A few months ago, MonaVie released “MonaVie Perks.”
Let’s investigate how MonaVie is marketing this release. On December 9th, 2011, it had this article Diamond Executive Marcy N. Shares MonaVie Perks Experience with Downline.
Before we dig into the details it is worth focusing on why MonaVie has highlights “Diamond Executive Marcy N.” when a simple search shows that the only Diamond Executive “Marci N.” is Marcy Negri. I understand anonymity and I’m anonymous myself.
However, if you want to be anonymous don’t try to pull rank as a Diamond Executive. In my view, you need to own the title if you are going to use your Diamond Executive title. Before he died (RIP), you never heard testimony from Steve J. about Apple, right?
So let’s look at what MonaVie is advocating that their top distributors spread through their downline. Here’s a quote from the article:
“The following is an email that Marcy N., Diamond Executive with MonaVie, sent to her organization. With permission, we are sharing this stellar example of downline communication, which effectively communicates the benefits of the MonaVie Perks program through personal experience.”
The email is this:
Dec 9, 2011
Diamond Executive Marcy N. Shares MonaVie Perks Experience with Downline
Thank you for the feedback many of you have provided us during the rollout phase of our MonaVie Perks Retail Rewards program. We’ve sincerely appreciated hearing your accolades and experiences in saving.
The following is an email that Marcy N., Diamond Executive with MonaVie, sent to her organization. With permission, we are sharing this stellar example of downline communication, which effectively communicates the benefits of the MonaVie Perks program through personal experience.
I am so excited about the new MonaVie Perks program. One of the reasons people quit MonaVie is because once they start to feel better or lose weight, they forget how they used to look and feel. Then their credit card bill comes, and they think that looking good and feeling good cost too much. Well, now, MonaVie has provided a perk that can save them significant money. In fact, it will actually cost them money to drop out!
We just enrolled in the new Perks program, and during the first week we saved $93.00!
How, you ask?
We have a $40 co-pay on our prescription plan for some prescriptions. They have some crazy formula—some prescriptions are $10, some are $20, and some are $40, go figure…I went to Walgreens and paid $40 for a prescription and then as I was walking out of the store, I looked at the fine print on the receipt and it said, “Your prescription plan saved you $2.49.” In other words, if I didn’t have insurance the script would have been $42.49, big deal! So I asked the pharmacist if he would try to run the prescription on my MonaVie Health & Happiness Card. He wasn’t too thrilled and thought that it wouldn’t save any money. But when he went to his computer, his eyes lit up and he said, “I will re-run your prescription on this card, and your co-pay will only be $15!”
I just saved $25
Later in the week, I had another prescription filled; this one saved $3.
I just saved $3
I went online before we went out to dinner on Tuesday night and looked at the MonaVie Perks site. I found a new Japanese restaurant that we had never gone to before and printed a coupon. We had a great meal with our friends and when the check came we saved $15 plus 10% off the check.
I just saved another $25
Yesterday I went to the Gap; prior to going, I printed a $15 coupon.
I just saved another $15
Last night we went to Bensi, an Italian restaurant that we frequently visit. Prior to going, I looked online, found a $10 coupon, and guess what…?
I just saved another $10
Today I received the actual Retail Rewards discount card and welcome kit booklet from MonaVie. There was another Gap coupon…
I went shopping, and today I saved another $15
Total savings on stuff I would have bought in one week: $93. If I do this every week, I will save $4,836 per year! That is more than my AutoShip costs me. MonaVie just found another way to reward me for being a customer. What a great company! I am making money 8 ways on the standard compensation plan, PLUS I am saving more money on everyday purchases than I am spending on the product. There are so many places to save money! Just log into your Virtual Office and click “MV Perks” to register and look at all of the great merchants in your area that are participating—you won’t believe your eyes!
It really does cost you money NOT to be with MonaVie.
The downline receiving this think that it is a fantastic opportunity to save money, right?
However, let’s examine the claims made.
Regarding the prescription part of the MonaVie Perks:
- Points #1 and #2 of Nancy Negri’s article relates to discounts for prescriptions being filled. Hey, I thought that people drinking MonaVie didn’t get sick. Oh wait, that was exposed as a scam here, MonaVie M(Mun), Dr. Paul Clayton, and Wellmune.
- Also there are similar health cards available for discounts on prescriptions here: http://www.medicationcard.net/
In short, the card has zero value. Also, MonaVie shouldn’t be representing it as a perk, especially when it flies in the face of what they’ve told consumers in the past.
The more egregious part of the MonaVie Perks program comes to the “deals.”
As “Marcy N.” says,
“Well, now, MonaVie has provided a perk that can save them significant money. In fact, it will actually cost them money to drop out!”
Is that truthful? Let’s look at what MonaVie has to say regarding their Perk program. Their “official representative”, Jake Larsen, who is likely related to Dallin Larsen: said the following:
“The Retail Rewards program is a specially designed program for MonaVie distributors that is powered by Entertainment®. The special offers for MonaVie have been chosen from Entertainment’s database of hundred’s of thousands of offers focused on delivering relevant savings for MonaVie distributors. Entertainment also manages offerings for student and charity fundraisers. One of those offerings includes the Entertainment Book, which you may have seen used as a fundraiser for schools or other organizations.
The offerings for MonaVie have been put together especially for our distributors and may be different offers than those found in Entertainment Books used for fundraising.”
It turns out that MonaVie’s Official blog is pushing the fact that joining MonaVie is a cost savings. However further inspection reveals that MonaVie’s autoship requirements costs close to $1700 a year and anyone has been able to get the FULL DEALS (not limited as MonaVie’s representative says) for around $35 a year… and it get cheaper depending on the season.
This is deceptive marketing at its finest. I’m in appalled that MonaVie would post the following:
“Total savings on stuff I would have bought in one week: $93. If I do this every week, I will save $4,836 per year! That is more than my AutoShip costs me. MonaVie just found another way to reward me for being a customer. What a great company! I am making money 8 ways on the standard compensation plan, PLUS I am saving more money on everyday purchases than I am spending on the product. There are so many places to save money!”
It’s hard to know where to begin with topics like this. Marcy Negri extrapolates one week to an entire year. Does she get two prescriptions filled per week? If so… Wow, you why are you paying $40 a bottle for MonaVie?!?!
After that why is she pitching savings of a MonaVie program as an exclusive benefit when a non-member could get similar fantastic deals for $1700 less a year?
Poor form MonaVie.
Originally posted 2012-02-24 17:06:39. Republished by Blog Post Promoter
This post involves:
... and focuses on:
In a surprising series of posts on Facebook the son of MonaVie CEO, Dallin Larsen, Dallin Larsen Jr. said he wants out of MonaVie. He doesn’t want to be a part of an organization that lies to people even if it means losing his trust fund. On his Facebook page there are quotes such as:
“there has to be a way out”
“@ david bunker…this is me calling out your fat tubby ass. You work for a nutritional company yet you eat burgers and fries all day. Chunk a chunk a chunk a chunk … I understand business is business which is why you should practice what you preach…I am son of the founding chair and president. Based on how much money the company makes is based on how much goes into my trust fund. GUESS WHAT? I don’t want a trust fund, I don’t want money from a man who walked out on me as a small child leaving me to try and raise four girls on my own at age 11. So dad go ahead and keep your damn money I don’t want it. I’m done being the man people expect me to be. You have all been lied to, they are poisoning you in order to depopulate, don’t buy it… @FBI—I have information for you. CTU has contacted me… I can be reached at [email protected]
“Dome dome origato nehow dashimash hola and hello. forgive me If my pronunciation is off : My name is Dallin Larsen Jr. Some of you may know me as Ross. I am the son of whom many know as CEO, Founder, and Chairman Dallin Albert Larsen, not to be confused. The Executives and I have decided it is best that I do not work at Monavie any longer based on personal reasons. I wish you all the best of luck I’m just not making what I need to here. I hope that one day you and your families will be in a position not only financially, but physically, mentally, and emotionally to the point where you no longer have increased stress from your job. I hope one day to meet all of you and know you are doing a terrific job at what you do; otherwise, the Monavie Corporation would not be where it is today. I’m done being the man people expect me to be. If I am fortunate enough to meet you, do not hesitate to come up and say hello, I don’t bite…delta alpha lambda lambda ioto nu lambda if you want fresh milk, don’t poison the cow for only the fool works for free. I love you all, I hope for nothing but the best for all of you…and David Bunker I forgive you for your selfish self-indulging idiocracy you son of a bitch you’re all doing a great job. Keep it up, don’t quit, blessings. love. ohbdeegada.”
This has obviously put MonaVie on alert. There a couple of messages from Randy Schroeder, International Distributor Ambassador at MonaVie, on his wall saying, “Dallin…call me. My private number is in your in box.”
I have also received word that the last quote from Dallin Larsen Jr. on Facebook was sent to everyone at MonaVie Internationally. The person said that his father followed up with the following email to everyone:
“All, I apologize for having to respond to all of you as a result of my son’s email. I love my son and he has been and is going through some personal challenges. I appreciate you honoring our family’s need and desire to deal with his challenges in private. Sincerely, Dallin A. Larsen Founder and CEO; MonaVie”
Clearly dad isn’t getting his wish due to the information being put publicly on Facebook. I understand that not every family is perfect all the time and we all go through some personal challenges. That’s not really the point of this post. The point is that it is notable that Dallin Larsen Jr. would give up a substantial trust fund and saying that everyone is being lied to about MonaVie and that he’s willing to tell the FBI about it. Hey, readers of this website have known about the lies for years, but it noteworthy that there lies that would be of interest to the FBI.
It’s also good to have the confirmation that top MonaVie executives don’t actually live a healthy lifestyle. Finally, there’s the thought that if this is how MonaVie treats their own people, what are doing to others?
Here is a screenshot from Dallin Larsen Jr.’s Facebook page (click for larger image):
Originally posted 2012-01-19 09:09:31. Republished by Blog Post Promoter
This post involves:
... and focuses on:
Many MonaVie distributors may claim that it is a healthy drink. As we’ve seen, MonaVie lacks nutrition. However, upon further investigation of the ingredients it seems that MonaVie contains a known carcinogen – a cancer causing ingredient.
That ingredient is benzene. Now you might be thinking, “I have a bottle of MonaVie and I don’t see benzene on the label.” Sodium Benzoate + Vitamin C = Benzene:
“Sodium benzoate has already been the subject of concern about cancer because when mixed with the additive vitamin C in soft drinks, it causes benzene, a carcinogenic substance.”
Here’s the list of ingredients from a bottle of MonaVie :
You might have blow that up a bit to read it. However, you’ll see that sodium benzoate and vitamin C are clearly there.
The FDA has created a question and answer for such products. It has tested quite a few products, but it has not tested MonaVie.
In any case, a wise consumer should avoid any “health” drink that has unknown dangers like proven cancer causing ingredients. MonaVie would fit into that category.
Originally posted 2011-09-20 12:54:59. Republished by Blog Post Promoter
This post involves:
... and focuses on:
[The following is research from frequent commenter Vogel… I have cleaned up some of the formatting.]
I had a look at MonaVie’s latest publication that just came out this week. This is MonaVie’s worst study yet. My critical analysis follows; it is by no means all-encompassing of the many flaws.
Jensen GS, Ager DM, Redman KA, Mitzner MA, Benson KF, Schauss AG. Pain reduction and improvement in range of motion after daily consumption of an açai (Euterpe oleracea mart.) pulp-fortified polyphenolic-rich fruit and berry juice blend. J Med Food. 2011 Apr 6.
The article features the usual cast of MonaVie’s pseudo-scientific hacks; namely Alexander Schauss and Gitte Jensen. Their shenanigans have already been discussed in great depth on Lazyman and JuiceScam already. In a nutshell, both are skeezy lackeys of the supplement industry.
Schauss, holder of a mail-order PhD, has been in tight with MonaVie since the company’s inception. He conducted all of their bogus tainted research, heads the company’s “scientific advisory board”, is a frequent speaker at MonaVie distributor meetings, sells his books and CDs to Monavie distributors, and holds the patent to the freeze-dried acai that was allegedly used in Monavie (and which served as a fundamental part of Monavie’s advertising claims about the product’s uniqueness and “efficacy”). Schauss is also known for having previously peddled his own line of BS supplements (Feed My Brain) to treat autistic children.
Jensen is best known for her association with the Klamath Lake blue-green algae scam (shut down by the FDA), and for a previous MonaVie publication she coauthored with Schauss. She operates a tiny little insignificant research-for-hire organization (HolgerNIS) in Klamath Falls. You can find the information on StemTech here and here.
One of the other authors is David Marshall Ager, an obscure Klamath Falls chiropractor who operates out of a clinic (Cascade Chiropractic and Rehabilitation) so insignificant that it doesn’t even have its own website. This is his first scientific publication.
The remaining authors, who don’t have a PhD or MD degree among them, are underlings of Gitte Jensen and affiliated with HolgerNIS.
The Journal of Medicinal Food, a rag for the nutraceutical industry, is produced by the Korean Society of Food Science and Nutrition. It has an ISI impact factor of 1.39. For perspective, this compares to top-tier scientific journals in roughly the same way that a Suzuki Sidekick would compare to a shiny new Ferrari (e.g., top-tier journals have an IF of about 30, going as high as 50). Read more about Impact Factor on Wikipedia.
If it dawns on you to you ask why MonaVie would publish a study in an insignificant Asian nutraceutical journal, then you are asking the right question. There is no legitimate reason other than that they couldn’t get their crap study published anywhere that actually matters.
The Study Design and Methodology
This was an open-label study, meaning that it did not include any placebo group or blinding, and it was conducted in a mere 14 subjects who were not enrolled in a randomized fashion. On that basis, this would be considered by any expert as an extremely poorly designed study; so poor in fact that it would be completely incapable of generating any remotely reliable data. The results would be susceptible to bias and the study cohort was too small for definitive conclusions to be drawn. In contrast, a randomized placebo-controlled double-blinded clinical trial would have been an appropriate experimental design.
The authors state explicitly that they included 2 subjects that did not meet the study’s inclusion criteria. This is unheard of — simply unfathomable. Inclusion criteria exist for a reason and subjects should never be included who do not meet a study’s preset criteria. My mind boggles at the ineptitude of the investigators for violating their own rules of the study.
“The original plan was to involve 12 participants; however, during the initial recruitment and interview process 14 interested participants were identified. Because this study was performed with the intent of broadly exploring what pain conditions may benefit from consumption of MonaVie Active, we decided to enroll all 14 even though some did not meet the original inclusion criteria.” [Page 3]
Several of the endpoints used to measure outcomes (pain, range of motion, activities of daily living) were subjective (based on patient questionnaires) and, thus, easily influenced by the study’s poor design (i.e. lack of blinding and placebo control) and susceptible to the placebo effect and subject/researcher bias. One of the few non-subjective measures used (to assess antioxidant effects) was the CAP-e assay, which we have discussed here previously. It is an anomalous assay developed by one of Jensen’s underlings (Dana Honzel, while she was an undergraduate student at Santa Clara University) and has never been used or validated by any other researcher.
It would not be considered as an even remotely acceptable method of measurement by any bona fide researcher.
The investigators also implemented an inappropriate method for analyzing statistical significance. They used a t-test instead of a repeated measures analysis, such as one-way ANOVA, to measure the effect of multiple measurements over time.
The study does not contain the required Declaration of Helsinki statement indicating that it was conducted in accordance with internationally recognized standards for human medical experimentation, nor does it state that the study was approved by any independent review board or ethics committee. These are grave oversights.
The study involved blood draws, yet it does not appear that any of the authors are qualified to perform such procedures. Lastly, the article does not include any statement indicating that the subjects provided informed consent prior to participation in the study; this too is a grave oversight and it adds to the overall picture that this study was not conducted in accordance with standards for ethical research.
Because of the lack or blinding and placebo control, all results can be attributed solely to the placebo effect and investigator/subject bias.
The medical histories of the patients were not considered (probably attributable to the fact that no REAL doctor was involved in the study, and a chiropractor wouldn’t be qualified to assess their case histories). This oversight is ridiculous. No serious medical research study on joint pain would ever be undertaken without thorough medical exams and chart reviews to determine the diagnosis, etiology, and natural history of each patient’s condition. To make matters even worse, the subjects were not excluded from taking concurrent medications. Thus, all results could be attributable to such medication use rather than to Monavie.
The key results reported were improvements in activities of daily living (ADL), range-of-motion, and pain questionnaire scores; increased serum antioxidant status (measured by the unreliable CAP-e assay); and decreased lipid peroxidation (TBARs).
The only potentially reliable and semi-objective indicator of efficacy, the C-reactive protein assay (a surrogate marker of inflammation) was not significantly affected, and to make matters worse, the data were not shown at all (a ridiculous oversight). Equally ridiculous, is the fact that the lipid peroxidation data were not presented, despite the authors’ clam that there was a significant reduction in serum following consumption of Monavie for 12 weeks.
Averaged data for range of motion scores at each timepoint were not presented, making it impossible to verify the authors’ claims of a significant effect. Data for pain and CAP-e results were presented as percent change rather than raw values, again making verification impossible (this method is a common way of fudging and disguising bad data and small, clinically meaningless effects).
Pain scores were reduced from baseline by less than 10% at weeks 2 to 8, and by about 17% at week 12. The data throughout were highly variable (as evidenced by the very large error bars in Figure 4) and the differences from baseline could be just random noise (not to mention attributable to biasing factors, the placebo effect, concurrent medications, regression to the mean, or intentional data fudging).
The correlation graphs for TBARS and CRP in Figure 5 are basically meaningless. They are used to disguise the fact that the actual data TBAR and CRP data were not presented (a fundamental and inexcusable omission).
The study attempts to single out acai as the causative factor responsible for the alleged benefits seen in the study subjects, e.g.:
“Given the combined antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and potentially antinociceptive properties of acai juice and pulp seen in vitro and in vivo, we sought to conduct a pilot study in humans with chronic pain and underlying inflammatory issues.” [Page 2]
“The test product for this study was MonaVie Active (MonaVie LLC, South Jordan, UT, USA), a fruit- and berry-based juice blend with a high level of polyphenolic compounds that exhibit strong antioxidant properties. These properties stem from the predominance of acai pulp in the formulation; pulp of this fruit has been shown to have high superoxide and peroxyl radical scavenging capacities in vitro.” [Page 2]
“Acai contains a range of polyphenols that protect cellular oxidative damage in vitro and provide anti-inflammatory signaling leading to reduced production of free radicals by inflammatory cells.” [Page 8]
However, the article’s discussion (page 8) states that grapes have been shown to have analgesic effects; and even though grape juice is a primary ingredient in Monavie, the authors fail to even remotely entertain the possibility that the alleged effects in this study would have been attributable to the grape juice rather than the acai in Monavie. Furthermore, the authors do not disclose that Monavie is made with significant vitamin and antioxidant fortification, nor do they consider the possibility that the juice’s alleged antioxidant effects could be attributable solely to the vitamin C that the juice is spiked with. Lastly, the do not discuss the possibility that the glucosamine added to Monavie Active could have been responsible for the improvements in patient-reported outcomes independently of any antioxidant effects (i.e. the purported benefits of glucosamine do not involve an oxidative/antioxidant mechanism).
The disclosure statement reveals that the study was funded by Monavie. Schauss declares that he is an unfunded member of the Monavie scientific advisory board. He fails to disclose that he has other relationships with the company, such as the licensing of his patent on Opti-Acai, speaking engagements, and profits from the sale of his CDs and book to Monavie distributors.
Originally posted 2011-05-04 10:42:33. Republished by Blog Post Promoter
This post involves:
... and focuses on:
I received an interesting email recently. The person had an email from former MonaVie distributor Robert Wright. I asked him if I could publish it and he went back to Robert for permission. Robert granted the permission so here is his email:
I was in MonaVie for 2-1/2 years, and never heard of non-retail bonus that you speak of. I will look into my back office and see if I can decipher what it is that you refer to.
As far as their Income Disclosure Statement….what a crock of crap. I have to admit that I made good money with MonaVie for the first year that I was with them. I made it to Gold Executive rank, but NEVER made the kind of $$ that it showed on the IDS. My average income ran around 300-400 per week, a far cry from $52,000 per year.
My group grew to just under 700 as of July of 2010, but out of those people I now have only 17 people that are on auto-ship and drinking the product
I’m very good friends with my Black Diamond up-line Carrie Dickie….she is the one on the Momentum DVD who talks about them taking the berry out of Brazil and MonaVie giving back to that country…speaking of the MORE project. She has over 22,000 people in her group.
Carrie made $980,000 in 2009 with MonaVie, her income today is less than $500.00 per week. This is happening with many of the Black Diamonds in MonaVie… the problem is that people simply cannot afford to drink the juice.
Carrie and I, along with my Diamond up-line, found a company that has a product that is only $40.00 per month, has better results than MonaVie, is a publicly traded company so that there is no hidden BS about the company being a billion dollar company, yet no one can see the books to validate what is being said. Everything with this company is in the open to the distributors and share holders, we are seeing 307% growth, and experiencing the momentum that MonaVie was seeing between 2005-2008.
Don’t get me wrong, I love the MonaVie product, but tell your wife to run….it is a loosing proposition. My wife and I went around $20,000 in credit card debt “sharing the juice” with everyone who would listen, only to have them get on the product, and than stop after a couple of months when they couldn’t afford to drink it anymore.
That’s quite a drop, right? It seems to support interest in MonaVie is fading.
As for the company that Robert is talking about, but not naming by name. That’s another scam called Protandim. Out of the frying pan and into the fryer.
Originally posted 2011-03-16 13:11:57. Republished by Blog Post Promoter
This post involves:
... and focuses on:
I came across an article from 2004 by about a Utah Study on tax returns. There is a ton of useful information here, but one item in general made me stop reading the article and post it here. In particular it was point #2 on a list of 7 bullets from the findings:
“2. Most recruiting for Utah MLMs is done outside Utah, presumably because heavy market saturation in Utah has stiffened resistance to buying into the MLMs. So MLM promoters go to other states, and then from one foreign country to another to keep the scheme going. Or they sometimes start new product divisions to cycle the pyramid anew. MLMs like Nu Skin and Usana become, in effect, Ponzi schemes, by recruiting new investors in their schemes to pay off earlier investors.”
Remember that this was written in 2004 before MonaVie existed. The prediction is eerily on target when applied to MonaVie. They company did expand from one foreign country to another. That’s not typically a bad thing. Successful companies do expand to other countries. However, this does look like the kind of thing that MonaVie’s been doing since it has started declining in the US, and interest is fading overall. Since MonaVie has been afraid to put out an IDS since the middle of 2009, it draws some legit concern that they had trouble keeping it going.
Mr. Taylor then predicted the company would start a new product division. For MonaVie this would be its weight loss product RVL. The company’s failure to expand due to the pyramid scheme of the business plan has caused it to ask its distributors for more money through another product.
Is Jon M. Taylor a reincarnation of Nostradamus? Not likely. It’s just the predictable nature of companies like these.
Originally posted 2011-03-09 13:58:47. Republished by Blog Post Promoter
This post involves:
... and focuses on:
Sometimes MonaVie distributors will make a case that Alexander Schauss has been studying MonaVie for so long that he’s an expert on the subject. This is done to give the illusion that there’s some value in MonaVie. Unfortunately it is just an illusion.
This argument is known as an Appeal to Authority and is known as a a logical fallacy. From Wikipedia the flaw logic goes something like:
“Appeal to authority as logical fallacy
A (fallacious) appeal to authority argument has the basic form:
1. A makes claim B;
2. there is something positive about A that (fallaciously) is used to imply that A has above-average or expert knowledge in the field, or has an above-average authority to determine the truth or rightness of such a matter
3. therefore claim B is true, or has its credibility unduly enhanced as a result of the proximity and association.
The first statement is called a ‘factual claim’ and is the pivot point of much debate. The last statement is referred to as an ‘inferential claim’ and represents the reasoning process. There are two types of inferential claim, explicit and implicit.”
The idea that there’s something special about the acai berry because Schauss has reportedly been studying is flawed. Wikipedia further notes:
“… experts can still be mistaken, willfully deceptive, subject to pressure from peers or employers, have a vested financial interest in the false statements, or have unusual views (or views that are widely criticized by other experts) within their field, and hence their expertise does not always guarantee that their arguments are valid.”
You can make a case that all of them to MonaVie. As we know MonaVie does try to suppress the truth and is willfully deceptive in the ORAC score of it’s juice. Numerous doctors prove that MonaVie’s “experts” have unusual views with in their field. Lastly, we know the vested financial interest in the false statements.
These are all good reasons to completely discount anything that Dr. Schauss says.
Originally posted 2011-02-01 17:44:22. Republished by Blog Post Promoter
This post involves:
... and focuses on:
Many distributors of an MLM will ask about my credentials. It sounds like a logical question on the face of it. However, upon further examination it really isn’t. I thought I’d break down a few of the reasons why so we can finally put this debate tactic out of commission. I ask you to read all the way through the end before commenting though (the “good stuff” is there).
What are the Credentials of the MLM inventors
I’ve looked at MonaVie and Protandim in detail. In the case of MonaVie, it was developed by Ralph Carson, who had and extremely questionable interview on CBS Radio. In it he violates the FTC guidelines when he talks about the “testimonials” of MonaVie.
Protandim’s inventor, Paul Myhill, shows no medical background at all in his Linked In profile.
Some People Ask Why they should Trust an Anonymous Person like Me
I would first like to address why I am anonymous. I have written more than 1200 posts about personal finance over at Lazy Man and Money for 4.5 years now. It is quite common (as you tell from this article) for personal finance bloggers to blog anonymously as they mention details about their income and net worth that they might not want to attach to their name. It doesn’t make sense for me to leave my name with much of my financial information present in that blog, so that someone could use the information to steal my identity.
When I started blogging, I wasn’t introduced to the evil that exists in these MLM scams. While I am happy with the number of people who thank me for helping them understand that MonaVie is a scam, when a MonaVie distributor like Glenn Siesser threatens to kill me and another monavie distributor tries to blackmail me, it’s clear that remaining anonymous is the best course of action. From the comments that you read on this site, and on my original MonaVie post it is quite clear that many of the distributors are not logical, sensible people looking to engage in a productive debate. I’m trying to help consumers and I ask for nothing in return. I’d rather do my job without having to deal with a mentally imbalanced person overreacting about 35 cents worth juice (in the case of MonaVie) or 12 cents of commonly found supplements (in the case of Protandim). These companies don’t need that kind of lawsuit on their hands either as it would easily bankrupt them (and yes we know that MonaVie would be held responsible for the actions of their distributors, just like Napster was).
Why Would You Want Credentials Anyway?
I don’t make any medical claims, not do I claim to have any medical training. I only show you what unbiased information from reputable third parties and point out logical inferences that require no more than your typical 5th grade education to understand
The Purpose of Asking for Credentials in a Debate is Logical Fallacy
Asking for credentials is a classic Appeal to Accomplishment logical fallacy. In case you are too busy to click that link here’s what Wikipedia says:
“Appeal to accomplishment is a genetic fallacy wherein Person A challenges a thesis put forward by Person B which criticizes Person C (or A) a due to the fact that Person B has not accomplished similar feats or accomplished as many feats as Person C or Person A.
Rebutting this appeal has been popularly called ‘Ebert’s Law’, referring to Roger Ebert’s ability to critique films irrespective of his accomplishments as a filmmaker.”
The person asking for credentials is simply trying to debunk what I’ve proven with a logical fallacy. Since the debater can find no logical fault with the arguments I’ve made, the debater resorts to fallacies. (For those who don’t know what “fallacy” means dictionary.com’s defines it as “a deceptive, misleading, or false notion, belief, etc.: That the world is flat was at one time a popular fallacy.”)
Finally, while we are on the topic of fallacies about credentials, I should note Alexander Schauss and Appeals to Authority
Originally posted 2011-02-01 17:45:45. Republished by Blog Post Promoter
This post involves:
... and focuses on:
I clicked on XOWii’s website today (12/23/2010) and I found something amazing. It was the following claim:
“One 2-ounce shot of XOWiiâ„¢ Ultimate is the nutrient equivalent of more food than you can comfortably eat in a day â€“ 2 cups spinach, 3 oranges, 22 eggs, 15 avocados, 3 cups of pea, 50 bananas, 5 potatoes, 2 watermelons, 30 cups of tomatoes, 12.5 pounds of cheddar cheese and 80 mushrooms.
Would you rather consume this mountain of food or receive all those nutrients in one convenient 2-ounce shot?”
What an amazing claim, right?!?! However, it is clearly lie. To understand why, we need to do no more than look up what the definition of a nutrient is. Wikipedia gives us a list of types of nutrients. As you can see, carbohydrates, proteins, and fats are nutrients. So the statement that XOWii is making is that 2 ounces of XOWii contains all the carbs, protein, and fat of that huge list of food. So let’s look at the nutrition label of XOWii Ultimate:
XOWii Ultimate Nutrition Label
As you can see that XOWii Ultimate contains no fat or protein… core nutrients that are in avocados, eggs, and cheddar cheese. It makes MonaVie’s claim of it being the antioxidant equivalent of eating 13 fruits look tame. The MLM juice scams know no limits to their ability to commit large scale consumer fraud.
Just in case XOWii updates their website, to fix this illegal claim, I grabbed a screenshot to prove it:
XOWii Ultimate Lies (click for full image)
Originally posted 2010-12-23 12:10:31. Republished by Blog Post Promoter
This post involves:
... and focuses on:
[The following is a guest post by frequent commenter, Jim.]
Often distributors make various claims regarding the failure of distributors due to lack if effort. Most of us have read the reasoning by distributors that people failed because they didn’t utilize the help available from the team, because people think it’s get rich quick and quit when they don’t see instant results or you didn’t work the fool proof system. However, this is not the case. The mathematics of the compensation plan guarantees extreme losses regardless of individual effort.
To prove this I would like to focus on the main structure of the MonaVie opportunity, which is distributors are paid 10% of their lesser leg. This creates in a perfectly balance downline a maximum gross payout of 5% since distributors are only paid on one leg.
Let’s use an example assuming that you and your entire downline purchase $200 per month of juice. Let’s also assume that you have 10 individuals on each side, for a total downline of 20. This means your entire downline is spending $4,000 per month (20 x $200). You would be paid 10% on only one leg, (10% of $2,000) or $200 gross commissions. You broke even. Therefore for every 1 person in the “opportunity” who breaks even, 20 must be cash flow negative. What is true for one individual “tree” is true for all. There is no way for anybody to make money without 20 people losing no matter how much effort or what system you are plugged into, it is a simple case of mathematics.
I am not stating that it is impossible for anybody’s downline to make money, just that the only way to do so is by them bringing 20 additional distributors who will lose into the “opportunity”. It is similar to a poker game, the only way for one to win is for others to lose, 20 others in this particular case. Everybody at the table can’t win no matter how good they may be. While it is possible for any one person to make money, and theoretically lots, it is mathematically impossible for everyone to make money regardless of effort or the system they are “plugged into”.
I believe there are actually many people involved in MonaVie who believe they are helping friends and family have the chance to improve their financial situation. I don’t think everybody in MonaVie is trying to rip off their friends and family. I think many do not see the mathematics and have trusted the one one who introduced them to MonaVie. To those distributors: please see the harm you are doing, please realize the next time you sign up someone you care about that there is less than a 5% chance they will not lose money and the only way for that to happen is for them to bring an additional 20 losers into the scheme.
Thus is the nature of the binary compensation plan when used within an endless recruiting marketing scheme. I am personally unaware of any such scheme which has had even a 5% success rate and there are plenty of them out there (see this Skeptoid article). MonaVie’s own IDS shows less than 2% of distributors cash flow positive.
Now I am aware there any several ways to get paid in MonaVie but most of the lucrative plans are reserved for those at the top and have no effect on the statistical odds of being profitable. First Order Bonus and Star Maker could have a slight impact on this analysis but as these are not recurring income or the major income stream I did not include the impact. To be fair, I also did not include other expenses associated with the “opportunity” such as the cost of travel, juice for tastings, motivational books, CDs, seminars, branding, or marketing materials which I believe would make the potential for profits far worse.
I am very open to hear any potential corrections to the above analysis from distributors, or any others, who may understand the plan better than I do. My goal is to be as accurate as possible without exaggeration so distributors can realize the damage that is required in this “opportunity” and to be able to see the truth that was omitted when they were shown the plan
Originally posted 2010-12-13 08:55:22. Republished by Blog Post Promoter
This post involves:
... and focuses on: