Could someone please tell me the word for what a person is called who is arranged to place the first call and place an order in order to make others believe that the product is really a good one to buy.

To give you a context, in the movie "JOY", when the protagonist goes on about how to use the mop, her friend calls her and asks questions which in turn causes others to start calling about the mop.

I would like to know the word.



1 Answer 1


I think the word you are looking for is shill. It used to be a common practice on eBay in the early days to have a friend (or even a second account) bid just to raise the price. (I'm not sure if it still is.) Here's the definition from the Oxford Living Dictionaries:



North American
_informal _

  1. An accomplice of a confidence trickster or swindler who poses as a genuine customer to entice or encourage others.

    ‘I used to be a shill in a Reno gambling club’
    figurative ‘the agency is a shill for the nuclear power industry’

1.1 A person who pretends to give an impartial endorsement of something in which they themselves have an interest.

‘a megamillionaire who makes more money as a shill for corporate products than he does for playing basketball’

  • 1
    Yep, "shill" is the word that came to my mind, and it goes back to the old carnival barker days 100 years ago, if not earlier. (Alas, "shill" is used as short for "shilling", swamping out the pretender meaning in Ngram.)
    – Hot Licks
    Sep 18, 2018 at 21:52

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