Thursday, August 15, 2013

Why do Some MLMers expect other people to take them seriously, when they do NOT take other people seriously?

English: Different customer loyality cards (ai...
English: Different customer loyalty cards (airlines, car rental companies, hotels etc.) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
In life, "fairness" is often expected. You do something for me, I do something for you.

So why is it different in the MLM world?

A common theme that often emerges in discussion of a particular opportunity's legality is the promoter wants you (the critic) and anybody else to take what they say seriously, while they discount everything YOU wrote/discussed/pointed out as utter garbage to be ignored. Indeed, much of this blog covers such excuses used by such promoters to dismiss criticisms.

Recently, the discussion was rehashed about the opportunity called Lyoness.

Lyoness is a strange hybrid of a shopping loyalty program where you can earn shopping credits (funded by merchant contributions based on your purchase and purchases of those you recruited). However, it also has this potentially illegal component where you can purchase account units (normally generated through shopping) directly, bypass all the shopping, and get money THAT way. Some MLM experts (not me, really) have pointed out this is basically a Ponzi scheme.

Troy Dooly published a blogpost on July 22nd 2013 titled" Lyoness America Violating Pyramid, Ponzi, Securities, and Business Opportunities regulations?"  And the **** really hit the fan. Mr. Dooly lost a bit of credibility when he practically endorsed the ponzi scheme Zeek Rewards, but he was willing to admit his mistakes and learned from it. Now, after being advised by one of his close friends and MLM analyst, he decided to put the information he got out there.

A month later, he was invited down to Miami to talk with Lyoness American leadership and legal counsel in what is pretty obviously a damage control spin attempt by Lyoness.

So what do Lyoness supporters have to say about Lyoness itself, while ignoring its critics?

Lyoness supporters almost always narrowed in on two themes:

  • It's a great shopping loyalty program! (Great, but nobody ever doubted that, not even the critics)
  • You don't *have* to buy any account units! (So why is it even allowed?)
Some will go on a bit of tangent and mention how many members, how many countries, how long it's been running (appeal to crowd, bandwagon fallacy, appeal to age), and so on, but so far, NONE can actually explain WHY would a shopping loyalty program would include a provision for BUYING your way up the shopper rank (more rewards) without doing any shopping. 

As this is not about the legality of Lyoness, I'll stop here, but if you choose to explore this topic further, you can read the discussion on Behindmlm 

My point is simple:

If you want people to treat you seriously, you have to treat others seriously, by understanding their arguments. If you don't, then you can't expect other people treat you seriously. 

Lyoness supporters have been repeating the same themes OVER AND OVER every few months when a new batch of supports discover the BehindMLM review, did not bother to read any of the points, and post a bunch of that they believe to be rebuttals, but only proves they didn't bother to read the points presented. 

They didn't treat the BehindMLM review seriously. 

Yet the critics (such as Oz and I, and M_Norway, and others) do treat their arguments seriously. We analyzed their arguments, pointed out logical flaws, inconsistencies with other known facts, and such problems. 

And usually we never heard back from them ever again. 

I am pretty sure we did not change their minds, but we treated them seriously. They did not treat us seriously. So they went somewhere else, where even if they don't treat people seriously, other people (who likely are not as critically thinking as we are) will treat them seriously. 

Which brings us back to yet another suspicious scheme supporter's general accusation: that the critics are "close minded" when it is them that are close minded.

Being open minded means taking other people's ideas seriously, consider its merits carefully, and choose to accept or discard it with proper reasoning. Being close minded means to reject other people's idea WITHOUT CONSIDERATION (think of some reason later is possible, i.e. post-hoc justification)

Critics who criticize an opportunity have studied the issues and explained their reasoning. The "defenders" who came in and choose to ignore the reasoning had not considered the critic's point of view in sufficient detail to understand the issues, yet they argue about it nonetheless.

Defenders who assumed they are right without even considering other people's viewpoints. THEY are close minded.

Yet it is often the defenders who call the critics "close minded"

Go look in a mirror. 

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  1. Hi there, I really appreciate your honest review. I've been looking into the Lyoness business opportunity myself, and for now am just taking advantage of the shopping side. Just wanted to offer my 2 cents -- I can't speak for everyone representing Lyoness, but I know what I've been told, that you should never place accounting units if you are not planning to build a business. However, if you choose to do so, that money is still your money, and will always be. But rather than being able to use it straight away, you're basically placing an order on gift cards. The only way that it would make sense for you to do so, is if you are about to recommend someone as a shopper who may completely outpace you in shopping units to the point where you would lose a certain amount of earning potential, however you would still earn commissions on their shopping, just not as much if you were to place units. There's a great video with the full explanation of the compensation plan, which goes into more detail but I'm not at liberty to post that publicly. Email me directly ( and I'll be happy to provide this for you.

    1. If "placing an order on gift cards" is considered a 'business' then what exactly brings in the money?

      It's to recruit shoppers (very slow profit) or purchaser of units (fast profit).

      So which one would people pick? Hmmm?

      There are PLENTY of videos online explaining what Lyoness is, even one from the head of Lyoness himself.

      Unless you're going to tell me that your video somehow says something DIFFERENTLY...

      But again, we don't really disagree on the details, don't we? You don't know why they have this potentially illegal "buy a unit" thing. You pretty much just say "ignore it".

  2. Its not going to be a habbit to post on Your blog ha ha ha.
    But I have to post on this one. I have no time to do mlm so I have not joined any Companies. But sometimes I do takes time to see a presentation. I went to a LYONESS presentation, and I must say this "deal" smells like rotten Apples. I agree With the ones saying this is a scam. I realy dont see the Product. They earing most of the Money from their starting packs. And they are $ 4000 or something. Yes they have a Product, but you need so many customers to realy make some Money, they clearly earns from their salesforce selling BIG PACKS to orhers in the network.. Not good.
    Johann- Sweden

    1. They have a legitimate shopper loyalty program, but they also grafted a potential ponzi scheme by allowing members to "buy" accounting units (i.e. reward levels) directly without doing any shopping. Those $4000 or something means they are buying reward levels, and they get rewarded when OTHER PEOPLE ALSO BUY REWARD LEVELS (or generate account units far more slowly through lots of shopping). That makes it essentially a Ponzi scheme, and as one of my prior posts explained, under investigation in native country of Austria as Ponzi scheme.

  3. Would you mind reading this and voice your opinion? lol

    1. Real coach, but this is a typical upsell scheme. They give you a short version of the book for free (probably one chapter from one of their existing books), and tell you to read the rest you need to buy the whole book. Call it... "demo book" if you will.

      I haven't read him, so I can't tell you anything useful yet. The website's registered to him and he has his own website. at