What happened to Trustpilot?
19th March, 2021 – This article is about Trustpilot essentially acting like the Mafia.
With a sad heart, we have to tell you that TrustPilot have banned us.
And by us, we mean you too. It was mostly for our customers, after all.
The hundreds of reviews we took so much pride in over these years, gone.
We are devastated beyond words to convey the loss we feel.
When did it happen?
On Friday, 19th March at 8.05am we received an email saying we were a “bad fit” and that we break their “ethical” standards.
Could it be the microscopy products we offer?
We were thinking it may have been the microscopy spores because they are from the Psilocybe species of fungi and commonly referred to as “magic”.
To make it abundantly clear, as it is on the rest of our website – we offer these products to look at under the ‘scope..
If we were to sell products to “grow magic mushrooms” we would probably be swamped in business, considering the boom in those Netherlands-based businesses!
But, nowhere do we advertise, promote, condone or facilitate illegal activity on our website or communications.
Did Trustpilot even read our website before they took this nuclear option?
This past year we have been chatting with our Trustpilot account manager about all sorts of features, getting API access etc… They like to call and email and treat us like good friends.
Meagan would look through our site and suggest where best to place widgets for best effect etc. What other features might be good here and there.
Trustpilot understood and knew our business.
On January 19th, 2021 Meagan (our account manager) asked us to arrange a time to discuss renewing our contract which was due to expire on 19th March 2021.
We were so busy that we forgot about that email and didn’t get back in touch.
Then came today, the 19th March 2021. Contract renewal date.
Today is the day were we were banned completely out of the blue.
Our “ethics” miraculously went bad on the renewal date, or so Trustpilot are trying to make you believe!
Being kicked when you’re down
To make things worse, seemingly out of spite they have left behind a defaced profile page for everyone to assume the worst about us.
What even is a bad-fit business?
We are sorry you even have to see some of these words:
“The types of businesses we don’t want on Trustpilot, and would consider to be bad-fits, are those that:”
- aid businesses or individuals to manipulate news, reviews, documents and results;
- promote hatred, violence, terrorism, xenophobia or any form of discrimination against any individual or group;
- offer illegal products and services; illegal drugs, prescription drugs sold on the illegal market;
- provide or facilitate the provision of escort services, mail-order brides, prostitution or any form of forced labour or human trafficking;
- offer or produce any sexual abuse or explicit imagery, and any material that presents children or animals in a sexual or illegal manner;
- organize illegal animal fights or sell products made with endangered animal parts
- facilitate criminal activities of any sort, including those carried out by means of computers or the Internet;
- are engaged in financial scams such as pyramid schemes, credit card fraud, mortgage scams; or, otherwise operate illegally; for example, selling fake or unsafe goods and services, or generally mis-sell.
…It has only been one day and we’ve already experienced nasty accusations because we have been linked to this list!
Trustpilot is trying to slaughter our business. A business we have put almost every single waking hour into since 2017 when we were amongst the only folks trying to revive a dying mycology scene in the UK with a half decent place to buy products from.
We dont feel positive today, that’s for sure.
Legal action against Trustpilot
This list above is so extremely offensive to our very core that we will not be rolling over and taking this.
In fact, we are so disgusted by it that we will be taking legal action to protect our reputation if they do not remove our profile and link to this list!
Not a hint of consistency…
Trustpilot allows huge (30K+ reviews) Netherlands-based webshops on their platform who make a business selling magic truffles containing Psilocybin (UK Class A) and fully colonised magic mushroom substrates amongst a tonne of other mind bending chemicals.
…So surely it couldn’t be our harmless microscopy spores that Trustpilot has used as their reason to ban us?
How does that make any sense? None of this makes sense.
A disgruntled customer or a jealous competitor?
Over the years, it’s fair to say we’ve experienced our fair share of despicable customers.
Sorry, we would like to tell you that everyone who shops with us are great people but that would be a downright lie. Most are though.
In this day and age it’s too easy for any small online-based business like ours to be reported for violating terms and have their service terminated.
Thorough investigations are a thing of the past and you can rarely (if at all) have a decision reviewed unless the news somehow goes viral.
After being banned from Shopify because of a troll who reported that our microscopy spore syringes were for injecting into an arm to get high, we quickly learned that the internet was savage to everyone!
…Yes, a troll successfully took our entire website down using total nonsense and a Shopify advisor blindly believed them; hook, line and sinker.
We had to build from scratch and self-host our own website after that.
Recently we took notice of another UK competitor suffer the same banning issue as us on Trustpilot. We were devastated for them… they didn’t deserve it.
It’s an unwritten rule not to be evil to your competitors (even when they pilfer your product ideas, names and content), so we would like to hope / think that this wasn’t another competitor.
What’s your purpose anyway, Trustpilot?
Trustpilot, you have zero expertise on this industry or the products we sell and your ethics are pure nonsense.
If Trustpilot has any idea what they were doing, they would see a major difference between a business like ours who specialises in all things fungi and the other (bigger…) businesses on their platform who specialise in customers getting as high as a kite.
Let us remind you of your purpose, Trustpilot… You are a review website.
Stick to what you are good at; making insane amounts of money simply to sell ‘extra’ email invitations for customers to review a business!
The more you pay Trustpilot for the invites, the less their “ethics” get in the way it seems.
It’s also interesting to note that this scenario happened at the end our yearly contract!
Now when someone searches for us on Trustpilot all they will see is a nasty message to give the impression we did something wrong… No, we didn’t.
Our products harm no living things, they bring joy, knowledge and they teach fungi through the cultivation of mushrooms.
Customers get a chance to experience the amazing and still highly unexplored health benefits mushrooms provide to mind and body.
Our microscopy spore products allow us to visualise the beginnings of the journey through a microscope, where it all starts.
Yes, it’s true that there are customers out there who could use our products in ways which go against our terms, but that can be said about any business including your own where fake reviews are a business in itself.
And if Trustpilot thinks it’s going to easily push our small business about and shit over our entire reputation by essentially accusing us of everything in that list by not defining which one applies to us, then we will fight them.
Take your ‘ethics’ and shove ’em up your ass, Trustpilot!
RIP Cylocybe @ Trustpilot
Jan 2018 – Mar 2021
Excellent 4.9 / 5