Cambridge Who's Who
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|Founded||Long Island (April 4, 1975 )|
|Founder(s)||merge of Manchester Who's who and Empire Who's who|
|Headquarters||Uniondale, New York|
|Area served||Worldwide, mainly English-speaking countries|
|Products||Who's who registries, available via membership|
|Subsidiaries||Metropolitan Who's Who|
As of July 2006 Cambridge Who's Who was established as a merger between Empire Executive and Professional Registry, Inc. and Manchester Who's Who Registries, Inc.
In July 2007, Cambridge Who's Who completed its acquisition of Metropolitan Who's Who, also based in Long Island.
Cambridge Who's Who advertises itself as a database of professionals and "an honor limited to individuals who have demonstrated leadership and achievement in their industry and occupation". It typically solicits persons to list with an unsolicited letter proclaiming that they have been selected for the honor. The company will interview the prospective listee, after which the company will ask the listee for money.
The Guernsey States' Data protection office advised the island inhabitants that the company would charge them hundreds of dollars for non-existing member benefits, even if it was advertising itself as a free service, and that any personal detail submitted to this company could be sold to other companies. It further advised that they shouldn't reply to letters from the company and shouldn't even visit its website.
Writer Beware, a watchdog group from the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, published an article from Victoria Strauss explaining that her husband had received an unsolicited email from the company just because he was inside her writer insurance. She claims that there is a network of inter-connected who's who scam companies that keep recycling themselves, and that this company is actually the same company as Metropolitan Who's Who since their logo designs and solicitation letters are identical. She also says that the company was the result of the "merge" of Manchester Who's who and Empire Who's who, with the last company having many complaints registered with the Better Business Bureau. She also says that the Cambridge and Empire companies use hard-selling telephone techniques, first selling themselves as a free service, then giving a high price, then lowering it to make people believe that they are getting a good deal. She says that the companies have many complaints against them in the internet, and that one blogger that denounced them was menaced with legal action, and another blogger was sued for $7 million in damages.
In 2010, the Better Business Bureau (BBB) labeled the company as a Who's Who scam. There were hundreds of consumer complaints filed against Cambridge Who's Who with various complaint bureaus, reporting fraudulent practices. In early September 2011, the BBB reported 414 complaints filed since April 2007. Based on the confirmation and nature of these complaints, the Better Business Bureau denied accreditation to Cambridge Who's Who. As of 2012, Cambridge Who’s Who had a C grade with the BBB based upon 356 complaints in 3 years.
- Who We Are, Cambridge Who's Who
- "Cambridge Who's Who Publishing Inc.". BBB Business Review. Better Business Bureau. Retrieved 3 May 2012.
- St. Petersburg Times (Florida) March 22, 2007 Thursday (Lexis). Also merger announcement and general FAQ's in company's website
- General FAQs. When was Cambridge Who's Who® established, Cambridge Who's Who, retrieved 27 August 2011
- "Cambridge Who's Who About Us'". Cambridge Who's Who. 2009-08-31.
- Victoria Strauss (2007-04-26), Victoria Strauss -- Beware Who's Who Schemes, Write Beware, watchdog group of Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America
- "Islanders warned about scam mail'". BBC. 2009-02-21.
- "Experts warn against business scam". Salt Lake City: ABC4. July 8, 2010. Retrieved 3 May 2012.
- Better Business Bureau: Business Review Reliability Report for Cambridge Who's Who Publishing Inc.
- The Guardian (London) - Final Edition. December 20, 2008 Saturday. Guardian Money pages, p.8.
- Cambridge Who's Who Publishing, Inc. v. Xcentric Ventures, LLC et al, case number 2:2006cv06590 Filed: December 11, 2006 Court: New York Eastern District Court
- Cambridge Who's Who Publishing v. Xcentric Ventures, Citizen Media Law Project, links to many of the case papers