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Modeling Scams-How To Avoid Being A Victim

Updated on April 8, 2013

Trust Your Instincts...Scams Are Everywhere

Modeling agency scams are so prevalent that both the Better Business Bureau and the Federal Trade Commission have released warnings about unscrupulous modeling agencies, modeling scouts, and modeling photographers. Parents or Guardians of young aspiring models must be on the look-out for scams of all types.

The Federal Trade Commission has issued a report for consumers on modeling-agency rip-offs that offers some guidlines about scams. This report gives aspiring models great advice about the many potential rip-off schemes out there including the internet. (the FTC website> www.ftc.go/bcp/conline/pubs/services/model.html)

Advice From The Better Business Bureau

The BBB advises caution when dealing with modeling agencies. Although ethical and legitimate agencies exists, the BBB warns that "for too often, consumers are victimized by unscrupulous talent and modeling agencies" and yes photographers too. Promising, money, exposure, and stardom.

Before becoming involved with an agency, know exactly what the agency should be doing for you. An agency should be engaged in the marketing and booking of talent. Usually a state license is required to book work for a fee. The agent's role is to promote the talent [ in this case, a model] who has contracted them for their marketing services, negotiate the most favorable contract for the talent and collect a commission from the talent.

There are ethical and legitimate talent and model agencies. You should interview your agent as throughly as you would interview your doctor, lawyer, or tax preparer. Remember, the agent will be "working for you" not vice versa. Careully review your contract with the agency/agent. This is your agreement regarding what the agent will do to earn the commission you pay.

Problems or complaints about an agency/agent may be referred to the Better Business Bureau, state Department of Licensing and Regulation or state Attorney Generals Office in the city where the company is located.

Scams Are Everywhere

Parents Beware (Do Your Homework)

Because young impressionable girls desire to become a model can cloud their judgement, Parents should be on the look out for all types of scams. A young aspiring model's desire to launch a modeling career may sometimes overshadow her logic and she find herself in a situation she is'nt equipped to handle. Or she may realize she is being ripped off. This is why it's essential for parents or guardians to stay involved on every step of their daughter's career, especially when she is starting out.

Steer clear of modeling companies that require you to use a special photographer.Compare fees and work quality of several photographers. Be suspect if a company requires an up-front fee to serve as your agent. Be leery of companies that only accept payment by cash or money order. Read it as a strong signal that the company is more interested in your money than your career.

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Sephora: The Ultimate Guide to Makeup, Skin, and Hair from the Beauty Authority

Sephora: The Ultimate Guide to Makeup, Skin, and Hair from Beauty Authority

 

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    • profile image

      ConvenientCalendar 4 years ago

      I know a few people who have been scammed! It seems like there are a lot of them going on right now!

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @bushaex: bushaex, I would have to agree with you. Although there are no government statistics...the ads for "stay at home jobs" and "resume posting sites" do increase in a down economy[the latter for identity theft] The modeling industry is no exception with the unscrupluous preying on the naive and vulnerable looking for fame and fortune, easily!

      Thanks for your visiting and your insightful comments.

    • bushaex profile image

      Stephen Bush 5 years ago from Ohio

      Given the chaotic economy, I can only expect that the potential for modeling scams has gone from bad to worse.

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @WriterJanis2: Janis, the best way for aspiring models and talent to avoid being victimized is to do your homework! Parents or Guardians can do simple background checks by using the popular search engines!...modeling can be very competitive and doing a liitle rsearch can avoid being scammed out of your hard earned money. Thanks for visiting and commenting.

    • WriterJanis2 profile image

      WriterJanis2 5 years ago

      It's sad that there are scammers in the industry that take advantage of girls who want to work in this field.

    • profile image

      maywhitner 5 years ago

      @ajgodinho: I just wish Id known about this a couple years ago, I was given an ultimatum at only 18 to take my clothes or I wouldn't get paid, Ive heard of similar photographer operations still running Craig Scarr in brisbane and a toby in sydney, careful girls!!

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @Ninche: Ninche, thanks for visiting and commenting on so many of my lens. I appreciate it. Although there are many legitimate modeling agencies/agents it is still a industry that requires parents using due deligence when considering launching a modeling career for their child.

    • Ninche profile image

      Ninche 5 years ago

      Good and important advices for young models and their parents!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Good advice, anyone asking for money upfront for homeworkers or modelling should ring alarm bells.

    • profile image

      reasonablerobby 5 years ago

      a good subject to write about

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
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      Ronald Tucker 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @dellgirl: dellgirl,

      I am glad you found the information helpful and I hope you have incorporated some type of antivirus software in your computer.

      Congratulations on being a new grandmother and best wishes for 2012!

    • JK Sterling profile image

      Jim Sterling 5 years ago from Franklin, Tennessee

      Thanks for the heads up on this.

    • profile image

      dellgirl 5 years ago

      Thank you for sharing this information, this is a very helpful lens you have here.

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @JK Sterling: jksterling, thanks for liking and commenting. Modeling scams have been around for decades and despite warnings from the Federal Trade Commission and the Better Business Bureau there still parents being victimized by unscrupulous model agencies, photographers, talent agents and so called "scouts".

      Parents have to do their homework to insure that they are dealing with legitimate companies and individuals, it is relative easy to use the technology of search engines to do a background check be handing over ones hard earned money.

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @anonymous: SereneSea, your accessment is so correct, scams are not only prevalent in the modeling industry but are saturated in financial, educational, and home mortgages industries. The best defense for anyone doing business is to always check references, do a background check and never pay in cash for services that traditionally requires documentation.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      We really have to be attentive of all scams, they are everywhere to fool people around, especially modeling scams.

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
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      Ronald Tucker 6 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      Vitalmughal, thanks for visting and the tip. I have found out that creating valuable, unique, useful content is the best way for my lens to get vistors that are "searching" for frelevant modeling information. Have a great week!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      To get more traffic add more relevant content in your lenses. Add at least two time more content than you currently have.

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 6 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @ajgodinho: ajgodinho, the same "get rich quick" schemes that permeates the internet can also be found in the modeling industry. Unfortunately for parents of aspiring models there is no such animal.

      Modeling requires dedication, persistence, determination, a positive attitude, self-discipline and a host of other attributes besides being "photogenic"

      Thanks for visiting and commenting...I appreciate it.

    • ajgodinho profile image

      Anthony Godinho 6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      It's not surprising that scams have increased tremendously over the past few years, especially with the rise of the internet and social media. In these types of scams, like you said, it's easy to get one's mind to cloud good judgement and one really needs to do their homework. Good topic to cover!

    • PromptWriter profile image

      Moe Wood 6 years ago from Eastern Ontario

      Homework is definitely essential. I've always wondered about the paper ads looking for models but asking for fees upfront.

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 6 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @anonymous: SereneSea, one of the best ways to avoid being a victim of not only modeling scams but business scams involving homeowners, automobiles, financial institutions, etc., is to use the very old saying "consumers beware"...individuals must do their homework!

      Appreciate your visit and comment. Have a great week.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      There are scams everywhere, but they remain unnoticed and the villains escape due to the absence of severe punishments. Hope the culprits of modeling scam get justice in due time.

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 6 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @inezsmith: Inez, it is so true. Especially in Hollywood where aspiring models and actresses come from small towns by the hundreds with "stars in their eyes" and "store front agencies" know this fact very well.

      For the young and naive these type of talent and model agencies are more interested in your money than lauching you a career in the entertainment industry. Thanks for stopping by and liking my lens.

    • profile image

      inezsmith 6 years ago

      Alot of supposed modeling or talent agencies have the better business bureau plaque on the wall like their legit..Like you said it's more of an instinct..I used to work in hollywood..there are 20 on every block.

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
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      Ronald Tucker 6 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @delia-delia: d-artist, what you experienced years ago is still prevalent today despite warnings from the Better Business Bureau and the Federal Trade Commission. The best way to avoid being a victim of unscrupulous photographers is to do background and reference checks. Thanks for your comment and stopping by.

    • delia-delia profile image

      Delia 6 years ago

      I think one of the scams that comes with modeling are photo shoots were the model is promised jobs and all they want from you is money for a portfolio...Many years ago I sued a Modeling agency and photographer, they were bonded and I got my money back.