SUBMIT A COMPLAINT

Study Dem, IncFalse Weight Loss Study

1
B Review updated:

Below is a message I received from a user claiming to be running a weight loss study, although they can't seem to actually buy or provide any of the materials themselves. It sounds way too good to be true, being paid somewhere between [protected] to take diet pills, and yeah, it is. Blatant scam to get people to sign up for free trials with recurring billing, hoping they wont look at their credit card statement for a few months. Beware the internet, she hath no soul.

Hello,


Thank you for your interest, you are indeed one of the first 50 people to contact me, so you could certainly reserve the spot.


As stated in the craigslist advert, we need 50 participants that are willing to take a popular diet pill on a daily basis for thirty days. Everyday we will be recording any differences, and finish the study at the 30th day. If you don't want your name used publicly in the study, then please say so. At the same time, we will compensate you $1500 for your participation. This will be paid in check, on last day.


We will meet a total of four times, and the times will depend on your availability time. Meeting places will be at a local gym of your choice.


The popular diet pill that you will be taking is called Resveratrol. This weight loss product has been used by several famous people, like Oprah Winfrey. We were lucky enough to have them offer a free trial for us.


If you plan to participate then the following needs to be done:


1) You must fill out the following qualification form to receive the free trial. Here is the link to the form, www.researchpage.biz.


2) After you submitted your order for the free trial, please email us back your name and your address.


3) Once you received the free trial, we will set up a personal meeting with you, discuss further details, and answer any questions you may have. At this point our study will begin also.


4) Always contact us on this email for any client support or if you have any questions.


Requirements


1) Must be above 100 pounds


2) Must be motivated to lose weight


3) Must not be taking more than 5 medication at the same time


* Spots are filling up quickly, so to reserve your spot, get your trial ASAP.


Thanks,


Melissa Downing
Study Dem, Inc


* We are an independent company from Resveratrol, and have no affiliation with them.

Responses

  • Z
      Aug 22, 2009

    I agree. I received the following email.

    Hello,


    Thank you for your interest, you are indeed one of the first 50 people to contact me, so you could certainly reserve the spot.


    As stated in the craigslist advert, we need 50 participants that are willing to take a popular diet pill on a daily basis for thirty days. Everyday we will be recording any differences, and finish the study at the 30th day. If you don't want your name used publicly in the study, then please say so. At the same time, we will compensate you $1500 for your participation. This will be paid in check, on last day.


    We will meet a total of four times, and the times will depend on your availability time. Meeting places will be at a local gym of your choice.


    The popular diet pill that you will be taking is called Purity12. This weight loss product has been used by several famous people, like Oprah Winfrey. We were lucky enough to have them offer a free trial for us.


    If you plan to participate then the following needs to be done:


    1) You must fill out the following qualification form to receive the free trial. Here is the link to the form, www.participateform.biz.


    2) After you submitted your order for the free trial, please email us back your name and your address.


    3) Once you received the free trial, we will set up a personal meeting with you, discuss further details, and answer any questions you may have. At this point our study will begin also.


    4) Always contact us on this email for any client support or if you have any questions.


    Requirements


    1) Must be above 100 pounds


    2) Must be motivated to lose weight


    3) Must not be taking more than 5 medication at the same time


    * Spots are filling up quickly, so to reserve your spot, get your trial ASAP.


    Thanks,


    Melissa Downing
    Study Dem, Inc


    * We are an independent company from Purity12, and have no affiliation with them.

    The difference is the last line, mine is for Purity12, and yours is for Resveratrol.

    0 Votes
  • C
      Aug 23, 2009

    I also received the e-mail for Purity12. I figured it was a scam. I answered the ad on Craig's list thinking that I would be involved in a focus group for weight loss. I am over 100 lbs. overweight and thought this would be a good motivator for me. As soon as I read the e-mail from so called Melissa, I knew it was a scam to get you to sign up for the product.
    Needless to say, I was very disapointed with the whole thing!!! And using Oprah's name, because of this I think some people will fall for it. Oh well, live and learn!

    0 Votes
  • T
      Aug 29, 2009

    Same complaint and virtually the same letter. Only two differences; I was promised $1200 instead of $1500 and the medicine was "Acai" instead of "Resveratrol". I replied to the email requested some guarantee that the promised compensation would be honored. I also asked for specifics about the study itself including the name of the company who retained them to conduct the research, whether some of the participants would be receiving a placebo and the address of their website citing other studies they had conducted. I doubt I will be hearing from "Melissa" again. As soon as I "googled" the company name, Study Dems, Inc., the screen filled with web pages that were all complaints. I'm going to report them to craigslist. I wonder how a person could let Oprah know her name is being misused? They need to be shut down before someone gives them their credit card info. In such trying economic times, the lure of $1200-$1500 can cause people to throw caution to the wind in hopes of actually receiving the compensation. I'm pretty clever and even I caught myself thinking that I could spend $60 on the pills because I would get it all back at the end of the study. Fortunately, I remembered the old adage, "If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is!" I'm hoping if most people report this scam, we might be able to save a few people from falling prey to another low-down, dirty thief!

    0 Votes
  • C
      Aug 30, 2009

    I DEFINETELY AGREE I RECEIVE THE SAME THING BUT THE LAST THING ON THE BOTTOM LINE IS WE ARE A NOT AFFILITAED WITH ACAI !!! YOU KNOW THE ACAI DIET PILLS THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR SHOWING ME THAT THIS WHAT IS MIND SAY THAT

    SCAM, SCAM, SCAM, SCAM ALL THE WAY TAKE THESE PEOPLE DOWN, THANKS FOR ONCE AGAIN LETTING ME KNOW.


    To:
    [protected]@yahoo.com

    Hello,


    Thank you for your interest, you are indeed one of the first 50 people to contact me, so you could certainly reserve the spot.


    As stated in the craigslist advert, we need 50 participants that are willing to take a popular diet pill on a daily basis for thirty days. Everyday we will be recording any differences, and finish the study at the 30th day. If you don't want your name used publicly in the study, then please say so. At the same time, we will compensate you $1200 for your participation. This will be paid in check, on last day.


    We will meet a total of four times, and the times will depend on your availability time. Meeting places will be at a local gym of your choice.


    The popular diet pill that you will be taking is called Acai. This weight loss product has been used by several famous people, like Oprah Winfrey. We were lucky enough to have them offer a free trial for us.


    If you plan to participate then the following needs to be done:


    1) You must fill out the following qualification form to receive the free trial. Here is the link to the form, www.rresearchform.biz.


    2) After you submitted your order for the free trial, please email us back your name and your address.


    3) Once you received the free trial, we will set up a personal meeting with you, discuss further details, and answer any questions you may have. At this point our study will begin also.


    4) Always contact us on this email for any client support or if you have any questions.


    Requirements


    1) Must be above 100 pounds


    2) Must be motivated to lose weight


    3) Must not be taking more than 5 medication at the same time


    * Spots are filling up quickly, so to reserve your spot, get your trial ASAP.


    Thanks,


    Melissa Downing
    Study Dem, Inc


    * We are an independent company from Acai, and have no affiliation with them.

    0 Votes
  • C
      Sep 05, 2009

    I am not in any way saying this is NOT a scam but No one seems to have any proof just speculation. If you did not get taken or defrauded how can you claim it is a fraud. It does sound fishy to me but still you act as if you know for a FACT. Please explain what facts you have of fraud.

    0 Votes
  • A
      Sep 06, 2009

    Wow, I received almost exactly the same letter just yesterday. How disappointed I am to find that it's a scam, I really could use that kind of money, but it did sound kind of fishy. Scientific studies don't usually pay anywhere near that well. Here is my scam letter:

    Hello Eric,

    Thank you for your interest, you are indeed one of the first people to contact us, so you could certainly reserve the spot.


    As stated in the craigslist advert, we need 5 Associates to participate in our clinical health study to help with our new programs and research .Our company evaluates new medications, health-care products, modalities and testing procedures .

    Everyday we will be recording any differences, and finish the study at the 25th day. If you don't want your name used publicly in the study, then please say so in your application . At the same time, we will compensate you $1150 for your
    participation. This will be paid in check, on last day.

    For this study We will be needing participants that could take a diet pill every day for a 3 week period . You will be recording any differences during that time period.


    We will meet a total of four times, and the times will depend on your availability time. Meeting places will be at a local gym of your choice.


    If you plan to participate then the following needs to be done:


    1) You must fill out the following short form at :
    http://www.pro-health411.info/study, and you will receive your diet pills, there will be a small shipping fee, this amount will be reimbursed on your first payment, this is only so no freeloaders take advantage of our program and see who is serious about this job .

    2) After you submitted your Form for the free trial, please email us back with your name, confirmation number, phone number and your address. You will then wait to receive the free trial.

    3) Once you received the free trial, we will set up a personal meeting with you, discuss further details, and answer any questions you may have. At this point our study will begin also.


    4) Always contact us on this email for any client support or if you have any questions.


    Requirements


    1) Must be above 100 pounds


    2) Must not be taking more than 5 medication at the same time


    * Spots are filling up quickly, so to reserve your spot, get your trial soon.


    Thanks !


    Diane Yorks
    HR, Pro-Health411
    local:2203-code145


    * We are an independent company from Acai, and have no affiliation with them.

    0 Votes
  • L
      Sep 10, 2009

    Same BS, but the company names are different, and the URLs are different and recently registered. Either Reservatol or Acai is being pushed. The endorsements are BS. Also, the study either pays $1500 or$1200. Idiot can't get it straight, but this is a definite scam to steal identities and credit card information. Also, note that all of the websites do not have a legitimate address on them.

    Hello,


    Thank you for your interest, you are indeed one of the first 50 people to contact me, so you could certainly reserve the spot.


    As stated in the craigslist advert, we need 50 participants that are willing to take a popular diet pill on a daily basis for thirty days. Everyday we will be recording any differences, and finish the study at the 30th day. If you don't want your name used publicly in the study, then please say so. At the same time, we will compensate you $1200 for your participation. This will be paid in check, on last day.


    We will meet a total of four times, and the times will depend on your availability time. Meeting places will be at a local gym of your choice.


    The popular diet pill that you will be taking is called Acai. This weight loss product has been used by several famous people, like Oprah Winfrey. We were lucky enough to have them offer a free trial for us.


    If you plan to participate then the following needs to be done:


    1) You must fill out the following qualification form to receive the free trial. Here is the link to the form, www.sttudyform.biz.


    2) After you submitted your order for the free trial, please email us back your name and your address.


    3) Once you received the free trial, we will set up a personal meeting with you, discuss further details, and answer any questions you may have. At this point our study will begin also.


    4) Always contact us on this email for any client support or if you have any questions.


    Requirements


    1) Must be above 100 pounds


    2) Must be motivated to lose weight


    3) Must not be taking more than 5 medication at the same time


    * Spots are filling up quickly, so to reserve your spot, get your trial ASAP.


    Thanks,


    Melissa Downing
    Study Dem, Inc
    [protected]@gmail.com


    * We are an independent company from Acai, and have no affiliation with them.


    and

    Hello,


    We received an overwhelming response to our ad on craigslist regarding the weight loss study and its really great to have you all on board.


    Some of you have received your package, so thats great. Please read the instructions that came with the package carefully and you can start following the plan. We have spoken to a few of you already and we are glad you love the product and see the benefits already.


    A lot of you are still interested but have a few questions about the study. Here are answers to questions that have been asked by participants:

    a) Depending on your location, there may be a slight S&H fee. This charge will be reimbursed once you come onboard and take part in the study.
    b) You can introduce you friends if they are interested in this type of study. Forward them the email so the can get access to the site.
    C) We would pay $1500 on the last day of the study as long as you have your free trial of the weight loss product.
    d) The study is open to everyone including men and women.


    For those of you that still want to join the program, spots are still available but it is a first come first serve basis.


    If you plan to participate then the following needs to be done:


    1) You must fill out the following form to receive the free trial. Here is the link to the FORM www.rresearchform.biz


    2) After you submitted your order for the free trial, please email us back with your name and your address.


    3) Once you received the free trial, we will set up a personal meeting with you, discuss further details, and answer any questions you may have. At this point our study will begin also.


    Have a great day.


    Regards,


    Melissa Downing
    Research Them, Inc
    [protected]@gmail.com

    0 Votes
  • C
      Oct 08, 2009

    This is the email I received

    Hello,

    Thank you for your interest, you are indeed one of the first 100 people to contact me, so you could certainly reserve the spot.

    As stated in the craigslist advert, we need 100 participants that are willing to take a popular diet pill on a daily basis for thirty days. Everyday we will be recording any differences, and finish the study at the 30th day. If you don't want your name used publicly in the study, then please say so. At the same time, we will compensate you $1500 for your participation. This will be paid in check, on last day.

    We will meet a total of four times, and the times will depend on your availability time. Meeting places will be at a local gym of your choice.

    The popular diet pill has been featured in many T.V stations and this weight loss product has been used by several famous people. We were lucky enough to have them offer a free trial for us.

    If you plan to participate then the following needs to be done:

    1) You must fill out the following qualification form to receive the free trial. Here is the link to the form, www.thestudylink.biz.

    2) After you submitted your order for the free trial, please email us back your name and your address.

    3) Once you received the free trial, we will set up a personal meeting with you, discuss further details, and answer any questions you may have. At this point our study will begin also.

    4) Always contact us on this email for any client support or if you have any questions.

    Requirements

    1) Must be above 100 pounds

    2) Must be motivated to lose weight

    3) Must not be taking more than 5 medication at the same time

    * Spots are filling up quickly, so to reserve your spot, get your trial ASAP.

    Thanks,

    Melissa Downing
    Research Them, Inc

    I do not know if this is a scam, but when I was directed to buy the product it sounded funny to me. I looked it up and found this site. Please everyone don't fall victims to these ### holes. Always read and research first befor doing anything. I found this on craigslist by the way! So beware!!

    0 Votes
  • F
      Oct 19, 2009

    I got the very same e-mail when responding to the craigslist ad. I in my always nieve and positive nature ordered the free trial. I never recieved any kind of confirmation other than a date as to when I should expect my order to come...Oct 18th! A SUNDAY!!! I immediately went down to my bank, withdrew all of my money and cancelled the debet card for which I used to place the order. It was only 5 bucks that was taken out and If for some crazy and unlikely chance I actually recieve the product, I will surely update you all. I'm young yet I don't subscribe to the internet or technology. It serves a purpose in my life in a very minimilistic way.I still write letters to friends and send them through regualr mail, pay my bills mostly with cash and I have a very basic cell phone which I get made fun of for by all my friends. I still buy cds and get excited by reading the lyrics and admiring the art...this whole situation was certainly a lesson to not be so quick to give people and opportunities the benifit of the doubt and to keep my credit card number off the internet! I was stupid and I should have known better. I like most people am struggling and the idea of taking some suppliments for 1, 500-suppliments that I would take anyway was just so very alluring and my judgement got clouded to say the least. I hope in sharing my story I will help someone to avoid putting themselves in the same vulerable position I put myself in. No one took advantage of me, I allowed myself to fall victim because I didnt do my research and took for granted that not everyone in life is honest and good.It's a sad reality but a lesson learned.

    0 Votes
  • F
      Oct 23, 2009

    Yes, it certainly does seem to lack credibility and this can be gathered by the fact that we have no website address for the company "Study Dem Inc", or physical headquarters. I find another huge red flag since Ms.Downing does not provide her company title, contact information and a work email address is not listed. The email she is using to send us the information is a gmail account.

    I just sent a response to the initial email which all of us have received. I hope to get a response and am eager to see what the answers to my questions are going to be. My letter asks if the study is local and what gym would be used in my area. I requested information regarding the weight loss medication and stated I wanted to discuss it with my physician (I take less than 5 medications a day, so still do qualify) to make sure there isn't a chance of possible dangerous drug interactions. In my closing sentence I asked for a link to the company website and stated I looked forward to hearing back from her and seeing how much weight I could possibly lose.

    The website link provided in our letters vary. I wonder just how many they have? As of yet I haven't followed the link provided to enroll. The link given in my letter is:
    theweightstudy dot biz which is a hyperlink to a different website which prompts enrollment for acai berry supplements on this site:
    acainaturaburn dot com

    On their website (for the product) they state that IF someone loses weight and sends in a before/after picture they will pay up to $1, 500. it does not guarantee that amount anywhere that I looked. My take on this is it is they must be getting paid by directing us to the site and getting people to sign up for a free trial based on the premise we get paid $1, 500. and that it auto ships monthly thereafter. As for the monetary amount promised? Like I said, it is contingent on someone losing enough weight for them to use a before/after picture based on what the manufacturer decides. The likelihood of losing enough weight in a month for a jaw dropping before and after picture? I'll leave that up to you to decide for yourselves.

    Again, my theory is that that "Study Dem Inc" and "Research Them" contact us after we read & respond to a weight loss trial posted on craigslist. How does this profit them? Here's my theory... When we show interest and get a response providing the qualifications and how they will conduct their weight loss trial it has been sent by Melissa Downing (sent using either of the company names listed). More than likely Melissa Downing is a pseudonym that someone is using based on the fact that no website exists for the companies, nor do we see a company address and phone number provided by this person. Clicking on the link given it directs us to a different website than the one listed; this is a redirecting link and this is generates a hit on their site (hits are the number of times a site has been visited) and the more hits they generate the more they are being paid for directing people to the site. When directed it shows the trial and we are supposed to sign up for the free trial, it probably sets up for auto ship and they get paid more for those that are redirected to the site and sign up.

    Got it? We visit the site- it counts us and gets credited to that person/company/creep and if we fall for the ruse then they get even more money. I hope to get a response back and will definitely let you all know what type of clever gimmick they try to feed me to lure me back in on this load of crap. Yeah, acai berry is healthy and over a period of time maybe someone could lose weight. I go back to what I said previously... jaw dropping weight loss in one months time? Not likely to take place and remember the manufacturer decides if someone has lost enough to be a poster child. Again, I will keep you posted as to whether Ms.Downing gets in touch.

    0 Votes
  • R
      Nov 02, 2009

    For any doubters, I can assure you it is a scam. I went through the whole thing short of final ordering, using a fake email and fake everything else.

    The result? You MUST do the trial purchase. You WILL continue to be billed for more of the product unless you notify them. And, you MUST participate in two other related purchase programs, both of which you must pay for, one of which was $79.00.

    And the final insult? A former poster is correct - There is NO guarantee of payment, $1500 or any other amount. Why? Because on their site, it says they will send every "verified" participant a check for whatever the promised payment is. And who does the verifying? THEY do, of course.

    If there is any doubt left in anyone's mind that this is a scam, just think of this - what company in the world would pay anyone $1500 for two weeks of unskilled work?

    If you still think they are legit, then by all means, sign up. You are exactly the kind of person (customer) they are looking for.

    0 Votes
  • A
      Nov 09, 2009

    I found the posting for this "free weight loss trial" on craigslist, guaranteeing to pay me $1500 at the end of the 30 day trial. I, being the broke and naive college student that I am, fell for it. I did receive the package with two different sets of pills and 3 workout dvd's. So far I have not had any more money than the $3.95 shipping and handling come out of my bank account, but I am on the lookout. Other than going into my bank and notifying them of this and telling them to not allow them to deduct that money from my account, is there anything else I can do? Is there anyway I can contact "Research Them, Inc." to tell them to stop taking money from my account and to cancel the diet pills? Yes, I have now learned my lesson...never fall for something on craigslist that will pay you $1500! Any info you have would be great!

    0 Votes

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