Post # 1
So, my sister is involved in a direct-to-consumer sales business (similar to Avon and Scentsy-type business). She has been trying to improve her “standing” — which involves recruiting new sellers underneath her who she “manages.” I know that is how most of these businesses work, and the way you actually make money is collecting a margin of the profit of the women you manage selling product.
Anyway, she is close to hitting her next “level” of management. She called me earlier this week telling me she needed our mom’s e-mail address and social security number. She told me she’s going to “sign” her up as a seller, so that she can “go on trips and stuff” with her. I’m not an idiot, I know she’s doing it because she wants to hit this next level, which requires a certain number of sellers under your management.
This whole situation made me uncomfortable. One, if it was actually in mom’s benefit, why wouldn’t you just tell her you were signing her up without any expectation of her selling anything? Two, I actually do have my mother’s e-mail password (which I lied and told her I didn’t have) and her social security number (it’s on old FAFSA forms in my filing cabinet, but I was NOT giving that out, either). I don’t believe it is ethical, and I have a sinking suspicion she may be trying to “double dip” (i.e., processing orders under my mother’s account, collecting essentially double commission).
Anyway, since I wouldn’t give her my mother’s password (I lied and said I didn’t have it), she knew I was the recovery email on the account, so she has now LOCKED OUT my mother’s email and forwarded a link to my email to reset her password. I’ve been ignoring her phone calls today, after getting multiple texts requesting I forward the password email to her immediately. The last text I get 20 minutes ago read “Call me call me call me call me.”
Am I right here? Is this shady and unethical?
Post # 3
Yeah that is shady as hell. I hate MLM schemes.
Post # 4
Nope nope nope. I wouldn’t do it.
Post # 5
Unethical for sure!!! you can’t even give our ur mom’s ssn, only ur mom can do that and give consent!!!
Post # 6
This is completely shady and unethical. I am sure who ever she is working for would have policies against this. Don’t help her with it.
I don’t care what any of these companies say, they all seem like elaberate ponzy schemes to me.
Post # 7
I’m with you on this. I mean, if it was something like signing your mother up for an email mailing list or something silly like that, whatever. But asking for your mother’s SSN? That’s shady as all hell. I wouldn’t even be nice about it, to be honest. If she was my sister, I’d tell her to go fly a kite. I’d even advise my mother of the attempted behind the back trickery so that your mom isn’t fooled by her claims of “going on trips together” should she decide that your unwillingness to cooperate warrants an attempt at convincing your mother it is a good idea. It is extremely shady and unethical. In your position, I wouldn’t want to assume that she would attempt to double-dip, but the type of request she is making… Well, based on that, I wouldn’t put it passed her. Call her back so she stops harrassing you to get in touch and simply tell her to stuff it. Totally unacceptable.
Post # 8
+1. Good for you for having your mom’s back.
Post # 9
YES it is shady! And possibly illegal as well – I don’t know about your area but where I come from personal data protection is a very serious thing.
Post # 10
I’m not against programs like Avon, Beachbody, Tupperware, etc. But I am totally against guilting people into things they don’t want/need & going beyond reasonable means to get to the next level such as signing people up through devious means.
Post # 11
Urgh, so many people I know have completely lost all of their friends AND family because of programs like this. Especially people who are feeling a bit vulnerable and then the program becomes their whole life. Every lunch you have with them turns into a sales pitch and every present from them is a product that they then try to get you to re-purchase.
They are cult-like pyramid schemes.
Good on you for staying strong, this is shady as all shady, the shadiest.
On a wider issue I think that someone needs to have a series discussion with your sister as to how far she is taking this and give her a bit of a reality slap. I don’t see this ending well any time soon by itself.
Disclaimer: Some people participate in these programs really well, but, as with everything, there are those who take it too far. The worst part of it is that the organisation WANTS the people to take it too far and actually encourage that behaviour.
Post # 12
OMG HELL NO! That is so shady and unethical. How dare she do such a thing! I would call her on her shenanigans in front of your Mom….
Post # 14
This is so wrong for MANY reasons.
Since your sister gets an income from this, doesn’t she have to report it on taxes. So if your mom was a seller, shed be liable for taxes/income that she had no idea about?
IMO, it is NEVER ok to mess with someones SSN.
Post # 15
@MrsEdamame: You are right. SHe should never use your mother’s Social or email without asking. That is identity theft.
Post # 16
I’d fill your mom in on this pronto.