Fake Skateboard Companies On the Rise

Students+from+publications+pose+in+front+of+the+famous+Mizzou+Quad.

Students from publications pose in front of the famous Mizzou Quad.

Website like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram are great ways for companies to get their names out into the world and get them popular. Some people take advantage of this though. Recently, an influx of fake skateboard companies have been appearing on Instagram. Some examples of these fake compaines are BrenGuard, Prestige, 365, Premium, and Palladium. One Instagram account, “Stop Brenguard/Prestige 2014” has taken steps into stopping the spread of these companies.

The comment that was left on Prestige's Instagram account that lead to me being banned from their account
The comment that was left on Prestige’s Instagram account that lead to me being banned from their account

“I expect the outcome of the Instagram account to be not to completely stop the people in charge of these companies yet, but to spread awareness about not only these people, but other companies in the future. The purpose I hope to bring is to help people be able to recognize and react to scam companies,” said Stop BrenGuard/Prestige 2014 account creator who referred to herself as Emily M.

These companies are selling decks, clothes, and wheels, and also offering sponsorships. Anyone who applies for a sponsorship “gets sponsored” and are promptly told to buy more product to show support. This product doesn’t normally even get received by the customer. They even send out fake order confirmation emails but rarely send the actual products.

“Prestige and BrenGuard have been known to only send out boards when they know that someone is on to them. Most likely they just take a blank deck and add their own graphics on it, just one at a time. Not an actual company who has a supply to sell,” Emily said.

I had the misfortune of attempting to purchase from prestigeskate.com. Their Instagram account promoted a new deal they had, which was “Buy one deck, get two free”. I felt this was too good to be true, but didn’t want to pass up on such an amazing deal. Two friends and I split the cost and placed our order. We received an order confirmation email shortly after. We not only did not receive the products, but the company never responded to our multiple emails. I posted a comment on one of Prestige’s Instagram photos about how I never received my order, tagged “Stop BrenGuard/Prestige 2014” in the comment, and was banned from their account in less than 10 seconds.

“I want to support independent skate companies, but people like this make it hard to trust small name companies,” attempted customer Parm Singh said.

Prestigeskate.com is not to be confused with prestigeskateboards.com, which is a real company. Prestige Skateshop is a well known and respected company that was even featured in the Girl/Chocolate video “Pretty Sweet”. Independent shops like this are the future of skateboarding and deserve business, but companies like Prestige make it hard for customers to trust small name shops.

“Don’t give up on indie skate companies. We need them to further skateboarding as a whole,” Singh said.