Beware is a blogging site that posts criticisms by advocacy groups for predatory marketing practices, excessive fees, high pressure sales and poor customer services used by off shore companies who have markets in the US to help authors self-publish. Beware has focused on one company – Author’s Solutions – which does indeed have a very negative business model that meets all of the above issues. They also have over 1,000 pending lawsuits. While Beware is accurate in their criticism of Author’s Solutions, they have taken the liberty to group all off shore companies in that same category. Their blog and website focuses on numerous companies based out of the Philippines as being scams. Simply put, that is both untrue and unfair. I work closely with ReadersMagnet, based in the Philippines with an office in San Diego – their customer service and fulfillment of product orders has been outstanding. My marketing materials and webpage design is outstanding, far surpassed by what was offered by local entities. Their webpage openly lists fees for their services. I would assume there are other off shore companies on Beware’s list which should also not be grouped as a “copycat” of Author’s Solutions..
Beware lists select services offered by Author Solutions and the other “copycat” offshore companies. The problem is that almost all self-publishing entities, regardless of where they are based, offer the same services at similar prices. For example, Beware lists radio interviews as scams, other websites site the immense author credibility and visibility obtained through radio interviews. Beware criticizes the cost of such interviews and how they might consider such practices if they were $100 or $200 which proves they do see some merit in that activity. Beware has not bothered to point out that various American based companies offer “invitations to a free interview” with these people – the catch being if you want your interview aired there is a $1700 cost. That is not a scam?
Beware does maintain information on companies who are the subjects of lawsuits for a variety of services. That’s a good thing that they should focus on. But their main focus of continuous dissemination of negative information and disinformation on all offshore operations is misleading. This is a practice of guilt by association. Don’t be fooled – the Philippine based entities do offer quality services at the same price point as their American counterpoints. So please be wary of Beware.