images (1)Following my recent post Don’t get scammed on WordPress and other posts on technology topics like Why companies don’t really get social media, I have been recently inundated with people liking either my posts or following my blog.

Now ordinarily this would be a good thing, except that most of these people had one thing in common.

Without fail, ALL of their blogs centred around some form of sales pitch about them being some kind of  “entrepreneur” and how they were enjoying the high life and that I too could have it all.

They either promoted the Empower Network or Project AWOL, both of which are “systems” that promise riches beyond your dreams that will give you a life style you have only dreamed about.

Now, these people are not “real” entrepreneurs in the strict business sense of the word as we know it today. I would think that most people when they hear the word entrepreneur would most likely think of someone like Richard Branson, or Donald Trump – Mega-billionaires who actually create real businesses and real products.

Most of these people posing as internet entrepreneurs were pretty young, fresh faced kids who looked like they had just graduated college.

Being young isnt a barrier to success necessarily, however the people liking my posts and now following my blog do not actually have any real products to promote, because if they did they would have them featured on their website for you to purchase via an online shopping cart

But they don’t, and that should tell you something straight away! Your scam alarm should be ringing LOUDLY inside your head.

What they do have on their blogs are a myriad of posts, web vids, cheesy motivational posters and banner ads all saying that you too can have all the riches in the world and that they are happy to share that golden information with you.  All you have to do to reap bucketfuls of easy money is to give them your email address and they will tell you their secrets to success.

As I mentioned in my first post on this, I played along to see where this thread of yarn i had just tugged would lead.

Lo and behold, as soon as I provided my email to one of these “entrepreneurs”, I was starting to have more and more likes for my posts.  And more and more followers of my blog.  WOW!  I must be a great writer and have the most awesome blog.

think-feel-become-empoweredI then started to receive flashy videos of people like Dave Sharpe and David Wood telling me for 45 minutes how much money they make from their “system” 

Dave and David provided testimonial after testimonial “confirming” how much people had apparently made using their great “system“, but not for once did they tell me what they sold.

That’s right, in 45 minutes they did not actually tell me what they sold. Not once.

But they did have a BIG purchase button, prompting me to send them $25, which would entitle me to their little magic internet marketing secret. Pay first THEN get told what it is that you just bought.

Yeah riiiiiight… Time for those internet alarm bells again.

As I am a seasoned, university qualified marketing professional with over 15 years experience in the real business world, I am comfortable to say that I know a little bit about marketing in both the traditional bricks and mortar, and online markets.  And I also know a scam when I see one.

So, I thought would do some more research into this form of internet “marketing” and it turns out that this whole concept is the brain child of a group of conmen who have teamed up together to fleece unsuspecting people out of their money, in return for basically nothing but smoke and mirrors.

That’s when I found this amazing expose article on The Verge, which is a real technology site reviewing and commenting on real businesses and issues.  The expose aerticle is entitled – Scamworld: ‘Get rich quick’ schemes mutate into an online monster

This fantastic article outlines how a network of pitchmen have used the internet and fear of a failing economy to play the ultimate long con  Give Scamworld: The Movie a watch and see if it all sounds legit to you.

Screen Shot 2013-03-29 at 1.19.55 PMNow I know that WordPress outlaws multi layer marketing blogs on their servers, but I think it is bordering on negligent and / or complicit of them to be forwarding on notices that point to content that they already have ruled is inappropriate to be hosted on their servers.

It seems that WordPress seems to think it’s OK that someone pays to self-host but still uses the WordPress platform and email alert service to spot and groom potential marks for their multi layer marketing scam.

I am going to contact WordPress and request a clear explanation on this extremely serious issue.

As the vide above shows quite clearly, this is a massive scam that has been orchestrated by a select group of people and more than likely some of the random strangers that you are getting on your blog are nothing more than people who have next to no understanding whatsoever about marketing, and are people that have most likely already bought into the scam, either wittingly or unwittingly.

Personally, I am tipping that it’s the latter, because most of the individuals that profess to having all this money and being entrepreneurs are extremely young, pimple faced kids who have fallen for one of the shonkiest, dishonest, yet oldest cons that I have seen for some time.

The fact that they didn’t realise that this was a scam before they shelled out their cash to these snake oil salesmen and got involved in this scam just indicates to me how little these people know about business, marketing and life in general.

Beware fellow bloggers and dont get sucked into promises of riches blogging your heart out on the internet.  If you’re trying to get into blogging for the money, then you’re in for totally the wrong reasons.

Remember the golden rule of the internet: If it sounds to good to be true, then it probably is.


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