Is there a meltdown in store for Royal Camera?

No_cameras

UPDATE: Add CCI Camera City Inc., 342 Kings Highway, Brooklyn, NY 11223 to your list of online camera shops to avoid. CCI has the same address as Royal Camera!

If you Google "CCI Camera City problems", you will find the same list of bait and switch complaints and grey market product complaints that Royal Camera is known for.

Royal Camera, the superstore of bait and switch selling, must be getting desperate. This is probably because Googling Royal Camera produces some very odd results. The forums and weblogs exposing Royal Camera are getting higher billing on Google than good old RC itself! 

Try it and see. Just imagine if your employer showed up on Google with that kind of bad publicity. You would look furtively around and check Monster.com to see who was hiring.

Ya gotta admire a firm so dedicated to corrupt practices that they will ignore what the public is saying about them for months and months on end. Somebody must have tipped them off that their cute little game was now public knowledge, because they have come up with a whole new approach.

Has Royal Camera seen the light and come clean? No way!

They have responded by getting their shills to visit every one of the sites that are criticising them and leaving messages how Royal Camera delivered exactly what they ordered, promptly, and how wonderfully kind and helpful the Royal Camera sales people were.

I had a flock of these shills descend on this site today and leave glowing reports on how great Royal Camera is, and how wrong I was to criticise such an honest and worthwhile company.

How do I know they were shills for Royal Camera? The comments come from the same few IP addresses and all contained the same mispellings and poor grammar, although the names were different.

I took a tour of several sites which have damning reports about Royal Camera and saw many of these chirpily cheerful and anonymous comments praising Royal Camera. It makes amusing reading, because the entries read like this:

Ripoff!
Cheats!
Scumbags!
Wonderful people with great products!
Liars!
Somebody ought to tell the BBB about them.
Ripoff!

How lame can these people get? There is a growing conversation about Royal Camera and it has reached all the way to China. I get visited by Chinese search engines every day and the only English words I see are Royal Camera and scam.

If there really is a Roy Shin at the head of this operation, he should carefully consider his options. This is no longer the marketplace of the nineties. Customers talk to each other all the time and their comments stay live on the internet for years. I feel Royal Camera has no place to go but down.

Why can I say that? I worked for a VP of sales in a small firm who drove his phone sales people to interrupt professionals who were working on patients. Ninety percent of the professionals so contacted would hang up as soon as they realized who was calling.

I would contact people in this profession and they would slam down the phone when they found out who I was working for, even though they had never been directly contacted by this company.

I challenged the VP to change his ways or he would upset his field. His reply is a classic: I don’t care how many prospects you upset as long as you make the sale!

He had no clue that bad word of mouth spread faster than his staff could contact new customers. The company fired him soon afterwards, but I was long out of there.

Roy Shin, or whoever is behind Royal Camera, is facing a sales disaster of his own making. The bad news precedes him and is the first thing a prospect sees on the Internet. In an informed and connected marketplace, bad news spreads at lightning speed.

Recent Update:

Royalcamera0009Here the Brooklyn storefront which houses Royal Camera and CCI Camera. Would you buy a camera from this store and expect to have a warranty that meant anything? Click on image to enlarge.

Thanks to Don Wiss <donwiss@panix.com>

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