|Received:||5/31/2006 9:30:36 AM|
|Subject:||Business Opportunity Rule|
|Title:||Notice of Proposed Rulemaking|
|CFR Citation:||16 CFR Part 437|
Comments:Gary Williams GLW Company May 31, 2006 Federal Trade Commission/Office of the Secretary, Room H-135 (Annex W) Re: Business Opportunity Rule, R511993 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20580 RE: Business Opportunity Rule, R511993 Dear Sir or Madam: I am writing this letter because I am concerned about the proposed Business Opportunity Rule R511993. I believe that in its present form, it could prevent me from continuing as a [DIRECT SELLING COMPANY] and/or DISTRIBUTOR. I understand that part of the FTC’s responsibilities is to protect the public from “unfair and deceptive acts or practices,” but some of the sections in the proposed rule will make it very difficult if not impossible for me to sell products as an Independent Marketer. This is especially true since most of the Independent Marketers are doing business on a part-time basis, out of our homes. One of the most confusing and burdensome sections of the proposed rule is the seven day waiting period to enroll new Customers and DISTRIBUTORS. Most of the companies that I represent, their sales kit only costs less than $250. People buy TVs, cars, and other items that cost much more than that and they do not have to wait seven-days. This waiting period gives the impression that there might be something wrong with the plan. I also think this seven-day waiting period is unnecessary, because most of these companies already has a 90% buyback policy for all products including sales kits purchased by a salesperson within the last twelve months. Under this waiting period requirement, I will need to keep very detailed records when I first speak to someone about my product or service and will then have to send in many reports to the company's headquarters. As Independent Marketers (part-time) we depend heavily upon the companies in the are or record keeping. The proposed rule also calls for the release of any information regarding lawsuits involving misrepresentation, or unfair or deceptive practices. It does not matter if the company was found innocent. Today, anyone or any company can be sued for almost anything. It does not make sense to me that I would have to disclose these lawsuits unless my company is found guilty. Otherwise, the company and I are put at an unfair advantage even though the company has done nothing wrong. Finally, the proposed rule requires the disclosure of a minimum of 10 prior purchasers nearest to the prospective purchaser. I am glad to provide references, but in this day of identity theft, I am very uncomfortable giving out the personal information of individuals (without their approval) to strangers. Also, giving away this information could damage the business relationship of the references who may be involved in other companies or businesses including those of competitors. In order to get the list of the 10 prior purchasers, I will need to send the address of the prospective purchaser to the company's headquarters and then wait for the list. I also think the following sentence required by the proposed rule will prevent many people from wanting to sign up as a salesperson “If you buy a business opportunity from the seller, your contact information can be disclosed in the future to other buyers.” People are very concerned about their privacy and identity theft. They will be reluctant to share their personal information with individuals they may have never met. I have been a [DIRECT SELLING COMPANY] and/or DISTRIBUTOR, for more than 35years. Originally, I became a Distributor of direct-sales type products because I liked them and wanted to earn some additional money. Now my family depends on this extra income to supplement our budget. I appreciate the work of the FTC to protect consumers, but I believe this proposed new rule has many unintended consequences and that there are less burdensome alternatives .