Friday, August 22, 2014

News Update 22-AUG-2014: More TelexFree Lawsuits, Zeek Lawsuits, and Phil Ming Xu (WCM) lawsuits

A lot of developments regarding various closed ponzi schemes in recent months...

According to an expert tracking ponzi scheme, a new Ponzi scheme was discovered every 5 days in the US. That's right, every five days, just during the first 6 months in 2014, with over 1 BILLION dollars in potential losses.

But here's some news...

Court Approves Zeek Receiver to Sue International Winners

US Federal Judge overseeing the receivership of Zeek Rewards has approved the receiver's request to start suing "net winners" who do not reside in the United States. Previously, receiver have already sued most net winners in the US who has gained 1000 dollars or more from Zeek Rewards. Many have already settled for a lesser amount, though a few notable exceptions are the really top winners, who have gained anywhere from 500K to well over a million dollars from Zeek.

It is worth noting that several prior top promoters of Zeek has indeed fled the US to various countries, including the Dominican Republic and the Philippines.

Speaking of foreign countries...

Federal Prosecutors Allege Extremely Complex International Fraud Regarding TelexFree

According to documents filed with Federal court overseeing the TelexFree case, Federal prosecutors asked the judge to designate the case as "complex case" which will make it exempt from the "Speedy Trials Act" that requires the indicted defendant to be tried within 70 days, because there are significant portions of fraud linked to Brazil and will require foreign investigation / testimony, and subpoenas.

Prosecutors asserted that they have seized 400 TERAbytes of data spanning 46 servers, 26 separate computers from TelexFree and 3 more from grand jury subpoenas containing yet more records.  There are total of 185 grand jury subpoenas issued for evidence related to TelexFree such as business records. They have not yet compiled catalog of existing evidence, and there are strong possibilities that they will need to travel to Brazil to interview yet more witnesses and/or gather more evidence there. Thus, there's no way this can be done in less than 70 days.

Judge has yet to rule on this motion.

In related TelexFree news:

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

An 2014 Update on AiYellow: Is this thing for real or for grins?

Recently, there seems to be a resurgence of comments, on AiYellow, probably because my previous blog post on AiYellow is somehow now #3 on Google search when you search for AiYellow, as of today, 18-AUG-2014.

Wow, how did that blogpost got to #3 search for AiYellow?
This, inevitably, has drawn in various defenders of AiYellow, who copy-paste a bunch of marketing material, without understanding the CONCERNS I had brought up almost two years ago regarding the legality and utility of AiYellow.

So far, it seems nothing has changed regarding its business practices, and the products are being marketed with the wrong emphasis, with its utility (i.e. how effective it can be) in further doubt.

Let's study one aspect of the problem... "Alexa Ratings". Feel free to check it yourself, as I can only offer you a snapshot of the information as I see them today, 18-AUG-2014.

Alexa rating for AiYellow can be found here:  It's the 5th most popular link regarding AiYellow, as shown by Google search above. You should see something like this:

Alexa Overview of, part 1, red lines and words are my comments

Global rank 7117th, yet in South Africa 135th. Why is it so much more popular in South Africa than elsewhere where global rank has dropped 2000 places in last 3 months? Let's keep looking.

Why is AiYellow more popular in South Africa and Thailand,
than where it started: Argentina? Colombia? 
The audience geography is strange. Normally if a website started in a particular country its countrymen would have embraced it first, so it should be more popular at home than abroad. AiYellow is exactly the opposite: it's more popular in South Africa and Thailand than its home in Argentina. This is a very weird growth pattern, keep that in mind while we keep looking.

Only 15% of AiYellow's visitors came from search engines
(but there's an upward trend)
According to Alexa, only 15% of visits to AiYellow came from search engines, and the most popular search terms seem to be South African. However, most visits seem to have came from the parent company,

But it is where the visitors actually go that is the most interesting:

Sunday, August 17, 2014

MLM Basics: Why are there so many names for MLM?

Have you ever wondered why are there so many different names for multi-level marketing? Here are most of them:

There are probably a few more I missed. If you spot some new ones not on this list, as a something-marketing, feel free to let me know via the comments.

Any way, why are there so many fancy names for the same thing?  Fraud experts, such as Tracy Coenen say this is an attempt to obfuscate and distract from the bad reputation multi-level marketing had picked up over the decades it had been in existence. However, I think this is also a symptom of how the decentralized nature of MLM became a sin, not a virtue. People are just appropriating terms that sounds SOMEWHAT similar to multi-level marketing, and in some cases, inventing them out of thin air.

First, let us define multi-level marketing... a marketing strategy where the sales force is compensated on multiple levels... direct sales profit, and portion of sales profit achieved by other salespeople they recruited (downlines). Remember, MLM = direct sales + commission based on downline sales.

But first, we have to clear up a few myths...