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68 of 74 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Approaches MLM In A New Light...
False Profits takes a fascinating look at the world of illegal pyramids and multilevel marketing. The book approaches MLM and the MLM industry like no other book I have read. Instead of explaining it from a pure business point of view, it explains it from a psychological, spiritual, ethical and social point of view.
Make no mistake, the author of this book loathes...
Published on September 8, 2002 by William Van Hefner

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3 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Deceptive: A Waste of Time and $10
I was looking for a book that took an honest objective look at MLM and found this book to be any thing but objective.

I have only read about a third of the book but found my sensibilities and reason assaulted by an esoteric approach to the topic that felt wrong. I will say there are a few good thoughts in the book but the poison pill is the authors moral...
Published 10 months ago by Daniel W. Mosher


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68 of 74 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Approaches MLM In A New Light..., September 8, 2002
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This review is from: False Profits: Seeking Financial and Spiritual Deliverance in Multi-Level Marketing and Pyramid Schemes (Paperback)
False Profits takes a fascinating look at the world of illegal pyramids and multilevel marketing. The book approaches MLM and the MLM industry like no other book I have read. Instead of explaining it from a pure business point of view, it explains it from a psychological, spiritual, ethical and social point of view.
Make no mistake, the author of this book loathes MLM. As far as he is concerned, there is little distinction between most MLMs and pyramid schemes, other than the fact that the latter are illegal. Even if you are pro-MLM though, you must admit that many of his observations are correct, and that the MLM industry in general has a long way to go before it reaches any level of acceptance in our society.
My favorite aspect of the book concerns its look at the psychology of many multilevel marketers and get-rich-quick schemers. It focuses on the guilt trips that these people lay on their own friends and family, their compromise of integrity and interpersonal relationships for the sake of greed, their deception of unsuspecting strangers, and the overemphasis on materialism that has made many of these people morally bankrupt.
Of course, not all MLM participants behave like this. These are largely the actions of "MLM junkies" and hard-core recruiters. Unfortunately, MLM companies and the industry itself often encourage this type of behavior amongst their reps, which has helped to give the MLM industry a black eye over the years and made multilevel marketers looked upon as people to avoid. Hopefully, by recognizing these ugly traits, you can avoid becoming one of these people.
About the only downside of this book is its occasional delve into spiritual and deeply philosophical theories of how MLMs and cults operate. While I have seen many MLMs that resemble cults, and many multilevel marketers that resemble little more than brainwashed zombies, I think that the author's view of all MLMs being tied (somehow) into the new age movement is a bit of a stretch. Not all people get involved with MLM for the same reason, and not all multilevel marketers become blathering idiots. Many do, but certainly not all of them.
Despite the author's occasional forays into the esoteric, the book is quite enjoyable to read. It is obviously very well researched and the culmination of many years of hard work. Although it may go a bit far at times, I think that it should be read by anyone contemplating getting involved in the world of multilevel marketing. It will really make you question EXACTLY why you are getting involved, and whether your involvement is for the right reasons.
Unethical multilevel marketers will absolutely HATE this book. Those involved in blatant pyramids and get-rich-quick schemes will probably want to strangle the author, since he will likely expose them for the shallow con-artists they are. Ethical multilevel marketers will learn how to avoid the pitfalls of becoming a participant in these types of schemes, and the book's lessons will serve as a reminder of how NOT to do business.
Fitzpatrick explains exactly how illegal pyramids work, and exposes many MLMs for what they really are. After reading this book, you should be able to tell the difference between a quasi-pyramid and a legitimate business opportunity. You should also come away with a strong sense of what is ethical and right, and what is not. Ethics seems to be a dirty word to many in the MLM industry, but it shouldn't be. Read this book, and you will likely discover much about MLM, and yourself, that you did not already know.
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54 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating expose` of the multi-level scheme "industry", June 12, 2000
This review is from: False Profits: Seeking Financial and Spiritual Deliverance in Multi-Level Marketing and Pyramid Schemes (Paperback)
After watching friends squander hard-earned money on worthless "network marketing" schemes, I found this book and read it. Proving that there really is one born every minute, authors Fitzpatrick and Reynolds have lived the lie--that easy money is to be had, merely by offering "business oportunities" to all of one's friends and aquaintances--and to their credit have written this remarkable book to warn others. Most helpful was the authors' comparison of multi-level schemes and illegal pyramid schemes. The only difference between the two is that in the former, a product is exchanged. This distinction without a difference allows "upline" MLM racketeers to exploit the gullible legally. Very telling also, was the authors' description of the training these MLM's provide, the standard lines, the stock answers and finally, blaming the almost inevitable failure to produce the promised financial independence on the recruit "not having what it takes" to "succeed". Blame the victim...one of the oldest lines in the book. I highly recommend this book to anyone considering participating in a multi-level scheme.
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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars False Profits - A long overdue examination of MLM., October 6, 1997
By A Customer
This review is from: False Profits: Seeking Financial and Spiritual Deliverance in Multi-Level Marketing and Pyramid Schemes (Paperback)
I found this book to be fascinating and difficult to put down. It offers a very thorough treatment of the multi-level craze and examines the psychology and motivations from a very personal perspective. Readers who have participated in multi-level marketing will likely find some sections to be painful and embarrassing, eliciting a knowing smile and blush from the all-too-familiar experiences. False Profits is highly recommended for those who wish to avoid or even escape the lure of MLM.
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I laughed, I cried, it was better than Cats, June 26, 1999
This review is from: False Profits: Seeking Financial and Spiritual Deliverance in Multi-Level Marketing and Pyramid Schemes (Paperback)
I was expecting a standard expose of the MLM industry, but this book is really more about the psychological and social forces that cause people to become involved in MLM. I found it honest, insightful, and engrossing. Judging from these reviews, it certainly seems to have ruffled some peoples' feathers...
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Before you join MLM or after your in, Read this book!, June 23, 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: False Profits: Seeking Financial and Spiritual Deliverance in Multi-Level Marketing and Pyramid Schemes (Paperback)
This book is a must for anyone involved or thinking of getting involved with MLM. I was involved in MLM for 3.5 years, and it was amazing how I let myself be seduced by the very charismatic leaders in the business. You take on a whole new way of thinking and speaking, and you don't realize how much you have changed until you get out of it. This book exposes MLM for what it really is, a snake oil sales pitch. It also does a good job of explaining the psychological appeal of MLM and why it is still around.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't join an MLM until you read this, June 7, 2010
By 
Neel Roberts (Vulcan, Alberta, Canada) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: False Profits: Seeking Financial and Spiritual Deliverance in Multi-Level Marketing and Pyramid Schemes (Paperback)
Have you ever suspected that MLM's are shameless scams out for your money and are utterly useless in every sense of the way? Guess what, your right and "False Profits" confirms why you feel that way. MLM's are pyramid schemes designed to do nothing but dup you into an impossible "fast buck overnight" nightmare. Don't join the millions of undiscerning fools who refuse to see through the smoke and mirrors. Let Bob Fitzpatrick explain in details why these phony companies have only your destruction in mind and read the fascinating stories of those who were in these systems for years and finally renounced them. Not only are their testimonies riveting, but stories are supported with factual documentation of how the scam works. A must read for all and don't quit your job whatever you do. If you want to build a business, remember there's no free lunch and it takes a lot of hard work, risk and capital but it's not impossible!
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20 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Is MLM a Religion?, July 4, 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: False Profits: Seeking Financial and Spiritual Deliverance in Multi-Level Marketing and Pyramid Schemes (Paperback)
This book is an excellent expose of the MLM failure mechanism from a common sense business point of view. It also gives a vivid description of how MLM participation can commandeer and derail people's religious ideals. As well, it contains an appeal to basic spirituality from a point of view that will not appeal to all--since it is written from a new-age perspective--but should be easily related to in any case. All told, a landmark book that is very well written and full of insight.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Insightful Read With Interesting History, January 26, 2011
By 
Chris Pascale (Long Island, NY) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: False Profits: Seeking Financial and Spiritual Deliverance in Multi-Level Marketing and Pyramid Schemes (Paperback)
In 1891, the definition of the word Prosperity included, for the first time, the attainment of great wealth. Before that, it was a very personal and often intangible matter with Calvinistic roots. Since then, prosperity has become extremely tangible in cars, houses, boats, and cash.

Information like this is found in False Profits, and it makes it a great book with an incredible history on how Amway became the model for all MLM companies (it was deemed legal by the FTC in 1979 while others were being shut down).

There is also a very interesting background on Metaphysics and how success somehow ended up being believed to be a result of how one thinks rather than how one behaves. If you think successfully, you will be successful. Essentially, successful living transformed in the era of motivation from a means of doing to a means of thinking.

Lastly, a scam the authors were caught up in called The Airplane Game is discussed.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great, May 11, 2013
By 
A. Phillips (Germantown, TN USA) - See all my reviews
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It is really difficult to find quality content on the mlm industry. there is so much mlm propaganda out there on the Internet. Thid book is a diamond in the rough.
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22 of 31 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good overview of a hopeless field, March 23, 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: False Profits: Seeking Financial and Spiritual Deliverance in Multi-Level Marketing and Pyramid Schemes (Paperback)
Reading "False Profits" was one of the factors that made me decide to quit the MLM job I had been in for a year and a half. It showed me that my MLM job isn't really a fantastic opportunity in which I alone happened to be failing miserably. Failure is universal in MLM. Though the company I was in was never mentioned in the book, every MLM technique described in the book was used in my company. This demonstrates how the recruiting and sales techniques are common to every MLM company out there. I never wanted to get rich. I just wanted another job. This set me up for failure right from the start. Only the greediest, most ruthless and most aggressive people can make it in MLM's. To succeed, you have to be willing to ...as many people as possible into a hopeless, money losing job. The authors drag in lots of talk about spirituality, altruism and worthiness of career goals. They do this to contrast most jobs with MLM jobs. To me, this wasn't necessary, but I can see why they did it. The book lacks real organization and conciseness in its presentation of how MLM's are set up and run. But despite this, the book is one of the very best out there for describing the futility of a career in an MLM. I thank Fitzpatrick and Reynolds for helping to cut short my losses in my MLM job. I highly recommend this book for anyone who is in an MLM or thinking about joining one.
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False Profits: Seeking Financial and Spiritual Deliverance in Multi-Level Marketing       and Pyramid Schemes
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