magazines and newspapers accept advertisements for restaurants but they do not guarantee that you will receive great service or great meals at said restaurants.

    M8
    Last edited by Mod 8; 12-02-2012 at 02:57 PM.

  13. #13
    Obviously, there is a very fine line between B&S and YMMV. But I do think there are disreputable agencies and "everyone kinda knows who they are" (except for newbies), and they shouldn't be allowed to advertise... even a banner. I'm not talking about a couple of members had a bad experience or whatever... I mean the agencies that are borderline fraudulent. Not saying this is particularly the case with any current advertisers, but it should be policy if it ever comes up. Just my 2c.

  14. #14
    Sioncnarf, "open arms" is a wide opinion. In my eyes, "open arms" would mean we would not even let members say these are B&S or otherwise bullshit agencies/providers.

    We in fact allow members to report these inadmissible behaviors. As Mod 8 already said, whoever is advertising on MERB and deceiving the members at the same time is paying to create their own bad publicity. Nobody can help members who still use them because they didn't bother checking the threads first.

    Contrary to TV, radio, newspapers and magazines, it's possible for the audience to counteract advertiser's bad behavior on MERB. The media can't be held at fault, the fault rest on the people creating the content.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by anonguy View Post
    Obviously, there is a very fine line between B&S and YMMV.
    Not really. YMMV means that you have a great time with Alice, but that Alice and Frank don't click and he doesn't get the same level of service.

    B&S means that you call for Alice and they send you Jane. Or that they say Alice is working but post Halle Berry's pics on their website claiming they are of Alice.
    The mounties always get their man.

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