MLSP Non-Review: My Response to Their Cease & Desist Letter

By Ian | Negative Reviews

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Today I received a cease and desist letter from Coast Law Group, LLP on behalf of Brian Fanale and My Lead System Pro (Upward Enterprises, LLC). I reviewed MLSP negatively earlier this year, pointing out what I believe consumers deserve to know about the product prior to deciding whether or not to purchase it. Here is a complete copy of the cease and desist letter I received (in accordance with Section 3.1 of MLSP’s Membership Agreement this written document was not marked as confidential so it is within my legal rights to disclose it publicly).

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For obvious reasons, I have to be careful about how I proceed with this post about MLSP. I believe you, as a consumer, have the right to research and evaluate other peoples’ opinions prior to purchasing internet marketing products like MLSP. This company clearly did not approve of the information that I published and accused me of breach of contract, copyright infringement, trade libel, and unfair competition.

I will let you draw your own conclusions about the fact that MLSP used time and money to legally notify me that they would pursue “judicial intervention” if my negative reviews of their products were not removed. 

How Many Active Members Receive Commissions?

The absolute most important thing that you should know about MLSP which I covered in my previous review is the percentage of active members they have that do not receive any commissions from the company. This information is listed within MLSP’s Legal Disclaimer, which you can find a link to at the bottom of their website (in accordance with section 4.1 of MLSP’s Membership Agreement, I do not have the rights to hyper-link to this document myself). Pay very close attention to that figure if you are considering purchasing the product.

Why Is MLSP’s Membership Agreement so Far-Reaching?

Before you join MLSP, you are required to agree to a massive legal document which they’ve labeled their “Membership Agreement”, which you can also find linked at the bottom of their sales page. Among other things, this document explicitly prohibits making any negative statements (phrased “derogatory or otherwise disparaging”) about their company or anyone affiliated with the company. This is disclosed in section 3.7 of MLSP’s Membership Agreement.

Think long and hard about why any company would go to such great lengths to limit your free speech and ability to share any potentially negative experiences with others.

They Aren’t Threatening Affiliates Recommending their Product

There are plenty of MLSP affiliates across the internet that are promoting their product through the use of copyrighted images and content, but these website owners are not receiving cease and desist letters demanding that their content be removed.

Using nothing but logic, think about how this affects the number of positive reviews vs. the number of negative reviews you have access to as a consumer trying to make an informed purchase decision.

What Do You Think?

Is it more likely that I as a one-man-team sought to deceitfully misrepresent and damage MLSP’s reputation for my own benefit? Or is it more likely that I was giving an honest, expert opinion about an internet marketing training product that they disapproved of and, in response, used their far-reaching Membership Agreement, time, and money to dispatch a heavy-handed legal notification to persuade me into erasing the content, statistically increasing the ratio of positive to negative reviews you are capable of finding as a consumer?

I will leave it up to you to ascertain the truth from this situation.

Share Your Experiences with MLSP, Just Don’t Say Anything Negative!

Have you had any experiences with MLSP that you’d like to share? I’d really love to hear them, and I’m sure people researching the product are interested in reading them too.

I’m obligated to “take reasonable steps to prevent others from making derogatory or disparaging statements” (in accordance with Section 3.7 of MLSP’s Membership Agreement), which I have interpreted to mean that I am required to tell you to not say anything negative about the product. I will not, however, filter these comments because I believe that free speech is incredibly important and is protected for a reason. With that being said, I’ve legally covered myself by warning you, now say what you want to say!

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About the Author

I’ve been in internet marketing for over 10 years, and I’ve purchased dozens of illegitimate products for the sole purpose of evaluating them and exposing the truth about these products to anyone who’s thinking about purchasing it. I never let money influence my rating of a product and your success/safety is my absolute highest priority.

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Leave a Comment:

(21) comments

Steve September 22, 2014

I had that same Law firm threaten me with a DMCA Takedown about a year ago. It was over a negative review I wrote. At first, this company had one of their marketing managers reach out to me and ask me if I would be willing to “soften” my review a bit. When I asked what they where offering, I was invited to apply for the same affiliate program that was offered to everyone else.
When I chose to leave my review the way it was, that’s when the threats began. Nothing ever came of it since I was not in the wrong however, this speaks volumes about companies who try to litigate people like us into silence.

    Ian September 23, 2014

    Thank you so much for sharing your experiences, Steve! I’m glad strong-willed people like you are around to speak up and help people discover the whole picture. Thank you for reading and commenting – I really appreciate you letting me know you stopped by!

Evelyn September 22, 2014

I’ve heard of MLSP, but never bothered to buy that stuff. I personally learn through sales that if you can’t get the business on your own. You gotta evaluate what your doing and keep evaluating until you get it right.

No business is perfect. MLSP shouldn’t even ask their members to sign a long extensive legal document. That tells me right there that this company is up to no good. If they had a good business model they wouldn’t even worry about bad reviews. Thanks for sharing, I’m surprised MLSP went there.

    Ian September 23, 2014

    Large companies deal with negative reviews all of the time – how many people are out there saying “Amazon sucks” or “Apple products are a waste of money”, but you’re absolutely right – it’s just the price of doing business in an open and fair marketplace! Thanks for taking the time to read and leave a comment to let me know you stopped by, Evelyn! I really appreciate it.

Goli September 22, 2014

You got to be kidding me, so if for an stupid reason y end up buying that program, and I feel I got robbed, I can’t say how I feel because somewhere in the agreement said I can’t say anything bad about the product?
I don’t know how it is there, but in my country a stupid clause on an agreement can’t be above the law, less a human right.
And yes lawyers work for money, but common, to tell someone it can’t say what he thinks about a product it’s just wrong.
I guess it’s the only way that person can keep his business, by getting lawyers to stop people from talking about his product.

    Ian September 23, 2014

    Thanks for reading and sharing your thoughts on this matter, Goli! MLSP’s broad Membership Agreement is definitely in place to protect them from a lot of stuff other publishers in this industry have to deal with. I greatly appreciate you taking the time to comment and let me know you stopped by! Don’t hesitate to reach out if I can ever help you with anything else in the future.

Deidre Salcido September 23, 2014

I tried this and there was just too much useless stuff…not worth the time or money. Back then, I thought the videos were great but now I am a Wealthy Affiliate Member and Kyle and Carson are the real deal! Wealthy Affiliate is QUALITY! Thank you for creating this informative Post and good luck with that mess!

    Ian September 23, 2014

    I’m very happy to hear that you’re safe and learning at Wealthy Affiliate, Deidre! I’ve seen some of your content and how your site has grown over time – you’re really rocking it over there! Thanks for taking time out of your day to read and comment here, it makes my day to hear from website visitors like you! Take care and let me know if I can help with anything down the road!

virgie September 24, 2014

The law firm will have their work cut out for them trying to control information on the internet.

    Ian September 25, 2014

    I couldn’t agree more – it’s pretty difficult to keep everything that people are saying about your business under control these days with how connected the world is these days. Thanks for stopping by and commenting, Virgie! It’s always nice to know when someone stops by 🙂

Scott Newkirk September 25, 2014

Hi Ian,

It sounds like the owners of MLSP aren’t too confident about their program. Otherwise there wouldn’t be no need for them to make you agree to such nonsense before you join. Isn’t this unconstitutional? It’s like taking away our freedom to speak our mind and warn other people to avoid this product.

Since when was it unlawful to give your opinion on something? I think you are only stating the truth and trying to help other people avoid scams online. I hope that you have been able to come to some kind of agreement with this company and get this matter resolved.

Keep up the excellent job you are doing by trying to keep everyone safe online by exposing scams like MLSP.

    Ian September 25, 2014

    Thanks for stopping by, Scott! There’s definitely a lot of protection in place for free speech, but law firms can present bloated cease and desist letters to try and scare people into compliance with what they want for their clients simply because most people want to avoid a law suit and shudder at the thought of being taken to court. As Steve has mentioned below when he received a similar threat, they’re unlikely to actually follow through (as long as your content is protected by things like free speech, Fair Use as it applies to copyright laws, etc..).

    I appreciate you leaving a comment to let me know you dropped by again – thanks Scott! Let me know if I can help with anything else down the road.

Jack Cao September 26, 2014

Wow! You must have written some really bad review on them for them to take action on you.

Well basically I have gone through MLSP in lengths and I would say that the program do provide a rather comprehensive training for MLM marketers, though the cost of MLSP do not justify the educational value of the program.

Upsells upon upsells within the members area. You will expect to spend a few thousand dollars plus recurring fees if you want to enjoy the entire MLSP experience. Be wary that you will have to spend a lot of time going through the training videos as they are no straight forward and the average video length is approx 90 mins, while the useful information on average only covers 20 mins.

Ian, I guess when your blog is blocking a substantial amount of their sales, they would evidently want to unblock that path to generate more sales. Your experience with MLSP gave me a valuable lesson to not sign anything or agree to any terms and conditions under my own name. LOL!!!

Hope everything works out well for you.

~Jack (BareNakedScam)

    Ian September 29, 2014

    You know, the interesting thing is that my review wasn’t THAT bad. I didn’t refer to the product as a scam or call the publisher a criminal, but apparently they did not approve of the content regardless. Thanks a lot for stopping by and commenting, Jack! I really appreciate it.

Jen February 16, 2015

I joined a MLSP webinar (thankfully for free) on the proviso that it was about general marketing as I am starting out as a writer. As soon as the guy started prattling on about how much money he has made and his posh house and fancy holidays, I really started wondering where his priorities lay. I just feel sorry for the people who aren’t cut out for MLM (because it isn’t for everyone – certainly not me!) but who feel drawn in and part with their money.

    Ian February 16, 2015

    I’m glad you knew it wasn’t for you without ever purchasing, Jen! Thank you for sharing your experiences!

Eileen March 25, 2015

Well, I ended up in MLSP when another company I had just paid my premium to, closed its doors and tossed us to MLSP, — as a favor? ha — (the previous company kept my money – dishonestly, they knew they were closing, but took my next months premium the day before they announced they were done! )
Anyway, seemed like all the MLSP webinars and such were just talk and hype and then selling some other class, or program, or whatever….
needless to say, I left there after getting duped and I am happy learning and earning with WA.

    Ian March 26, 2015

    Thanks very much for stopping by and sharing your experiences, Eileen! Hopefully other people researching the company find them helpful 🙂

Nathaniell March 26, 2015

I’d be interested in finding out if it’s actually legal to write a contract like that. Is that even a thing, that you can make people buying your product sign away their right to express their opinion publicly? I wonder. I’m obviously not going to test it, but it sounds like their puffing smoke and hoping to strong-arm people with legal jargon.

Sorry, not sure if you can publish that comment. Wow. This sure reminds me of when I was living in China…worried about what I say in public not to protect myself, but to protect my friends who might be guilty by association.

    Ian March 26, 2015

    Haha, right?! It’s not only my job to make sure that I don’t slander the company, but it’s also my job to make sure that I control everyone around me to make sure they don’t slander the company either. Definitely doesn’t feel like a policy where Free Speech plays into the equation.

Frank Casebier August 8, 2016

They don’t use PayPal so that cuts it for us.

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