Amway: The Untold Story

Your Comments, Part 17

(8/96 - 9/96)

Here are some of the responses I've received to the information on this page. I've left them as is, except for a) removing the names to protect privacy, and b) reformatting them to fit the screen better.

This is a long file…I suggest downloading it to your computer and reading it off-line.

My thanks to everyone who took the time to contribute their opinions.

[NOTE: Some of these messages contain offensive language]

Just because you believe that family values and faith in God and country is a cult doesn't mean that it is and you should mind your own business.

You seem to have a great deal of detailed knowledge about the successes and failures in the world of Amway. I would like to know if you are prepared to substantiate your position that buying motivational and educational tools from major lines of sponsorship is NOT neccessary for success in the Amway business. Please, if you would, provide proof of the existence of any distributor(s) who have reached a minimum of the Emerald level WITHOUT purchasing, using, and promoting the use of "tools" within their organizations.

If there are such distributors, please provide information as to their business practices, strategies, and success principles.


I understand the effort of trying make facts available to consumers, that's great. But you missed something. This is America, if Rich DeVos, or anyone else want's to make contributions to politicians, they have that right. You forgot to mention all of the charities that Amway contributed to. You don't think Clinton got money from wealthy friends? What difference does it make if you deal with an independent Amway distributor, or a lawyer, doctor, or store front proprietor. Maybe you should accuse the democrats of "pay offs" for votes by offering wellfare and unemployment to the lazy.

Amway gives to a charity that I hate. So what! They also gave me the opportunity to retire at age 27 in 18 days. My wife and I raise our children together. We teach them good moral values. Values that we wouldn't have read about if those "brain washers" hadn't lead me to Jesus by hold an OPTIONAL non denominational service at a funtion. Bill Britt has created jobs all over the world. He has helped thousands create a better life style, get out of debt, and for many, become finacially independant. What have the negative folks on this page done for anyone?

Consumer Reports? You misquated the eval on SA8. It rated #3. Better fix it or maybe Amway should file a lawsuit against you.

[I don’t know what it is about a Consumer Reports article that so confuses Amway distributors; it must be something, since they so consistently misunderstand and misquote them. Four products were rated above the SA8, three powders and one liquid. That makes the SA8 #4 of the powders and #5 overall. What part of that does this guy have so much trouble understanding? This article was in the 2/95 Consumer Reports…check it out for yourself.]

Amway is a business, it costs money to operate, like any other. I showed a loss for 2 years, like most businesses, now I have to pay taxes. Bummer, I'm in the upper 10% of American income and climbing.

TOOLS! Before you are allowed to by tapes and books, you are required to sign a form that states that purchase of such tools is voluntary, refund periods are clearly stated in this document, and disclaimers exist on all tapes. Maybe they should read the document.

I would never say there are no bad seeds in Amway. But I seem to have missed your sight on Lawyeres, Car Salesmen, Politicians, etc.. Amway has helped more people become financially independant that any corporation in the world. And the bad seeds don't last because there groups quit.

Suggestion! Get a life. Either state all the facts or none. Put all of this energy into something productive so that you can effect the world in a positive way. This only steals dreams from people. You don't know who may kill themselves tomorrow because you took there last hope. I've seen people prevented from killing themselves because this was offered just in time (phone rang as trigger was being pulled). I would assume that the opposite would be true. You take this away, then what do they do?

We make our money helping others make money. The products aren't even relevent. What else are people going to do? You never seem to mention that.

-Rags to Riches-


I am a successful salesman. I sell insurance. Needless to say, I come across Amway distributers all the time. Of course, each one sees me as a prize catch and tries to recruit me. I have several observations: Have you noticed that in the letters sent to you, your success or failure in life depends on your success in Amway. Since you "failed" in Amway, you obviously are a failure in life. Also, have you noticed that professional sales people don't get involved with Amway. If you did a survey, you would probably find very few sales professionals in this business.

When I go out to sell, I sell a product. I present a need and ask a person to purchase my product to take care of that need. I don't ask them to go out and sell products for me. I like your site and plan on using the information with some clients of mine who are trying to prospect me.

I was investigating cults because I have a family member in one and was shocked to find that some people believe that Amway is a cult! I have been studying cults for some time and I am also an Amway distributor. While some of your information has drawn some intersting parallels linking Amway to cults, the information is none the less being twisted to your own purposes. Sure we wear business attire but it's mandatory (you're not asked to leave if you wear jeans). It's a BUSINESS. Certain attire is demanded when you go to work is it not? I just wonder what your personal agenda is with the Amway corporation. I mean, the Sales and Marketing sheet is endorsed by the government. Is the government a cult too?? Get real, you can draw cult similarities to Brownies, Boy Scouts, just about anything but that doesn't make it a cult.

It is extremely dangerous to spread misinformation about cults. It could mean the difference between life and death. If you are REALLY concerned about saving peoples lives then crusade against some real cults like the moonies, or scientology etc etc. Spreading that kind of information would really help someone out instead of giving out your own "personal" beliefs. I don't believe that you really want to help people, you have a hidden agenda. There is much more you could do in the area of cults if you really had a concern about them. I'm not sure that you do.


My grateful thanks for your web site! I have been approched by an "independent Businessman" that tried to sell me the merits of "reference marketing". It took about 90 minutes of intensive grilling brfore he would even admit to the name of the parent company ! Need I say I became suspicious ?

I got in touch with some friends that were involved for a stint with the system, and that conversation gave me valuable aditionnal info on the business culture of Amway. However, only in your site was I able to find actual estimates of the profitability of this marketing scheme. I particulary liked the estimates of business costs, which of course are not to be seen in any of Amway's recruiting litterature.

I won't be joining any such scam soon!

You've saved me many hours of valuable time and efforts. Thanks!

I visited your page few months ago. I am impressed with what you have done to the page. I was wondering how much money did you make to set up this page? I am amazed that there is one human being like you who are doing a lot of effort which produce nothing useful to this world. How much time do you spend to collect those information?

Dont you have anything better to do? Are you that desperate to get recognition from people? If you are really desperate, I salute you with the effort you put in to create this very impresive page but not useful at all. You could have invested your time to study laws or learn how to rob a bank or perhaps you can set up an adult-only web site (maybe a photo of yourself - You will get more recognition this way).

Bye bye. Good luck, I hope you will get a lots of recognitions.

Thank you for creating this site, AMWAY has started in Greece. With these articles, it was easy to say no, and I hope will get others to do the same.

My husband and I were recently approached by someone regarding AMWAY. We were VERY skeptical about the success of this company so I decided to do a little research on the internet. I commend you for publishing both the negative and positive feedback you get regarding AMWAY. The biggest problem I have is that most of the people who support AMWAY feel it is necessary to call you names such as idiot, loser and tell you to get a life. If AMWAY were such a reputable business they would attract respectable people who wouldn't have the need to attack someone who doesn't agree with their business. Rather, they would simply point out the benefits and positive aspects of being an AMWAY distributor. I don't get that feeling from these people. I chose not to become one! Thanks for creating this forum.


It amazes me the lengths some people will go to justify their own failures. Your own web site!! Just imagine the success you could be enjoying if you channeled your time and efforts into something positive.

Let me ask you this question: If Amway is such a bad thing, do you have something better? Are you prepared to offer all of the people you turn away from Amway a better vehicle to success. The corporate ladder isn't going to do it and there is no such thing as a "job for life." If you don't have a better way, what gives you the right to destroy peoples dreams?

As for myself I feel sorry for you and anyone who supports your cause. But not sorry enough to give up my own VERY successful business. With Amway I have been able to help a lot of people in my community, spend more time working with non-profits, and spend more quality time with my family. Can you say the same? I didn't think so…

Not every company is perfect. With over two million distributors there are going to be those who act immoral, spouting mis-information, cheating people. But they are the exception. If you knew someone who was injured by a Doctor or Dentist would you stop going to your Doctor or Dentist? I would think not. You know that not every Dentist or Doctor is going to practice the same. The same can be said for Amway or any other large organization.

Just my thoughts, take'm or leave'm…

I can tell, judging by the poor grammar and frequent misspellings that Amway advocates have in their letters to you, that they don't have much of a chance at winning the Nobel Prize for being the smartest people in the world.

I sincerely believe that if they put as much effort into their jobs or in school prior to their "recruitment" as they do now, they would have found themselves doing a hell of a lot better than being the human equivalent of sheep following the "Judas goat" into the slaughterhouse. By the way: I own two houses and two brand-new cars. I only work a few hours a day during the school year. I have a beautiful wife and three kids. I'm financially independent. I've done it all legitimately and by myself. and I don't buy Amway.

I really appreciate the information in this site! I am involved with a wonderful young woman, and things are very serious. However, I have had one failed marriage partly due to her VERY strong family ties. My current relationship is w/a woman whos family is HEAVILY into Amway and I am scared shitless of this cult. My sister is in a different cult organization and the power and control over people's lives is very frightening. I can never see myself being one of "them", as I have never been a follower, so the potential for my relationship w/this woman to turn sour is also saddening. Her family support is closely allied to the "business" as they call it. I know they have expectations that I would be at the very least accepting if not receptive to being one of "them". Shit, losing someone I love to a soap-cult…live can't suck much more can it!

Mr. Schwartz-

I think that Amway is a very good corporation. My parents are involved in it and it is a very positive business. I plan on being involved in it myself when I become 18. This is not a cult business and I believe it will go along ways. I am glad my parents have found this business because it has brought them closer together and not as negative.

I've just been approached by a friend at work to borrow the IBS promotional video. Watched it - invited to the presentation, seen it. It all sounded excellent. In fact the guy who gave the presentation is coming to see me on Saturday to find if I have any questions or if I would like to start etc. Thanks for the extra ammunition I got from your site. I feel sorry for all the others who havn't got access to WWW for info. Thanks again. Any additional information you think I should know about, so I can inform those at work who would like a little more info before they commit. I think I'll give this 'exciting' exploit a miss! Thanks again.

It's hard for me to understand all this negativity about Amway when I receive checks from the corporation every month. I won't be able to retire on those checks. But I sure feel better driving that new car. Not to mention knowing that I am absolutely debt free.

So I offer this to your readers:

If you want to learn to play tennis, would you ask your next door neighbor who has a pretty good serve and won the local community center tennis tournament 3 years ago…or would you rather take lessons from Pete Sampras.

Think about it....

OK, Now I get it…someone who puts on a suit and tie and gets a bit excited about their financial future belongs to a cult. But if some idiot spends $35 or so every week to go to a football game, paints their face, wears some silly hat and jumps up and down like a monkey, rooting for the success of some other yahoo, THAT'S NOT A CULT???

By the way, I do make good money in Amway. I've helped with setting up seminars and open meetings and can honestly say the proceeds often barely covers the expenses, especially of the the hall. Try renting some auditorium or even some room in a school and you'll be in for a surprise. Other, larger meetings will make more money but they have to subsidize those smaller functions that will lose money. I too, had some skeptism before this but now I have only the utmost respect for the WWDB system. Working behind the scenes I can tell you Worlwide Dreambuilders is extremely honest and well-run.

If anyone out there has anything better to offer me--as much money in the period of time it takes to do this, LET ME KNOW (and I don't mean something that's being investigated by half the attorney generals and will be shut down in a year). I don't think you can.

How much do you make a year? Thought so…

Dear Sidney,

I too have been caught up in the Network 21 group 4 years ago. Thank goodness my wife & I are out of this.

We got started with a new company in January this year. Within 9 weeks of being in this particular program I QUIT my job in the corperate world in sales that I had for 8 years.

I have now since then DOUBLED my income & my wife Leah is part-time in our business which extends in 4 countries, 6 states within Australia & there are about 600 - 700 people in our organisation.

There are a couple of people within our organisation who are earning double what we are who came into our organisation 6 weeks after we did.

If there some people who come to you who were like me had 100% faith in the NETWORK DISTRIBUTION INDUSTRY but could not make it in the big A & they ask you if you know somebody who is doing OK out of this indistry, please feel free to ask them to contact me at *.

I work on this way, I show people how our programme works & if they think it can work for them we go further, if not they go on their merry way.

I'M not interested in bringing people into anything with their heels smoking.

My roommate and his girlfriend are freaks, and so is the girl downstairs. I'm a student with a head on my shoulders. I also write songs. I wrote this one for them. I thought you may like it. Notice it doesn't mention Amway once. I did that on purpose so when they asked me if it was about Amway (they did) I could ask them why they thought it was about that. It's a lot of fun playing with feeble minds. :)

Pawns on Your Shelf

The cleverest of schemes
Is never quite like it seems.
Pulling it off is easy,
If they never see.

And if you let them join in,
And make their reasoning thin,
You can make from them
A whole lot of money.

But then you have to live with yourself -
When they give you their dreams and so much else.
Is nothing felt? By you?
Are these people to you or just pawns on your shelf?

While I LIVE my dream,
You just plan and scheme.
My life is filled with beauty,

Yours IS money.

I take my life in stride,
You're never satisfied.
Who's the rich one here?
I find that funny.

And I know that all I want is free.
All I want is all that's meant to be,
But you can't see
For the greed
That's inside of you ain't no part of me.

Hope you liked it. Keep up the good work and maybe people's eyes will be opened.

Mr. Schwartz,

I was a distributor and have recieved notification regarding a class action suit against Britt and Yeager for the sale of "motivational" material (tapes). They (Britt and Yeager) decided to settle rather than continue and increase the cost of litigation. The reason I'm writing you is to voice my opinion on their settlement.

They have decided that they will give members, past and present, of their downline who have purchased any of these materials, a 35% discount off of the suggested retail price of up to ten listed items. My problem with this is that through the sale of these items they will still make money. What kind of settlement provides for the profit of the defendant?

You may not be interested in this, but I feel better voicing my opinion on this subject.

Hi, my name is *. I am married to a great wife and have a wonderful son. I am current a student at a small liberal arts college in Orange City, Iowa called Northwestern. I am angry about the truth I found out about Amway from your Web site on the Internet from the college's computers and would like to thank you greatly for the information. I joined Amway this last may under the line of Yager and my upline diamond is DS. When my sponser told me that this Amway was the way of the future and the best way to get rich, better than college I was not sure at first. Should have stayed with my gut feeling about this and not joined. But my wife and I went to a majar rally and got hooked in. I now see my my upline nevers tells me the details of the "buisness." I would greatly like to hear from you in a letter and learn more of this scam to warn other people in it and thinking about jouining.

Thank-you greatly for the truth and would very much like to hear from you.



I was just shown the Amway business last week and was considering joining. I thought I'd research it first and found you web site in the process. I'm glad I did. It was interesting and reitterated the negative comments that I've heard about Amway in the past.

What is your motivation for writing creating such a detailed and informative web page? Were you previously involved and let down by "The System" Or was this a research project of some kind? I'm curious.

I can't believe the idiocy I've read in your page. I'd be curious to know what you do and how you help people in your profession. Amway is what it is. Few people make good money but that is true in most businesses. This is differenct from what folks do 8 - 5 all year. This takes effort and time. Most don't pay the price and therefore don't reap the benefits. How many people have earned financial indepence doing what you do?

I bet you think you're helping people by setting them straight. We'll consider this: for every person you talk out of this business, when they end up working all their live for a crappy lifestyle, you'll be at fault.

Please get a life. Amway is bigger than you. Why would anyone listen to you when a corporation like Amway, with it's resources, association and good works is their to help them achieve dreams. Yes, I said it: achieve dreams. May be cliche or corny but this is America, and there's nothing wrong with trying to do great things. By the way, how much did your company give to Easter Seals last year?


great web page, gets to the point

send me some more info

It took my husband and I only about three encounters over a period of one week to begin to get bad vibs about the Amway distribution system through these monopolistic "upline" powerhouses.

We are the type of people who thoroughly investigate every major decision we make, especially those that involve money or a serious commitment of time. One of my routine avenues of investigation is the internet.

That brings me to the point of this email. Thank you for the time and effort you took to make all this information available to the public! It was the last stop on our investigative journey. Needless to say, my husband and I will not continue our contact with our would be sponsors, and we actually spent the last 15 minutes before we fell asleep last night giggling about our week-long experience!

The average person does nothing.

The average person competes in sports from behind the remote control. We all would like to have more out of life than what we already have. Look at it like this:

You have one life to live. You can work the rest of it at 60 - 80 hours a week.. or you can work for the next two - five years 90-100 hours a week building any network marketing business, eating what you buy from it. Using thier products. After those few years have passed. You can take a vacation for 40 years.

Let me see…

work my whole life....?

slam dunk my amway business for 2- 5 years

No it's not easy for the average person…but it's always easy for the average person to find fault in the things

they are not able to do vs. finding fault in themselves.

I know you're laughing, so am I.

Any business you own you must invest in it. Time & Money. You get out of it what you put in. Unless you are just the average kind of person. The average person does nothing, I guess because the average person wants nothing.

For all people who want more and are going after what they want I commend you. What ever way you choose to attain your goals make the best of it. Never quit. Stop listening to the guy at the water cooler.

Do your own research. Don't just look at the negative side of everything look at all of the facts.

Oh, also none of the people that I know have a problem with me helping them make an extra $2,000 a month or even more.

Hi Schwartz,

I felt relieved after I saw you homepage on ANTI AMWAY. I was conned yesterday to attend on of their lousy meeting or brainwashing sessions.It sounded fishy and hush hush business I thought why not give it a try in internet I might getsome information.

I don't know how you found the time to construct and maintain such an elaborate web site, but I have found it very educational, and I think you're doing quite a public service. Thank you.

Dear Sidney Schwartz,

I have just found this web site and look forward to reading every bit of it thoroughly. As a member of the legal profession, I find the legal issues most interesting. Unfortunately, I must get back to working on a career path that I took steps away from after allowing myself to be misguided. I continually resisted "Fascinating Womanhood" but even sewage eventually seeps into the ground. My husband would write a comment today, but he is on the road driving a truck in order to pull us out of debt and put himself back into college.

One last comment, it is nice to know that I have not been subjected this election season to "Dole vs. Clinton" on white tapes with black lettering.

obviously you did not follow the system or you would have made something of your life,the world is full of critics.

i was an amway distibutor i the early 80's. i am no longer with amway. i had no success in recruiting a downline. but i find it hard to believe your hostile attitude. i know that some people in their enthusiasm can say things that are misleading in order to "make the sale". but common sense about building a business hsa to come into play. i like that someone has looked at the downside of amway but you're comments are very biased. can you tell me why you have taken this slant on this company? or is it mlm ingeneral?

ps i haven't sa of yet seen amway's reply to your page.


I lost money with Amway. YET, I learned about self improvement and took it from there. Amway taught me a great deal. I bailed out after I lost my apartment. They had me brained washed but after looking back on it. I received an EDUCATION and moved on from there. The education was the best but I applied that wisdom into the nature of business. See for yourself visit and view my work.

so what you are saying, is you could not make it work. likely because you had no motivation, desire, or goals!! AND YOU WANT TO DISCOURAGE OTHERS. HERE'S A SMALL SUGGESTION…GET A


MCI is now entirely owned by British Telecom.

Any distributor who has long-distance service from MCI is supporting a foreign-owned corporation.

Is this the American Way?

The "Information Highway" is at best a misnomer. It is, like many others before it, a type of media. Most of what is on The Web is in actual fact paid advertising. And as such, if you have the money, you can advertise pretty much what you want.

Those "Crawling The Web" should realize the "information" they find on The Web can be just as biased and slanted as any other form of paid advertising. (Refer to Ann Landers and her recent columns and her comments) And as such (Paid Advertising that is) should be viewed accordingly.

Unfortunately it seems there aren't enough laws governing what can and can't be put on The Web, proof of that being the slander in many of the responses, which makes me shake my head in amazement at the mentality of the poeple (of which you are one by printing them). So many people it seems want to sue the big company (or anyone who might have some money), it seems Americans have a real QUEST for the free ride. But many of the responses could themselves be sued for slander.

One notable difference is the REPUTABLE advertisers do not try to hide the fact that they are indeed advertising a product and/or service. They do not try to flame or slam anyone else, they merely promote their own.

The Web is as much a case of "Buyer Beware" or in this case, "Crawler Beware" as any thing else man has devised. If the heading on the Web Page looks like the heading from the STAR or the ENQUIRER, maybe that's where it belongs!

You are a jerk!

yeh! Add Sicko to the Jerk comment