*Edit 10/24/2020- different pictures are being used now, but the same scam is still going on. Please get a live person on the phone before ordering anything.
Over the last few days, I’ve seen a lot, and I mean A LOT, of targeted advertisements for commercial quilts. It made sense. I’m a quilter, and I am probably in one of the top ten hits from any targeted ad involving quilts. No surprise there.
I’ll admit I was taken in by the beauty of these advertisements at first, but as I had no intention of buying them I didn’t look all too closely. It wasn’t until a sweet person in one of my quilting groups asked about the fabric in one that I learned the truth. Another person posted the link to a news segment about the scam. They used the name of a store that was only slightly off, and that poor store had received numerous calls from scam victims asking when their quilt would arrive. Over and over again, that lady had to break the news to them that they’d been scammed. I was surprised when I recognized the image of the scam as similar to ones that had been on my news feed pretty constantly. Some of my other friends had also taken notice, and I believe they tried to buy them.
Here’s what a few minutes of poking around amounted to. Here’s the original image that probably came across your news feed. It’ll be this quilt or any variation therein.
If you click on the link, you’ll find a legit spot where you can buy it. It has all sorts of useful information on payments, customer reviews, shipping, etc.
If you need to contact them, there is either a form, like on this page, or some type of email address. This one was the first I’d seen with a full address. The others either didn’t have an address or it was partial. The lack of a phone number, or at least a working one, is a dead giveaway.
I looked up the address, and this was what I found on the street view. The house to one side is 2030, and the house to the other side is 2060. There is NO 2055 Hazel Ave at this location or across the street.
Ok, so the next step would be to try the email address. This isn’t the first one to do this. Another one I tried had a space in between the front of the email and the “@” symbol. I closed that gap so it would work correctly, but I never did hear back. This particular email address bounced back within a minute.
So no phone number, no correct address, and no email. Yeah, this isn’t a legit product at all. I went back in and looked at the merchandise itself since that was the original draw. I’m not sure where the images for the quilts/blankets themselves came from, but they are most certainly photo shopped.
In this set, it’s pretty cool how, in the red circle, you can see the quilt is placed in the exact same spot of the display. I’m good at set ups, but I’m never that good. It also has the same fold up top. And in the yellow circle, you can see that the editor got sloppy and didn’t change the red binding color or navy blue backing in that spot – even if the front of the quilt had no such binding or colors.
In the second set, you can see the same issues. The leaves fall gracefully over the quilt in the exact same way. The same fold can be seen in the blue circle, and even the smaller creases in the yellow circle are duplicated.
So what happens now? For a good while, I reported as many to Facebook as I could find. When given the option, I specifically reported it was “misleading or scam”. I remembered the news segment saying that Facebook was actively trying to take down the scam, but it was going strong on my feed despite the news segment being four days old now.
Here’s what I have received so far in regards to my reports. Long story short – the advertisement itself is fine and goes with their standards. I suppose they are washing their hands clean of the fact that they know it’s an active scam.
Funny enough, I tried to find a link where I could email them directly and explain why the ads were scam. However, just like the websites I investigated, I couldn’t find an actual email or message section. Funny how that works, right?
Long story short – please don’t be taken in by these ads that seem too good to be true. They are. Please share and reshare to spread awareness since Facebook seems uninterested in taking them down.