Amazon Payments Abruptly Shuts Down Service For Apps Genius Corp's LGBT Fundraising Site - GetGayFunded.com Action Disables LGBT Site While Animal Oriented Sister Site Remains Active
DEERFIELD BEACH, Fla., Feb. 21, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- GetGayFunded.com, a crowdfunding website for the LGBT community, was effectively and unexpectedly shut down by Amazon Payments on Wednesday, said Adam Kotkin, chief executive officer of Apps Genius Corp (OTCQB: APGS), the company that developed and operates GetGayFunded.com. Amazon Payments provided the processing service by which the crowdfunding site collected and dispersed funds for projects of interest to the LGBT community and its allies.
According to Kotkin, when he approached Amazon Payments for an explanation, the responses he received from Amazon Payments representatives were confusing, contradictory and simply not true.
"In one email, Amazon Payments said the GetGayFunded application had been denied. But that's not true as our application was approved in December 2012 and the site had been fully functional with projects receiving their funding through Amazon Payments," Kotkin said. "Another rationalization said we were rejected because we claimed 501c3 status, but nowhere in any of our documentation had we claimed that because it's simply not true and their phone rep agreed.
"Yet another email from Amazon Payments said they aren't currently accepting crowdfunding projects. Again, we were accepted last December and my other crowdfunding site with Amazon Payments, GetFunded.com, is still up and functioning perfectly as are several other crowdfunding sites processed through Amazon Payments. The only difference between the two sites is that one is focused on the LGBT community and the other on animal welfare."
Kotkin is currently looking for a new partner to process funds donated on GetGayFunded.com and has started a fundraising project of his own on IndieGoGo at http://igg.me/at/getgayfunded to expedite the re-launch.
He is mostly concerned, however, with the almost $7,000 that's been raised for 20 LGBT-oriented projects. Amazon Payments has ignored Kotkin's multiple appeals to release those funds to the groups for which they were intended.
Kotkin said the chain of events seemed to start when the Charleston Blockade Gay Rugby Team had trouble collecting the $2,000 contributed for their new team uniforms. The team directed Amazon Payments to GetGayFunded to review the team's project and while an error was found on the team's payment processing application, the Amazon Payment rep said there was nothing misleading or inappropriate listed on the team's fundraising page. One hour later, Amazon Payments terminated it relationship with GetGayFunded.com, leaving all the LGBT projects on the site in limbo.
"These people worked hard to fund projects on my site," he said. "I don't care if we never work with Amazon again and I don't care about our lost fees, but these projects deserve to have their funds released."
Interestingly, Amazon founder and chief executive Jeff Bezos and his wife donated $2.5 million last year to a Washington state campaign to legalize same-sex marriage there. According to a Wall Street Journal report at the time, Amazon spokesman Drew Herdener said, "It's a personal decision, and Jeff and Mackenzie feel strongly about the issue."
"One would hope that Mr. Bezos' inclusive and supportive nature would trickle down through the whole organization," Kotkin said.
About Apps Genius Corp
Apps Genius Corp (www.appsgenius.com) develops and operates a crowdfunding platform that powers GetGayFunded, a crowdfunding site devoted to the LGBT Community and GetFunded.com, a crowdfunding site devoted to the welfare of animals. It also develops, markets, publishes and distributes social games and software applications that consumers can use on a variety of platforms. The platforms include social networks, wireless devices such as cellular phones and smartphones, including the Apple iPhone™, and standalone websites.
Statements about the future expectations of Apps Genius Corp, and all other statements in this press release other than historical facts, are "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and as that term is defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Apps Genius Corp intends that such forward-looking statements shall be subject to the safe harbors created thereby. Since these statements involve certain risks and uncertainties and are subject to change at any time, Apps Genius Corp's actual results could differ materially from expected results.
SOURCE Apps Genius Corp