I recently read with ambiguous emotions of dismay and gratitude that Global Online Systems was fined $150,000 for operating an illegal pyramid scheme. I was personally bilked for about $13,000 and I "recruited" many others who lost a great deal of money as well; in fact one client accrued $15,000 worth of debt over this "lucrative" home-based business opportunity. We were continuously told to invest more and more and more money into advertising, and advised that our businesses were failing because "we weren't spending enough on advertising."
I want to advise people that in September of 2004, a large group of Global Online Systems members branched off as Online Business Systems; this group is spearheaded by Shawn Dahl and Glenn Kirkpatrick. They have a new website, but utilize the exact same tactics and scripts that Global Online Systems used. Verbatim.
I started this business with Global Online Systems around August 2003 and got out of the business in October 2004. Basically, I was forced out by a key member, namely Phil Keogh, because "my organization was complaining too much" about the inordinate expenses each month for leads (getting forced out was actually a blessing in disguise). For example, giving $1000 in advertising to these clowns at the beginning of each month, we would receive 8 to 10 leads (at the most 12), some of which weren't even legitimate credit card numbers to process. (They now have a clause on their website indicating the "advertising is not guaranteed" in any way shape or form, which protects them from any liability.)
Many, many, many people have lost thousands and thousands of dollars given to these scam artists at the beginning of each month for what they call "group advertising" or the "internet marketing wheel."
I just thought that perhaps people might want to be made aware of this, and that Online Business Systems should be part of the ongoing investigation into illegal pyramid schemes as well. These people are representing Herbalife International, and I have found that these products are extremely overpriced and difficult (if not impossible) to reasonably market. In addition, in order to participate in certain Fast Track or Focus Groups (which is where the awesome training occurs that is supposed to practically guarantee business success), they require that a client be classified as a "Supervisor" with Herbalife (this is typically a $3,800 investment) and also have at least one internet wheel slot (cost of $500 per month for each slot; they strongly encourage us to buy three per month for a total investment of $1,500!!). Plus, you are required to purchase those Decision Package kits ($180 in lots of ten) and Operations Manuals ($120 in lots of 5) and Training Tickets ($150 in lots of five) in order to do the friggin' business. Furthermore, Herbalife dings the hell out of you for shipping, handling and tax for every order that you place!
In hindsight, this whole scheme is utterly ridiculous! Where are all those advertising dollars going each month??? There is absolutely no accountability financially for these invested dollars. It's based on a factor of trust and faith. What a scam! No one that I know of made any money (and several of us tried really, really hard); rather, we all accumulated a massive amount of debt.
Many of the people that I recruited, including myself, genuinely tried to make this business work. We believed in the system and what we were being told, however, we all lost a lot of money. Most of the debt we incurred ranges between $7,000 and $15,000!! It's bad enough that I got myself into a very serious financial crisis, but frankly, I'm living with a lot of guilt now because I got many other people in the same exact boat. And for that I'm very sorry. I was just as naive as them and certainly didn't intentionally try to hurt anyone. I am now a very cynical person because of this experience, and I never was before. I was always sought out the best in people, tried to help everyone in any way I could, and generally believed that the majority of folks were decent.
Furthermore, all of the clients that I was ever involved with were from the U.S. Perhaps these guys are protected under some international guidelines, which is why they typically dealt with people out of Canada. I don't know.
Bottom line: Don't get wrapped up in this deceptive business!! It's not a business really, just brainwashing tactics to get you in deep enough financially; then you are compelled to stick with it, hoping to get out of debt and achieving those ambitious financial goals that you're continuously promised will happen with perseverence and consistency. This is a really bad business venture!! Take my word for it. All you really need to do is objectively (the operative word here is "objectively") consider the tactics that are being employed. In hindsight, it's very evident. Frankly, I can't believe I was affiliated with a group like this for so long. I have a master's degree in business management and considered myself business savvy.
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