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The Almighty Buck The Internet

Ponzi Schemes Multiply On YouTube 346

Posted by Soulskill
from the if-you-agree-paypal-five-dollars-to-the-poster-above-you dept.
Hugh Pickens writes "While it's probably not true that P. T. Barnum was the originator of the saying 'there's a sucker born every minute,' the proliferation of nearly 23,000 Ponzi schemes on YouTube, with an astounding 59,192,963 views, proves that the sentiment is still alive and well. The videos usually don't ask for money directly, but send viewers to web sites where they are urged to sign up for the 'gifting program,' usually for fees ranging from $150 to $5,000. One of the videos recently added on YouTube featured Bible quotes, pictures of stacks of money and a testimonial from a man who said he not only got rich from cash gifting, but also found true happiness and lost 35 pounds. 'They make it seem like it's legal and an easy way to make money, but it's nothing more than a pyramid scheme,' says Better Business Bureau spokeswoman Alison Southwick. Some of the videos claim that because it's 'gifting,' it's somehow legal. 'They talk about "cash leveraging," whatever that means, and other vague marketing talk,' says Southwick, but the basic scheme is that participants are told to recruit more people who will put in more money. 'It's just money changing hands,' says Southwick, 'and it always goes to people at the top of the pyramid.' A spokesman for YouTube, which is owned by Google Inc., said the company doesn't comment on individual videos."
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Ponzi Schemes Multiply On YouTube

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  • by Rockoon (1252108) on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @04:16AM (#27567587)
    Just as the government learned it by watching Ponzi, these youtubers learned it by watching the government.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      Right, because taxation never produces libraries, public roads, schools, an FDA, FCC, or any number of other services.

      All taxation does is make a handful of oligarchs rich, right?

      • by Nitage (1010087) on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @04:32AM (#27567673)
        He might be talking about Social Security - which relies on more people paying in than taking out and will crash and burn horribly if the population stops growing fast enough.
        • by Rockoon (1252108) on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @06:30AM (#27568207)
          It isnt just social security...

          The national debt is now over 11 trillion dollars and there hasn't been a real budget surplus since 1969.

          The federal government has borrowed money and can not pay the prior lenders back, so they borrow more money in order to do so. This has been going on for so long that only a few people still recognize it as an active ponzi scheme, as is evident by the ignorant people modding my post as a troll.

          The interest payments on the debt will crest half a trillion dollars this year, and will be over a trillion/year by the time Obama's 1st term is up. The government will likely borrow more from social security (why not? its doomed anyways) in order to pay off prior lenders as it becomes more and more difficult to find new lenders.

          There are other areas where the government is actively ponzi as well, such as medicare (medicare is a bigger problem than social security.)

          Check out (U.S. Government Accounting Office) http://www.gao.gov/cghome/d08446cg.pdf [gao.gov] to see how grim the pyramid really is.

          It wont be possible to take down the pyramids through force (taxation at gunpoint) for much longer. If ponzi could have gone out and robbed some banks, he could have paid off all of his lenders. But imagine the point where even if he robbed every bank in the country he couldn't pay them off. America is pretty much there, right now, at the point of no return.
          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by Maudib (223520)

            "The government will likely borrow more from social security (why not? its doomed anyways) in order to pay off prior lenders as it becomes more and more difficult to find new lenders."

            Except that its actually exceptionally easy to find lenders. Currently treasuries are barely above a negative yield and buyers are lining up to get them and paying some of the highest prices ever to do so. If the market is willing to lend the U.S. Government gobs of money at what is essentially interest free right now, why sh

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by patro (104336)

        Right, because taxation never produces libraries, public roads, schools, an FDA, FCC, or any number of other services.

        All taxation does is make a handful of oligarchs rich, right?

        The question is how much more roads, schools, libraries, etc. we'd have if the gov didn't take the money from the people and spend it wastefully.

        The current system does produce good things, but one can argue it produces more bad than good.

        • by dangitman (862676)

          The current system does produce good things, but one can argue it produces more bad than good.

          OK, well let's see that argument, then. It's not much good saying that one "could" argue something, without seeing the specifics.

          • by patro (104336)

            OK, well let's see that argument, then. It's not much good saying that one "could" argue something, without seeing the specifics.

            Recommended reading: http://mises.org/articles.aspx [mises.org]

            • by dangitman (862676)
              So, you're not actually willing to put forth an argument, but instead lazily link to an ideological website? I'm not quite sure you understand this whole "argument"' thing.
      • ok. Follow me here. This is real simple, but 300 million Americans keep missing it.

        I need some money in order to facilitate a transaction... How do I create that money?

        I go to a bank (the FED) and borrow $100 from them. The FED creates new money (credit) and loans it to me at 5%. (Did you see the pea in the shell game? It was right there. Cos millions keep missing it)

        Right, so there is only $100 of credit in existence but now I owe them $105.

        1 year later I'm a bit stuck because I've paid off most of the loa

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by lyml (1200795)
          Yes, because economy is a zero sum-game.
          • by Colin Smith (2679)

            Um... Didn't you notice the last 2 years?

            The only time it's not a zero sum game is when it's growing... The instant you hit a limit, like lending to people who can't afford the houses they are buying, it collapses and you lose.

        • by Tony Hoyle (11698) * <tmh@nodomain.org> on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @06:29AM (#27568199) Homepage

          The $5 comes from work - you know, the means of selling goods and services to generate income.

          You're talking about a world where nobody produces anything, so the only income they have is from banks. That's not a realistic model.

          Oh and nobody creates money, except in exceptional circumstances (the central bank can, but an ordinary bank can't.. that's self evident, otherwise they'd all have infinite money). Credit to you is a net debit to the bank (and a source of income, due to the interest payments). This is why banks aren't keen to lend right now - their reserves are low as they've taken a hit from all the bad debt.. because they can only lend based on their reserves they're cherry picking the lending to the safest debtors.

        • Nope, that's not quite how it works either since you missed the part where the bank borrowed some amount (say $10) to cover your loan from the FED or overseas, and you deposited (or spent and the seller deposited) that $100 into another bank account. I suggest you read The Roving Cavaliers of Credit [debtdeflation.com] recently written by Steve Keen, which explains how a pure credit economy can function and how it can fail.
        • by Kjella (173770) on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @06:49AM (#27568331) Homepage

          1 year later I'm a bit stuck because I've paid off most of the loan to the FED but that last $5 is a real bitch because it just doesn't exist. So what do I do?

          If it's (hyper)inflation you spend it as soon as possible before it loses value until it collapses like the reichmark in 1920s germany or just recently the zimbabwean dollar. If it's stagflation you hoard it as money is increasing in value. What you're missing here is that somewhere, real value is produced. Imagine that there's 100$ total and there's 10 foobars, the only goods to trade so each is worth $10. Now there's a foobar maker, which produces another foobar - there's now 100$ and 11 foobars and the new market price is 9$. Who's earned value? The people sitting on a 10$ bill. Now imagine how well it works if everyone wants to sit on their 10$ bill.

          So what's the solution? To print money, they print one more 10$ bill and suddenly there's 110$ total and 11 foobars and the money market works. Of course they can fall to the temptation and print more money than actual growth, say 110$ and 10 foobars, meaning you can sell a foobar for 11$. The government basicly took part of the value out of everyone's 10$ bills. But people have a very simple way of fighting this - don't sit on money, sit on goods as printing money only increases prices. In those situations money is just an intermediary as you swap one good for another, you buy gold or a saner currency.

          Of course the government like everyone else like skimming something of the top, but for the most part they work hard to keep the financial system going. Once you stop believing in the currency you also stop believing in deposits and credits because they make you "stuck" in that currency and so the whole economy withers. Like with the human body, you have vital organs but if you have no circulation system then none of those will survive either.

    • Google HYIP:

      http://www.google.com/search?q=hyip [google.com]

      There is a whole parallel universe of ponzi schemes out there. Big deal that it's on youtube.

      Disclaimer: If you find yourself thinking about investing in one of those shoot yourself in the head immediately
  • by RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) <{taiki} {at} {cox.net}> on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @04:17AM (#27567589)

    ...this is precisely why we really need to reconsider our public schooling system.

    If we abolish forced schooling, and insist that people "educate themselves" They'll find one of these scams, get taken for an expensive ride, and then left dumbfounded as to what happened.

    Solid critical thinking skills start with a decent education. Decent education starts by making it free, neutral and accessible.

    • by QuantumG (50515) * <qg@biodome.org> on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @04:36AM (#27567687) Homepage Journal

      You'd be surprised how quickly a sucker learns after his money is gone forever. Sounds like a cheap education to me.

      • by Kuroji (990107) <kuroji@gmail.com> on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @04:48AM (#27567741)

        You'd be surprised how many people fall for one of these schemes, then move on to the next, lose out, and move on to the next to lose out again...

      • by Skuld-Chan (302449) on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @04:57AM (#27567785)

        Want to see an economy tank all we need is a couple million illiterate people come of working age.

        • by Velex (120469)

          Want to see an economy tank all we need is a couple million illiterate people come of working age.

          Oh shi—

      • by jimicus (737525)

        If it was that quick, we wouldn't hear of the people who've invested their life savings and borrowed money to invest in a GUARANTEED 100% RISK FREE OPPORTUNITY IN NIGERIA!!111oneoneone.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        Sounds like a cheap education to me.

        No, it sounds like the most expensive, yet useless education ever devised. You lose a lot of money, and you learn one way NOT to lose your money, when it's far too late.

        • by QuantumG (50515) *

          You lose a lot of money, and you learn one way NOT to lose your money, when it's far too late.

          Sounds like someone went to Brown.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Ornedan (1093745)

        There is a general tendency not to admit one has been wrong after having invested in something. A result is that people who have been scammed are generally unwilling to believe they've been scammed, even when confronted with evidence. They'll rather make up flimsy explanations for why the evidence can't be right.

        So, no, the sucker won't learn fast, if at all. And it won't be cheap, because those that do learn will end up paranoid, unable to trust other people ever again.

      • Not Ponzi, but scam is a scam - sucker is a sucker...

        http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,453125,00.html [foxnews.com]

        Her family and bank officials told her it was all a scam, she said, and begged her to stop, but she persisted because she became obsessed with getting paid.

        And you sure as hell can't put it in your resume as "$400.000 worth invested in master's degree in fraud discovery and prevention".

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      Solid critical thinking skills start with a decent education. Decent education starts by making it free, neutral and accessible.

      So true.
      Speaking as a philosopher of education I can say that there's no end to the practical application of logic and reasoning that you're taught in the course of the study.

      It should be an obligatory course in elementary school, but for some reason it's much more important to have bible-stories read to you.

      Makes sense right? I guess someone thinks it's a shortcut to good behavior being told what's right and wrong in broad general terms open to interpretation, instead of equipping people with the ba

    • by Kjella (173770) on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @05:32AM (#27567941) Homepage

      Solid critical thinking skills start with a decent education. Decent education starts by making it free, neutral and accessible.

      That's a good start, but critical thinking must also be focused on as a skill. It's far too easy to regurgitate a textbook and even regurgitate what other people have thought on the matter. In things like math it's easy to learn the method without understanding, and in things like science you spend a lot of time catching up with that others have done or experiments with an expected outcome that is more reproduction than experimentation. Linguistics teach you to express things but again doesn't really help critical thinking alone.

      Sure, you can do more critical thinking on subjects already discussed to death by millions of scholars around the world, but given the tendency to google instead of thinking yourself it really only works on those who already want to think for themselves. To teach critical thinking you need to make them "think where no man has thought before". Make up a situation they won't find on google, ask them to argue some opinions, form arguments and give reasons for their logic. Unfortunately that is orthogonal to teaching them about the big and important events in history, which is so much more concrete and measurable. So we get people that know a lot about the world and understand little of it.

  • Sign of the times (Score:4, Insightful)

    by VShael (62735) on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @04:17AM (#27567593) Journal

    Just like during the Great Depression, this will be a time of resurgent con-men as the majority will (in desperation) try anything to get cash.

  • by Rik Sweeney (471717) on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @04:18AM (#27567595) Homepage

    Some of the videos claim that because it's 'gifting,' it's somehow legal

    Reminds me of that law [mamedev.org] software pirates invented so that they could copy games.

    • by DJRumpy (1345787)
      Our congress receives 'gifts' all the time, and they never go to jail. Am I missing the point? ;)
  • Pedantry (Score:5, Informative)

    by elvum (9344) * on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @04:21AM (#27567611) Journal

    Surely these are pyramid schemes [wikipedia.org] rather than Ponzi schemes [wikipedia.org]?

    • by julesh (229690)

      Just what I was coming here to say. A ponzi scheme is an investment scheme where old investors are paid from the money invested by new investors, but don't know where the money is coming from. What's described is a classic pyramid scheme, where the participants (who can't be considered investors because they don't expect to get money back from the same place they sent it in the first place) get money directly from later participants. The schemes are similar, but not the same.

  • by onion2k (203094) on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @04:22AM (#27567613) Homepage

    The notion that you can "gift" (or "buy") your way to being rich without doing any hard work, or having a creative idea, is so completely stupid that anyone who believes it, assuming they're in full control of their mental faculties, deserves what they get.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by SalaSSin (1414849)

      deserves what they get.

      What do you mean get? Then it does work???

      Where's that website???

    • The people that send off money (gifts, paying for "Get Rich Easily" books, whatever) are idiots, they were idiots 10, 20, 30 years ago for similar scams, and they'll be idiots in 10, 20, 30 years time in whatever variation comes to light then. I won't cry for them. Maybe they'll learn the really hard way, because for some people there is sadly no way of getting them to learn any other way.

      However it isn't right that YouTube is giving these people a free advertising platform. There are some people out there

      • How ironic that Slashdot should be punting an advert at the top of this very page saying "I'm Rich. You're Not. I Cracked The Code To Making Money. See How I Make $3 Million Per Year Doing Nothing. And How You Can Too."

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      As a kid of the English aristocracy, I can with full confidence say that the richest people in this country have never done any hard work and have no more creative ideas than the average Slashdot poster.

      As far as I can tell from the nouveau riche the family tends to mingle with, they might work harder than us but I've not met one who does "hard work" in the sense of toiling mentally or physically through almost every waking hour, as was pretty much obligatory for some classes over a century ago. And they ce

    • by dangitman (862676)

      The notion that you can "gift" (or "buy") your way to being rich without doing any hard work, or having a creative idea, is so completely stupid that anyone who believes it, assuming they're in full control of their mental faculties, deserves what they get.

      But it does work. Plenty of people get rich from these schemes. Just not most people.

    • Well, banks work that way. And they were very successful for long times. But it works a bit different. Just take the money of people, and deposit it somewhere. Banks only have to keep between 3-10% of the cash available, in case, someone wans to get some of it back. So you can lend over 90% of that money to others. With a nice fat interest. From that interest you take a tiny part, and give it to the people that that money belongs to. The rest is free money for pretty much no work. (You can automate most it.

    • .. I guess the devoutly religious are trained to suspend their disbelief and instead believe in miracles. The people who lost the most money in a recent pyramid/MLM scheme in Norway were more religious than the general population. That's what happens when you train people to be irrational..

  • Bah (Score:2, Funny)

    by nrgy (835451) *

    I don't care about getting rich or losing 35lbs, if the video says I'll get a free pocket fisherman just tell me where to enter my cc #

  • Ponzi != pyramid (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @04:31AM (#27567663)

    Isn't a Ponzi scheme different, in that you show a "return" on an investment using other investors' money in the hopes that they will keep investing in you, thereby allowing you to make it seem as if there is money being made.

    In a pyramid scheme, you recruit X members who recruit X members each etc. At each level, you send some percentage of the money you receive up.

    The main difference being that in a Ponzi scheme you are recruiting investors whereas in a pyramid scheme that task falls upon the suckers you convinced to give you money.

    Also, according to Wikipedia, Ponzi schemes are easier to maintain for longer because you simply have to convince a large enough portion of your "investors" to reinvest, whereas the pyramid scheme relies on an exponentially increasing base of suckers.

    Ponzi schemes also revolve around financial machinations to confuse people, whereas pyramid schemes, from my understanding, relate more on convincing people about buying into a "franchise" or something to that effect.

    captcha: viruses

  • google care? for each one of these videos they can bombard us with adsense adverts for more scams

  • by Opportunist (166417) on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @04:46AM (#27567727)

    With more and more videos being pulled because the various MAFIAA organisations can't get enough, crap like that will soon be the only things left on YouTube. Let's be honest, what's left? Music videos were the first thing to go (or "be unavailable in your country" should they not want to cough up the dough to be available for you). User made videos are now targeted, as well as videos to the likeness of "look how I play $instrument to $song".

    Soon all there will be left are videos that, bluntly, nobody wants to watch.

    But, to avoid being modded offtopic, let's ask another question: Why should it be illegal to play pyramid schemes? Just because people are stupid enough to fall for them? I have no sympathy for people who are lured in by promises that are quite bluntly too good to be true, where thinking about it for only a minute would give you enough reasons to stay away from it. How can they promise you insane interest rates when your bank can only give you 3% or less? How the heck should they have any influence on your weight (aside from you not being able to even buy bread anymore and thus starving)? And if that's illegal, why is religion still legal while promising essentially the same?

    • by QuantumG (50515) *

      Soon all there will be left are videos that, bluntly, nobody wants to watch.

      Videos of someone's cat doing something stupid/cute will always be popular.

    • by American Terrorist (1494195) on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @04:57AM (#27567783)

      Why should it be illegal to play pyramid schemes? Just because people are stupid enough to fall for them? I have no sympathy for people who are lured in by promises that are quite bluntly too good to be true, where thinking about it for only a minute would give you enough reasons to stay away from it.

      Libertarian intellectualism at its finest. Why don't we just scrap all the laws and let people fuck each other over every way imaginable? People do stupid things, laws try to prevent and minimize the harm done by those actions.

      • And that's what's wrong, in my opinion. The law should keep you from being harmed by someone else's actions. But why should it keep you from doing someting stupid and suffer yourself from it?

        In other words, I do think the law should protect you from being robbed and mugged, it should give you a title to enforce a contract you and another party willingly entered in, but why should the law protect or even reward someone for acting like a complete moron?

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by gnasher719 (869701)

          In other words, I do think the law should protect you from being robbed and mugged, it should give you a title to enforce a contract you and another party willingly entered in, but why should the law protect or even reward someone for acting like a complete moron?

          We need laws against robbery and being mugged not to protect strong people, but to protect people who are weaker and/or less well armed and less violent than the muggers. The laws are there to protect people who are physically weaker. I think it is quite sensible to also protect people who are mentally weaker. If the law protects me from a person who uses a gun or a knife or strong fists to convince me to hand other my money, why shouldn't the law protect me from a person who uses his brain and his smooth t

      • "Did you really think that we want those laws to be observed? We want them broken. You'd better get it straight that it's not a bunch of boy scouts you're up against . . . We're after power and we mean it. You fellows were pikers, but we know the real trick, and you'd better get wise to it. There's no way to rule innocent men. The only power any government has is the power to crack down on criminals. Well, when there aren't enough criminals, one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it

        • by Ihlosi (895663)
          "Did you really ... It's a quote with several logical flaws that should be blindingly obvious to anyone with half a working brain. Maybe it makes for a nice work of fiction, but it's not how reality works.
    • by master811 (874700)

      Because it is essentially just like any other con or scam (which also happen to be illegal). There is really no big difference between a con artist and someone running a pyramid scheme.
       
      Either way they are promising something which simply will never happen.

    • User made videos are now targeted, as well as videos to the likeness of "look how I play $instrument to $song".

      I wonder how many royalty payments Hervé Roy received for all the YouTube videos featuring the track "Lovers Theme" ?

    • by Anna Merikin (529843) on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @06:13AM (#27568103) Journal

      Here's why:

      If it illegal to take someone's money by use of force, so it should *not* be legal to do the same with a pen or a computer.

      If the strong of body cannot rob the weak, the strong of mind should be prohibited from doing the same.

      • Interesting that so many investment bankers are not in jail, then. Do you think they lost their money in the recent bubble bust, too?

        Where's the difference between ponzi schemes and investment bubbles? In both cases it is known to the "inside people" that it will eventually pop, yet one is legal and one isn't. Can you explain why?

    • Why should it be illegal to play pyramid schemes? Just because people are stupid enough to fall for them? I have no sympathy for people

      Why should it be illegal to mug people? Just because people are scared enough to hand over their wallet to armed assailants? You have no sympathy for people.

      • I hope you can see the difference between FORCING someone to hand over money and TRICKING someone into handing over money, yes?

        In case you don't: In the first case, the alternative is physical pain. In the second case the alternative is ... umm... well, still having the money.

        • by Ihlosi (895663)
          In case you don't: In the first case, the alternative is physical pain.

          Err, no? If you're stronger than the attacker, or better armed, or if the guy is just bluffing, physical pain isn't the alternative. Heck, lots of fun might be the alternative, if you enjoy beating up people or shooting them.

    • by xigxag (167441) on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @06:37AM (#27568257)

      Why should it be illegal to play pyramid schemes?

      Because outside of the damage they inflict upon naive individuals and their families, if left unchecked (as we basically saw with the housing bubble) they have the potential to inflict damage upon the real economy.

      Because a large percentage of people are not smart with money but are otherwise extremely capable of being productive contributors to society. As a society it benefits us for people to be justly rewarded for their fruitful labor, which requires mitigating the potential harm of their money-foolish character flaw.

      And finally, to the extent that money becomes a hack as opposed to an accurate representation of labor and capital, it is devalued as a concept, which decreases its global worth and utility.

  • ...and there always will be. So why not at least use them for the good of the rest (especially ourselves)? ^^

    Yes, the problems are the stupid people. But they will not ever go away. So we better start accepting to live with the consequences.

    The once richest man in the world (Bill Gates) did exactly that.
    In fact, most companies work that way.
    Most governments definitely work that way.

    So why not do it ourselves, in a morally more acceptable way, than someone more evil else doing it anyway?
    I see it as a form or

  • in a frame behind the prison bars... ;)

  • "If you don't have it, don't spend it"

    Expand that:

    "If you don't have it to burn, don't give it to someone who uploaded a youtube video after you had a few beers"

    Expand that:

    Never, ever watch youtube after drinking, while depressed or after consuming any other mind altering substance. If you do, give your car keys (and credit cards) to someone sober.

    In the case of those who do very stupid things WHILE sober:

    There will always be predators, there will always be fools, why is this news beyond the phenomenon bei

  • by tezza (539307) on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @06:18AM (#27568133)
    A few of my relatives were almost taken in by Multi Level Marketers [wikipedia.org]. These companies too are trying to grow via social internet means

    These are barely legal organisations who sit _just_ on the legal side of the Pyramid definition.

    Basically they try to sell overpriced financial restructuring products to people. Then if the customer does not want to become a purchaser, they try to convert the customer into selling the same products.

    MLM people at the top earn more than people at the bottom.

    • by CRCulver (715279)
      While hitchhiking in Russia, I got a lift in a brand new luxury car driven by two local Amway salesmen. Apparently Amway is huge in certain parts of the country. While multi-level marketing has faded in the United States, the Internet and the ability to expand to Eastern Europe have given it a new lease on life. I actually see Ponzi schemes as better than multi-level marketing. In a Ponzi scheme, the guy who takes your money may well not be someone you're closely acquainted with. With things like Amway, how
  • by DrXym (126579) on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @08:56AM (#27569745)
    Read up on any kind of pyramid scheme and the first thing that strikes you is that when they (ALWAYS) collapse the majority of people will lose their money. In a typical scheme something like 90% of the people come out with nothing. Mathematically guaranteed. And those losers are going to be really pissed off (not with their own stupidity of course) which means acrimonious disputes, assaults and all sorts of fun fall-out as people scramble to come to terms with losing everything.

    Thirdly just because 10% of people seem to make money doesn't mean anything. The scammers who set up the scheme loaded the top of the pyramid with their own shill names. So Fred, Jack, Sue and Bob might occupy the top of the pyramid, but really they're all working together and never staked any of their own money either. And they're all gone well before the scheme collapses. So yeah, you might be a lucky non-shill and make some money (at the expense of friendships etc.), but vastly more likely is you will lose everything.

    If you really want to blow money, go stick it on a horse or a spin of the roulette wheel.

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