Xerveo bites the dust in the UK.

For a while now, there have been troubles and uncertainty within Xerveo. See previous posts on them here and here. More recently there has been widespread panic and rumour spreading from the reps. A lot of infighting has been going on and many reps are jumping ship to other MLMs.

It has been hard to find anything official on the matter though so I have not said anything up until now.

On the 5th of November 2017, Paul Holtham put this document on his Facebook page without comment or explanation.

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Paul Holtham is registered at Companies house as the director of Xerveo in the U.K.

 

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The Trading Standards letter says that Paul is no longer the representative of Xerveo in the UK and all the reps are essentially out on their own now. This letter was dated 31st October and he must have been fired a while before that for it to be mentioned in a letter from the authorities.

Paul explains what happened here in a Facebook post without actually explaining anything.

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It looks like he was fired. What for or why remains a mystery.  If you were a rep with him when it collapsed, please let me know what you were told about the reason behind all this.

If anyone has any  information on the rumours about Xerveo being merged with another MLM, I would love to see some evidence please.

Advice to Xerveo reps

If you intend to remain with the company, please read the Trading Standards letter and consider if you are willing to take on that level of responsibility.

If you are owed money for products you paid for and never got, consider talking to your bank/credit card company. A few reps have had their money refunded to them when they havenmt had their goods within 14 days.

If you are a rep who has decided to join another MLM, please be very careful in your choice. I have written an article aimed at helping you avoid the worst MLMs. Please have a look for some tips. Do not blindly follow your team. Consider your options carefully and independently of others.

 

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MLM meets quackery

Most Multi Level Marketing companies (MLMs) have some element of quackery in them. Just take a look at the bogus health claims attributed to Ariix, Juice Plus and Forever Living products to name but a few. When Cleanshield came to my attention, I was horrified at the sheer amount of idiocy that I felt compelled to write about why it is so wrong.

Here is their product

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Wow, some bold claims there!

What is in this amazing product I hear you cry? How on earth can it ‘resist and correct’ these many conditions?

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Sodium carbonate.

There is a website dedicated to this ingredient. This ingredient used to be a key ingredient in household cleaners and washing powders. It is an irritant.

Sodium phosphate

This is a strong laxative and features on Medline plus, a medication information website.  There is a serious risk of kidney damage or death with this drug, especially if certain other drugs are taken or if there are some other underlying health conditions.

 

The pH of this liquid is 11-11.3.  pH is measured on a 0-14 scale where 0 is extremely acid and 14 is extremely alkaline. What else is pH 11, for comparison?

I’ll tell you what is-

Ammonia.

How would drinking a highly alkaline solution cure all those conditions in the advert above?

It won’t.

For some reason there is an idea being touted by quacks that all illnesses are caused by the body being too acidic and this can be cured by ingesting alkaline things. Here is what Cleanshield have to at about the process-

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This shows a gross misunderstanding of how the body works. If the stomach’s acid is diluted, it will no doubt make more acid, but this will not affect the rest of the body! Cleanshield think that the body’s water is an ocean and the whole ‘ocean’s’ pH will alter. Different parts of the body have a different pH and the body is very good at keeping them where they should be. Drinking an alkaline solution will not trick the whole body into being more alkaline. If it did, you would die really easily.

That bit at the end- ‘No known harmful pathogens can survive in the human body with a pH near 7.0’ !!! No human bodies can survive for long at a pH of near 7!

Blood’s pH should be between 7.35-7.45 and it is kept this way by the kidneys and lungs. If it goes much out of this range, you become very ill. If it goes under 7 and over 8 you will most likely die. It is very difficult to artificially change the pH of blood, and you would be foolish to try. To think that you can change it with a drink is laughable and ridiculous.

Where are the scientific papers showing any evidence at all of these claims of Cleanshield? How do we know what their drink does to their body? Where is the evidence this supposed change of pH will affect the immune system and that this can help with the list of conditions? There is none.

There is no evidence at all.

Cleanshield are not the only quackery MLM that are peddling alkaline water. Enagic are another MLM company at it. They sell expensive machines that make alkaline or acidic water to help with health.

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Kangen water comes in 5 different strengths of pH. They have a pH11 water just like Cleanshield. Interestingly, they say not to drink this.

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They subscribe to pseudoscientific mumbo jumbo of changing the body’s pH though.

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Please, if you are going to believe in the idea that drinking products can change your pH level and this can change your health, despite there being no evidence or any credible scientific reasoning behind it, do not do it within an MLM company.

 

 

 

Quick and simple guide to why network marketing is a bad thing.

This blog post has been written at the request of a follower who wants to present information about MLMs in a simple format that can be printed onto a sheet of paper that she can distribute to some people to explain why MLMs are a bad thing. Anyone is welcome to copy and paste this into a word document. It will all fit onto one page if you make the font size 10. Make your own title as you think is appropriate.  The information may seem simplistic but it is this way on purpose.

Earning money

Most people do not earn money. The only people that do earn money are the people at the top who have recruited thousands of people under them. A lot of people lose money.  You will be told about many people who are earning money and that you can too. You can’t unless you already have a team of hundreds that all join at the same time as you. People often lie about the money they make because they want you to join and to think it is a good business opportunity. Do not believe anyone who says they earn a lot and want to recruit you.

Products

The products are very expensive and people don’t want to buy them. This is because some of the money goes up the pyramid to pay all the levels above. No one wants to pay the expensive price. You will end up buying it or friends will buy it because they feel sorry for you. People can buy products for cheaper in a shop.

Your friends

Your friends will get annoyed if you keep trying to sell to them and they will be even more annoyed if you try and recruit them. Do not use your friends and family to make money from them, it is not kind or friendly. If you lie to them to trick them into joining you, they will never trust you again. Friendships and family relationships can be ruined.

Control

Often, people in these schemes are told to do things that they feel uncomfortable doing. They are told to follow instructions and do things that don’t feel right, like lie about the products, buy a lot of stock for themselves, lie about how much money they are making, trick people into going to meetings. People start off doing some of these things and feeling bad, until soon they are doing lots of these things and it feels normal. Right and wrong start getting confused and the person changes into someone they don’t like anymore.

Hope

People realise they will not make money. They are told they are not working hard enough. They are told they are not being positive enough and if they spend more time and money they will start earning money. They are told to stop talking to friends and family who have been saying these schemes don’t work because their negative talk will make them fail.

The reason people do not make money is because only very very few can make any money and most lose money. It is not the person’s fault, but it is the way the company is set up. If you keep trying and keep spending money and keep hoping, you will still lose. But you will lose even more. And you will lose friends, time and more money.

Your own business

You are told you are an independent business person and you are in charge of what you do. You are not a boss. You do not own anything. You are just a salesperson who only gets paid commission. You do all the advertising, recruiting, training, selling and buying and take all the risks. You can be fired for many reasons and companies like these often fire people just for asking questions or saying they won’t do something.  You are responsible for following advertising laws, paying your taxes, registering your business properly, following the correct legal procedures for selling, storing and distributing products. There are a lot of rules to follow that you might not know about and you can get in trouble for. The company won’t get in trouble if you break the laws, you will.

 

This article has been translated into West Africanised French. Thanks to the Bot Watcher that did this for me.

 

Gagner de l’argent

La plupart des gens ne gagnent pas d’argent. Les seules personnes qui gagnent de l’argent sont les personnes qui ont recruté des milliers de personnes sous leurs ordres. Beaucoup de gens perdent de l’argent. On va te parler de nombreuses personnes qui gagnent de l’argent et on te dira que toi aussi tu peux gagner une fortune. Tu ne peux pas gagner une fortune sauf si tu as une équipe de centaines de personnes qui rejoignent l’affaire en même temps que toi. Les gens mentent souvent sur l’argent qu’ils font parce qu’ils veulent que tu les rejoignes et que te convaincre que c’est une bonne opportunité. Ne croit pas quiconque qui dit qu’il gagne beaucoup et veut te recruter.

Les Produits

Les produits sont très chers et les gens ne veulent pas les acheter. C’est parce qu’une partie de l’argent monte la pyramide des gens pour payer tous les gens qui sont arrivés avant toi. Personne ne veut payer le prix fort pour des produits chers. Tu finiras par acheter les produits ou tes amis vont les acheter parce qu’ils ont pitié de toi. N’oublie pas que les gens peuvent acheter des produits moins chers.

Tes Amis

Tes amis vont s’ennuyer si tu continues à essayer de leur vendre des choses et ils seront encore plus agacés tu essayes de les recruter. Utilise pas tes amis et ta famille pour faire de l’argent sur leur dos , ce n’est pas gentil ou amical. Si tu leur ment pour les inciter à te rejoindre, ils ne te feront plus jamais confiance. Les amitiés et les relations familiales peuvent être ruinées !
Le Contrôle de sa vie
Souvent, les gens dans ces affaires sont invités à faire des choses qui les mettent mal à l’aise. On leur dit de suivre les instructions et de faire des choses qui ne leur conviennent pas, de mentir sur les produits, d’acheter beaucoup de produits pour eux-mêmes, de mentir sur le montant d’argent qu’ils gagnent, d’amener les gens à se rendre aux réunions. Les gens commencent à faire certaines de ces choses et se sentent mal, jusqu’à ce que bientôt ils font beaucoup de ces choses et ça devient normal pour eux de mentir a leurs amis et leur familles par exemple. Le bien et le mal commencent à devenir confus et la personne se transforme en quelqu’un qu’elle n’aime plus.

 

L’Espoir

Les gens se rendent compte qu’ils ne feront pas d’argent. On leur dit qu’ils ne travaillent pas assez dur. On leur dit qu’ils ne sont pas assez positifs et s’ils dépensent plus de temps et d’argent, ils commenceront à gagner de l’argent. On leur dit d’arrêter de parler à leurs amis et à leur famille qui ont dit que ces programmes ne fonctionnent pas parce que leur conversation négative va les faire échouer. La raison pour laquelle les gens ne gagnent pas d’argent est que très peu peuvent faire de l’argent et la plupart perdent de l’argent. Ce la faute de la personne, mais c’est la façon dont l’entreprise est mise en place. Si vous continuez à essayer et continuez à dépenser de l’argent et continuez à espérer, vous perdrez toujours. Mais vous allez perdre encore plus. Et vous allez perdre des amis, du temps et plus d’argent.

Avoir Sa Propre Affaire

On te dit que tu es un homme d’affaires indépendant et que tu es responsable de ce que tu fais. Mais n’oublie pas tu n’es pas un patron.Tu ne possede rien. Tu es juste un vendeur qui ne reçoit que des commissions payées. Tu fais toute la publicité, le recrutement, la formation, la vente et l’achat et tu prends tous les risques. Tu peux être viré pour de nombreuses raisons et les entreprises comme celles-ci virent souvent des gens simplement parce qu’elles posent des questions ou en disant qu’ils ne travaillent pas bien. Tu es responsable pour payer tes impôts, pour enregistrer ton entreprise correctement, en suivant les procédures légales correctes pour vendre, stocker et distribuer les produits. Il y a beaucoup de règles à suivre que tu ne connais peut-être pas et tu peut avoir des ennuis a cause de ça. La compagnie n’aura pas de problèmes si tu enfreins les lois, mais toi si.

 

 

 

 

Letter templates

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If you see an advert for an MLM at a jobs fair or a school fete, please complain to the organiser. Let them know that more and more people like yourself disapprove of these things and want them stopped.

If you send a letter and get a request for more information or you would like assistance in drafting a letter, please contact us on FB, Twitter, email or in the comments here and we will get back to you as soon as we can.

If you get a positive reply, please let us know in the comments. It would be great to know that, together, we are making an impact.

MLM at a job fair

Dear organiser,

I have noticed that (insert MLM here) will be appearing at your jobs fair on……….. at…………..  The inclusion of this organisation concerns me somewhat, for the following reasons.

  1. The company does not offer jobs, they offer the opportunity for people to act as independent contractors, earning commission on sales and the sales of the people they recruit.
  2. The company offers no employment benefits at all.
  3. People who sign up under this company are led to believe they will own their own business and be in control of their activities. In reality they are tied to a very restrictive set of terms and conditions. Please look them up under the company’s website.
  4. Research by the FTC in America has shown that 99% of people in these schemes lose money. Figures published by these types of company show that the average earnings before expenses is dismally low. Search for an ‘Income Disclosure Statement’ for the company to see what their figures are.
  5. People in these schemes buy products, marketing materials, training materials, samples, business cards, leaflets, website fees, etc etc. They take all the risks for the company and are given very little in return.
  6. There is no proper leadership or hierarchical structure. Anyone can recruit anyone and become an ‘upline’ who becomes like their manager, with no experience, management training or anything resembling someone with authority. These uplines tell their recruits what to do, often giving really bad advice, leaving the recruit to take all responsibility if they make mistakes.
  7. These types of companies often target women, especially mothers. They guilt them into questioning their choice to go to work, leaving their children behind. They tell women they can earn a living with this scheme so they do not need a traditional job. Giving up a job for this scheme would be a disaster.

People who join these schemes are put in really difficult positions and can waste many months and hundreds or thousands of their own money before they realise it is a scam. Please help protect future victims of this type of company by not allowing it a presence at your fair.

Please advise if you need further information on the matter.

Thank you for your assistance in this matter,

 

Kind Regards,

 

MLM at school fair, fete, market stall etc

Dear organiser,

I have noticed that (insert MLM here) will be appearing at your…………… on……….. at…………..  The inclusion of this organisation concerns me somewhat, for the following reasons.

  1. The products from this type of company are often of average or below average quality, with inflated prices. The prices are expensive to reflect the commission that needs to be paid to the seller, the person who recruited them, their recruiter, etc, all the way to the top of the pyramid.
  2. The people running these stands will say they are an independent, local business but that is not true. The main company is a large one and the stall holder is just a contractor who pays for the ability to sell the products. They are tied to the main company by a very restrictive contract and actually have very little say in what they can do.
  3. The people in these schemes will try and recruit the people at fairs so they can earn off the commission they might make. They especially target women, young mums and pregnant women who might feel they need more time at home.
  4. Research by the FTC in America has shown that 99% of people in these schemes lose money. Figures published by these types of company show that the average earnings before expenses is dismally low. Search for an ‘Income Disclosure Statement’ for the company to see what their figures are.

 

The general public are becoming increasingly aware of this type of scam and the inclusion of it at your event will diminish the enjoyment of many people and tarnish the event’s reputation.  Please reconsider this stall’s inclusion at your event, both to protect your reputation and the risk to the attendees of being recruited into the money losing scheme.

Please advise if you need further information on the matter.

Thank you for your assistance in this matter,

 

Kind Regards,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Oh Xerveo, what next?

I’ve written twice about Xerveo-

Xerveo– In this post I looked at the company’s registration at Companies House and tried to find the distribution centre. I looked at the illegal health claims being made for the coffee by the reps.

Xerveo updated– In this post, I was still searching for the distribution centre and discovered it was the registered owner of Xerveo’s house. The missing coffee orders was looked at and people are still puzzled over where their coffee is.

The people unlucky enough to have been involved in Xerveo are becoming increasingly upset at the difficulty they are having obtaining the truth. Let’s have a look at some of the issues.

1. Is the product licenced for resale in the UK?

I have been told by reps that it is and they have evidence. They’ll get me the evidence. They’ll find it in a minute. Oh, it was on my other phone and I can’t get it now. I’m sure it’s ok, my upline told me it was ok.

Has anyone actually got any real evidence? Someone asked the bosses about the licence in a Xerveo group discussion. (My spies are everywhere)

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“Yeah….you don’t worry about certification….focus on building”. I don’t know about you but I’m not convinced. The rep was worried enough and suspicious enough to question certification and they were brushed off. Told to bring more people into the company, spending more of their money and making Xerveo more profits.

2. How safe is the coffee?

The coffee apparently is only supposed to be consumed once a day. It says so on the packet I am told. Then Jun Lee, one of the two bosses in the UK puts this information on Facebook-

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This information concerns a few of the reps as they have previously been told people can only have one sachet a day safely. It says on the box.

 

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So it doesn’t matter. After all, maybe they can sell twice as much coffee this way?

3. The new CEO of Xerveo in America.

Recently, there has been a handover of power in America from someone called Argo to James Wiggins. Is it the same James Wiggins that got in trouble with the law a few years ago? If it is the same man, I hope he has changed his ways.

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4. Why is no one getting paid?

Since the company ‘went binary’ a few months ago, no one has been paid from it. People have been promised they will get paid on 5th October. That’s tomorrow. I’ll be watching. Please let me know if you get paid, reps.

Someone told me that bonuses weren’t being paid even before this. Where has all the money gone from reps’ purchases? There is no coffee even to show for it.

 

5. Ask questions and you get fired. Even though you are an independent business person.

Fiona asked some questions of the UK boss, Paul Holtham and a US boss Jan Lee. Have a look at the live she did, explaining what happened to her. Start watching at 7 minutes if you want to get straight to the details.

 

Here is the text she was sent, firing her.

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She still has not been told what rules she broke.

6. Evidence Xerveo is an illegal pyramid scheme.

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People in this scheme have to have an automatic shipment of products sent to them every month to be eligible for payments. They are the customers. It is questionable whether the coffee can be sold to real customers. This makes it an illegal pyramid scheme.

Alarm bells should be ringing in all reps’ ears if they are obliged to buy the product themselves. Surely they should be able to buy what they want for themselves, or even not buy anything at all for themselves?

tl:dr

People have to buy coffee for themselves, no coffee is arriving. Coffee might not be for resale. Questioning will get you fired, no one gets paid. Illegal pyramid scheme.

 

Are there any Xerveo reps reading this that want to add their experiences in the comments below? Have any of you experienced any of this? You can comment anonymously. Does anyone want to warn people about joining this scheme?

Update (5th October)

Marty Glover, a rep for Xerveo has been saying he has proof that Xerveo have the correct licensing for retail in the UK. Here it is-

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I will endeavour to check this out. Watch this space. I have contacted both Xerveo and the Food Standards Agency to try and clear this matter up properly.

I haven’t heard directly from anyone who has had a coffee delivery or been paid today (5th October). I would have thought people would want to prove me wrong if they had either of these things and tell me about it. But…..

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I’ve been given excuses though.

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This explanation from the rep is quite sad. He’s not been paid as he should have been. He’s been given ‘points’ instead and he’s happy because most companies like this are much worse. It sounds like he is used to being treated quite badly and is resigned to being happy with any payment or excuse he is given. He’s happy with the integrity of a company that isn’t paying its workforce and has no products available to sell. All they have are excuses.

How to be a Bot Watcher

 

 

Fed up of the scamming MLM companies you come across?

Is it time you took a stand and took your interest further than just observing from a horrified distance?

If you would like to join the fight, here are some things you can do.

Twitter

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Join Twitter if you haven’t already and follow the people/ sites that are likely to offer upto date information on MLM developments. If you are new to Twitter, have a look at this Wikihow article on how to get started.

I have compiled a list of people/organisations to get you started. If you subscribe to the list, you will see all the valuable tweets they make. Add in some companies or people that you have an interest in as well. Make sure you also follow other non-MLM people/ pages of interest, otherwise you will be inundated with depressing tweets. Follow your favourite companies, actors, musicians to balance out the dark stuff. ‘Faces In Things’ is quite funny if you need a distraction.

Take a stand and comment on MLM tweets, showing up their lies. Tell people in MLMs that are making health claims that they are wrong. Follow the MLM companies’ official accounts so you can see what they are up to.

Retweet tweets that need to be spread so that awareness can be spread to your followers.

Using Twitter as a Bot Watcher can be a passive or active activity. You can join in the arguments, retweet stuff, or just watch and gain information to stay up to date.

Don’t forget to follow Bot Watch. Click on the twitter symbol at the top of tis page to join us.

Facebook

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We are on Facebook so you can watch us there for some updates or join in the discussions there. Sometimes MLM supporters turn up, trying to defend their companies. Feel free to join in the arguments, whichever side you are on. We will not block you just because you support MLM, but we will if you try to recruit or we think you are using us to gain traffic to your ‘business’.

To follow us on Facebook, click on the link at the very top of this page.

Here are some other Facebook pages you can follow-

Juice Plus/MLM Lies Exposed  People post things they have seen and heard about MLMs, and there is often quite an enthusiastic discussion on the posts. It reveals the deceptive practices and obvious lies that people tell to try and recruit or sell their products.

Elle Beau The Antiblogger.  Elle was a presenter with Younique until she saw through the lies. Now she tries to spread awareness to protect others from making the same mistakes she did.

Timeless Vie Their original page was taken down due to people reporting them for using that well known hate/ racist word ‘Hun’. This page is a back up one. They offer support and information to victims of MLMs, as well as being a spoof MLM.

Sounds like MLM but OK This group has over 22,000 members so there is a wealth of information posted. Lots of discussions about the items posted. You’ll see a lot here.

 

Internet discussions

You could join in or observe discussions about MLMs, asking questions or sharing knowledge you have. You are sure to learn a lot here.

Mumsnet  This link will take you to the ‘money matters’ page. From here, look for the thread that contains the words ‘MLM botwatch’. The people here are very knowledgeable and you are welcome to join in and ask questions/ make contributions. I hang out there under the name TooBusyToWee.

Reddit have a subreddit where MLM subjects are discussed.

Report

If you see an illegal health claim or dodgy advert for an MLM product you know is banned, report them. The Advertising Standards Authority in the UK are the people to report advertising infringements to. They have advice on their website about what you can complain about.

If you see an MLM is due to appear at an event, try complaining to the organisers, warning them of the MLM’s intention. If they are sponsoring an event, complain. Let people know about the event and complain, and others can also let their feelings be known. If you want to remain anonymous, pass on the information to us here and we can complain about it. Make a noise. Tell people on Twitter, write letters, email, mention it on forums. If you want to explain to organisers why MLMs are a BAD THING, you can copy and paste from this piece or give them the link.

If you see someone in an MLM making claims or doing something dodgy, confront them or report them to their own MLM. MLMs have compliance departments that investigate dodgy behaviour. They are very quick to sanction people. So much for them being ‘independent business’ people! I try not to go down this route because people are often the unwitting victims and do not know what they are involved in. Sometimes, however, it is justified. Use your judgement.

If you see a scheme that is behaving like an illegal pyramid scheme you can report them to the police at Action Fraud via the phone or online. If a business is operating without having customers or breaks any of the pyramid scheme laws, they can be reported for investigation.

 

Share your experience

Tell your story and help spread the truth. Make sure there’s lots of evidence out there for people researching joining one of these schemes. Make sure that the truth outweighs the propaganda. You can do this in a number of ways-

  1. If you are a talented writer, consider writing a blog. Either write a post for someone else’s blog or start your own. If you want your story telling but don’t want to write it yourself, consider speaking to Bot Watch, Timeless Vie or Elle Beau to see if they could use your story.
  2. Give a brief rundown of what happened or what information you have so you can go on Bot Watch’s database. You might be needed when a reporter contacts us, looking for people to interview. This happens quite regularly. Unfortunately we are often not able to find people who are willing to help. This means the story doesn’t get written. It would be really useful to have you on our list, along with details of whether you need to anonymous or not. Drop us an email at botwatchmail@googlemail.com and tell us how you can help.
  3. Add your voice to the twitter discussions or website forums and make sure people hear what you have to say.
  4. If you have any professional experience and wish to give your take on something, e.g. a dietician who has looked into Juiceplus or a business person who wants to give an analysis, please let us know. You might be able to act as an adviser or write your own post.

Recognise an MLM/Pyramid scheme

To be a Bot Watcher, you need to make sure you know what you are looking at. If you see a company and you suspect it may be an MLM, you could look it up on the Directory of MLMs here at Bot Watch. If it isn’t there, it still might be an MLM, but just hasn’t been put on the list yet (there’s so many).

If you Google the name of the company, followed by ‘MLM’, often you will get loads of results if it is one. Look for posts of people trying to recruit into it.

The key things you are looking for are-

1. There is usually a mention of a ‘compensation plan’ instead of a wage or hourly rate.

2. Look for terms like ‘team building’ or ‘recruiting’ or a chance to grow your team.

3. Are there pictures of cruises, holidays, cars, piles of money? Promises of what you can obtain if you join?

4. Search for the company on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc. Are the sellers using a lot of emojis and unable to spell correctly? They may be making outrageously incorrect statements or just seem dodgy.

5. Do not rely on websites that claim it is not a scam or pyramid scheme if they then try and get you to join. It is a very common thing to see people put titles on posts such as ‘Is company X a scam?’ or ‘Don’t join company X until you read/watch this’) These are always written by people in the schemes trying to trick people who are suspicious and change their minds to join them. Don’t fall for it.

6. If in doubt, email, FB message or comment on posts here. I’ll get back to you                  pretty quickly with an answer. Then I can add the details of the company onto                  the Directory.

Research

Learn what you can about these schemes. Have a look at some blogs on the subject, read some books, watch some programs or short YouTube clips to learn more. Here are some ideas to get you started.

Websites

Timeless Vie’s blog has some interesting exposes, interviews with victims and articles that look at MLMs from a feminist angle. On their menu, they have a drop down bit where you can look up different MLMs that they have written about.

Elle-Beau’s blog  This is a multi part story on a Younique presenter’s experience from beginning to end. Funny and addictive. You’ll learn about the tactics used.

Ethan Vanderbuilt‘s website has details of many individual MLM scams as well as more general articles and MLM news. He has videos and written articles.

Pyramid Scheme Alert is a consumer organisation that confronts the abuses of MLMs. Full of information.

Truth IN Advertising (TINA) is an American website that fight false and misleading advertising. As such, there are many mentions of MLM scams.

False Profits by Robert Fitzpatrick, an MLM academic and expert witness on the subject.

MLM The American Dream Made Nightmare by David Brear gives detailed analysis on the subject. He’s been researching MLM for over 20 years.

Videos/ programs to watch.

2017-10-02

 

Betting On Zero is a very informative documentary that looks at Herbalife and the deceptive practices that go on. It also looks at the financial battle going on with the company’s shares. It’s more interesting than I’m describing here! You can buy this film on Netflix or iplayer. Here is a  free trailer for it.

 

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This episode of John Oliver’s ‘Last Week Tonight’ takes a satirical look at Multilevel marketing, focusing on Herbalife but the message applies to all MLMs.

 

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Documentary where an investigative reporter looks into MLMs that prey on people in Uganda, selling them false health products and promises of riches.

 

 

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How to spot a pyramid scheme video. This explains the basics of how pyramid schemes/MLMs work. 6 mins 21 seconds long.

 

 

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This video contains the testimonies of many Herbalife victims. It is really quite sad.

 

 

Reading list

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Complain

If you discover that an MLM are going to be at a jobs fair or will be running a stand at a fete, please let the organisers know what these companies are like. Ask for them to reconsider the inclusion of the company and give them a list of problems associated with MLM. Some templates you can use can be found on this blog here.

Xerveo updated

There have been a few developments in the Xerveo story so I have added them here, to avoid messing up the original article.

The company address

There were some issues with the company address in the last post. The address given for Xerveo was 31 Albert Road, Broadstairs which was a normal house. There was another address as well, for Parcel Distribution Ltd, 2 Harold Road, Cliftonville, Margate.

Someone commented on the last post that the 2 Harold Road address was the accountant’s address. This may well be true, and maybe there is an office in the care home that is rented out? What I wanted to know was, where is the warehouse or parcel distribution centre where all the stock is being sent so it can be distributed? There is no address for it anywhere. Where is the warehouse? Where are the vans? The admin staff?  Where is the actual business?

Then I came across this label that has been shown to reps by Paul Holtham, the owner of Xerveo and the Parcel Distribution centre.

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The address is given as 31 Albert Road. A normal house on a residential street. It’s not a proper distribution centre at all.

This picture brings us to another story.

Where is the coffee?

Months ago reps ordered coffee that still has not arrived. There is general concern in the ranks as to what has happened to the coffee they ordered. If you to to the Xerveo website now, you will see it is all out of stock.

This is what you see when you click on any of the products

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Apparently, it has been like this since the website was shut down for the change to the ‘binary’ system at the end of August 2017.

People have started asking question and Paul (the registered owner of Xerveo in the UK) has given an explanation on Facebook. On 27th September 2017, an insider has sent me Paul’s explanation-

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Does this sound reasonable to you? Would HMRC destroy stock because of a mistake counting the it? Would a reputable company headquarters in America respond by waiting for the return of it and then send it back? None of this sits right with me.

Has a delivery really been stopped at the airport? If so, why? Is it Not For Resale? No one has been able to provide proof that it is legitimate and allowed to be sold in this country.

Has the coffee been sent to this country at all? Have Xerveo realised it can’t be sold here and stopped providing it?

Paul has provided the above label at the top of this post as evidence the delivery is imminent. This shows nothing though.

The Health claims

I have spoken to one of the leaders and explained about how they cannot make health or weight loss claims in the UK for their coffee. He has taken note and the message seems to have spread to all the leaders. I have since been asked by someone from within Xerveo to amend my article about health claims. It is true, the health claims have dramatically reduced, well done. The one featured in my last article has been removed. Thanks for listening guys.

Reps now seem to be not mentioning the products or company at all. They’ve completely hidden everything, going all mysterious.

Other concerns

I have looked into Xerveo a little further and a few other niggles have cropped up.

Name Change

Xerveo used to be called Ferveo and then it changed, apparently without any explanation. December 2012 they announced on Facebook they were changing the name and website, via a call to some of the reps. They gave a Ferveo website address that I was going to look at so I could see what happened, but I got this message.

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I didn’t feel brave enough to continue.

 

Better Business Bureau

I had read that they had an F rating due to the many complaints from reps and customers so I looked it up. This is what I found

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I wonder what it is being updated to? Look at the section it is filed under.

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The Ingredients

Here are the ingredients in one of the coffees

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Ganoderma Lucidem is a mushroom. As stated in the last post about this mushroom, there are no health benefits to consuming this mushroom. But are there any bad side effects?

Organo Gold had this ingredient in their coffee and they were sued because of the dangerous side effect of blood thinning.

This is what WebMD has to say about it.

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Conclusion

Is this a pyramid scheme with no products to sell? If it is, this is an illegal pyramid scheme. Well done to the reps who have taken heed of my advertising warnings. Please be vigilant of anything that might be dodgy. Let me know if you see anything that concerns you. Alternatively, let me know if I have anything wrong. Keep an eye out for updates. Thank you to my sources who have provided me with information.