The Talent Contest Scam
(or "How You Can Turn A Scam Artist Into
one’s been surfacing a lot lately. Here's how it works: An unscrupulous
organization sets up shop and says that they're going to hold auditions.
And, oh, by the way, there just happens to be a fee to audition. Sometimes
the prize is described, but in recent months, some of these scam artists
have been so brazen that they don't even tell you what you're auditioning
for. Now, when they ask for $50 or $75 dollars for an audition and they
schedule 300 or so auditions in each city, and they hold auditions in
50 or 60 cities around the country, they've just padded their pockets
with somewhere around a million dollars and they haven't
provided anything to anyone!
Be careful. Sometimes these contests attempt to lure you
in by associating themselves with stars. Maybe the stars themselves know
about it and maybe they don't. (It doesn't take much to post pictures
of stars that they're supposed to be associated with on their website.
Because by the time anyone catches up with them, they've already shut
down their website, closed up shop and started up again under a
Does this sound unlikely? Well, not only has this happened
in the past in Denver and lots of other cities around the country, but
it's still happening.
Here's just one variation on the theme that's going
on right now that you should watch out for: There's a general
audition scheduled, with all kinds of vague promises about the upcoming
TV pilot season and films that are supposedly casting in a year or so.
But, big surprise, in order to be considered for the audition, you have
to first take a workshop with these people. And, hmmmm, could there be
cost involved? Oh, only $75.00 for the workshop. And taking the workshop
doesn't even guarantee you that you get an audition! And this is by an
organization that's basically been run out of town every place they've
tried to set up shop. (Now, they’re operating under a different name,
of course, but they haven’t even changed their E-mail addresses!)
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