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Federal Trade Commission Information on Multi-Level Marketing

The FTC has some good resources and information about Multi-Level Marketing. Read its tips and don’t get scammed!

Here’s a comment from a reader about filing a complaint with the FTC:

I have read several comments where the FTC was mentioned and this business opportunity being reported to them. By just doing a quick search and digging through the FTC website, I found a site to submit complaints. If you read a bit about submitting a complaint, you will see that you have the option of including as much identifying information as you wish (you aren’t required to include a name or anything on the first page, but the FTC would then not be able to contact you for further information or for follow-up). Just a note, on the third page in, you need to select the type of complaint – choose other. The next page will allow you to enter “Business Opportunities”, then MLM/Pyramid Scheme.

Again, if you feel strongly about this and want to report your experiences, I would highly encourage everyone to do that (rather than suggesting others do it for you).

https://www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov/

The Attorney General for the State of Michigan has a page about MLMs and Pyramid Schemes. The page has a good list of tips to consider when seeing these “business opportunities.”

35 Comments leave one →
  1. January 7, 2013 4:15 pm

    Editor’s Note: Comment deleted upon the personal request of the author.

  2. No Team For Me permalink
    January 7, 2013 4:25 pm

    Great idea. People should also register complaints with the Better Business Bureau. It would be good for everyone who is dissatisfied with Team to let their voice be heard. I believe complaints with the BBB are all posted on their website so there could eventually be a nice listing of all the people who felt scammed.
    I believe the Michigan BBB is probably the best one to use since they are headquartered in Michigan.

  3. Frustrated permalink
    April 4, 2013 2:49 am

    I know a number of you have filed with the FTC but if we can get even ten people to file with the local Genesee county where their office is located we might have a better chance.

  4. April 4, 2013 6:31 am

    @Frustrated and all – The main page for the Genessee County Sheriff’s department is here. Here is a link to the complaint form PDF for the county.

  5. Freedomhaha permalink
    April 4, 2013 2:01 pm

    Frustrated- I am close to there, and will send it in. I will do whatever we have to do to right the wrongs and save the innocent.

  6. Frustrated permalink
    April 4, 2013 7:51 pm

    It’s definitely a start! The more awareness the better!

  7. Out in Pa permalink
    July 11, 2013 6:55 pm

    Just read on his blog that OW spoke at a Leadership Conference in Norway with his good friend Orjan Saele of Zinzino another multi – level marketing pyramid scheme. He is also infamous for making a fortune on his MLM Seven Nox before the whole thing collapsed. What is that old saying “birds of a feather stick together.” According to what I researched Zinzino sells coffee for two to four times the market price in Belgium and France. Could this be the next “product” for TEAM? Tools probably already being made…absolutely makes me sick to my stomach! These comments are my personal opinion and from my own experiences.

  8. Chrisxrascal permalink
    July 12, 2013 1:27 am

    You think people would realize something’s.wrong when Team changes their name, changes companies, and says don’t look on any alternative sites such as this one. Uhh maybe because they might find some truth here. I remember listening to their rhetoric ” do this because it’s something right”. Umm, not for everyone. The ” Team” does a lot of talking about freedoms. How about the right to know and the right to an opinion? They seem to do some rascally things. They speak of freedom, but how many people are really free to just be theirselves and not live and breath team and depending as if it is the only thing that will save them.

  9. July 13, 2013 6:01 am

    Being blinded by greed is a serious and an unfortunate situation. MLM charlatans have have mastered turning that into a scummy craft couched as achoo, achoo, a business.

    And BTW I’ll look, read, think and say what I wants. Ain’t nobody’s getting away with silly attempts to abridge my 4th. Never ever again. It’s shamefully un-American. For their mind control lunacy MLM charlatans can French-kiss a stinging nettle leaf, I don’t give a rip!

  10. July 13, 2013 6:08 am

    @Amthrax
    Please correct that I meant the 1st.

  11. kathy permalink
    June 21, 2014 3:20 pm

    orrin woodward and his life leadership lectures seminars what ever he chooses to call them has done nothing but peay on take from the poor who are so desperate to get a break in life that they are willing to buy in to anything that sounds like it will produce quick significate cash flow, and while doing this awful thing he uses the word of the lord to make theese people beleive in his goodness, when infact the only one who is truely profiting from his B.S is orrin himself and his collegues, while innocent unknowing victoms continue to recruit there friends and family to attend seminars that are collecting money from them convinceing them to buy his cds and books about life leadership ,telling them that by recruiting more people they will prorfit and that they can build a business that makes them free of debt and the world a better place, I do not understand why a susposadly extremly educated man would have to go to such lengths as to be a con man , and scamming theif to support the lavish lifestyle that he has become accustomed to, if he is so dam smart why cant he run a legitamate business on his own instead of buying in to all theese other pyramid companies and continueing to screw the people that have given there life saveings to something they thought was a sure thing, he has cost people there life saveings college funds, loss of homes , even destroyed families and marriages with his greed and lies,, and useing the word of the lord to do so, all I can say is beware people I just saved my very best friends and family from his scam after a long lengthy search of his past history and the present new dealings, dont be fooled by this man and his promisses he is a fraud and although he is a smooth talker and can talk a child out of a choclate bar , he is an evil greedy selfish man, and does not care about anyone but him self, so shame on you Orrin woodward and shame on all of you that help him pull off this rotten scam, I hope god can find forgiveness for all of you , as he will have the final judgement when this blows up in allyour faces,

  12. freedomhaha permalink
    June 22, 2014 4:54 pm

    Kathy- Yep.

  13. Melanie Morgan permalink
    June 24, 2014 11:50 pm

    Kathy~I second that Yep.

  14. antti suhonen permalink
    January 10, 2015 8:20 am

    Finland police investigations Zinzino, police believe that company is pyramid scam
    and its against Finish law. But they are coming now USA http://zinzinoevent.com/
    you have bean warned!!!!!!!!!

  15. Melanie Morgan permalink
    January 10, 2015 9:33 am

    Antti suhonen~

    Thanks for the warning. I will have to say I have had only 1 MLMer contact me since I was able to find the truth but wish someone would ‘contact’ me on these….it would be quite fun, the first one was, lol 🙂

    Don’t take me wrong I clearly understand the seriousness and damage they do in these predatory MLM’s. I just had to learn the hard way, unfortunately.

  16. January 12, 2015 6:47 am

    Without doing a lot of research on Orrin Woodard’s history of corruption (to save time), is there a timeline on Amthrax that lists his legal dealings (lawsuits and such) that are up-to-date?

  17. antti suhonen permalink
    January 12, 2015 6:52 am

    Allegations of Zinzino being a pyramid scheme in Finland
    http://zinzinotruth.com/2013/10/08/allegations-of-zinzino-being-a-pyramid-scheme-in-finland/

  18. January 12, 2015 8:38 am

    @jemily52 – this post is the best place to go at the moment: https://amthrax.wordpress.com/2014/07/01/lawsuits-against-critics/

    You can go do a search for lawsuits at http://dockets.justia.com . If you have a PACER account (free registration, but you pay pennies per page to get the documents), you can get more information.

  19. Jolene Van Meeteren permalink
    February 28, 2015 9:14 am

    Life Leadership is it a pyramid…I don’t. See a real product …just recruiting…..????? Am I stupid they don’t talk about Amway lawsuit or what happen with Mona Vie…..do these guys just keep getting away with scamming people????

  20. kilerb permalink
    March 1, 2015 4:20 pm

    Jolenae look through this site at all the information on here to answer your question if they are a pyramid or not as far back as I can remember OW has always been on top of his organization no one has passed him up . Their so called products is their system .Your not stupid either your asking questions instead of following them blindly which is what they want sheep .Now on their passed they will never in the open discuss Amway ,Quixtar nor Mona vie.OW and his minions will play victim on these issues on what they didn’t like with the previous MLM s they where associated with OW was on Quixtar ‘s board of directors I remember my diamond that I was involved with (as in paying for his meals putting gas in his crappy Cadillac ) was in a crowed room dance around a question he was ask about him being involved in Amway which was Quixtar just a different name he very quietly said he was once involved with them they were the same company he also sold Kirby vacuum cleaners before Amway lol . Also I don’t know how these people get away or live with themselves for what they do . They present themself as honorable people with huge character and all they are is huge scam artist .Have you ever seen the play the music man the main character reminds me of these clown smooth talking salesman .The sad part is they claim to be Christians when they get upstairs they have a lot To answer for .For all the destruction on the back end when people fall away all the damage they Do over the long run to the family unit .Also in business when before your start or buy into one you need a exit strategy this does not have one you Have to stay plugged in and keep attending otherwise through attrition you Have no business .These people say they are free but they are not they work mainly 2nd shift showing The plan and selling crap out of their trunk

  21. freedomhaha permalink
    March 2, 2015 5:43 am

    Jolene-“do these guys just keep getting away with scamming people????”

    Simple answer, yes.

  22. Kilerb permalink
    March 2, 2015 3:38 pm

    This is a good response to MLMs

  23. Melanie Morgan permalink
    March 2, 2015 6:17 pm

    Kilerb~

    Yep, haha. Here is one you will probably love:

  24. kilerb permalink
    March 6, 2015 2:59 pm

    Ha ha Melanie I remember when we merged with you all Brady had CDs just like this Like Question is this Amway? Answer no is that what you are looking for This guy should speak at their majors

  25. freedomhaha permalink
    March 6, 2015 3:31 pm

    kilerb- I knew I wasn’t cut out for TEAM when I couldn’t stand to listen to Orrin anymore because just his voice scared me. Sadly, I turned that CD off and turned on Brady or Lewis like somehow that was better. At least Brady always seemed a lot smarter and less slimy than Woodward.

  26. noteam permalink
    March 7, 2015 2:55 pm

    Brady was the real brain behind TEAM. If it wasn’t for him, no one would have followed Orrin. Orrin was a horrible speaker. Brady was the best speaker they had. Unfortunately, Orrin’s ego would never allow Brady to be #1 like he should have. Orrin was VERY jealous of Brady.

  27. freedomhaha permalink
    March 8, 2015 5:42 pm

    noteam- I think TEAM would be a lot bigger today if Brady was the #1 man. At least to me his personality as a lot more welcoming and not as typically “MLM” as Woodwards. Orrin rubbed so many of my new people the wrong way.

  28. Melanie Morgan permalink
    March 11, 2015 1:32 pm

    Noteam & freedomhaha~

    Is that why Chris Brady took a J>O>B as the CEO or is it for a ‘steady pay check’? Funny how Orrin didn’t write up the BIG news flash on that one like he did when Rob Halstrand saved the Company when supposedly Bobbie Dickie got fired (that was one of the slanderous ‘story’ back then ) when the CEO position was given to the hero Rob Halstrand.

    When Chris Brady’s took his new job as CEO must not have been as news worthy or was it intentionally left on the low down?….I would bet the latter… That transition happened it seems as quietly as possible.. Perhaps to try and to save the embarrassment of decades of bashing jobs but frankly every person who has been in since the Quixtar/Amway (some for a decade or more) Should be questioning just WHY would Chris B take on a JOB?! Quit on his “team” as a “builder”?!….Is he “building his business” AND being the CEO…. aint nobody got time for that being…as a CEO Ha! So is he leaving a false impression he still is?

    Why would anyone want to build a the LIEf “business” if Chris B doesn’t “believe” it is worthy of building.. for his future?! Hmmm… Those who spent decades in Chris Brady’s LOS and the “thousands” who stuck and heard Chris, Orrin and repeat themselves. that adamantly spew their propaganda and belief the bashing about jobs, bosses,…everyone knows they think J.O.B’s are for losers!

    Why not the hyped up(BS) typical Orrin style heroic announce, Chris taking the CEO job, just as they did for Rob h? Well seems pretty obvious to most but in this case would bring up un wanted “frequently asked questions” and attention… Wonder what their followers remain convinced that somehow they will “make it” …. especially those who STILL hoping someday, maybe, if they read enough books, go to enough seminars, somehow are missing something, aren’t listening to their mentors…What about Chris Brady…does he “mentor” them on becoming a CEO and not a MLM LIEF builder? You know the same people who haven’t became or kept their “life coach” rank, some after more than a decade?!!! Do they think Chris is a hypocrite taking a J.O.B?

    Certainly after years of them making out J.O.B’s to be for losers etc,, including repeating in their plan for oh decades of how the TEAM/LIEF… “B” business is your ONLY way to freedom, that “jobs” only enslave you to a Boss who only makes him richer…while it provides you with a 45 year plan to be dead, broke or disabled! Which I find absurd now that they convince people to repeat this bullsh*t… As if you build their scam…they can prevent someone from being dead, disabled or broke!

    What disturbs me the most is how their deceptive, lies…. the well oiled propaganda “motivational” system… and the abuse of people’s emotional needs and ‘trust’ that they …shuts down people’s brains and their critical thinking! I Obviously with the industry and their dirty little secrets being exposed, clearing it is making it more difficult to suck people in….

    And what happened to poor Rob, why not the CEO anymore no news on him being removed?

    Clearly they hope to keep the truth hidden! Well what other explanation could there be for their LAWSUITS against others to typically silence and gag, forever and any critical thinking person can clearly see, that the whitewashing of ALL their old blogs, articles etc that they claim is the TRUTH, wouldn’t be deleted if it were the truth,, would it?..What are they affraid of?

    And now with it being common knowledge, that Orrin and others get/got those special undisclosed sweetheart deals, along with so much TRUTH out there, it is no wonder why their numbers are pitiful….The “earning it” is BS and meant only for others…. How can they possibly believe a word out of their mouths the many lies on the ‘fairness, level playing field’ … intentional deceptive, lies…..also the control and manipulation of LOS, and what about the numerous open spots only given to the select TOP ONLY. to position whoever they want and enrich themselves?

    They must be proud of themselves and wonder when they will face their real ‘legacy’,…the truth of all those people they knowingly they were feeding nothing but Bullsh*t too, didn’t care they were deceiving to benefit themselves they know exactly what they have done, and the real numbers of people of lose money, but yet they spent decades deceiving, others, many people they claimed to be “friends”…

    I am thankful, to be free and to see the truth…..

    In some form, it will return….They will get what they gave…

  29. March 15, 2015 8:11 pm

    It’s my understanding that Rob is still the CEO of TEAM (Signature Management Team) and Chris Brady is the CEO of LIFE. Was there ever a CEO of LIFE when it first was launched?

  30. Melanie Morgan permalink
    March 16, 2015 8:59 am

    Amthrax~

    Here is the article written by Orrin December 5, 2011, promoting and congratulating Rob Hallstrand as a Founder and CEO of LIFE about a month after they launced. http://orrinwoodwardblog.com/2011/12/05/rob-hallstrand-life-founder/

    And here it shows: http://www.zoominfo.com/s/#!search/profile/person?personId=1597433562&targetid=profile

    Based on dates under “Web References” the zoominfo article is from Oct. 2014

    Rob Hallstrands: Background Employment History

    President and Chief Operating Officer- Life

    Founder, Chief Executive Officer- Life

    Chief Operating Officer of Management Team Signature

    Chief Operating Officer- TEAM

    So if this is accurate it shows Rob as COO of Management Team Signature not sure why it isn’t written as Signature Management Team.

    Another curious thought, but Orrin said there was no longer going to be “team profit-sharing” so why any need for a Rob as COO of TEAM why is this a separate ‘business’?

    And this article: http://www.life-leadership-forums.com/index.php?/topic/230-orrin-woodward-chris-brady-chairman-of-board-ceo-of-life-leadership/

    Orrin tells of Chris Brady as the new CEO. as of January 1, 2014.

    So it appears Rob H. was CEO from about December 2011 until January 2014 (3 years) before Chris became CEO of LIFE.

  31. March 16, 2015 10:30 am

    @Melanie – thanks for the links. I stand corrected!

  32. Dalia Alvarado permalink
    May 21, 2016 6:26 am

    BIG SCAM Future Global Vision promotes a fuel aditive EFTAB, the CEO Raul Serrano just resells stuff at crazy high prices. nothing is exclusive http://futureglobalvision.com

  33. July 30, 2016 6:56 pm

    Found this article about Monavie on David Brears:
    mlmtheamericandreammadenightmare
    Monavie: Another MLM racket. Great article. Maybe a little justice for the offenders. But probably not nearly enough.

  34. August 1, 2016 12:34 pm

    Here is the link to the article that jemily52 found:

    http://mlmtheamericandreammadenightmare.blogspot.com/2016/07/monavie-another-mlm-racket.html

    Has some additional information on the collapse of MonaVie, including a good article from the Salt Lake Tribune from the reporter who’s been covering MonaVie for several years now.

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