Keep Your Wallet Far From Spazio's Westport Tonight
More specifically, the BBB believes iJango is a pyramid scheme.
On its website, iJango has a movie-style trailer (rated "'EX, for excitement") that promises that you can become the center of the online universe. Somehow -- it's never made quite clear -- iJango will help its users "earn money when you or someone you know searches online".
"We're poised for explosive growth," the announcer promises. "It's an enormous opportunity for anyone willing to control their own destiny."
Yep, there's oil in them thar hills!
Reports the BBB on its own website:
On August 3, 2009 the Better Business Bureau met with iJango's CEO, Rayner Smith to clarify the nature of their business. Mr. Smith and his staff indicated that they offer a business opportunity; however, they do not make any lifestyle promises based on earning potential. Similarly, he indicated that the only promise the business makes to potential clients is that they will be paid for the recruitment of registered customers and the recruitment of others to do the same.That does sound pretty pyramidal.
After the meeting with Smith, the BBB began investigating iJango's claims that it is affiliated with sites like Google, Rhapsody, iTunes and Amazon. So far, Rhapsody has claimed never to have heard of iJango and Amazon responded to the BBB's request for information with a lot of blather that amounted to, "'We'll look into it." As for Google:
On August 11, 2009 BBB requested iJango provide clarification regarding their relationship with Google and Google's AdSense. BBB further requested a list of the companies that iJango has entered into a legal agreement with in order to generate shopping commission. As of August 12, 2009, the Bureau is awaiting the company's reply.Warning to fellow citizens: Be wary of a company that promises to change the world and make you a gazillionaire, particularly if it already has a website (with a cheesy "trailer") that invites the masses to take part. Do you really think Google attracted its first investors that way?
Snake-oil salesmen at work after the jump: