|Received:||7/14/2006 7:56:44 AM|
|Subject:||Business Opportunity Rule|
|Title:||Notice of Proposed Rulemaking|
|CFR Citation:||16 CFR Part 437|
Comments:I am writing this letter because I am concerned about the proposed Business Opportunity Rule R511993. Although I applaud your efforts to regulate some fraudulent companies, this rule will hurt those companies who are operating ethically and legally while doing little to clearly address the problems in the industry. I have been a Market America distributor for 3 years. Although it is not my primary source of income, I have come to depend on my Market America commissions to supplement my income. I am concerned with the part of the rule that says we must disclose information on 10 references close by. In Market America, this is easy to do and it is actually common practice to make sure anyone evaluating our business as the opportunity to meet other distributors and ask them questions. However, it is our CHOICE to do this. You are taking away our choice and freedom to run our business in the best and most ethical way we can. You would never require a traditional business to disclose such information before doing business with an individual. We are only looking for the same consideration. In addition to this, the rule requires release of any information regarding lawsuits. It struck me as very absurdly funny to think if this requirement pertained to traditional business as well. Could you imagine that Microsoft had to disclose any lawsuits they were involved with to any company or individual who was going to do business with them? Or, how about this one....how about if every person working for the government had to disclose any lawsuit they were involved with? We all know that in our society today, being involved in a lawsuit is no indication of guilt or wrongdoing. In disclosing this information, there is a presumption of guilt that is just a horrid contrast to our basic right to be presumed innocent! In addition to this, with the convenience of the internet, we all have access to this information through a click of a button. When I was deciding whether to become involved with Market America, I did numerous searches to find information on the company. I found ample enough information on any past lawsuits to help me make an educated decision! Again, I do appreciate your efforts to protect consumers and I do readily admit that there are direct sales companies who are unethical and hurting the public with their practices. However, right now, I am having a very difficult time with a jewelry store. They did not deliver the service they claimed they would and I can't get a refund. Maybe we should propose a rule that would get rid of those pesky jewelry store frauds!