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Vector Marketing/Cutco Being Investigated by the Oregon Attorney General

According to the Salem Statesman Journal, the Oregon Attorney General is looking for people who were misled in any way by Vector Marketing/Cutco- a company that recruits students to sell very expensive kitchen knives through in-home demonstration starting with their friends and family.
Students Against Vector Exploitation
Students Against Vector Exploitation
They said they will take action if they can find people in Oregon to substantiate the well known complaints about Vector. Vector is under an agreement with the Marion County court to be "truthful in representations made to induce persons to sell Vector's products" and tell jobseekers "exactly what the job is about before they get there."

"If they are breaking that agreement, not only they are violating the law, but they're violating an agreement with the court," AG Spokeswoman Jan Margosian said. "So people need to speak up and let us know about it."


This company advertises vague "Customer Service and sales" "positions" in "housewares and sporting goods" with "no door-to-door or telemarketing" for over "$12/base-appt" all over the nation and it's main recruiting website is www.workforstudents.com

It turns out to be a kitchen knife selling scheme: after you pay about $150 for a demo set (that may be refundable) you are turned loose to sell these knife sets to your friends and family costing anywhere from $200-$2000 with a starting commission rate of 10%. Then you're supposed to ask them for the contact info of their friends and family and do the same. There is no pay for training, meetings, soliciting appts over the phone, writing reports, driving to appts, etc. As reps are often misled about their job, they are also often misled abot the quality of the knives. You are hired as an independent contractor instead of an employee and that basically allows them to withhold pay for training, phone time, etc. There is a base pay per appt you don't sell at, as long as it is qualified by their standards (one-on-one done fully to someone over 25 with a job). They've admitted to fraud in settlements with the Australian Consumer and Competition Commission (1999), Wisconsin Consumer Protection Dept and a Court in Marion County(1994), and the Arizona Attorney General (1992). Wisconsin surveyed 940 Vector Marketing recruits in 1992 and found that almost half either earned nothing or lost money working for Vector and they earned less than $3 a day on average selling cutlery for Vector. Vector has settled several wage claims that were filed at the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries last year, although it did not acknowledge any law violation.

The Complaint Station, a Web site where consumers can post messages with concerns regarding a product or company, has logged more than 2,000 complaints against Vector Marketing and Cutco. An online group called Students Against Vector Exploitation, or SAVE, has an online petition against the companies with almost 3,000 signatures since it began last year.

Many sites and newspaper articles have done stories on Vector:
Channel 10 News Albany:
Cornell University:
Known False and Misleading Claims:
 link to www.thecomplaintstation.com

If you've been misled by Vector, please don't let the get away with it! You can contact the Oregon Attorney General's office and let them know at:
(503) 378-4320 from Salem
(503) 229-5576 from Portland (toll free)
1 (877) 877-9392 elsewhere in Oregon (toll free)
 consumer.hotline@doj.state.or.us email-24 hours

homepage: homepage: http://news.statesmanjournal.com/article.cfm?i=85450