Monday, November 18, 1996

Week of 11/18/1996

Internet .Con-Games
- by David Matthews 2

Psst.. can you keep a secret?

Good, because I’d like to tell you the secret to making MONEY!

Yes, dollars, denier, francs, yen, money, money, money, money! So much money that you’ll slap yourself silly wondering why you’ve been slaving over that job of yours!

How would you like to wake up at your OWN pace, never having to work a real job again? Think of all the things you could do that you couldn’t before! And all you have to do is sit back and let those check roll in. Life should be that easy, and I’ll show you how!

Just call me at 1-900-555-MONEY and I’ll tell you my secrets to making money. Yes, you heard me.. call me at 1-555-GET-RICH!

Oh, so you’ve tried the program already? And you still aren’t rich?

Well maybe you haven’t tried hard enough. Why don’t you take part in my advanced personal seminar on getting rich using the same techniques I used to get rich? I’ll tell you some NEW ways to make money while not doing anything. Yes, in my advanced seminar you’ll be an even BETTER person, and get rich at the same time!

So don’t delay! Reserve your seat and materials now through my secure Internet server! Have your credit card handy and click on over to http:/ww.bigmoney.con NOW!

Better yet, why settle for just GETTING rich when you can teach others to do the same thing and get even RICHER in the meanwhile! Take part in my exclusive "Dynamic Power Pyramid Management System!" In the DPPMS you can set up Power Pyramids of your own. You won’t have to sell anything at all - just teach others people to sell using the secrets I have for successful business.

For a LOW, LOW $150 "Executive Quick Start Program" I’ll train you in starting up your own Power Pyramid. Once you get the hang of it, then you can train others, and they will train even more people, and so on. And the best news is that once you get started, YOU’LL get paid for every new recruit under you, and for every sale made!

I know what you’re thinking: you think this is some sort of "multilevel marketing" scheme, right? WRONG! We’ve already done all the marketing - that’s how we’ve been able to provide you with the successful secrets to easy living and quick cash!

PLUS we’ve got an EXCLUSIVE "get-rich-or-die" money back guarantee! If after paying our fee, taking our seminars, and work your ass off like never before, you don’t have money coming out of your ears after 50 years, you’ll get your money back!

So don’t delay! E-mail me at scammaster@bigmoney.con for all the juicy details on how to make money, money, MONEY!

Any of that sound familiar? These are the compilation of some of the messages and E-mails I’ve got over the Internet. Such messages have sprouted all over the newsgroups, infesting them like viruses. Usually they have subject headers like "It’s no joke! I’ll make you rich!"

Now, we all would like to have more money. Who wouldn’t? But there’s always something wrong about so-called "secrets to success" that people try to peddle to others.

For starters, if these programs are such "secrets" why is it being cross-posted to every newsgroup possible and e-mailed to every Internet user they can get their hands on? If this information is handed out freely, then it’s not really a "secret" is it?

More importantly, if it’s such a secret why tell us? Out of the "goodness of your heart?" R-I-G-H-T!!! Usually there is no "get rich quick" program without you paying money, or making a phone call that costs you money. That’s how these people MAKE their money in the first place - by getting you to give it to them!

And let’s talk about these programs that "aren’t" multilevel marketing programs. Multi-Level Marketing programs, or MLM, used to be called "Pyramid Schemes" because of it’s organization. I’ve seen them work - and the only people who really make any money on them are the folks who START such programs.

Here’s how one such program works: You start off as a salesman, selling widgets or whatever product they have to offer to the people you know. Then you’re supposed to turn around and recruit people to work under you, selling the same stuff you’re selling but you get a portion of their profit as commission, just as the people who recruit YOU get a portion of your profit as commission. Then those people are supposed to recruit other people, and so on and so forth. The more people who get recruited under you supposedly translates into more and more money.

Sounds nice… in theory. But there is an intrinsic problem - there may be an ample market for one salesman, but what happens when you then recruit five other people to work under you? And those people recruit five people under them? Do your math. There’s now thirty-one people, including yourself, selling the same product! That’s fine if those thirty others sell in other towns or cities, but in most cases that cuts into YOUR market. Think about it like fast-food chains. One or two may be great, but stick one on every street corner and you kill whatever market you had.

Then there’s the assurances you make more money in recruiting those five people, who then recruit their five people. If you put all your effort into recruiting more people, who will be selling the product? I mean, that IS what’s supposed to be the purpose of this little enterprise, selling the product or recruiting people?

Once you get into it you begin to realize that this isn’t exactly a prolific business we’re talking about.

So why are the schemes so prolific? Think about the message I was trying to sell you at the top of the article: making money! That’s the message they sell, and there are PLENTY of people who buy into the notion they can make money on it.

Now those messages are being hawked on the Internet. It shouldn’t be a surprise. After all, the Internet is a new medium of communication that’s cheaper than the informercials, and you can view them at ANY time, not just at three in the morning when that cable channel programmer can squeeze you in between the "hair in a can" guy and the "make money selling foreclosures" guy.

And now the US government wants to crack down on this kind of action. No big surprise, after all, since there’s only room for ONE den of thieves, and that’s reserved for the people we keep electing into office. But there are some that want to go a bit further and use these groups as an excuse to regulate the Internet. My warning to them is simple: there’s laws already in effect against pyramid schemes, and there are already agencies designed to warn people about suspected fraud. There is NO NEED to add to those laws and effectively punish every Internet user for the minute faction that abuse it.

For the rest of us, we can dismiss these online schemes even faster than we could change the channel on our TV sets - with just a click of the "delete" button. Maybe once enough people do that many of these "get rich quick" schemes will disappear.

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