Christian Internet Marketing: Selling Greed Using Jesus

jesus-bannerI came across this banner for bethsmoney.com (will not reward the site with a hyperlink) that claims a Christian mom earns $5,000 working at home. When a person uses religion to sell an Internet biz opp, the warning bells start to go off.

The website doesn’t pass the smell test, starting with what appears to be  stock photo of “Beth” and an elderly lady. Here’s a disclaimer in white text on a gray background at the bottom of the sales page:

“This page and associated pages on this site are an advertisement. All persons mentioned on this blog are fictional examples of people who used the promoted products and is for demonstration purposes only. The statements contained herein come from many different people and are not necessarily being made about the specific products discussed.”

Fictional people and the statements might not even be about the specific products discussed in the sales page. Incredible.

The site is pitching googleprofitsinsider.com, which according to the fine print in white text in a gray background at the bottom of the page includes:

“The initial shipping and handling charge of $1.98 S&H which includes fourteen (14) days worth of access to the online directories and training. After 14 days, you will be charged MONTHLY of $47.50”

The screen capture of a Google check is in the amount of $868.55, which the fictional Beth Fisher claims is for one week of work. No evidence of $5K per month earnings from Google. And, let’s assume the check is an AdSense commission. Want to bet the expenses incurred ate up a nice chunk of “Beth’s” commission. Of course, because Beth doesn’t exist, the payee name on the check has been whited out.

Who owns the domains involved? That’s a good question. The “Christian” owner has them registered by proxy so the WHOIS doesn’t reveal identity.

It gets better. This link shows that bethsmoney.com was being used to pike government grants less than six months ago. The photos show a U.S. Treasury Check (tax refund?) and a check that Beth is claiming is a government grant check that just happens to be the same as a Google check with the payor’s name blurred out.

If you want to apply religious and moral principles to your business, by all means do so.

However, the deceptive and fraudulent tactics engaged in by people who own websites like bethsmoney.com are clearly unacceptable. The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) should make an example of them.

Author Mike Young, Esq.

Mike Young has been practicing business and technology law since 1994 and is an angel investor in startups. He's been an entrepreneur since 1988. To get legal help from Attorney Young, click here now or call 214-546-4247 to schedule a phone consultation.

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