Letters to the editor 8.23.06


Market Americans

In its August 9, 2006 issue, YES! Weekly, published an article that recklessly mischaracterized Market America as an illegal Ponzi or pyramid scheme whose distributors receive “kickbacks.” With little or no research or justification, the article ignored Market America’s long-standing history and enormous contributions not only to the people of Greensboro but to thousands of entrepreneurs.

Market America is a product brokerage and internet marketing company. Through utilization of cutting-edge internet technology, Market America gives entrepreneurs an online presence – similar to – that is powered by people. This combination of high tech and high touch gives customers the ability to find what they want when they want it, while providing a standardized methodology to help business owners build and grow their businesses.

Market America has over 125,000 distributors worldwide, a large number of whom come to Greensboro every year for our annual international convention. The event regularly contributes nearly $20 million to the local economy while helping thousands of business owners become successful. These business owners also earn in excess of $90 million per year in commissions and $95 million in retail profits from product sales.

Despite these facts, the article chose to denigrate Market America, its employees, executives and independent distributors. The article was an unprincipled portrait painted with a broad brush.

Using the terms kickback and MLM (multi-level marketing) is lazy journalism relying on blanket terms as substitutes for clarity and informed writing. Equating Market America with a Ponzi scheme shows poor judgment and an obvious bias.

After 14 successful years in business and millions paid in commissions to its distributors, it is perplexing how this reporter arrived at his conclusions after attending the Convention. This article was an inexcusable, baseless assault on Market America.

I am gratified that YES! Weekly is admitting the mistakes and falsehoods in the story.


James Ridinger

President and CEO

Market America, Inc.

It is important when you write a story that you get all of the facts [“Can Market America

Save Your Soul?”; Aug. 9, 2006; by Brian Clarey]. Market America is not an MLM. One of the main differences is that MLM’s pay people in levels, thus the reason they are called MULTI LEVEL marketing.

Amie Souder

West Palm Beach, Fla.


Just wanted to compliment you on the excellent article on Market America. I think you captivated the exact essence of the MLM. I used to be in the MLM business and decided to go elsewhere, but it still remains a good opportunity if somebody works it. I think you gave a great presentation of the sales opportunity.

I enjoy your writing style.


Wayne K. Quinn


I’ve been to quite a few Market America events and can’t understand how the author of this article came to some of the conclusions he did. There are enormous differences between what Market America does and what other companies like Amway, Mary Kay, Avon, etc. do.

Market America doesn’t ask or allow its distributors to go out and recruit as many people as they can, hoping to make a little money off a mass of folks. MA’s system uses technology like internet portals and data-mining to develop and sell products that do work.

That’s another difference. MLMs and Ponzi schemes (as the print article reads) are based on recruiting, not product sales. MA distributors make money from selling product not recruiting suckers.

After reading this article, both in print and online, I question the reporter’s motives. The print piece reads like a hit job on the company. I don’t see where in the convention he would have gotten some his thinly veiled animosity towards the company. A company, I might add, that employs something like 300 people in Greensboro.

Richard Pate


I love Market America. You see, in any business to be successful you have to work. With Market America I have pleasure to combine work, rest and income in a harmony with my life. Think about your future: You stop working and then what? Will you get checks? Will you be able to exist having your stupidly small pension? Savings? Lottery? Think about your future. There are no promises. Market America does not promise. This company gives us the proven (by success of thousands) business system, great tools and belief in ourselves. The author has no idea about MLMs and direct selling industry. Brian, you should try this business first.

Olena Prosto

Toronto, Ontario

I would say the Market America Unfranchise business is a real business. It’s not a scam. I would say the Unfranchise business owners are like the jaguars, people that work hard, creative, smart, run the business faster than any other companies. The UFOs are not the persons who are riding in the big roller coaster that turns out into a tragedy. Some people would think their business will collapse from Market America. So my answer is, no. Market America is not of the MLM companies. It’s a binomial network marketing. Because most of the UFOs Unfranchise business owners followed the JR-proven business plan for Unranchise business owners. For those people who call the Market America as a MLM company, I would suggest to be in the business and follow the business plan.

Remember this people: Market America is not a MLM company. It’s a product brokers company.

I would rather become a jaguar, rather than a person who is riding in the big roller coaster that turns out to a tragedy.

Eric Jun Silva

Stamford, Conn.

Market America is not a MLM or pyramid. It can be more correctly said to be an angle, since there is no bottom level. The computer searches infinitely deep. Also the ability to re-enter under your downlines goes against the whole concept of MLM. In the case of a re-entering, your downline becomes your upline and so on. It is also more fair than a MLM because downlines have the ability to earn more than uplines. My mother has about 50 people in her organization making more money than her. Some also in the million dollars club.


New York, NY

Although this lengthy article has a lot of truth in it (regarding the descriptions of the convention event itself, and the events that took place), clearly this article was not written objectively. First off, Market America’s binomial marketing plan is in no way shape or form an MLM. Any objective comparison using legitimate schematics and formulas proves that binomial marketing is by far more profitable for more people working together in synergy than any other business model on the planet. Do not let biased information be confused with objective reporting. Although the concept of duplication is indeed similar to the age-old concept of the Amways of the world, only with binomial marketing can this sort of duplication work correctly, provided the duplication is indeed followed and implemented according to the directions defined in the compensation plan itself. This point has proven itself countless times for countless people. What Mr. Clarey neglected to mention was the fact that every dollar and cent earned by every single UnFranchise Owner with Market America is documented and credible – including the earnings claims made by many more than the two or three people mentioned in this article. Any true objective reader will seek out more accurate, third-party information from more credible articles than this one. Because indeed, Market America has never saved anyone’s soul, and the implied humor of this slant on the encouragement fostered at the Greensboro event further proves the obvious lack of objectivity that peppers this article in numerous places.

John A. Ellis

York, Pa.

Dirt bikers dig it

Dear Jordan,

In a recent issue of YES! Weekly, I came across your article about the mountain bike race at Burl-Mill Park in Greensboro [“A surprising twist of fate on Bur-Mil Park’s dirt bike trails”; Aug. 2, 2006; by Jordan Green]. This article sparked my interest because my boyfriend is Charlie Pendry who is in the photo featured. I wanted to let you know that he and I enjoyed the article. Your writing and your description of the race impressed us both. So often, writers and reporters simply report the results and include a photo, but your article was fun to read and really captured the scene. I wanted to express our gratitude, it is a great article, and with the help of journalists like you, public knowledge can only grow.


Lauren Hilton

Charlie Pendry


High Point deadlock

Dear Editor

‘ Kudos to Jordan Green for a for-the-most-part balanced article on the north High Point education and housing market [“Race, education converge in roiling real estate market”; Aug. 9, 2006; by Jordan Green]. The only thing I would differ with is the headline itself: “Race, education converge in roiling real estate market” should read: “political corruption on the schoolboard and education converge in roiling real estate market.” Race is not the issue, although I imagine it would be a sexier angle for a somewhat liberal publication. Statistics show the neighborhoods themselves are solidly racially mixed. Forty percent of the students at our school are minority. The issue is forcing children from a performing school by objective criteria to a non-performing school, by objective criteria, and expecting sane parents to go along with it. This was done by High Point board members acting out of self-interested demographic concerns which they thought would benefit their own neighborhoods that had nothing to do with education, irrespective of the wishes of the parents and children to be moved. They did it because they could, with nobody to stop them since the areas affected have no schoolboard representation.

If non-performing schools should be addressed by moving students, then students would be being moved all over the county. Two-mile wide swaths would be removed from Irving Park and Grimsley areas and sent east and south. Obviously this is insane and will never happen, but has happened in High Point. Like Mr. Barr was quoted in the article, the last re-districting fouled things up. This re-districting will foul things up and in six years I’ll probably be clamoring for somebody’s kids to be ripped out of their school and brought to ours to “repair an old injustice” – an endless cycle of idiocy and futility.

John Gehris

High Point

Hi! Hope you’re having a good summer. Enjoyed your article. I thought it a fair, thoughtful piece. One observation: I won the 2004 Board of Education race with 52 to 48 percent margin – with six opponents in the primary – all outspokenly opposed to the choice/redistricting plan. In the general election, I faced Jim Kirkpatrick, a well known businessman who had been a Greensboro city councilman, mayor pro-tem and county commissioner – who with or without the districting issue should certainly have merited and been expected to garner a large share of at least Greensboro and surrounding County votes. So I’m not sure why that would be considered a narrow margin of victory – or one entirely related to the districting matter. I know that many who were and are opposed to the districting designed to further more socio-economic balance in the schools like to say that I barely won the election because of my support for that concept; however, I’m not sure that is an accurate interpretation of the election outcome. I think many candidates feel blessed to get a 52-48 outcome’… I’ve had much larger margins of victory, have run unopposed and have lost during past campaigns, so I feel great and grateful about the outcome of the 2004 election – although always sad to displease or disappoint or inconvenience any constituents/citizens. But I think a public official must look at what actions serve the future and all citizens. Win, lose or draw with regards to election, I have tried to keep that in mind.

Thanks for letting me share.

Dot Kearns

High Point

The writer is an at-large member of the Guilford County School Board.

Nude reviews

Hey Chris,

Just wanted to say we LOVED the “Framed” in YES! Weekly [“Pride in your hide”; Aug. 9, 2006; by Chris Lowrance]. I happened to be in Winston that afternoon. A girlfriend ran up to me and started talking about seeing us in the paper and I assumed the News & Record was what she meant.

Then she dragged me by the arm to a YES! Weekly box about a block away to show me what she was going on about. What a thrill! I thought that we looked terrific and I recognized all the other folks as well. You did a great job telling the story as well as with the illustrations, keep up the good work and thanks again.

Colorful Regards,

Madelyn Greco & Scott Ray


Bring back the Packard!

Dear Mr. Ross,

Re: Ye olde economic development [“Uncontested elections, gay enlightenment and the demise of Freedom Fries”; Aug. 9, 2006; by Kirk Ross].

I suspect your remarks about Chris Craft and Indian Motorcycles were intended as a gentle jab at North Carolina’s tendency to live in the past. Personally I am delighted that they will locate here.

Chris Craft and Indian represent quality, and the brands were well respected. Both failed because of financial trouble, not poor products. The Bugatti automobile met the same fate and it is back with a vengeance. I have high hopes for the other two.

I own a Cadillac. The only other make of car I would really like to own is a Packard. The remnants of the original company are property of General Motors so the name is lost to history. The Victrola Grand name belongs to RCA, which belongs to Thomson CSF of France. No doubt they could sell iPods under the Victrola name and make a killing.

Hudson/Essex/Terraplane and Nash are up for grabs as Chrysler let them expire. Any takers?

Robert Koch


Undocumented = illegal

The article “Speaker advocates amnesty for immigrants” [Aug. 26, 2006; by Amy Kingsley] is nothing more than this ongoing leftist tripe in support of foreign nationals who in spite of the over-used term are not “immigrants” not “undocumented workers” nor are they “illegal immigrants.” Rather they are “illegal aliens” the operative word here is “illegal”. I can imagine that Lopez would have us open our prisons and grant amnesty to everyone serving a sentence. What’s the difference? You rob a bank you are a criminal, you sneak across the border and enter the country illegally you are a criminal. Although articles like these are becoming tiresome at best perhaps a different approach is needed. How about something new and ditching this time worn Communist/Socialist pap, Workers of the World Unite etc. That system of slavery has failed miserably since HD Thoreau was a pup. Amnesty for criminals? No way. Do the crime, do the time!

Ian A. Millar