Bad Company List/BBB

Subject: Bad Company List/BBB
From: Daniel Wise <dewise -at- IX -dot- NETCOM -dot- COM>
Date: Sun, 4 May 1997 22:45:38 -0500


Someone asked how the Better Business Bureau avoids litigation. Simple.
They report *facts* and only facts. If you ask them for a report on a
member company, they will give you a rundown on the company and whether they
have received any complaints against the company.

Keep in mind that they also offer an arbitration and mediation service to
all of their members to help them resolve disputes with customers. Not all
of them use it, of course, but I know some who have and were very pleased
with the results. They described it as a win-win proposition.

Bad company lists abound. One of the venerable ones I have not seen
mentioned (did I miss it?) is the Writer's Digest Storm Warning. If a
publisher becomes a slow-pay or a no-pay client, they report it in their
magazine. Since they are still in business, I doubt they have lost any
large number of suits. And it gives [WARNING! Stereotype Coming Up!] all
the houswives with portable typewriters on the kitchen table some very
valuable information about where not to submit their work. I use this
example because the struggling freelance magazine writer usually has little
or no chance to network and get this kind of information.

Hope at least the information on the BBB is useful. If you have a gripe
against a company (in the US of A at least) contact your local BBB to
determine whether the company is a member and whether that company
subscribes to the alternative dispute resolution program.

Dan Wise
dewise -at- ix -dot- netcom -dot- com

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