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Spam, Room reservations during Defcon, Stratosphere

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  • Spam, Room reservations during Defcon, Stratosphere

    Hello,

    Some of you may remember this spammer that also spammed the #defcon hashtag on twitter offering, "cheap rooms for defcon," but at the Stratosphere, not the Rio or other closer and cheaper hotels. They also illegally used images and content owned by Defcon, created by Neil to make their hotel room offer look like it had official Defcon affiliation, when it did not. We banned them here, and twitter eventually banned them, forcing them to re-spawn a new account with the same name but using an underscore. They also eventually took down the copyrighted content they were illegally serving.

    As we pointed out, the stratosphere is a great distance away from the Rio, and when I compared online prices published by the Stratosphere to what this spammer was claiming was a good deal, I found the online prices direct from the stratosphere's website were better than what the spammer was offering.

    Here is the question, and I'll leave this thread open for 2-3 weeks:

    Did any of you actually give this guy your credit card and have a good experience with getting your room at the Stratosphere and no problems with check-in?

    I'm interested in this, because the behavior was scammy (scam-like) based on evidence that was found, but maybe it actually worked out well for a few of you. Who used that reservation and actually had no problems?

    (Favorable replies will not reverse the decision to ban this user, as the spamming was not approved. I am only interested in this to know if I should follow-up with more investigation and work more with twitter to cite abusive or scam-like behavior by testimonial.)

  • #2
    Re: Spam, Room reservations during Defcon, Stratosphere

    Slightly unrelated, but for what it's worth...

    The link to the defcon group rate for the Rio was higher for me vs just going to the Rio's site also.

    /offtopic

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    • #3
      Re: Spam, Room reservations during Defcon, Stratosphere

      Originally posted by netstat View Post
      Slightly unrelated, but for what it's worth...

      The link to the defcon group rate for the Rio was higher for me vs just going to the Rio's site also.

      /offtopic
      That is something good to bring up, and answer quickly. As I understand it, we (Defcon) did not have the entire Rio hotel. The number of Defcon-rate reservations was limited in count. Our first year at the Rio, there was worry that we might not be able to fill up the hotel. Once the originally advertised Defcon rate rooms were consumed, the Rio chose to charge at increasing room rates, eventually exceeding the, "normal," price for rooms for other weekends on the same month. (I heard rates of ~$450-$550/night claimed for Friday or Saturday night at the Rio.)

      (One item to point out: If the reservation claimed one rate, but you were actually charged another rate, THIS IS A BIG PROBLEM. You should complain in the thread about here.)

      Running out of room reservations for the cheaper defcon rate (Friday and Saturday, not Sun-Thurs) lead to many conflicting results. For one, a single person could stay at a cheaper price if they DID NOT use the Defcon rate when setting a reservation. Additionally, when the Defcon-rate was in effect, it was possible to use the, "normal," Rio Rates for Sun-Wed and get a room for about $49/night, and $85/night on Thursday. (The Defcon rate for Sun-Thurs was $99/night but I think included 2 people, and maybe allowed for up to 4 at this same rate, but I am not sure.) However, the, "normal," rate for the Rio on Friday and Saturday was ~$168/night. As a result, a second reservation for Friday and Saturday at the Defcon rate (when it was still available) could provide rooms at an even cheaper rate. Then a third reservation at the $49/night regular Rio rate could be made for Sunday. There were also deals offered by the Rio early in 2011 (around Feb) which allowed you to get 25% off for each night of stay if you stayed 4 nights in a row, or 20% off if you stayed 3 nights in a row. As a result, early birds were able to save BUNCH of money by getting their rooms early and splitting their stay over multiple reservations. It is unlikely that they (the Rio) will make it easy to do the same thing next year. They will more likely black-out the Defcon week from promo-codes and require the Defcon rate for all days of stay for anyone, IF we get the whole hotel.

      Many people looking to save money chose to stay next door at Gold Coast, and when that filled up at other nearby hotels to avoid expensive taxi rides. (There were about 3 or 4 other hotels withing, "walking distance," depending on your definition of, "walking distance," in the Las Vegas heat.

      Hope this helps explain that issue. I am not involved in the room reservation, and am not a goon, or Defcon staff so what I write here is not an official statement from, "Defcon," only a collection of observations and what I understand of the story on this topic.

      Hope this helps!
      -Cot
      TheCotMan
      *****Retired *****
      Last edited by TheCotMan; August 16, 2011, 23:40.

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      • #4
        Re: Spam, Room reservations during Defcon, Stratosphere

        Originally posted by TheCotMan View Post
        Hope this helps explain that issue.

        I am not involved in the room reservation, and am not a goon, or Defcon staff so what I write here is not an official statement from, "Defcon," only a collection of observations and what I understand of the story on this topic.

        Hope this helps!
        -Cot
        He may not consider himself a Goon or staff but the respect he has earned from EVERYONE in the Defcon Community from all his hard work puts him in that class Automatically.

        Just for the record (even if TheCotMan rather it not be known) his Defcon status of the Oracle of Wisdom (and his open Non-biased input) makes his statements the most valuable to read.

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        • #5
          Re: Spam, Room reservations during Defcon, Stratosphere

          For reference, when I called to make reservations and the group rate was sold out at the Rio, they offered me a room deal at Harrah's and Bally's, which runs a free shuttle to/from the Rio every day about twice an hour. Ended up at Bally's, was even cheaper than Gold Coast.

          One bad thing-- first shuttle didn't run until 10am, so I often just found someone else wearing black and said "wanna split a cab?"

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          • #6
            Re: Spam, Room reservations during Defcon, Stratosphere

            For future reference, the stratosphere is surrounded by some pretty ghetto areas. I wouldn't stay there if it were free.

            The rule of thumb is watch your back any time you are north of Sahara, with the exception of the Fremont street experience (under the canopy), which is pretty well policed.

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