Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Consider These Charities for Holiday Gift Giving


I was perusing a Forbes 2012 list of top 10 Travel Gifts for 2013 and came across their 7 top travel related charities.

Giving to charity in a loved one's name can be incredibly gratifying for both the giver and the recipient.

Here is one of my favorites.. Day's For Girls 

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Words To Live By

"Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure, than to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in the gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat....
Teddy Roosevelt 

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Cyberstalking Is a Crime.. Punishable by Jail Time

Most Cyberstalkers and Trolls think they won't get caught.. but almost always are... Then it's deportation, jail, loads of embarrassment and worse. 

New York

Last updated: December 12, 2010
§240.30 Aggravated harassment in the second degree.
A person is guilty of aggravated harassment in the second degree when, with intent to harass, annoy, threaten or alarm another person, he or she:
1. Either
(a) communicates with a person, anonymously or otherwise, by telephone, by telegraph, or by mail, or by transmitting or delivering any other form of written communication, in a manner likely to cause annoyance or alarm; or
(b) causes a communication to be initiated by mechanical or electronic means or otherwise with a person, anonymously or otherwise, by telephone, by telegraph, or by mail, or by transmitting or delivering any other form of written communication, in a manner likely to cause annoyance or alarm; or
2. Makes a telephone call, whether or not a conversation ensues, with no purpose of legitimate communication; or
3. Strikes, shoves, kicks, or otherwise subjects another person to physical contact, or attempts or threatens to do the same because of a belief or perception regarding such person's race, color, national origin, ancestry, gender, religion, religious practice, age, disability or sexual orientation, regardless of whether the belief or perception is correct; or
4. Commits the crime of harassment in the first degree and has previously been convicted of the crime of harassment in the first degree as defined by section 240.25 of this article within the preceding ten years.
5. For the purposes of subdivision one of this section, "form of written communication" shall include, but not be limited to, a recording as defined in subdivision six of section 275.00 of this part.
Aggravated harassment in the second degree is a class A misdemeanor.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Cyberstalking... Not a Victimless Crime.

Cyberstalking is the use of the Internet or other electronic means to stalk or harass an individual, a group of individuals, or an organization.[1] It may include the making of false accusations or statements of fact (as in defamation), monitoring, making threats, identity theft, damage to data or equipment, the solicitation of minors for sex, or gathering information that may be used to harass. The definition of "harassment" must meet the criterion that a reasonable person, in possession of the same information, would regard it as sufficient to cause another reasonable person distress.[2] Cyberstalking is different from spatial or offline stalking in that it occurs through the use of electronic communications technology such as the internet. However, it sometimes leads to it, or is accompanied by it.[3] Both are criminal offenses.[4] Cyberstalking shares important characteristics with offline stalking; many stalkers – online or off – are motivated by a desire to control their victims.[5]
A cyberstalker may be an online stranger or a person whom the target knows. A cyberstalker may be anonymous and may solicit involvement of other people online who do not even know the target.
Cyberstalking is a criminal offense that comes into play under state anti-stalking laws, slander laws, and harassment laws. A cyberstalking conviction can result in a restraining order, probation, or even criminal penalties against the assailant, including jail.


Stalking is a continuous process, consisting of a series of actions, each of which may be entirely legal in itself. Technology ethics professor Lambèr Royakkers writes that:
Stalking is a form of mental assault, in which the perpetrator repeatedly, unwantedly, and disruptively breaks into the life-world of the victim, with whom he has no relationship (or no longer has), with motives that are directly or indirectly traceable to the affective sphere. Moreover, the separated acts that make up the intrusion cannot by themselves cause the mental abuse, but do taken together (cumulative effect).[6]
CyberAngels has written about how to identify cyberstalking:
When identifying cyberstalking "in the field," and particularly when considering whether to report it to any kind of legal authority, the following features or combination of features can be considered to characterize a true stalking situation: malice, premeditation, repetition, distress, obsession, vendetta, no legitimate purpose, personally directed, disregarded warnings to stop, harassment, and threats.[7]
A number of key factors have been identified:
  • False accusations. Many cyberstalkers try to damage the reputation of their victim and turn other people against them. They post false information about them on websites. They may set up their own websites, blogs or user pages for this purpose. They post allegations about the victim to newsgroups, chat rooms, or other sites that allow public contributions such as Wikipedia or Amazon.com.[8]
  • Attempts to gather information about the victim. Cyberstalkers may approach their victim's friends, family, and work colleagues to obtain personal information. They may advertise for information on the Internet, or hire a private detective.[9]
  • Monitoring their target's online activities and attempting to trace their IP address in an effort to gather more information about their victims. [10]
  • Encouraging others to harass the victim. Many cyberstalkers try to involve third parties in the harassment. They may claim the victim has harmed the stalker or his/her family in some way, or may post the victim's name and telephone number in order to encourage others to join the pursuit.
  • False victimization. The cyberstalker will claim that the victim is harassing him/her. Bocij writes that this phenomenon has been noted in a number of well-known cases.
  • Attacks on data and equipment. They may try to damage the victim's computer by sending viruses.
  • Ordering goods and services. They order items or subscribe to magazines in the victim's name. These often involve subscriptions to pornography or ordering sex toys then having them delivered to the victim's workplace.
  • Arranging to meet. Young people face a particularly high risk of having cyberstalkers try to set up meetings between them.[11]
Cyberstalking is a form of cyberbullying.


Mental profiling of digital criminals has identified factors that motivate stalkers as: envy; pathological obsession (professional or sexual); unemployment or failure with own job or life; intention to intimidate and cause others to feel inferior; the stalker is delusional and believes he/she "knows" the target; the stalker wants to instill fear in a person to justify his/her status; belief they can get away with it (anonymity); intimidation for financial advantage or business competition; revenge over perceived or imagined rejection.[12][13]


Of women

Harassment and stalking of women online is common, and can include rape threats, and other threats of violence, as well as the posting of women's personal information. It is blamed for limiting victims' activities online or driving them offline entirely, thereby impeding their participation in online life and undermining their autonomy, dignity, identity, and opportunities.[14]

Of intimate partners

Cyberstalking of intimate partners is the online harassment of a current or former romantic partner. It is a form of domestic violence, and experts say its purpose is to control the victim in order to encourage social isolation and create dependency. Harassers may send repeated insulting or threatening e-mails to their victims, monitor or disrupt their victims' e-mail use, and use the victim's account to send e-mails to others posing as the victim or to purchase goods or services the victim does not want. They may also use the internet to research and compile personal information about the victim, to use in order to harass him or her.[15]

Of celebrities and public persons

Profiling of stalkers shows that almost always they stalk someone they know or, via delusion, think they know, as is the case with stalkers of celebrities or public persons in which the stalkers feel they know the celebrity even though the celebrity does not know them.[16] As part of the risk they take for being in the public eye, celebrities and public figures are often targets of lies or made-up stories in tabloids as well as by stalkers, some even seeming to be fans. In one noted case in 2011, actress Patricia Arquette quit Facebook after alleged cyberstalking. In her last post, Arquette explained that her security guys chewed her out and warned her Facebook friends to never accept friend requests from people they do not actually know. Arquette stressed the importance of differentiating that just because people were on her page or seemed to be friends or fans did not really mean they were safe. "I'm going to say it again because it is important", the actress wrote about persons on her page, "it doesn't mean they are safe". The media issued a statement that Arquette planned to communicate with fans exclusively through her Twitter account in the future.[17]

By anonymous online mobs

Web 2.0 technologies have enabled online groups of anonymous people to self-organize to target individuals with online defamation, threats of violence and technology-based attacks. These include publishing lies and doctored photographs, threats of rape and other violence, posting sensitive personal information about victims, e-mailing damaging statements about victims to their employers, and manipulating search engines to make damaging material about the victim more prominent. Victims are often women and minorities.[citation needed] They frequently respond by adopting pseudonyms or going offline entirely.[18] A notable example of online mob harassment was the experience of American software developer and blogger Kathy Sierra. In 2007 a group of anonymous individuals attacked Sierra, threatening her with rape and strangulation, publishing her home address and Social Security number, and posting doctored photographs of her. Frightened, Sierra cancelled her speaking engagements and shut down her blog, writing “I will never feel the same. I will never be the same.”[18]
Experts attribute the destructive nature of anonymous online mobs to group dynamics, saying that groups with homogeneous views tend to become more extreme as members reinforce each other's beliefs, they fail to see themselves as individuals, so they lose a sense of personal responsibility for their destructive acts, they dehumanize their victims, which makes them more willing to behave destructively, and they become more aggressive when they believe they are supported by authority figures. Internet service providers and website owners are sometimes blamed for not speaking out against this type of harassment.[18]

Corporate cyberstalking

Corporate cyberstalking is when a company harasses an individual online, or an individual or group of individuals harasses an organization.[19] Motives for corporate cyberstalking are ideological, or include a desire for financial gain or revenge.[20]



Preliminary work by Leroy McFarlane and Paul Bocij has identified four types of cyberstalkers: the vindictive cyberstalkers noted for the ferocity of their attacks; the composed cyberstalker whose motive is to annoy; the intimate cyberstalker who attempts to form a relationship with the victim but turns on them if rebuffed; and collective cyberstalkers, groups with a motive.[21] According to Antonio Chacón Medina, author of Una nueva cara de Internet, El acoso ("A new face of the Internet: stalking"), the general profile of the harasser is cold, with little or no respect for others. The stalker is a predator who can wait patiently until vulnerable victims appear, such as women or children, or may enjoy pursuing a particular person, whether personally familiar to them or unknown. The harasser enjoys and demonstrates their power to pursue and psychologically damage the victim.[22]


Cyberstalkers find their victims by using search engines, online forums, bulletin and discussion boards, chat rooms, and more recently, through social networking sites,[23] such as MySpace, Facebook, Bebo, Friendster, Twitter, and Indymedia, a media outlet known for self-publishing. They may engage in live chat harassment or flaming or they may send electronic viruses and unsolicited e-mails.[24] Cyberstalkers may research individuals to feed their obsessions and curiosity. Conversely, the acts of cyberstalkers may become more intense, such as repeatedly instant messaging their targets.[25]
More commonly they will post defamatory or derogatory statements about their stalking target on web pages, message boards, and in guest books designed to get a reaction or response from their victim, thereby initiating contact.[24] In some cases, they have been known to create fake blogs in the name of the victim containing defamatory or pornographic content.
When prosecuted, many stalkers have unsuccessfully attempted to justify their behavior based on their use of public forums, as opposed to direct contact. Once they get a reaction from the victim, they will typically attempt to track or follow the victim's internet activity. Classic cyberstalking behavior includes the tracing of the victim's IP address in an attempt to verify their home or place of employment.[24]
Some cyberstalking situations do evolve into physical stalking, and a victim may experience abusive and excessive phone calls, vandalism, threatening or obscene mail, trespassing, and physical assault.[24] Moreover, many physical stalkers will use cyberstalking as another method of harassing their victims.[26][27]
A 2007 study led by Paige Padgett from the University of Texas Health Science Center found that there was a false degree of safety assumed by women looking for love online.[28][29]

Cyberstalking legislation

United States

The current US Federal Anti-Cyber-Stalking law is found at 47 U.S.C. § 223.[30]
The first U.S. cyberstalking law went into effect in 1999 in California. Other states include prohibition against cyberstalking in their harassment or stalking legislation. In Florida, HB 479 was introduced in 2003 to ban cyberstalking. This was signed into law on October 2003. [31]
While some laws only address online harassment of children, there are laws that protect adult cyberstalking victims. While some sites specialize in laws that protect victims age 18 and under, current and pending cyberstalking-related United States federal and state laws offer help to victims of all ages.[32]
Some states in the U.S. have begun to address the issue of cyberstalking:

  • A few states have both stalking and harassment statutes that criminalize threatening and unwanted electronic communications.
  • Other states have laws other than harassment or anti-stalking statutes that prohibit misuse of computer communications and e-mail, while others have passed laws containing broad language that can be interpreted to include cyberstalking behaviors
Cyberstalking has also been addressed in recent U.S. federal law. For example, the Violence Against Women Act, passed in 2000, made cyberstalking a part of the federal interstate stalking statute. Still, there remains a lack of legislation at the federal level to specifically address cyberstalking, leaving the majority of legislative prohibitions against cyberstalking at the state level.[24]
Most stalking laws require that the perpetrator make a credible threat of violence against the victim; others include threats against the victim's immediate family; and still others require the alleged stalker's course of conduct constitute an implied threat. While some conduct involving annoying or menacing behavior might fall short of illegal stalking, such behavior may be a prelude to stalking and violence and should be treated seriously.[41]
Online identity stealth blurs the line on infringement of the rights of would-be victims to identify their perpetrators. There is a debate on how internet use can be traced without infringing on protected civil liberties.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Raw Travel Debuts in 70% of U.S.

-  New Travel Show Premieres with Aspirations of Shaking Up Sleepy Genre -

NEW YORK, NY:  October 2nd, 2013 - AIM Tell-A-Vision® Group (AIM TV) announced today that their latest production Raw Travel® is set to debut in over 73 cities and almost 78 million homes via broadcast stations this weekend October 5th -6th, 2013.  

The adventure travel series boasts timeslots in key cities including most of the top 10 markets. The show is set to debut in New York (WWOR-My9 Saturday @ 12 Midnight), Los Angeles (KCAL – 9, Saturday @ 6PM), Chicago (WFLD-Fox 32, Sunday @ 12 midnight), Boston (WCVB-ABC 5, Saturday @ 12 Noon), Atlanta (WUPA-CW 69, Saturday @ 5:30PM), San Francisco (KTVU-Fox 2, Sunday @ 11:30PM), Dallas (KXAS NBC 5, Sun @ 12:30 AM) and many more. Viewers can visit
www.RawTravel.tv/wheretowatch for a complete listing of cities, affiliates and time slots.

Raw Travel is an adventure travel & lifestyle series showcasing the rapidly growing wave of socially and environmentally aware, independent travel. The series weaves together themes of eco-tourism, volun-tourism (giving back) with underground music and authentic culture in a way unique to U.S. television.

Executive Producer and host for the ½ hour weekly series is AIM TV Founder Robert G. Rose, an experienced Executive Producer who has overseen over 300 episodes of 1st run programming and traveled to 30+ countries. Rose collaborated with key production members from his previous creations under his “American Latino Syndication” banner, which he sold to Los Angeles based LATV Networks in 2008.

While shooting Raw Travel, Rose & his crew traveled like typical budget travelers (by bus, boat and train) to destinations which offered unique opportunities for authentic cultural, environmentally sustainable, socially aware and life changing experiences. The Raw Travel crew endured earthquakes, stomach sickness, cramped chicken buses and creepy critters for the chance to experience authentic culture, view incredible landscapes and form long lasting friendships. True to the title, the program illustrates the raw and often unglamorous reality of independent travel. The show simultaneously showcases how this type of travel is not only more affordable, but can spur personal growth and fulfillment.

“I’m humbled by the confidence our broadcasting partners have demonstrated with generous time periods in cities all over the U.S. They had plenty of programming options and they chose Raw Travel,” Rose says. “We’re looking forward to showcasing real travel for real people, that doesn’t revolve around games, contests or celebrities. Raw Travel instead celebrates the wonderful and diverse world around us, which thankfully, needs no gimmick to be both entertaining and life affirming,” Rose continues. 

The website www.RawTravel.tv has undergone a complete facelift that allows fans to interact with producers, view bonus clips, get travel tips and help shape the direction for future episodes.  
# # #

AIM TV is an independent content, production and distribution company founded by media executive and entrepreneur Robert G. Rose. AIM TV aspires to produce and distribute positive, compelling content that reflects its mission of presenting Media That Matters. Visit www.AIMTVGroup.com and www.RawTravel.tv for more information.

Raw Travel Promo 2013-14.. Sure Hope You Dig It

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Raw Travel Premieres 10/5-10/6

It's finally time. Raw Travel premieres Oct. 5-6th in over 73 cities in the U.S., Puerto Rico & the Virgina Islands. More info at www.RawTravel.tv

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Dollar Rent-A-Scammed

Beautiful Roatan, Honduras


The attempted scam began innocently enough and could have happened to any traveler. I booked a car online using the popular website Kayak.com as I’ve done dozens perhaps hundreds of times, except this time it was for Roatan, the popular island and diving spot just off the coast of Honduras.

I had plenty of economically feasible rental car options to choose from, but I chose Dollar Rental Car because they are a familiar company I’ve used many times over the years. I figured a brand name company like Dollar would help me avoid any potential headaches from renting in a developing country where I suspected they had few protections for consumers.

I was wrong.


We arrived to Roatan via a ferry from the mainland in semi rough seas that had about ½ the passengers hurling into bags. I was cool, so long as I kept my head down and my eyes off of the other retching passengers.

After claiming our luggage and asking several taxi drivers where Dollar Rental Car was located, we were met with another sea but this time a sea of blank stares that then led to huddled conferences among the taxi drivers and eventually wildly conflicting information. No one, it seems, had even heard of Dollar Rental Car much less knew the location.

I proceeded to call the Roatan telephone # provided for Dollar by KAYAK from my reservation email but to no avail. The phone # was disconnected and no forwarding number was provided. Hmmmm.. more than frustration this would turn out to be RED FLAG #1. .

Finally a lone driver stepped forward and claimed to know where Dollar’s rental office was located. Ten minutes later our driver pulls into what is essentially a wooden shack with two small Dollar Rental Car signs haphazardly tacked up to the chain link fence and an even smaller, home printer printed sign tacked or taped to a small shack that apparently served as the Roatan’s Dollar Rental Car. “This is their office” I thought?

The shack had a very temporary feel to it, especially in comparison to the other rental car companies surrounding it. Suddenly I regretted not booking with another, even an “off brand” rental car company.
The “office” interior wasn’t any more appealing, consisting of a couple of folding chairs, a desk and an old computer terminal. But hey, function over form right? Well, the function was a sticking point as well. The lone woman in the office was busy tapping her mobile device and didn’t even look up, much less acknowledged us when we walked into the shack, creating an awkward moment until eventually I break the silence by asking “hello, do you work here?” which led to an even more awkward grunt that I could not decipher as either “yes” or “no”, so I waited. .

Finally some young, rotund (not shorthand for someone from Roatan) guy in shorts, an ill-fitting t-shirt and flip flops came into the office and somewhat took charge.

I asked had Dollar’s phone # changed or something and he replied that he thought we were coming in by plane not by boat. What this had to do with their telephone # not working I’m not sure but I was so relieved that they actually had our reservation that I let it slide.


The guy proceeded to pull out a boiler plate Dollar Rental Car Contract and filling it out by hand. He then asked me what our rate was. I was further confused. “Don’t you have a record” I asked as I dig into my bag for my laptop to pull up the reservation?

Finally we both confirmed the rate of $37 U.S. per day and he asked me to sign on the dotted line. There was none of the usual insurance disclaimer or upsells. In fact, there was no mention of insurance at all.

This would turn out to be RED FLAG #2 but we were late already so I didn’t argue.
When his helper pulled the tiny economy car around, we piled our luggage and ourselves in like clowns in a clown car and we were ready to take off when I noted that the fuel was not only on empty, the gauge was sitting on the wrong side of the “E” symbol. Was it broken? We half hoped. 

Nope! There was just no gas in the car, well, there was enough to pull the car around in the lot form the back to the front but was there enough to get us where we could gas up, that was the mystery.
We all nervously tittered and laughed about possibly running out of gas in Honduras but I was seriously concerned as we had very real time constraints and something like running out of gas could seriously jeopardize our shoot. Our entire purpose for being in Roatan in the 1st place was to produce for our Honduras episode of Raw Travel (launching Oct. 5th in the U.S.).

The guys at Dollar assured me there was a gas station just a couple of miles down the road and that the car would make it there and we did. But not before some very nervous moments and not before filming the thing on our Go Pro camera just for laughs. Who rents a car to a customer on empty? No..,not even on empty but past empty? Evidently Dollar Rental Car in Roatan that is who. Ladies and gentlemen, may I present RED FLAG #3.


This was my 2nd time in Roatan and I sort of knew the lay of the land. We were heading to the West End of the island which is where most of the action we needed to document happens and was only a 20-25 minute drive away from the airport and the rental car agency.

I was torn over whether we actually needed a car but in the end decided on one in case we needed to drive to other parts of the island. Since we were going to be in Roatan less than 24 hours I felt I wouldn’t take chances in case we needed a vehicle to chase a good story.

Turns out, one of the stories WOULD be the Dollar Rental Car experience and will hopefully serve as a warning for other unsuspecting t travelers to Honduras or any other country that Dollar Rental Car operates that they do not take responsibility for the action of their agents in other countries.

As things turned out we didn’t need the car. We promptly drove to the west End, checked into our hotel and began setting up shoots for that afternoon and the next morning. The West End is easily covered on foot so the car remained parked until it was time to return it and catch the early afternoon ferry back to the mainland. What little we drove the car was 100% without incident.

The next day, right on schedule we returned the little car to the Dollar Rental car shack this time with a 1/8 tank of gas so at least the next customer wouldn’t be sweating bullets wondering if they will be stranded in Roatan after renting from Dollar (unless of course the staffers go joy riding after hours).
Mr. T-shirt and flip flops and his hearty assistant from the day before inspected the car and gave it a “good to go” thumbs up. The assistant then drove us the few miles to the boat ferry. No issues and again no problems with the car whatsoever just some small talk about Roatan, our trip, living in the U.S. etc

Mr. Assistant made it clear we were early for our ferry and had plenty of time to eat at the ferry station which we proceeded to do immediately after waving goodbye and thought we’d seen the last of the Roatan Dollar Rental Car folks.

We checked in for the ferry, breezed through security and had some lunch and were waiting around for our departure time when the Dollar Rental Car scam kicked into high gear.

I emerged from the restroom when one of my travel mates alerted me that some guys from Dollar Rental Car were in the lobby of the ferry terminal and wished to see me. I thought maybe I had left something in the car or something so I walked outside to the lobby where 2 guys I’d never seen before wearing official looking red polo shirts with Dollar Rental Car logos were waiting for me and glaring my direction severely. The younger of the two spoke Enlgish and told me in his most grown up voice that there was a problem with the car.

I sighed. Here it comes. After all this time, all these red flags, here is the very scam I’d been hoping to avoid. I tried to remain calm. “What problem?! I barely drove it” I replied.

The young guy then proceeded to tell me that somehow I had messed up the transmission or something or another. I laughed at the audacity of the claim. He pulled out his mobile phone which already had a man on the other line claiming to be the “manager” and asking me to come back to the office. The ferry would be leaving soon so that was not possible I said.

This official sounding gentleman who spoke perfect English then went straight into full scam mode accusing me of screwing up the transmission and “ruining the car” and said I was going to "have to pay something".

I relayed to him that I had barely driven it and said that if there had been a problem with the car why didn’t Mr. Assistant who drove us to the ferry say something then. Wouldn’t he have noticed something? Maybe he messed up the car on the drive back to the office form the ferry or maybe, just maybe, there was nothing wrong with the car in the first place, just some guys trying to extort a little money from tourists?

He replied that Mr. Assistant had alerted them that there HAD been a problem with the car when he dropped us at the ferry and when he returned it to the shack it was damaged and I owed money to fix the car.

I was on the verge of hanging up when he asked me if I’d ever driven a stick (manual transmission) before.

I informed Mr. Official Sounding Voice (AKA the manager) that I’d driven a stick many times, including learning how to drive as a preteen on a stick on the farm I grew up on many years ago.
After more back and forth and my voice beginning to raise a bit, a small crowd was now gathering as more travelers arrived to catch the ferry. 

I finally wearied of this brazen scam and told Mr. Official Sounding Voice the truth. I told him that we were in Roatan filming a travel show and that we had videotaped the pickup of the car and would now begin filming this incident and since the whole thing is taped documentary style it would be no trouble at all to put the whole thing on national TV for the world to see in a cute little segment entitled "Dollar Rental Car Tries to Scam Us".

I gave him the name and website (www.RawTravel.tv) of the show and told him to look it up. He paused, and then asked to speak to his “mechanic”, the other employee. After a brief conversation in Spanish the mobile was returned back to me.

Mr. Official Sounding said “never mind” that even though I had ruined the car he was going to forget about it.
And that is when I really got mad. Really? You are going to forget all about me ruining a car now?


All it took for him to give up this charade was for me to simply offer up some potentially damaging publicity? If I had really damaged the car would he have rolled over so easily?

What if I hadn’t been a producer for a travel show and had been just on vacation as I was in 2010 when I first visited Roatan? What of the people who, like me, use Kayak and rent from Dollar Rental Car because of the brand recognition and they think this will protect them from scam artists like these clowns who prey on unsuspecting tourists?

How many people are afraid of any issues like this in another country and simply pay these guys money to go away and forget the whole thing?

I told him too late. This WAS going on TV and nothing he can say or do will stop it. I hung up the phone, pointed to the two guys and said something like “the next time you try to scam somebody you better, you better”… and just like in a bad sit com show I could not find the words to finish my sentence in English or Spanish.. so I stormed off. But I think they got the point.

To be honest I’m not sure what I exactly said but I wish I had it to do over again. I would have played along longer with the scam, gathered my Go Pro camera and gotten the names, images on tape, etc. before unloading the travel show truth on them.

But I had a ferry to catch and lets face it, in the heat of the moment, you don’t always think rationally and that is exactly what the scam artists are hoping.

Dollar is supposed to be a legitimate business operating in a very popular tourism destination as a service to their customers worldwide. Yet when I contacted them about this issue thinking I was doing them a favor reporting on some rogue agents using their good name in order to scam unsuspecting travelers, they took days to get back to me and then absolved themselves of any responsibility stating they sent the Roatan managements an email.

They sent them an email? The so called and alleged managers are the very ones who tried to commit the scam in the 1st place” and all Dollar does is send an email? What did the email say? “Bad agents… bad!” or perhaps “better luck next time guys”.

You can see Dollar Rental Car’s response to my emails below as well as my follow up email to them to which they have thus far never responded (as of 8/13/13).

I've always had positive dealings with Dollar in the U.S. which is why I’m shocked and disappointed that Dollar would ignore this problem and by doing so essentially be complicit in potential alleged fraud that could be committed against their own customers.

If Dollar runs their business like a solid citizen in the U.S., why allow potential scam artists apparent free rein and risk customer good will just because the location is abroad? Something doesn't smell right.

I wonder if they might change their mind come next spring when the Honduras episode hits the airwaves and this smelly business is out in the open for all to see? I guess we'll find out won't we.

Hi Robert,
Thank you for contacting us. I have forwarded your message to the location’s management to review and address. I’m sorry but we do not comment on behalf of our franchisees, who are independently-owned and operated businesses.
Anna B. / Manager, Corporate Communications


Thank you for finally replying to my concerns. However, I must admit I’m pretty taken aback by your response. I want to make sure I understand it accurately. Are you saying it is acceptable for your independently owned franchisees to attempt fraud while operating under Dollar’s franchise agreements?

Are there any steps made by Dollar to protect consumers in locations like Honduras where the consumers are led to believe they are dealing with a reputable U.S. company when in fact, they are dealing with independent operators with which, assuming your statement is accurate, you have little to no control, even in cases of potential criminal activity?

Why would Dollar give the rights to your name, logo and branding if you cannot insure consumers are protected against potentially criminal behavior?

Are you comfortable with your statement going public in our Honduras episode of Raw Travel? (The episode is currently scheduled to air in March 2014).