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Monday, February 25, 2013

Megdal: Madoff-ravaged Mets enter into a stadium deal with ... Amway

Legacy of Clean!

Amid fresh non-news that the Mets are still in debt, Amway, a business known for false promises of riches, has moved into a storefront at Citi Field.

The imagery isn’t great for the Mets, to say the least. Amway was busy settling a class action lawsuit alleging the company is a pyramid scheme at the same time Mets’ ownership group was fighting a lawsuit by the trustee for the Bernie Madoff victims over its role in Madoff’s Ponzi scheme.

But the cash-strapped Mets, who only recently contemplated putting a casino next to their stadium, seem to have made the calculation that whatever money they’re getting from the deal trumps any cosmetic problems that might stem from the association.

The Citi Field outpost is Amway’s first storefront in America.

On Saturday, Amway staged a grand opening (or “grand opening”: it got no coverage, as far as I can tell) with the Amway sign just a few feet away from a Mets ticket booth.

Amway is a multilevel marketing opportunity, to use the euphemism, or a pyramid scheme, to use the terminology of its critics. Individuals sign up as “Independent Business Owners”, or I.B.O.s, to sell an array of Amway products, buying them up front while simultaneously recruiting others to join Amway as well.

Repoz Posted: February 25, 2013 at 07:03 PM | 42 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: mets

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Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. AndrewJ Posted: February 25, 2013 at 07:13 PM (#4375944)
Paul Harvey agrees.
   2. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: February 25, 2013 at 07:35 PM (#4375960)
Mets executives are projecting that this summer's attendance figures will be low enough that only a third to a half of the concession stands will be needed. The rest are to be turned into "concession scams" featuring vendors such as We Buy Your Gold, Education Connection, Natural Cures THEY Don't Want You To Know About, Russ Dalbey's Cash Flow Note Finding, and Armando Montelongo's real estate seminars as well as hordes of desperate local distributors for Amway, Avon, Mary Kay, Herbalife, Pampered Chef, Silpada Designs, Longaberger baskets, etc.
   3. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: February 25, 2013 at 07:39 PM (#4375963)
It isn't a pyramid scheme, it's a triangle opportunity.
   4. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: February 25, 2013 at 07:44 PM (#4375964)
Will the Mets cross-promote with the Orlando Magic?
   5. bobm Posted: February 25, 2013 at 08:01 PM (#4375971)
Here's your legacy of clean...

Http://www.crainsnewyork.com/article/20120805/MEDIA_ENTERTAINMENT/308059976&template=smartphone

Crain's New York
The rise and fall of the Spongetech scam

By AARON ELSTEIN
Aug 05, 2012 

The New York Mets got stiffed out of nearly $3 million by Spongetech. [...]

The Mets were the first team to carry Spongetech ads, and the company signed a three-year advertising deal shortly before the team moved into Citi Field in 2009. Spongetech agreed to pay a bit more than $1 million a year for a large sign along the right field wall and ads elsewhere in the ballpark, according to state court documents. The company also rented a luxury suite behind third base for five seasons, starting at $250,000 per year. Because Spongetech was selling so much stock to gullible investors during the summer of 2009, it could afford to pay its bills to the Mets, at least at first.

The ads with the Mets caught the attention of MSG officials, who were impressed that the little-known company had secured a licensing agreement for SpongeBob with the cartoon character's owner, the entertainment giant Viacom. For its part, Viacom's Nickelodeon division terminated its licensing agreement after Mr. Metter and Moskowitz were arrested in 2010 and Nickelodeon was never paid past-due royalties, according to a Spongetech bankruptcy trustee's report. Viacom declined to comment.

At the time MSG was courting Spongetech, a credit check showed it was paying the Mets, according to a person close to the matter, and its product could be found in stores. Yet had MSG executives looked a little deeper they might have found red flags—such as seven letters from the Securities and Exchange Commission over a 13-month stretch, starting in March 2005, demanding that Spongetech provide more information in its financial statements.





   6. Robinson Cano Plate Like Home Posted: February 25, 2013 at 08:05 PM (#4375976)
Spongetech Squarepants?
   7. Heinie Mantush (Krusty) Posted: February 25, 2013 at 08:49 PM (#4375999)

It isn't a pyramid scheme, it's a triangle opportunity.


In my experience, those tend to get real awkward, real fast.
   8. madvillain Posted: February 25, 2013 at 09:46 PM (#4376022)
The Mets? Pyramid Scheme? They have a saying down south, "fool me once, shame on you...fool me twice...um, um -- can't get fooled again!"
   9. The District Attorney Posted: February 25, 2013 at 09:54 PM (#4376027)
The rest are to be turned into "concession scams" featuring vendors such as We Buy Your Gold...
You joke, but there were in fact "cash for gold" ads at Citi in its first year. I think they were gone after that, but don't quote me.
   10. Pat Rapper's Delight Posted: February 25, 2013 at 09:57 PM (#4376028)
The rest are to be turned into "concession scams"...

I can just hear Vince from ShamWow slap-chopping his nuts now.
   11. steagles Posted: February 25, 2013 at 10:15 PM (#4376033)
The Mets? Pyramid Scheme? They have a saying down south, "fool me once, shame on you...fool me twice...um, um -- can't get fooled again!"
leave the jokes to the professionals.
   12. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: February 26, 2013 at 12:30 AM (#4376072)
My childhood best friend was/is caught up in a pyramid scheme, and he really laid on the pressure to get me into it. I told him I wasn't interested, but that only seemed to encourage him. Then I tried ignoring his inquiries, but he still emailed/facebooked me a couple times a week, asking if I checked out the material yet. I finally told him there was no way in hell that I would ever join, and now we don't talk anymore.

Pyramid schemes are evil in more ways than one.
   13. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: February 26, 2013 at 12:39 AM (#4376077)
dupe.
   14. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: February 26, 2013 at 12:39 AM (#4376078)
Oh come on. I refreshed the page and my post appeared for the third time.
   15. Walt Davis Posted: February 26, 2013 at 12:45 AM (#4376081)
Mets executives are projecting that this summer's attendance figures will be low enough that only a third to a half of the concession stands will be needed. The rest are to be turned into "concession scams" featuring vendors such as We Buy Your Gold, Education Connection, Natural Cures THEY Don't Want You To Know About, Russ Dalbey's Cash Flow Note Finding, and Armando Montelongo's real estate seminars as well as hordes of desperate local distributors for Amway, Avon, Mary Kay, Herbalife, Pampered Chef, Silpada Designs, Longaberger baskets, etc.

Where's the anti-aging clinic?

dupe.

I'm sorry to hear you and your friend fell out but that's no excuse to be rude to him. :-)
   16. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: February 26, 2013 at 12:48 AM (#4376082)
That jerk! Grrr.

Well played, Walt.
   17. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: February 26, 2013 at 01:06 AM (#4376086)
Where's the anti-aging clinic?

That's affiliated with the Cardinals.
   18. Pat Rapper's Delight Posted: February 26, 2013 at 01:51 AM (#4376098)
Where's the anti-aging clinic?

That's in the locker room of the ballpark across town.
   19. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: February 26, 2013 at 03:43 AM (#4376117)
My childhood best friend was/is caught up in a pyramid scheme, and he really laid on the pressure to get me into it. I told him I wasn't interested, but that only seemed to encourage him. Then I tried ignoring his inquiries, but he still emailed/facebooked me a couple times a week, asking if I checked out the material yet. I finally told him there was no way in hell that I would ever join, and now we don't talk anymore.

Pyramid schemes are evil in more ways than one.


I had a similar issue with a sorta friend who pushed me to put on a suit one night and come with him to an 'investment opportunity'. He was cagey about the details but wasn't asking me at that point for money, and a date fell through, so that's how I wound up at my first and only Amway seminar. After ten minutes I told him we were leaving, and when he declined (we had taken his car) I started going through his pants pockets for his keys. Fun times. I think we ended up getting fairly drunk somewhere.

I've heard that tricking people into going to these seminars isn't that unusual. What's to gain, though? If someone doesn't want to go, how is deceiving them supposed to help? "Oh, well, since you lied to me, here's ten thousand dollars for soap."
   20. Canker Soriano Posted: February 26, 2013 at 08:21 AM (#4376140)
Post 3 in this recent thread.

Accurately predicting partnerships between con artists... worst superpower ever.
   21. HowardMegdal Posted: February 26, 2013 at 08:33 AM (#4376142)
20. I had forgotten about this. Probably why when I first saw the picture, I assumed it was a hoax.
   22. BFFB Posted: February 26, 2013 at 09:29 AM (#4376164)
That is an amazingly prescient post!
   23. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: February 26, 2013 at 10:08 AM (#4376185)
My childhood best friend was/is caught up in a pyramid scheme, and he really laid on the pressure to get me into it. I told him I wasn't interested, but that only seemed to encourage him. Then I tried ignoring his inquiries, but he still emailed/facebooked me a couple times a week, asking if I checked out the material yet. I finally told him there was no way in hell that I would ever join, and now we don't talk anymore.


Well you can hardly blame him for cutting you off, seeing as how you hate the idea of his financial independence and all.
   24. Hack Wilson Posted: February 26, 2013 at 11:10 AM (#4376226)
My childhood best friend was/is caught up in a pyramid scheme.


You are obviously a conservative investor, great. I have the perfect opportunity for you, just two words will say it all-ASTEROID MINING. Absolutely no risk-unless your asteroid obliterates
Cincinnati.
   25. Canker Soriano Posted: February 26, 2013 at 11:38 AM (#4376245)
My childhood best friend was/is caught up in a pyramid scheme, and he really laid on the pressure to get me into it. I told him I wasn't interested, but that only seemed to encourage him. Then I tried ignoring his inquiries, but he still emailed/facebooked me a couple times a week, asking if I checked out the material yet. I finally told him there was no way in hell that I would ever join, and now we don't talk anymore.

That's usually what happens when my friends become born-again Christians and start bugging me about whether I've been saved.
   26. TerpNats Posted: February 26, 2013 at 11:44 AM (#4376251)
Jeez, even the Marlins haven't lowered themselves to this. (But Loria and company have other ways of scamming the public.)
   27. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: February 26, 2013 at 11:48 AM (#4376257)
I went to some pyramid scheme pitch when I was in college that I thought was going to be a job interview - had to walk three miles, partly through iffy neighborhoods, at night to get back to my dorm. Yuck.
   28. Swedish Chef Posted: February 26, 2013 at 11:52 AM (#4376265)
Jeez, even the Marlins haven't lowered themselves to this.

Silly. Why would the Marlins allow a competitor to set up business at their park?
   29. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 26, 2013 at 12:01 PM (#4376276)

Mets executives are projecting that this summer's attendance figures will be low enough that only a third to a half of the concession stands will be needed. The rest are to be turned into "concession scams" featuring vendors such as We Buy Your Gold, Education Connection, Natural Cures THEY Don't Want You To Know About, Russ Dalbey's Cash Flow Note Finding, and Armando Montelongo's real estate seminars as well as hordes of desperate local distributors for Amway, Avon, Mary Kay, Herbalife, Pampered Chef, Silpada Designs, Longaberger baskets, etc.


And sponsored content between innings brought to you by the Church of Scientology.
   30. The Chronicles of Reddick Posted: February 26, 2013 at 12:33 PM (#4376299)
My dad got caught in a pyramid scheme which caused him to get a 2nd mortgage on the house. Unfortunately he was one of those get rich quick kind of people that never took advice from those in the know and instead had no problem believing anything a salesperson put in front of him
   31. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: February 26, 2013 at 12:49 PM (#4376316)
And sponsored content between innings brought to you by the Church of Scientology.


Bigot.
   32. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: February 26, 2013 at 02:16 PM (#4376374)
Absolutely no risk-unless your asteroid obliterates Cincinnati.


I'm willing to take that risk.
   33. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: February 26, 2013 at 09:49 PM (#4376732)
I heard a pyramid scheme pitch while working my current part-time job. For some reason my scam radar didn't go off and it wasn't until I got home, dialed the provided number, heard a voicemail with the company name, and did quick Internet research that I realized what was going on.
   34. Arbitol Dijaler Posted: February 26, 2013 at 10:09 PM (#4376739)
I wish there were a Mets-related baseball story.
   35. Rafael Bellylard: Built like a Panda. Posted: February 26, 2013 at 10:12 PM (#4376741)
My landlord is into this kind of get-rich-quick type of crap. Buying houses and flipping them, or in the case of the house we're renting from him, buying it and not paying the mortgage for 18 months (so we recently found out).

When I confronted him about it, he gave me the "I do this stuff all the time, don't worry" line. Also told us it would take a few years to get it settled, so we had nothing to worry and, by the way, would we like to sign a new lease?.

Um...no.
   36. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: February 27, 2013 at 02:11 AM (#4376817)
Is there a single flippable house left in the US? Between the craze in the 2000s brought on by rising prices, and the plunge in prices that made it no longer worthwhile to sink 50k into improvements, there can't be many.
   37. Canker Soriano Posted: February 27, 2013 at 02:34 AM (#4376824)
Is there a single flippable house left in the US? Between the craze in the 2000s brought on by rising prices, and the plunge in prices that made it no longer worthwhile to sink 50k into improvements, there can't be many.

There may be, but I think they're all reserved for TV flipping show participants.
   38. Jim Wisinski Posted: February 27, 2013 at 02:41 AM (#4376826)
While house shopping last fall we looked at several homes that were obviously being flipped.
   39. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: February 27, 2013 at 03:15 AM (#4376831)
@38: what part of the country are you in--is it a metro area?
   40. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: February 27, 2013 at 08:44 AM (#4376861)
I guess with my new handle I should probably pop into this thread at some point. Amway is gross and the Mets should be embarrassed. I like to poke fun at the Mets as I believe they are a sleeping giant and I need to get my barbs in now while I can, but this is really beyond the pale. Nothing against the Mets fans here, but I hope the team loses a 100 games and Phillies fans burn down the luxury boxes and salt the outfield grass so it shall never grow again.
   41. JE (Jason) Posted: February 27, 2013 at 08:57 AM (#4376866)
Mets infomercial, 2014: "Call within the next 10 minutes and we'll double your season-ticket order for free. Just pay the separate shipping and handling."
   42. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: February 27, 2013 at 10:20 AM (#4376904)
Since people can't afford to buy houses now for even 70% of what they cost at the peak of the market, there's a flipping market among institutional investors, even hedge funds, who are trying to figure out a way to assemble large-scale single-family-dwelling rental businesses which historically have been impossible to manage.

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