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Why is it always women?

(36 Posts)
Pinkhousealreadyinuse Fri 06-Nov-15 13:30:10

A fairly sexist post but one where I hope I'm proved wrong!

Why is it always women who fall for the MLM/pyramid/chain letter schemes? Is the employment market so bad for women these days that they are lured by these "get rich quick" schemes? If so, how does that explain the crazy chain letter 36 books for one or secret sisters gift rubbish? Surely anyone sees a "too good to be true" scenario and at least googles it to find it's not all it seems? No?

It's intelligent women as well, in quite high flying or academic careers ime. What the hell is going on? Please tell me you know loads of guys doing this and it's just the pool of people that I know. Please!

wasonthelist Fri 06-Nov-15 13:35:32

My stepdad would be signed up for all these and many more if my Mum didn't warn him.

Several male friends have invited me to become a serf in their Amway pyramid, sorry, I mean MLM, over the years

Enjolrass Fri 06-Nov-15 13:35:33

Actually it's not.

Women however are more likely to own up to it or report it.

Or so my dad who worked in the police for 32 years. Spending his last few years working with the fraud team.

Enjolrass Fri 06-Nov-15 13:36:55

Or so my dad who worked in the police for 32 years, says

MildVirago Fri 06-Nov-15 13:41:19

You're confusing sex with economics. I have never come across a woman in fulfilling, reasonably well-remunerated employment that has involved herself in one of these pyramid schemes/scams - they are aimed at, and seem alarmingly appealing to, poorer people who are desperate for some extra money, but don't have the qualifications/health/confidence/childcare/ freedom from onerous family care responsibilities etc etc to work, if they work, in anything more than a crappy, insecure,minimum wage/zero hours job. These people are overwhelmingly female, so these schemes are marketed towards women.

It's not some indictment of female stupidity, more a symptom of how women are over-represented among the poor.

welshHairs Fri 06-Nov-15 13:46:16

I don't know overall stats for men v women but my dp's male friend of friend has fallen for one of these schemes. He talks like it's a proper business thing though so I think people who didn't recognise the company name would assume it was a proper company he started himself.

Pinkhousealreadyinuse Fri 06-Nov-15 13:50:40

Hmm, you might be right in general but one of my friends doing this is a chartered accountant and another is in the middle of her phd, I'm not so sure of the others (but I think one may be a lawyer(!)). They are both very well off, intelligent and so are their husbands. Speaking to others and seeing some of the threads on here, it seems that is not unusual either.

InternalMonologue Fri 06-Nov-15 13:56:47

Men fall for them too. But IME it's women who fall into one of two camps (sometimes jumping between the two) - 1) Cash strapped 2) Time poor - particularly if they have young children. Until childcare properly becomes a "parent issue" rather than primarily a "women's issue", it will be women who they aim the "Want to work from home around your kids?? PM me!" cryptic adverts at.

Viviennemary Fri 06-Nov-15 13:58:52

I think men do fall for this kind of thing but they keep it quiet.

NotTooBothered Fri 06-Nov-15 13:59:55

I know two men who've fallen for these sorts of schemes and had to be dragged away from them by their wives.

I also know one woman who falls for them regularly.

"To good to be true" seems to suck in a fairly diverse range of people.

BugritAndTidyup Fri 06-Nov-15 14:02:24

I think it seems like it's mainly women because so many of the companies are predominantly based around lifestyle products and beauty and like internalmonologue says, because woman are probably more likely to be seeking work at home jobs that are designed to fit around looking children.

So many MLM threads at the moment!

DinosaursRoar Fri 06-Nov-15 14:03:08

Because woman are more likely to give up work or go part-time or step down on their career when a couple have DCs. Woman are more likely to have to consider childcare when factoring in if a job is suitable for them, so more likely to fall for these schemes with the biggest selling point being "work from home, around your caring responsibilities".

Woman are more likely to be the ones who are in charge of buying all things for DCs, so more likely to fall for the books for children scam.

Woman are more likely to use and buy beauty products, so more likely to be suckered into selling them.

That said, I have a friend on FB who's selling Forever living stuff. She's quite good at it by the number of awards she gets and regular posts about "helping X build their new business, so excited for you!" as she recruits yet another person on board - anyway, she posts lots of photos from their events (the sheer number of nights and weekends she's out working it doesn't seem all that family friendly to me...) and it does look like there's not far off a 50/50 split, the men could all be there to support their DW/Ps who are selling it, but a fair few must be flogging it too...

noddingoff Fri 06-Nov-15 14:03:23

I wondered this too, but have a look at the wikipedia list of investors who lost money in Bernie Madoff's Ponzi scheme. There is a mix of men and women on the list of private investors, with the majority being men (presumably as there are more rich men to chase than rich women).
So the low level schemes targeted at the poor and desperate will end up attracting more women as there are more poor women; the high level schemes, from Charles Ponzi's original scam onwards, targeted at the rich who want to become richer, will attract more men as there are more rich men.

MrsMolesworth Fri 06-Nov-15 14:05:16

It's not. I have a male friend who asked me to look over a scheme he planned to invest in. It was blatant fraud. He may as well have had a neon signing pointing at his head saying 'Mug.' I explained very clearly that all the warning signs were there and he shouldn't go near it, but he ignored them and went ahead. And lost money. And won't talk about it at all.

D F-I-L was taken in by a dodgy investment scheme too. He has a degree from Oxford, so he's no fool, but has a sort of naïve blind spot about people who appear to be fabulously wealthy and are offering him a slice of their pie. He got very uppity with me when I told him it was a con. He had a posh brochure to 'prove' me wrong. I pointed out the numerous spelling mistakes in the brochure and he went quiet and didn't mention it again. I have a horrible feeling he'd already invested in them.

So the only two people I know who got taken in were men.

DepecheNO Fri 06-Nov-15 14:10:01

I know a high-achieving uni student who's involved in a MLM - she's also a single parent. It's to do with being time poor. More that women are being targeted due to existing disadvantage than that women on the whole are mugs. With the high earners, could it be that they want the status of running their own business on the side, and it's not even about the money but more a quite unimaginative hobby which impresses others? Can't get worked up about successful career women, apart from it could be argued that the MLMs make a lot of money about them, but it's hideous that these scams target people who can't afford to make a loss.

DepecheNO Fri 06-Nov-15 14:14:03

* make a lot of money out of them

momb Fri 06-Nov-15 14:17:02

..because (thinking of the book one rather than a get rich quick scheme) it's a bit of fun and has better odds than the lottery for less outlay?

As a child I participated in a 'send one postcard and receive 36' scheme, with my Mother's assistance. I was collecting postcards at the time and it seemed a brilliant idea to my 7 or 8 year old brain. My Father was furious and made me promise never to do a chain letter again. The whole adventure cost about 4p and I was first downstairs to check the post for weeks. I eventually lost hope and forgot, and the book scheme Mums will too. It hasn't bankrupted anyone and it's just a bit of fun.

Months later when I'd forgotten all about the chain letter I received 4 postcards all in one week from complete strangers. One was from someone called James and had a picture of Windsor Castle on the front. I remember that postcard over 40 years later. An inexpensive adventure, all in all, and a surprisingly bright memory.

ShebaShimmyShake Fri 06-Nov-15 14:17:35

Men sign up for get rich quick schemes all the time. They're just different ones. Health and beauty gunk that is pushed through friendship networks on social media, with the promise of being able to fit around childcare commitments, are naturally going to appeal more to women. Men are more likely to sign up for cold sales/daft investment schemes.

Which is not to say women wouldn't do those too, of course. But the reason you're seeing more women doing it right now is because part of the lure of Juice Piss and Forever Lurching is that you do it through your social media network.

SitsOnFence Fri 06-Nov-15 14:19:58

It's not some indictment of female stupidity, more a symptom of how women are over-represented among the poor

This!

RedF0x Fri 06-Nov-15 14:22:31

My (male) flatmate bought a load of forever lurching products about 15 years ago. I couldn't believe it. This was before social media, but I do agree that that is a BIG factor in more women falling for it. It's a medium that they're familiar with. They have the friends....
My Dad is always clicking on spam emails! Always downloading trojan horse viruses!

RedF0x Fri 06-Nov-15 14:23:10

It's not some indictment of female stupidity, more a symptom of how women are over-represented among the poor.

True! brew

reni2 Fri 06-Nov-15 14:40:44

I have never met anybody in RL who fell for any such MLM or pyramid scheme. I read about every single one of them only on mn, and never elsewhere. Maybe it helps that I don't do fb.

Pinkhousealreadyinuse Fri 06-Nov-15 14:42:02

I can't believe that FL has been going that long! I assumed that these things were short lived or cyclical when it comes to chain letters

goodnightdarthvader1 Fri 06-Nov-15 14:44:33

They're aimed at SAHP, which are mostly women.

ShebaShimmyShake Fri 06-Nov-15 14:44:40

I don't doubt for one second that these things appeal to poor people. But a lot of the people I've seen doing it are middle class and not badly off. Judging by the spiel they give, it seems that a large part of it is being able to work around your childcare commitments (and to be fair, you can indeed hold online launches and send out spammy messages when the kids are at school or in bed). That's another reason you'll see women falling for it; they've got the bulk of childcare a lot of the time. Chances are they're also looking for a career change if having kids affected their earning power (and you know it did, even if it is nearly 2016).

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