Data Network Affiliates (DNA) Promoter Describes Program As ‘Cause’; References Walmart Parking Lot; Says Members Should ‘Snap’ License Plates With iPhones, Blackberrys

UPDATED 12:15 P.M. ET (U.S.A.) Without raising the issues of propriety, safety and legality, a promoter for the Data Network Affiliates (DNA) multilevel-marketing (MLM) program has produced a sales video that instructs members to “snap photos” of the license plates of cars.

The video is 8:40 in length, and appears to be an upline promotion that is available to DNA downline members in a specific group. A “Join For FREE Right Now” button appears below the video, and the link resolves to a DNA registration page that may be on an insecure site. The sign-up link is on an “http” page, as opposed to an “https” page, although the URL includes the word “securesite.”

“The company’s going to pay you $25 to do this,” the narrator said in a YouTube video. He recommended Walmart parking lots as a source of plate numbers, and also “malls, shopping malls, shopping centers, grocery stores, banks” — and “anywhere” there is a group of parked vehicles.

The PP Blog became aware of the video after the link for it was used in an ALL-CAPS sales-pitch spam attempt at the Blog. It was not immediately clear if DNA, whose domain is registered in the Cayman Islands, had a policy that prohibited affiliates from spamming to drive business to the company.

Also unclear is the process by which recipients of email and forum spam from DNA promoters would contact the company to report affiliate spam. A “Contact Us” link at the bottom of DNA’s website says, “Information is coming soon!”

DNA has been in a state of prelaunch for weeks, twice postponing launch dates in February and moving the launch date to March 1, according to a countdown clock on its website.

The link to the video was at a URL of a domain registered in Myrtle Beach, S.C. The narrator said he had “personally sponsored” more than 400 DNA members in two days.

Screen shot: This DNA sales pitch was sent to the PP Blog at 10:05 p.m. (ET) yesterday. It included an ALL-CAPS promo and a link to a video by a DNA promoter. The video site included a link to register for DNA.

In the video, the narrator described DNA as a “cause” that sought to involve “millions of people” and put “millions of eyeballs” in the business of recording license-plate numbers. In various audio recordings by DNA, pitchmen have referenced the AMBER Alert program, although a recent recording by the company says DNA is not affiliated with the national child-protection system administered by the U.S. Department of Justice.

In this story, the PP Blog describes a DNA audio recording in which a pitchman shared a vision of an America in which DNA members would record the plate numbers of cars as they moved from destination to destination during the day.

A hypothetical “red corvette” could be spotted at Walmart at noon, at a “doctor’s office” at 1 p.m. and somewhere else at 4 p.m. — with DNA members recording the plate number at all three locations, according to the recording. Meanwhile, in this story, the PP Blog reported on a DNA audio pitch that described “church” parking lots as a source of license-plate numbers.

In the YouTube video posted on the Myrtle Beach domain, the narrator instructed viewers to “stop whatever you are doing.”

“This is huge,” he said. “This is truly the wave of the future.” During the video, the promoter described his experience of recording plate numbers. He motioned as though he were snapping photographs, while instructing prospects to do the same.

“Now, there’s  people out there that will pay big, big, big bucks for this data, OK? ” he said. “And that’s the reason that these people (DNA) are willing to pay big bucks.”

He did not disclose the names of any companies for which DNA was collecting data. Nor did he describe whether permission needed to be obtained from retailers to snap photos of their patrons’ license numbers or how DNA members should behave if confronted by retailers, patrons or police.

Many retails chains have policies that limit or prohibit solicitation on their properties. The video provided no guidance on whether individual DNA members should increase their insurance protection or advise local authorities that they were canvassing the parking lots of doctors’ offices, churches and stores to record license-plate data.

A Dallas-based MLM business — Narc That Car — has a similar program involving the capture of license-plate numbers for entry in a database.

UPDATE 11:59 A.M. (See comment below that explains there are two versions of the DNA promo video on YouTube, one that is 8:40 in length and one that is 8:48. The longer version includes this narration about DNA promoter Jeff Long’s experience recording license-plate numbers in a Walmart parking lot:

“People looked at me kinda weird. But I didn’t care. You kind of do it inconspicuously. . . . because . . . you know, everybody, ‘Why are you taking a photo of my car?’”

The narration in the 8:48 version continues:

“Who cares what people think? Who cares what people are going to . . . look at you weird? Whatever. Because as you do this, and you record 20 license plates, the company’s going to pay you $25.”)

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9 Responses to “Data Network Affiliates (DNA) Promoter Describes Program As ‘Cause’; References Walmart Parking Lot; Says Members Should ‘Snap’ License Plates With iPhones, Blackberrys”

  1. Quick note:

    The video referenced above appears to have been produced by Jeff Long, whom DNA has identified in an audio recording as its top affiliate — more than 700 individual recruits.

    Long purportedly also was involved with Narc Thar Car.

    I don’t believe Long was the source of the spam we received; I think the sender was a member of his downline who owns a domain registered at a South Carolina address.

    Patrick

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  2. Quick note:

    OK. There are two versions of the Jeff Long video on YouTube. One is 8:40; the other is 8:48.

    The longer version includes this commentary about Long’s experience in a Walmart parking lot as he took pictures of plate numbers.

    “People looked at me kinda weird,” according to the narration in the 8:48 version of the video. “But I didn’t care. You kind of do it inconspicuously. . . . because . . . you know, everybody, ‘Why are you taking a photo of my car?'”

    The narration in the 8:48 version continues:

    “Who cares what people think? Who cares what people are going to . . . look at you weird? Whatever. Because as you do this, and you record 20 license plates, the company’s going to pay you $25.”

    The shorter version (8:40) does not include those lines. Nor does it include Long’s name. (The longer version includes Long’s name and says the video was recorded in Florida at Long’s home near a golf course.)

    Longer version (8:48):

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=210ht8lWib0

    Shorter version (8:40):

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zynUKK1P8NI

    Patrick

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  3. Patrick:

    I signed up as a Free Agent and as one would suspect my mailbox on a daily bases is slammed with spam emails from the company. The very first one said that I had two web pages that were setup by the company for my benefit and to get people to join. As of today I have been informed that I now have 85 people in my downline. I tried to send the email to you but it was rejected. I will make another attempt at forwarding to you.

    Jack

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  4. Jack Arons: I tried to send the email to you but it was rejected.

    Jack,

    I received a Blog Comment from you several days ago that included multiple links. The system flagged it as spam because of the links. This Blog has received more than 20,000 spams in the past 13 months and employs a system to prevent its publication.

    Your multilink post was not published instantly because of the spam software, which holds such posts in a queue for manual approval.

    Within minutes, you sent me an email, questioning whether I was “blocking” your posts.

    I then sent you an email explaining why your post was not published immediately, advising you that I found it in queue and approved it manually.

    Your post already had been published by the time I sent you the email.

    In virtually all situations, the software will block comments that contain multiple links as a spam-prevention measure. Because not all people who send multiple links are spammers — meaning they are legitimate posters who might want to share links of interest — the system holds such posts in a queue for manual approval.

    Occasionally the system will block a post that contains a single link or no link at all, depending on variables.

    Patrick

      (Quote)

  5. Quick note:

    Received more affiliate spam at 5:13 p.m. (ET). Affiliates appear to be targeting this thread:

    http://patrickpretty.com/2010/02/11/data-network-affiliates-pitchman-for-license-plate-database-cites-amber-alert-walmart-church-company-website-suggests-amber-alert-falling-short-on-child-recovery-mission/

    And the spam appears to be originating in or around the Carolinas.

    Patrick

      (Quote)

  6. I have to laugh at every single time they have to sneak around for something that’s suppose to be legit. If people are looking at him, why isn’t he trying to get them in his downline?

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  7. Jack:

    Just curious why you call email from DNA as “spam emails from the company”?

    Obviously, I do not support nor condone DNA nor Narcthatcar but I find it strange that you indicate you signed up to the company, obviously agreeing to accept email messages from the admin and then you refer to it as spam mail.

    Please understand that I’m not calling you out (yikes!), just curious why you would refer to email from the company that you signed up with as spam.

    I’m glad you signed up so you can report to us what’s happening as you have done with this program and others.

    I’m just perplexed as to why you would refer to email from them to you as spam. That’s all. :)

    ARWR

    Jack Arons: Patrick:I signed up as a Free Agent and as one would suspect my mailbox on a daily bases is slammed with spam emails from the company. The very first one said that I had two web pages that were setup by the company for my benefit and to get people to join. As of today I have been informed that I now have 85 people in my downline. I tried to send the email to you but it was rejected. I will make another attempt at forwarding to you.Jack  

      (Quote)

  8. Hey everyone Jeff Long here. I appreciate what’s being said here but come on guys…I was just really excited about an opportunity that I thought was going to be really awesome for people…I was wrong. I have decided to leave DNA.

    I’ve got a post on my personal blog regarding all of this if you care to read it. http://www.JoinJeffLong.com

    In Gratitude,

    Jeff Long

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  9. Jeff,

    With all due respect, DNA was from the beginning a scam easily identified from fifty miles away. You “make money” by convincing others to join, and it has been obvious from day one that there is no real product — no one will ever pay money for the out-of-date, incredibly limited license plate data, nor will it ever help anyone find a missing child. Same thing with NarcThatCar — easily identified as a scam. IMO next time you should promote a company that actually has a real product.

    Jeff Long: Hey everyone Jeff Long here. I appreciate what’s being said here but come on guys…I was just really excited about an opportunity that I thought was going to be really awesome for people…I was wrong. I have decided to leave DNA.I’ve got a post on my personal blog regarding all of this if you care to read it. http://www.JoinJeffLong.comIn Gratitude,Jeff Long  (Quote)

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