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Consumer Complaints

BBB Accredited Business since 04/17/2014

Webshots

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Customer Complaints Summary

20 complaints closed with BBB in last 3 years | 2 closed in last 12 months
Complaint TypeTotal Closed Complaints
Advertising / Sales Issues1
Billing / Collection Issues8
Problems with Product / Service11
Delivery Issues0
Guarantee / Warranty Issues0
Total Closed Complaints20

Complaint Breakdown by Resolution

Complaint Resolution Log (20)BBB Closure Definitions
03/10/2015Problems with Product / Service | Read Complaint Details
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Complaint
My checking account is being charged by Webshots without my permission.
I cancelled my account with Webshots about 2 years ago but I am still being charged thanks to my daughter reviewing my checking account. I cannot reach anyone with this organization and the information regarding websites does not work. Phone numbers are extremely hard to find. Since I am on a fixed income I need this stopped being taken out of my account. The company does not have my permission to debit my account in any form. Please help. Thank you very much.

Desired Settlement
Just want debit charges to stop. They have received about 2 years of payments that I did not authorize.

Business Response
Contact Name and Title: ***** ********* (CSM)
Contact Email: *****@webshots.com
Hello *******,

I am sorry you've had a problem contacting Webshots Support. The Webshots billing support phone number is listed with the charge on your bank or card statement. We also provide support links on our website at www.webshots.com.

I do see your account in our system registered to the email address *********@att.net with the user name *********. I am not showing that this account was ever cancelled. I am showing that a confirmation email was sent to you when the account was created in September 2013 and another was sent in January 2014 when the monthly payment was declined by your bank. I am also see that several payment confirmation emails were sent as well. Did you receive these emails? Could they have gone to your junk or spam filter?

I've cancelled your account per your request and issue a refund of the latest charge. You should see this refund back on the card that was charged in 3-5 business days if not sooner. I've also closed your account which strips all billing information. Your account will no longer renew.


Consumer Response
(The consumer indicated he/she ACCEPTED the response from the business.)
My email was changed several years ago so where the email was sent does not get accessed. Each way I tried to contact this business was not accessible either by email or phone number. This is a difficult business to contact. Thank you for your help. By the way, my bank also tried to contact this business while I was present with no success.

08/15/2014Billing / Collection Issues | Read Complaint Details
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Complaint
They have been charging my credit card since Aug. 2013 at $2.99/mo after I canceled Webshots. They reactivated without me knowing.
This company goes under 3 names. I have found out that Webshots/Smilesaver/Threephotos have reactivated all Webshots Premium members accounts without their knowledge and started charging the account $2.99/month for a service in August of 2013. I never authorized this.
Webshots was sold in late 2012 and I closed my account and moved to SmugMug photo hosting service. Since the charges I have instructed my credit card company to block them and issue a credit. They can't credit back that far.
Here's a link that provided more information on their scam.
http://***********************************************************************************************What's really gets me is they have been charging on a credit card that expired in 2012. There's a service that can routinely charge a reoccurring charge even after it expired. I never knew this.
What a potential scam risk this can cause, and it just happened.

THIS IS A COPY OF THE LETTER I SENT THEM

Dear Sirs
I understand you are the current owners of webshots/Smilesaver. I've just noticed your company has been charging my card for years, I never agreed to this. I canceled service when Webshots was sold in late 2012. I did not authorise Webshots or Threefold Photos to charge my card after I closed my account. I did not resubscribe to Webshots or Threefold Photos. Quite simple your stealing. I have contacted my credit card company and I have AGAIN canceled service with WebShots/ Smile Saver/Threefold Photo. I'm filing a complaint with the Better Business Bureau and the Federal Trade Commission for your practices. Your even using and expired credit card from 2012, I didn't know this could be done. It takes a smart bottom feeder to do this, I give you credit. I have instructed the credit card company to block all future charges from Webshots or any affiliated company.
I just got a cancellation email from Threefold Photos, I don't know this company. Why are they answering the email?

Desired Settlement
I want a credit of $23.92 for a charges of $2.99/month for 8 months. And they should also agree to stop all future charges. I want nothing to do with them.
Thank you for your time.

Business Response
We responded to ******* within a few hours of being contacted through our support email on Sunday April 27. 2014. As requested, we've cancelled his account. No future billing will take place for his account. We also issued a refund for the charges back to his card as well as offered to send a live refund check for the charges that could not be refunded automatically. Please see reply email below. I've removed all personal information from the email response.

Hello,

Thank you for the email. When Webshots.com closed last year in October, your membership was transferred to Smile and then paused until Smile had a billable product for Wallpaper & Screensaver. Now that we've released the new Webshots Wallpaper & Screensaver software, all premium recurring memberships are starting to rebill at $2.99 a month for premium membership. You should have received several emails to the email address registered to your premium account prior to billing at ____ . We gave everyone a 30 day trial period, so users could opt out of the service before the account was actually billed.

I've closed your account registered to _______ and issued 5 refund of $2.99 back to the card that was charged. You should see this refunds within 7-10 business days. Processing time may vary depending on your bank or credit card company. These refunds cover the monthly charges from December to April however, your account started billing after the free month in September. Unfortunately my billing system will not allow me to issue a refund back to the credit card past 90 days. We'd like to send you a refund check for September, October and November billing. All we'll need is your mailing address to send the check to. We do apologize for your account billing with out your knowledge as it was not shown as cancelled durning the transition is 2012.

Consumer Response
(The consumer indicated he/she DID NOT accept the response from the business.)
I need a check for the balance due.
It can be mailed to
**** ******
**** ******** ***
******** ** XXXXX.

I canceled and closed the account when webshots was closed.
You shouldn't be able to reopen a closed account.
That's a shady business practice.
When can I exspect the check ?
Thank you.

Final Business Response
****, We've already closed your account and issued 5 refund of $2.99 back to the card that was charged. You should see this refunds within 7-10 business days. Processing time may vary depending on your bank or credit card company. These refunds cover the monthly charges from December to April however, your account started billing after the free month in September. Unfortunately my billing system will not allow me to issue a refund back to the credit card past 90 days. We'd like to send you a refund check for September, October and November billing in the amount of $8.97.

Thank you for sending us your address. It usually takes 5-7 days to process and ship the live refund check. With the refunds back to your card and the refund check you've received a total refund of $23.92.

We are not showing that your account was cancelled during the time of transition which is why your premium membership was paused and then reopened with the new service. We did send an email to your email address listed above in reference to the new account billing during a 30 day free trial of the new service issued to your account in August.

Final Consumer Response
(The consumer indicated he/she ACCEPTED the response from the business.)
I\'ll accept the terms.
you did reactivate the account without my knowledge.
I don\'t want to ever hear from webs shots or any affiliated company in the future.
Thank you.

Business Response
Hello ****.,

Thank you for the email. I do apologize, this was human error on my part when refunding your charges on April 27th. Although the refunds were issued, I failed to close out the renewal properly. I've issued 3 more refunds of $2.99 back to the card that was charged for May 23rd, June 23rd, and July 23rd payments, you should see these refunds back on the card that was charged in 3-5 business days. I've also made sure and have double checked that your account registered to ****@solidimage3d.com has been closed and all billing information stripped from our system.


Consumer Response
(The consumer indicated he/she ACCEPTED the response from the business.)

04/09/2014Problems with Product / Service | Read Complaint Details
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Complaint
Cannot access my photos at Smile.webshots.com.
In early 2013, Webshots transferred their photo service to smile.webshots.com. Initially, I was able to access my photos. Later in 2013, I decided I wanted to back up the photos and close the account. I found after logging in, I could not access my photos. I have sent about three emails to Smile.com and have received no response accept for the computer generated message that "we have received your email". At this point I would just like to get my photos from them by CD or something so that I can close this account.

Desired Settlement
I just want my photos. They can send them by CD or DVD. Then I will close this account. There are several complaints about this company on the web, but it seems no one can do anything about it.

Business Response
Ms. ***** asked to retrieve photos from previous owners. Since she was a paying user we had her photos and sent her a download tool to retrieve them. Instructions were sent on March 13 and we have not heard back from her.

12/02/2013Billing / Collection Issues | Read Complaint Details
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Complaint
CANCELED SERVICE. RECEIVED ONE REFUND, THEN WAS AGAIN CHARGED THE NEXT MONTH.
10/28/2013 WEBSHOTS WEBSHOTS CORTE MADER *********** BUSINESS SERVICE - Transactions FinApp - Press enter to edit Business Miscellaneous - Transactions FinApp - Press Enter to see links for various options -$ 2.99
10/10/2013 ELECTRONIC PAYMENT RECEIVED-THA - Transactions FinApp - Press enter to edit Credit Card Payments - Transactions FinApp - Press Enter to see links for various options $ 2.99

Desired Settlement
REFUND OF $2.99 AND NOT FUTHER CHARGES.

Business Response
The account for *** ********* has been cancelled and the amount that was charged refunded.

Final Consumer Response
(The consumer indicated he/she ACCEPTED the response from the business.)

11/06/2013Billing / Collection Issues | Read Complaint Details
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Complaint
Webshots dissolved by new owners Dec 2012. SEP 2013 new owners begin charging old members for service.
Webshots sold to new owners, new owners discontinue service to all members and delete all photos(the service was providing photo screen savers and storage of photos), Dec 2012. Sep and Oct 2013 my credit card gets billed $2.99 per month for new Webshots service that I did not sign up for nor was this charge authorized by me. My dad has been gone now since Jan 2012. This was his thing. The new owners of Webshots discontinued his account before his year was up and offered no refund even though a refund was requested by me on a number of occasions. Sep and Oct 2013 my credit card is charged for premium membership for New Webshots. I was not contacted by Webshots at anytime about beginning a new membership. My father's email account was never contacted regarding a new Webshots. Since the original Webshots was dismantled and all the members pictures deleted, I was pretty sure the service was dead. The new owners of Webshots/Smile started a service called Smile by Webshots for which I did not sign up to get and the service was discontinued I assume because it failed. Fast forward 9 months and I am getting charged for a service I did not sign up for nor did I authorize charges by Smile, or Webshots or whatever they are calling themselves now. This stinks of fraud. It is as though they kept everyone's information so they could charge them at some future date when they decided they needed the money. I am apparently not the only one. There is a website on Facebook dedicated to warning people of the "new" Webshots and that this new set of owners are crooks.

ADDITIONAL DETAILS:
Case is being handled by another organization: My credit card's anti fraud division

Desired Settlement
Immediate refund. The refund cannot be sent via my credit card because my bank has closed the account due to fraudulent activity. They can send me a postal money order. No personal or company checks, I do not trust this company.

I would also request they remove my name and my deceased father's name and all our personal information from their database as I do not want them selling my or my dad's information to other companies.(I do not want to have anything to do with this company ever again) I suspect the fraudulent activity was because Of this company. Someone should dig a little deeper here there is definitely something fishy. I am very careful with my card and accounts. I have had the card for many years without incident and I do not travel extensively. As soon as their charge showed up within weeks another fraudulent charge from the UK showed up on my account. Hence my bank closed the account. These guys are crooks.

Business Response
Webshots dissolved by new owners Dec 2012.

Answer: American Greetings (AG) was shutting down Webshots and Threefold Photos purchased some of the assets.

SEP 2013 new owners begin charging old members for service.

Answer: Correct.


Webshots sold to new owners, new owners discontinue service to all members and delete all photos(the service was providing photo screen savers and storage of photos),

Answer: During transition Threefold Photos, the new owners gave the screensaver and wallpaper service away for free while building the new system. No photos were deleted by Threefold. There was a transition period with AG where users could download their personal photos. On December 1, 2012 AG deleted all unclaimed photos. Photos from paying users were transferred to Threefold servers.

Dec 2012. Sep and Oct 2013 my credit card gets billed $2.99 per month for new Webshots service that I did not sign up for nor was this charge authorized by me.

Answer: Once our service was ready we notified users with multiple emails alerting them the auto renew they signed up for with their subscription (from AG) would be activated again unless they decided to cancel.

The new owners of Webshots discontinued his account before his year was up and offered no refund even though a refund was requested by me on a number of occasions.

Answer: Refunds were paid out to anyone that requested and we provided a simple form on our site to get a refund. We never collected the money so were refunding money we never got in the first place. Several thousand users were refunded.

Sep and Oct 2013 my credit card is charged for premium membership for New Webshots. I was not contacted by Webshots at anytime about beginning a new membership.

Answer: We sent numerous emails to the account on file explaining that the service would be turned back on.

Fast forward 9 months and I am getting charged for a service I did not sign up for nor did I authorize charges by Smile, or Webshots or whatever they are calling themselves now.

Answer: Happy to send a refund.


This stinks of fraud. It is as though they kept everyone's information so they could charge them at some future date when they decided they needed the money.

Answer: Turned peoples subscription back on when we felt we had a product to sell. Prior to that date we paid $100's of thousands of dollars to keep those paying users photos on our servers.

I am apparently not the only one. There is a website on Facebook dedicated to warning people of the "new" Webshots and that this new set of owners are crooks.

Answer: There are two sides to every story. *** ******* from the site above continues to spread her fictional version of the story.

Again, we will gladly cancel your account and provide a refund. Please let me know the email for the account and mailing address for a refund.

Regardless, I'm sorry for the frustration we may have caused.

Final Consumer Response
(The consumer indicated he/she ACCEPTED the response from the business.)
Thank you.

Final Business Response
Our condolences for your fathers passing.

Our records show a refund for both charges was made (see attachment). If for some reason the bank does not transfer the money back to you because of the closed account then we will send you a check.

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10/25/2013Problems with Product / Service | Read Complaint Details
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Complaint
no email response after several emails and billed when I said I did not want to renew unless issues resolved
I loved webshots before smile. then it never really worked and now with the new webshots it still is not doing everything I need it to do. I have used their "helpful notes" but wasn't able to resolve this.

I wrote them that I didn't want to pay the new premium until this was resolved and they have ignored all my requests.

I can't add my own photos, I can't add old webshots or smile photos. THey are charging more for less features than before.

I don't like it that I cant talk to someone on phone or get chat to resolve these issues.

Desired Settlement
I want to talk with a tech person on the phone till webshots works on my computer the way it is suppose to work. And is it doesnt I want a refund for the last year since Smile started and you were holding my money captive

Business Response
Your credit card was refunded the $2.99 on October 2 and your account was also cancelled.


Final Consumer Response
(The consumer indicated he/she DID NOT accept the response from the business.)
I want to know how the software works not to have it canceled. I want to talk with a tech person on the phone till webshots works on my computer the way it is suppose to work. Why is that asking too much?

07/03/2013Problems with Product / Service
04/24/2013Problems with Product / Service
04/09/2013Problems with Product / Service

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