Wednesday, January 16, 2013

The reason it's hard to find info on the dark side of MLM online...

When I warn people about the risks and costs of the MLM industry, I often am asked a good but somewhat naive question:  "The reason it's hard to find info on the dark side of MLM online?"

The answer is that because MLM companies and their top distributors (who together are the only participants who benefit from these schemes) has a huge vested interest in minimimizing the availability and accessibility of criticism and negative information about their products.  And they go all-out to blanket the web with apparently positive information about their products, much of it disguised as first-person testimony or even-handed analysis....much of it mediocre and informative...anything to make it harder for people to find more important information on the cons, the risks, and often shady backgrounds of the founders of Multi Level Marketing companies.

In other words, MLM acolytes fan out accross the web to bury the important but negative truth about risks, waste, and other negative impacts with astroturf posts that that one. 

Here is one of thousands of examples....On a comment on this post on the false medical claims made by Isagenix, an unidentifiable reader calling herself Megan posts the following

"I’ve never done the cleanse, but was thinking about doing so after the holidays. I’m no medical expert, but I am entering into health care as a nurse in the near future and nutrition fascinates me. The hypothesis that neurological syndromes and food allergies are attributed to toxicity *has* been supported by research (see Dr. Theo Colhoun’s work). Differences have been shown between subjects who ingest foods laden with additives and pesticides in contrast with with subjects who eat whole, organic foods. The effects of taking in said toxins can range anywhere from developmentally delayed children to reproductively impaired adults. These statements have been supported by data and research.

I recently read about the various P450 enzymes and their role in detoxifying our bodies…Could pesticides and additives have an adverse effect on these enzymes? I would love to see the research, but my instincts after reading more into the subject say perhaps.  .... Isagenix at least supports people in making healthier choices…Kale instead of candy perhaps. You are what you eat, and heck, if Isagenix gets people to drink a nutritional shake vs eating a happy meal, I’m all for it."

Aww, shucks seem appealingly positive but suspiciously armed with pro-Isagenix talking points.  In this case another reader calls her out, writing that "Even Stevie Wonder can see" that Megan is an Isagenix rep.