allAgents hits 40% of fundraising target in legal battle with Purplebricks

The crowdfunding campaign aimed at raising £50,000 for review site allAgents to mount a legal challenge to Purplebricks has hit 40% of its target.

However, there are now just eight days left to raise the remainder.

By yesterday, 86 supporters had chipped in £19,978.

Purplebricks has claimed that 29% of reviews on allAgents were fake, and a further 23% could not be authenticated.

allAgents suspended the reviews and, following a further objection from Purplebricks, has now dropped the Purplebricks profile page.

It now wants to reinstate the Purplebricks account and use funds raised to cover costs, should Purplebricks pursue its legal threats.

allAgents says it hopes not to have to use any of the money raised, but to return donations.

https://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/help-us-fight-corporate-bullying-from-purplebricks-1

Meanwhile shares in Purplebricks dipped again yesterday, down 6.5% to 319p – almost £2 below their summer peak but well above the £1 launch price.

Yesterday’s fall followed a consistent downward trend last week when a particularly gloomy RICS report on the housing market may have affected investor sentiment.

The new share price values Purplebricks at about £926m – below the £1bn-plus valuation when shares hit a peak this summer.

In contrast, Countrywide shares were up 3% yesterday, but at 118p its valuation remained at £285m – a fraction of that of Purplebricks.

The share prices of LSL and Foxtons were largely unmoved yesterday.

* Purplebricks’ new advert on Rightmove now shows that there is a “Fee payable regardless of sale”. The change appears to have been made yesterday.

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26 Comments

  1. Hillofwad71

    Sounds like a solicitor’s beneficiary to me .What is  it going to prove.? Same rules apply to both parties  that all reviews are capable of being manipulated .What are they going to do forensically examine each review ?

    The fiasco with Trustpilot for Brick’s launch into the  USA when they ported the UK reviews across

    Look at these   2 recently posted from the same property for Bricks in California

    https://uk.trustpilot.com/reviews/5a05e68c1ea9160b44fced23

    https://uk.trustpilot.com/users/5a05e4110000ff000ae0eed7

    Surprised they didn’t get little Homer  to put one up too

     

     

     

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    1. cyberduck46

      Hillofwad,

       

      The case, if it transpires, will be about defamation and whether the 2013 defamation act is relevant.

       

      My understanding is that PurpleBricks have served a legal notice on AllAgents and if they don’t provide details of those responsible for the content then they themselves become responsible for the content and with a defamation case the burden of proof will be on AllAgents.

       

      This will be why TrustPilot remove a review when a company questions its legitimacy and only reinstate it once they’ve verified the legitimacy of the review. This absolves them of all liability in accordance with the 2013 Defamation Act.

       

      The outcome won’t be anything to do with positive reviews.

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      1. dompritch134

        Cyberduck

         

        I had these emails from Allagents last week

        Dear Dominic ,

        From time to time, our moderation team carry our random checks on reviews and agents in order to verify the experience. Your review has been selected for further checks. Can you please confirm if you had a genuine experience with Purplebricks.

        Kind Regards,
        Martin McKenzie
        Allagents

        Hi Dominic,Thanks for your swift reply.
        Are you able to confirm if you are a genuine Purplebrick client. If so can you please forward a copy of some correspondence confirming you as a customer (email/copy contract etc).

        Thank you in advance.

        Kind Regards,
        Martin McKenzie
        Allagents

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        1. cyberduck46

          Interesting. Not sure what to make of it. I’m presuming you left a positive review 🙂
           
           
           
           

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          1. dompritch134

            Yes I sold and completed in around June time. I replied yes i was a genuine client and that it was odd why they ask this now as PB is removed from their site.
            He now wants me to send copies of emails and contracts for verification.

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            1. gk1uk2001

              So they’re doing what trustpilot should be doing and verifying ALL reviews, not just the negative ones? Not sure I see a problem here…..

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              1. cyberduck46

                >So they’re doing what trustpilot should be doing and verifying ALL reviews
                 
                No that’s just speculation.
                 
                I doubt anybody will verify all reviews. Too expensive. TrustPilot get it right from what I’ve seen of their systems.
                 
                 

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            2. Curious george

              what? Are you serious that AllAgents is having to literally get full evidence of the customers experience in order to satisfy Purplebricks demands!  That is shocking

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          2. Bless You

            What all agents have done is basically call Purplebricks out…they have been operating for years without any problems and then all of a sudden PB show up with a company based on a review system, where you review before you have even used the product and they are threatened by them . 
             
            bless you for the truth will prevail. 
             

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            1. dompritch134

              Allgents were canvassing for negative reviews of PB on twitter from disgruntled clients, PB also noticed potential fake competitor agent lead reviews on the site.
              PB rightly took a stand against this and now Allagents are desperatly scambling around and begging for £50k.

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              1. Bless You

                I dont like review sites /fake awards etc  full stop…  this was even before PB took the pi** 
                 
                 

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        2. Property Pundit

          Yes some of us noticed you couldn’t get to your keyboard quick enough to tweet purplebricks about it. Just surprised they didn’t give you of all people the courtesy of an acknowledgement or reply.

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  2. AgentV

    With regards to the new wording on the PB advert, you can hardly read it on an iPad. Considering the vast majority of traffic to rightmove will be from mobile phones…it’s very unlikely anyone will ever see it as much more than a blur.

    But of course, they probably know that don’t they…no need to be open and transparent if you can get away with it. The wording should be the same size as ‘Except the commission’ otherwise it is nothing more than #CYNICAL MARKETING.

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    1. MrLister

      AgentV…people aren’t stupid.

      I have a very good mate who works for PB. He’s been an LPE for over a year and he says (and I absolutely believe him) that he’s never been on a valuation where the seller didn’t realise that they had to pay the marketing cost regardless. Equally as a high street agent, I’ve never come across anyone who’s had PB out and not known how the model works beforehand.

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      1. dompritch134

        I asked the very same question to an LPE and his response was the same, never ever did anyone think no fee is required on an appointment.

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        1. Bless You

          Nothing like  a “apocryphal story” or in everyday language a FAKE anecdote to prove a point. I reckon DOM is one of the dastardly Bruce brothers…   no one else would spend so much time going through share sites, review sites, industry sites etc etc talking complete nonsense to defend the share price unless had a motive. 

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          1. dompritch134

            Believe what you wish, i know 3 LPEs pretty well, and I  know quite alot of Estate agents as well due to my work.

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            1. Bless You

              Your work?  lol..  as a PR company for donald trump and now employed by PB,. 

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      2. AgentV

        MrLister
        AgentV…people aren’t stupid.

        Obviously no need for the FCA to insist on warnings on mortgage adverts to be the same size and prominence as the advert wording then……cos as we know people aren’t stupid enough to believe that their property won’t be repossesed if they fail to keep up payments on a loan secured against it. 
        So if the mortgage promoting industry have been open and honest in advertisements for years, without adverse effect, making sure there is no possibility of any misunderstandings, why can’t other advertisers just do likewise?
        Why? 

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    2. cyberduck46

      >no need to be open and transparent if you can get away with it.
       
      What about anti-competitive business practices?
       
      AgentV – “However I wouldn’t publish it on the website because my competitors would then publish on their websites ‘we charge £300 less than quoted on x’s website’. ”
       
      http://www.propertyindustryeye.com/newsflash-industry-regulator-warns-online-agents-against-making-unsubstantiated-claims-in-advertising/

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      1. AgentV

        cyberduck46

        You just continue dreaming of your dystopian world where all the money is made by large companies and syphoned off into shareholder’s pockets/ tax havens and your children, grandchildren and descendents have low paid menial jobs (like LPE’s).

        In the meantime, carry on trusting your biggest asset in life to someone who for ‘supposedly’ trying to sell it on your behalf for the highest amount possible will earn less than a decent service of your car at the local garage costs.

        I think you should look at ploughing all the money you make into a well known share listed on the AIM. I hear they are available at a good price at the moment……..and surely they can only go one way from here, because when we claim we know something to the contrary, we of course are only making it up 😉 BSOS23PC

        By the way….just as clarification…are you accusing me of carrying out anti-competitive business practices?

         

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        1. cyberduck46

          AgentV, by not publishing your fees for the reason you provide you are not being open nor transparent, exactly what you accuse PB of. In my opinion not listing a fee because another Agent will be able to inform the homeowner that they are cheaper is both anti-competitive and is neither open or transparent.

           

          I’m sure your commission rate is on your contract somewhere but the fact that you pay whether you sell or not is made very clear when you sign up with PB. More so than on any contract I’ve signed with a traditional Estate Agent.

           

          Not sure what you are on about when referring to menial jobs. Are you suggesting an LPE’s job is menial while an Estate Agent’s job is not? My son is actually at University studying medicine so I’m not sure where you are going with the children/grandchildren angle.

           

           

           

           

           

           

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          1. AgentV

            I’m sure your commission rate is on your contract somewhere but the fact that you pay whether you sell or not is made very clear when you sign up with PB. More so than on any contract I’ve signed with a traditional Estate Agent.

            Don’t think it can be clearer than saying we will only charge a fee if we fulfill the conditions of completing a sale. We use a recommended plain English contract.

            By the way, since your methodology of commenting seems to be about recording everything anyone has ever said and then bringing it back up when it suits the point you are hoping to make, I will now feel free to do likewise, though I have rarely done it before, because I don’t really like doing it (even with stuff I know about our favourite company 😉 BSOS23PC).

            One thing I have always noted in business is how to assess who you can trust………….just tell them something a bit revealing, or a little sensitive……and wait and see if they ever use it against you….or throw it back in your face. I have used this principle many times, and I have huge respect for those that have kept strum on what they knew.

            Having worked in the NHS for 9 years in my past, including doing a good few years of on call, I come from a caring background. I care passionately about doing the best for my clients which is why I criticise ‘online listers’ that are only out to make as much money as possible for the few at the top, whilst exploiting others.

            In your quote against me, you forgot to include the part where I said I would charge a ‘little old lady’ who I knew had paid double what she needed to for her double glazing, the same as I would anybody else……in actual fact I would probably charge her less to try and make up a bit for the DG rip off!!

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  3. GeorgeHammond78

    I still hate PB with a passion as I think their whole platform is the work of con-misery-merchants. BUT, Allagents deserve everything coming their way; the vast majority of the negative reviews on there (relative to any agent who refuses to engage with them) are spurious at best. And, is it a coincidence that the agents with positive reviews are those that spend money with them?

    Most with negative reviews on Allagents just ignore them as no-one outside of the industry reads them anyway but PB as a shining example of the Kings New Clothes must be desperate to allay any fears of being found out that they are going after AA with such ferocity.

     

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    1. gk1uk2001

      We don’t spend any money with allagents yet are still rated very highly on there so that kinda blows that theory out of the water….. We’ve not experienced any issues with competitors leaving fake reviews to try and discredit us, nor have we engaged in such practices against our competitors. I’m not saying it doesn’t happen but it could happen on any review platform, not just allagents. I’ve left negative reviews on trustpilot and tripadviser for certain companies and never been asked to verify any interaction with said companies on those reviews so it’s just inconsistent. The whole review system is buggered really.

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      1. GeorgeHammond78

        Doesn’t happen on Google because they will investigate the spurious when asked to do so……….

        Well done in not spending money with Allagents, why would you? Negative or positive reviews on their site, matter not since no potential client ever reads them. Its a tawdry, grubby little business that is only known within the industry and millenial complainants. It has no relevance whatsoever except as a useful forum for keeping the feckless off Google. If you want your competitors to read how wonderful you are, great, keep directing your clients to review you on Allagents.

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