Written By: Marc Kelly
I will present all the facts I have to prove my accusations against Mike Berritta. I want to show you a timeline of events with dates, one after the other, from the start of the story to the end, or what I pray to be the end.
I started this company and App with my wife and my brother. We took a shot at this thing with all we had, which was nothing. I spent our families last 8-thousand dollars at the time to go after my dream. We made a run at it because we all believed in this dream of bringing adventurers together to explore the outdoors and this world’s amazing swimming holes. My brother and I have been Cliff Jumping for over 20 years now. I published my first piece on Cliff Jumping Locations in my High School newspaper in 2001. I believe Karma has led me to the other partners in Big Swings because they have been a God send, working non-stop to provide this free adventure tool to the community.
* If your name is mentioned in this article- then you personally attacked Big Swings and I in the name of Cliff Life yesterday, so don’t ask me why you are included in this. I covered a few names because they don’t deserve to be publicly dragged into this, I have respect for them. If you can’t handle a few cus words and gritty, dirty details then read no further.
The Beef Starts Here——-
I met Chase Reinford in early August of 2015 at Peace Rock. Afterwards he contacted us on Aug 6th on instagram and said he loved the app, and then we planned to meet up.
I jumped with Chase twice and thought he was worth taking a look at, and possibly present an opportunity to chase his own dream (no pun intended).
After our third time out, I told him I wanted to start to vest him in the company because I saw great value in him as a person and athlete. I spoke in-person with him every time we were together about safety and that we need to be sure our athletes are staying safe even when not around us. Ask any of our athletes about safety and they will verify what I’m saying. Safety always comes first with anyone, especially our family which we consider our athletes to be. Chase went out ONE day after one of these conversations and split a huge gash in his head swinging on a rope swing into a steel bridge. He had to get stitches and couldn’t go near the water. This canceled all of our plans with Chase for the next month, including a trip to Vermont we did not take that weekend based on his injuries. Here are the screenshots that prove those statements.
Top- Chase Loves Us | Middle- We want chase to be part | Bottom- Chase wants to jump even with fresh stitches in his head (Scares Us). The stitches show us exactly the safety measures he takes when we aren’t present (Scares Us More). We have to think about safety especially when liability is a factor and we are trying to represent safe cliff jumping and swimming.
The conversations below and many other very pleasant texts happened between Mike Berritta and I starting on AUG 8, 2015 on the day we met. Mike had seen the app at this point, and his opinion seemed to be positive… and remained positive for months as we can see below. After three months, I even approached Mike about hiring him to film for us. We spoke on the phone about it, and Mike never said one word about disagreeing with our company’s values or purpose. Proof of that is in these conversations……Look at the DATES ON THEM.
Ok, now I’ve even spoken to Mike, and he still never mentioned anything about not agreeing with the Big Swings mission. By November, Chase had only jumped with us once since his injury and never helped with any videos like he said he would. Jumping season was closing and he proved that he was the epitome of an unsafe jumper and has continued to do so since. I told Chase that he was too unsafe to sponsor, and I was sorry. I was more delicate than that, but that’s essentially what was said. Chase became furious calling me all kinds of names and threatening my business with lawsuits because we owed him something he said. Following this outburst, he ripped us to some major leaders of the community known as Mike Berritta and whoever else makes up Cliff Life.
The following evidence is proof that Mike acknowledges that Chase was
talking trash. Right here to the right————–>
This screenshot was taken on 12/29/15, and it refers to some negative conversations between Chase and Mike about me prior to this date of 12/29/15. Which means Mike was either slandering us before he invited us into Havasu, or he was talking trash while the Havasu thread was up. The message he is referring to between Chase and I is a conversation where we both said things we didn’t mean out of anger. I apologized to Chase for that myself, like a man. And he did the same back. At that time, I was simply defending myself against a crazy person who was threatening to sue me for nothing other than being really mad.
We all heard the tape of Chase saying he was sorry for doing what he did, and he called Mike and apologized for getting him involved out of his pure hate directed towards Big Swings. This is all fact. We all heard it, and I’d be happy to post it again; however, I’m actually trying to ease off Chase because he was a man and apologized. Yes…Chase is really the one that started the original lies, and I have to expose him again now, but this should never be mentioned again from our side. We believe we have proven the facts. Mike was the one to slander us to the community, and I can prove that with the screenshots below.
Next up would be Havasu Falls and how Mike had come up with a plan to embarrass us in front of the community because of what we “apparently” did to his friend Chase; I sense a hint of jealousy in there too to be honest.
Around 12/20/15- Mike invites Big Swings- a company that films cliff jumping- into a 100 person private group calling all the “Best Cliff Jumpers and Filmers” in the country. That is what he called it. I thought we would be allowed to bring our jumpers and camera people with that type of name on the Group I was invited into, but I was wrong. Mike allowed me to post into that thread. I posted how excited Big Swings was to get to meet all these amazing people and that we were pumped to be most likely picking out our first sponsored athlete at havasu. Mike let that post sit and be seen for OVER A WEEK AND A HALF by the 100 plus jumpers, and then I contacted Mike on 12/29/15 and asked him to please invite my crew into the event. The screenshots below are what I received back.
When was he planning on telling that group that La Swim and Cliff Life were running the production and shooting if I didn’t expose it? The post was at least two or more weeks old at that point. Was he going to wait until after everyone already committed and made plans around it? That sounds really selfish to me honestly. It’s not like a community leader to be most concerned about themselves and their gains really.
What if I put together a huge event on fb on the other side of the country, and then told you that you could come, but your crew can’t because I don’t want you to release any footage? You’d think I was a straight asshole.
Back to real life, after Mike explains why he won’t invite my crew (jumpers and filmers) into the group, I KNEW EXACTLY WHAT HE HAD DONE, and I called him out on it. He excluded The Big Swings Crew and only invited me. Big Swings as a company was purposely ostracized, called-out, and ridiculed by the people running this event. Did they tell anyone else that their crews CAN’T COME? I do know he and Chase were good friends and this is exactly the kind of stunt Chase would try to pull on me.
At this point, Chase was spamming our app and attacking our pages like a wild man. We knew he was pro at posting stuff where it didn’t belong, and we tracked the IP address back to within a mile of Chase’s house. He got caught, or his neighbor spammed us with pictures of unmentionable material. Chase has admitted, on tape, proof of slander to Mike against us prior to Havasu. Havasu is a cover folks. It started before Mike says it started. He was just smiling in my face the whole time.
These are my responses to Mike. These are the facts. If you want to read the whole conversation below go on over to Mike’s page because he posted it there. I left my company’s personal business plans and details out of it. They aren’t necessary to explain this situation at hand, but feel free to go check it out. The gang mentality when you stand up to one of the Cliff Life folks, wow. I encourage you to go see. Funny none of my people attacked you guys yesterday. Wonder why? Maybe because they saw how bad you guys looked attacking someone defending themselves against an obvious bully. Just because someone doesn’t bully YOU doesn’t make them Not A Bully.
This was my response in the Havasu thread. And I was immediately attacked by
all of Cliff Life and La Swim; just ripped from head to toe in front of the whole community. Called me every name in the book and trashed Big Swings to no extent to over 100 Cliff Jumpers and Filmers that work in this
industry. Mike set me up just to embarrass Big Swings, and to get back at me for Chase, and because it was Mike who thought of us as a threat for some reason. He had already discussed this with all his friends, and they were ready to attack in the Havasu thread. All the same people that attacked me yesterday attacked me there. This is how tough guy Mike threw me out of the thread.——–>
I can admit I was pissed when I made that post leaving the group. I was pissed because I felt like I was in High School being bullied. Mike took his chance to gain control here in front of the whole community with that move. Not take control from me, I don’t and never have wanted control. Take control from you guys- the people of this community. WHO ELSE WOULD SPEAK UP TO THEM AFTER THEY DID THAT TO US? IT WAS A POWER MOVE OVER THE WHOLE BROTHER AND SISTERHOOD OF CLIFF JUMPERS.
Had Big Swings been accepted into Havasu, we would have respected all of the event coordinators wishes, but that wasn’t even an option for us.
Wait, let’s look again and see what Mike said in the above screenshot about us not being allowed to shoot because they didn’t want 5 videos to come out? In actuality, there were at least 8 edits made all released within a ten day time period. Oversaturation at its peak.
So you staight went back on what you were saying to me then? You lied to get me to leave the group? Or you realized that your request in which no one else release footage was an astronomical failure? Either way, you did me dirty as hell bro.
While I’m on this subject.
Two of our athletes asked us if they could attend Havasu with everyone because they wanted to be involved in the community, and we all thought it would be a stand-up way to try to squash the beef that Mike started. We figured, shit if we let them use our paid athletes image for their edits from Havasu, they will surely see we mean no harm- that we are good people who just want to see the athletes succeed and the community grow. The people of the community would have had the opportunity to meet some athletes that we sponsor, and they could have seen for themselves we do support this community and these amazing people. It looked like a win-win for everyone.
In the end, one Big Swings athlete could make it and did. And do you know what Jeff Edwards and Mike Berritta did?
Even though that athlete wrote personal emails to them explaining that he would like his sponsor’s Logo in the edit if they planned on using his image. They completely ignored him. Jeff Edwards alone used the dude’s image 27 times in his edit! I know for a fact our athlete wrote this letter to Jeff Edwards. It was either also forwarded to Mike or Mike was told another way by our athlete.
Close-ups of his face and distinguishable attributes and talents were seen in shot after shot. It was the ultimate slap in the face to my company and this community, but Mike and Jeff didn’t see it that way. They just wanted to hurt Me, but it ends up hurting all of us.
Let me ask this- If that athlete was hurt on those cliffs, who was paying for his health insurance? Was it Cliff Life or Mike Berritta or Jeff Edwards? Maybe it would be a La Swim? No, it was Big Swings. Big Swings was paying for his insurance at that time. We care about the people that jump for us by trying to help support them financially for some travel and health insurance. And we support their dreams.
I’m also calling Mike out for being two-faced. Loving us one day and trashing us the next. What’s with that Mike? When exactly did you decide we were blowing spots up? Please tell us? Was if before or after you talked to Chase about him hating us? We have already established with screen shots and your words that you had been nice to us for three months even being really friendly and helpful. I can provide all the other convos during that time where we talk about our kids and our goals and our lives. Funny, you never expressed one time, you thought we were blowing up spots.
There is no where to go now; I have the proof laid out plain in front of everyone, and there’s much more below. Which one are you? The person that will smile in someone’s face while lieing to them, or the person who attacks as a BULLY for someone else and for selfish reasons?
So onto more proof for all you delighted readers out there..
Pictured above- Just a few months after the Havasu attack on Big Swings, these are the messages I get from people all the time. I am using this to clearly show how Mike was slandering us to another professional company in this industry- in private. Someone we were looking to possibly work with in the future. People we looked up to. Other professionals who are willing to give back and recognise the actual athletes that make the sport and recreation fun as hell. I’m not saying this company or athlete above did anything wrong. They were lied to, and afterward, if they worked with us, than they would have to answer to the man that acts like the God of this community, Mike Berritta. I’m saying Mike did wrong by spewing hate about us. Based on him embarrassing Big Swings in front of the community(all spun from a lie his friend told him and spite) he is now reaching out directly to possible future affiliates for Big Swings before we even have a chance to introduce ourselves. It doesn’t matter if they are friends or not. That is bullshit.
This golden piece of information above was leaked by their friend and local smack talker Matt Strasser…Matt clearly says that he and Mike discussed ways to take Big Swings down, “A YEAR AGO!” Let’s think about when a year ago was. Oh, it would drop you right into the weeks following the day Mike set us up in the Havasu thread. So I appreciate your comment Matt. Not only does it prove that Mike started publicly slandering us at least that early, but it proves we are dealing with a mob mentality. I also realized even more that Mike works in secret. At this point in time, he knew if your troll group attacked us publicly we would have dropped what I am dropping right now. The truth bombs. And it’s obvious from the conversation above who is in charge. They take orders from Mike. So much evidence, such small words.
NOW this comment above was posted by an EVEN MORE INTELLIGENT man. Jake Berthelot’s genius thread on fb, to the group “United cliff jumpers”. Check out this dudes NON-BULLY MENTALITY…but it’s cool Jake because you set your boy Matt up to leave the doozy comment of proof of conspiracy of power a year before; I forgive you.
I will openly admit that I told Mike I bought the name Cliff Life on Dec/29/ 2015; though, I never actually did buy anything. If he looked it up in the five minutes it takes, he would have seen that I was lieing out of frustration and self-defense. I was defending myself from a group of bullies at that time, and just didn’t know how to deal with it.
The day after I said I bought their name, Mike Berritta’s best friend in the whole world, Johnny Bryant bought our url…BigSwingsApp.com, but Mike says he had no say in that and he didn’t even know about it. Johnny did that on his own. Let me ask you this Mike, so you didn’t speak to Johnny in between when I said I “bought” your name and the moment in time Johnny purchased the url? If you are saying that, then how would Johhny know anything at all? The only one on earth that could have told him is you. And then Johnny actually posted a thread saying, I did that on my own free will as a joke. You’re the joke Johnny. Because you bought our domain name, this is some collateral damage you didn’t see coming did you? I bet Mike is loving your joke now. I hope you got a really big laugh out of it. And who was it that attempted to negotiate the sale of said website back to me ? It was MIKE BERRITTA.
After Johnny Bought our URL, our team immediately saw it and on 12/30/15 we bought the urls www.clifflife.com, clifflifemedia.com, and clifflifeproductions.com as a joke too. And believe me that pissed Mike off something fierce. Fierce enough to slander Big Swings all over to everyone. . We have been receiving threats and spam from them ever since, but we have not spoken up until now. This response of all the information was set in motion after we were viciously attacked AGAIN on our public fb Big Swings Page at the end of last week by these cyber terrorists. Then yesterday with phone calls threatening me with death, that was a real hoot.
That’s my side of the story and it’s all true. Every single word of it.
So Cliff Life family and friends, I forgive you all for following and trusting your “friend” Mike. That is understandable. He seems really trustworthy; I trusted him too. I was fooled. Mike lied over and over to this community and to me for the past year at least. It’s all out now. I have been awake over 30+hours defending myself, my business, my family, and my entire being. I am beat up and worn down. But it’s nothing compared to the abuse I have taken in silence this whole time. I have never been prouder of myself than I am right at this very moment. I will not stand idly by and let bullies push me around ever again. It’s a value I hope all of you take from this situation. Wheather you’re 13 or 60, and wheather you believe me or not.
We really do have love for all of you, even the people who have been so mean. And Mike Berritta, if you apologize to me than I will forgive you too.
This is the last post I will ever make on the subject. Unless we are forced to come out in defense of slanderous attacks against our company.
One more thing to chew over guys. A lot of you groups out there all say you aren’t interested in the money (and you’re not for profit), and it’s all about the cliff jumping, nature, and being together. Why are you profiting off of the sport by selling merchandise? Please tell me the merch pays for your travel to cliff jump or your camera gear. Because if that’s your reason, than you are directly profiting off of the sport of Cliff Jumping for your own personal gains. If those shirts pay for you to cliff jump, then you are for profit guys…….So please stop saying you aren’t trying to make money off this community. Because you are. And that’s okay. Because this is a sport just like any other, and it’s okay for the people who provide for the sport to let the sport provide for them.
We make a little scratch from banner ads on your free app and we are money hungry pigs? Right Mike? Think again man, and think really hard before you respond to this call out with anything other than an apology because I can and will break this down more for all the people you made follow you blindly into this.
I’m going to bed now.
Oh yeah, the Big Swings App is being migrated to a new host right now, so if you aren’t seeing Icons in the App, no worries it should updated tomorrow. After which, we start rolling out all the new social features!!! PM other users, Screen names, Plan Routes and Connect Spots Just Like Map Quest, and Share Trip Plans with your friends directly! Every adventurer will have their own home page where they can show off their Pics. Our new “Cliff Jumping Ranks” are based on different achievements in the app: Checking-in at spots, Adding locations, and being active in the community! We are pumped to send it into 2017!