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Web Hosting, Web Design, SEO Marketing and ECommerce
Gossamer Computer Services, LLC

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Lake Tahoe Coal

We have all entered into business relationships lined with good intentions that soured over time. This page is dedicated to to those companies that I have fielded the greatest number of complaints about.

But first, a message from Tahoe folklore, Sally Smith.

Sally Smith says: "Wake up all you low life locals."

(12/15/2005) I guess some folks believe that their wealth is a substitute for intelligence. Today's "Tahoe World" ran a biting editorial from a self-proclaimed wealthy residence of Palo Alto, CA. Apparently she is bewildered why all the locals don't lay roses at her feet whenever she graces our mountain paradise.

Sally proudly proclaims, "Locals need to appreciate us. It is obvious that we create your economy...". Unfortunately, Sally did not think to research the Tahoe economy prior to issuing her diatribe. She makes a number of statements that simply do not ring true. What is more amazing, is her apparent lack of understanding of business in general.

While there are some pockets of business that cater to pampering the rich, it is highly unlikely that anyone could earn a living dedicated to pampering Sally. And while Sally is clearly unhappy with her lot in life as a second homeowner in Tahoe, she seems to forget that the appreciation of real estate in Tahoe far outstrips the gains she can find in her home town of Palo Alto. These gains more than offset, by a substantial margin, the small sums of money Sally distributes to the "poor church mice" of Tahoe.

I am sorry Sally, you won't find much of the class found in "The City" in Tahoe. I sometimes miss the amenities I grew accustom to, living in the neighboring town of Los Gatos. Many Tahoe second homeowners don't realize just how different mountain life is and tend to complicate their homeownerships in Tahoe, by insisting that their Bay area homes serve as some sort of standard for homeownership in Tahoe.

Although I can only claim ten years in the Bay area and ten years in Tahoe, I can proclaim that the mutual respect epitomized in Rome, "When in Rome..." certainly may serve as a welcome basis for resolving our differences.

ComServ4You

I used Connie as a subcontractor for several years during the late 90s. During that time she was extremely argumentative and she always held a view of her skills much higher than demonstrated. At the time, I thought I could help her leave her $8/hr sales clerk job for the greener pastures of helping me maintain my customer's websites while I pursued the more lucrative software programming contracts.

I terminated the relationship after the dot com bust and it became clear that the software contract market had completely collapsed. At an obvious point of reflection for my business, I began to review some disturbing points of our business relationship.

ComServ4You Irregular Billing - a review of her invoices uncovered a number of undocumented activities. In particular, I was being billed for sales calls in which Connie refused to discuss who she talked to and what the conversations were about. It became clear (customer feedback) that Connie was using the sales time to promote herself and her services, rather than those of my company.

ComServ4You Conflict of Interest - while Connie was tasked with adding directory listings to my website, her constant requests for more hours led to an agreement whereby she would contact the various businesses I listed to drum up more work. She completely failed this task. I was to learn later that while she was charging me for adding enhanced directory listings, she was engaging in trade outs from the customer. This became painfully clear after I ran into her in town and she told me that she had just gone on a fishing charter, free of charge, from one of my fishing charter customers.

ComServ4You Unfair Business Practices - I soon realized that my attempt to let her go gently was doomed to failure. I received constant calls from Connie in which she repeatedly claimed that I was obligated to use her for the website maintenance work. She refused to destroy my customer contact and billing information and actually had the audacity to republish my website under a new domain name that differed by one character. tahoesbest.com -> tahoebest.com. In addition, she began using my customer lists to call my customers up to try to persuade them to jump ship. I received numerous complaints from my customer base, mainly due to the derogatory nature in her depiction of me.

ComServ4You Misleading Advertising - Perhaps the best testament to her inflated view of her talents, lies in advertising copy for her company. She has repeatedly staked claim to "designing" several of my customers websites, mind you, these sites were created by me prior to having met Connie. In addition, she boasts of designing company logos, where in fact, all she really did was resize previously existing company logos to fit on a web page. Perhaps the biggest misleading statement in her ad copy is her recent claim to being a "web optimization expert', stating that she can get top web search engine placements. All anyone has to do to see that this claim is bunk, is to review the search results for any of the competitive keyword phrases. Better yet, if you have knowledge of website optimization techniques, review her websites. You will find numerous problems.

Encore Please - The latest complaint (2005) I fielded came from a customer highly disturbed with Connie's work. Apparently she put together a website to advertise two vacation homes, one in Lake Tahoe, the other in Palm Springs. Not only was the customer highly displeased with the quality of the website, it turns out that Connie slipped a clause into the contract that stated that Connie owned the website's content. Furthermore, the customer could buy the rights back for a sum equal to the outrageous price she charged for designing the website! Repeat business? Seems unlikely.

Legal Actions - Of course, I explored my legal options with my legal advisor who sent Connie several letters explaining her illegal business practices and requesting that she destroy any and all company information, including copies of my website. It is clear, that she refused all requests. She even fired back having her lawyer claim that my billing records and website were a matter of public domain!

Of course, the bottom line was simple. Connie has ZERO assets, so spending thousands of dollars in the legal arena would certainly net ZERO dollars in damages.

BlueSky Communications, LLC

Misleading Advertising

TahoesBest.com - Serving the Lake Tahoe lodging and general business community since 1996 ...

...your local connection to the Lake Tahoe vacation and tourism community since 1996

Breach of Contract - need I say more?

Unfair Business Practices

Although the terms of my non-compete agreement with BlueSky has expired, I feel that others contemplating the sale of their Lake Tahoe website to BlueSky, or any one of the many LLCs Roger sets up, should take note.

PUBLIC NOTICE

Gossamer has been forced to discontinue or change the development of this web site under threat of litigation from Blue Sky Communications. While we believe our rights to promote our customer's websites are not governed by the purchase agreement for Tahoe's Best, proving this under a legal system which has yet to comprehend the Internet world is a costly and risky investment.

This website does not sell advertising and the only businesses featured in this guide have relied on Gossamer to design and promote their Lake Tahoe websites. Blue Sky Communications has made it clear that they consider my efforts to promote my customer's websites through this website a threat to their advertising business, if my efforts result in top rankings for various popular search terms for the Lake Tahoe area. Gossamer considers Blue Sky Communication's position unwarranted and views this position as an attempt to control Gossamer's web design business which was not sold to Blue Sky Communications.

Please bear with us while we attempt to redesign this site in a less threatening manner. Meanwhile, please visit our customer's websites, we have all worked hard to provide you with the information you need to enjoy your stay and activities in beautiful Lake Tahoe.

Last modified: March 12, 2007
Copyright @ 2003-2005
Gossamer Computer Services, LLC

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