Maybe it’s the phase of the moon, but I feel ready to pick a fight today. In a Clint Eastwood, Go-Ahead-Make-My-Day kind of way.

We get bizarre e-mail messages sometimes, calling us to task for being shameless scammers, or from a victim of negative option marketing demanding their money back. Today’s “Huh?” moment came in the form of a comment on the Jordangetsgreen post. Kim writes:


I live here in Bentonville and I want to know if you are a real person and if this really works. I can meet you in person and talk about it.

Thank you,

Kim [last name removed]

Ummm….Kim? You do realize I’m not Jordan, right? And that the Jordan you see isn’t a real person? And that this non-real person doesn’t really live in Bentonville, just where you happen to live? (His page uses a script that detects where your computer is coming from and then reprograms the page accordingly.)

Of course you do. You were just giving a suggestion for a snarky reply to his cheesy Web site. I get it…that’s funny!

Anyway, because those messages are sometimes amusing, I figured I would toss this out and see if I can get some of the capitalist, Ayn Randian Kool-Aid drinkers to reply.

Stay Away from the Quixtar “Opportunity”

Quixtar is Amway’s reinvention of itself, which was necessary after the original name became more toxic in the 80s and 90s than collateralized debt obligations are today.

Why so toxic? Because disreputable and unethical Amway distributors have for decades made unrealistic claims about income potential and money-saving potential of buying Amway products. In short, they lied through their coffee-stained teeth.

I should know. I was one of the smiling zombies for about 4 years in the early 90s. I was trained to lie. (I just didn’t know I was doing it.)

But don’t take my word for it. Take the word of a high-ranking (Emerald) former distributor, who is now telling the truth about Amway/Quixtar. You can even download a free ebook about his experiences, called Merchants of Deception.

If you join the cult “opportunity,” you’ll be joining a business that boasts:

  • A 99% failure rate (99% of the distributorships lose money)
  • A 97% attrition rate (97% of distributors quit by year 5. There goes your downline!)
  • Unabashedly higher prices than for comparable products at retail outlets
  • Unrestricted opportunity to buy “training” tools and “motivational” tools to help you “build your business”

I could go on, but you should really go read the whole story for yourself, especially if you’re considering getting involved with a business whose legal status is constantly being challenged with litigation charging deceptive practices.

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Join the Discussion

  • BTDT

    I remember in the early 90’s I was being recruited to join Scamway-I mean Amway. I was working two jobs and was interested so I met one of the maintenance men at the condo project we were living in at his house after work. I got there a little early, but Eric wasn’t even ready to go, he was just lounging around, watching tv, etc. Bad first impression! We started off with the presentation,Eric told me about the unlimited amount of money I could make, I could own my own business, etc, and by the way, I don’t really know what I’m doing, but since I’m new, I want to bring a couple of “heavy hitters” i.e. his upline to help. As Eric babbled these words to me, I nodded and said the type of things that a mlm recruiter loves to hear, stuff like “I work two jobs, I know that job equals Just Over Broke and if I keep on doing what I am doing, I’ll keep on getting what I’m getting.” I could see Eric getting hot and bothered and excited, and so a few minutes later, his doorbell rang and two heavy hitters arrived. He called them Steve and Bob. We talked for a while and we discussed compensation plans and what all and I still said the same things, and these guys got hot and bothered and I could see them thinking to themselves, let’s get this sucker I mean prospect in our downline and we won’t have to work as hard every month, etc. I finally put a stop to all of this by stating,”You know guys as I was just about to tell Eric here, that I already belong to a mlm. And in the contract I signed, I could not work with another mlm at the same time.” It was almost funny to see their faces fall and then all three huddled together in the dining room to figure if they could save the deal. Picture the Three Stooges trying to come up with a plan. After as few minutes of back and forth bickering they broke the huddle and came back to the living room and Steve-I took him to be the leader as he did most of the speaking-said “I’ve never run across this before. Let me talk to my boss.” Silly me, here I thought he was working hard so that he wouldn’t have a boss. Anyway, he went back into the kitchen and used Eric’s landline and talked to his boss for a few minutes and came back to me with a big smile on his face. “Well my boss, says this happens, but it is rare,”he began, then lowered his voice like we were conspiring to rob a bank. “But, we like you, we really do and we would like to have you working with us. But we would not like to jeopardize you with your other organization, so, my boss says that it would be great to work with you, that we all could learn from you, you have a great attitude, and that of course you would have to be compensated for your time and trouble.” I said,”Well, of course.” Steve continued,”So, just for situations like this, we have a course of action in place. We will welcome you on our team, you would be in Eric’s immediate downline, and so you wouldn’t get in trouble with your other mlm, we would keep you off the books and pay you cash under the table. Good deal, huh?” I was pissed! I swear smoke must have come from my ears. I leapt off the sofa and was trying to leave when Steve put his right hand on my left elbow to try and stop me. “What’s wrong?” he asked. “You think I’m stupid!” I countered. I was still so angry I almost could not speak. “Let go of my arm, creep,” I told him. When he didn’t let go, I reached out with my right hand and grabbed his left earlobe and tried to pull it off-you know a souvenir. “Oww!” he cried as he let go of my hand so I could storm out the door. I only talked to Eric one more time because I got tired of his calling me and leaving messages on my answering machine. I finally cornered him one day and said, “Eric, this is not personal. This is a scam. If these guys are willing to try to pay me under the table, which is illegal, then what do you think they are going to do to you? Maybe one day a downline you signed up will disappear snatched up by one of those bozos. Or you don’t get paid, because you don’t qualify. Or any number of things.” All Eric would say was,”I’m sorry you feel that way, but that can’t happen because those guys are my friends. I’m going to recruit wide and deep.” One of my neighbors later on told me that Eric quit Amway about six months later, he was tire of being broke, about the time I quit my mlm because I was going to go back to school. Thanx for reading, BeenThere, Done That

  • Jay Stevens
    Jay Stevens

    “Amway Global – as many as have tried and failed, there has been an equal number who have been successful.”

    Totally not true. Only a very small percentage of people actually succeed. It is why there are so many horrow stories about Amway. Just look at the Amway plan, there are many layers of unsuccessful IBO’s propping up the higher level IBO’s. That’s who it’s been for years and years and it’s why Amway has a bad reputation.

  • Tom

    Amway Global – as many as have tried and failed, there has been an equal number who have been successful. Amway Global (formerly Quixtar) is a legitimate business opportunity that if you allow yourself to be coached and are willing to learn will potentially allow for a decent income stream. What Amway Global is not is a get rich quick scheme nor was it ever intended to be. If one does nothing, one can expect to recieve nothing.

    • Joe

      Tom, “an equal number who have been successful?” If that were true, the attrition rate (the percentage of those who drop out) would be closer to 50%, not more than 90%, which is the true attrition rate.

  • Jay Stevens
    Jay Stevens

    I was shown the Amway plan by a guy who said he was from Network 21. Network 21 is not Amway but he said Amway supplies them with products. So he said I would have to join both Network 21 and Amway and that Network 21 would train me to sell Amway products. He kept telling me that I needed to attend some upcoming convention of sorts and it was at my own cost. It sounded fishy so I politely said no, but the guys persisted and kept calling me and telling me I would regret my decision and would end up broke. That’s when I told him I was not interested in his scam. Anyone else run into one of these Amway or Network 21 salesmen?

  • Faridah

    I joined Quixtar in 2006, but I am not with them anymore. That kind of business wasn’t for me because I felt like I had to get too many people to help me make income. Then, I had to make sure they spent enough points for the month and other things. All that wasn’t worth it to me. However, that experience has changed my life so much and I don’t regret joining them either. Before I knew Quixtar, I didn’t know I could own my own buisness and it helped me to create my own business ideas! This was important to me because it made me realize that someday I can be my own boss with my own buisness. Then, Quixtar has the conference thing, and on the 3rd day, they do a church service kind of a thing that was optional. I attended it, and I confessed that God is my savior! I have never done anything like that before! Now I have a relationship with God and I’m saved. I am a lot more peaceful now and understanding. So yea, Quixtar helped me see the full potiental that I have with in myself. However, I will not used Quixtar as a source of income. Their methods are unrealistic to me and sometimes they acted a little fony. I am just glad I got something good out of it.

  • Mark

    great stuff!!
    I was also part of the 90’s craze for MLM’s… whatever the name of the company… I was “successful” money wise; at least broke even & covered my costs but what opened my eyes was what my wife told me at one point: “They are using you”…
    I’m a natural when it comes to speaking in front of peoples; what my wife made me realize is that I was making money but only because the “gurus” were placing me in front of peoples who needed to hear the great words “you can be financially independant” and boy did I know how to sell it…
    The last time I was brought in front of a crowd, I think pretty much everyone had their jaws wide open; I told them the truth – even statistics like you mention for Amway… good thing I had my coat in my arms, they got me out of there so quickly, I think it would still be on the chair I was sitting in…

  • Deborah

    I think you do a fabulous job and consider myself fortunate thaqt I stumbled upon your website. I even have you in my RSS feeder. I have learned a great deal and you have saved me a lot of money, Never considered Amway but always assumed that people made money–thanks again for all of your infornation that you freely share.

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