A fraudulent business model, illegal in most places, in which participants are paid to recruit more participants, rather than commissions on sales.

Frequently passed off as Multi-Level Marketing by incorporating sales of an unmarketable product or service into the scheme. In such cases, participants are usually required to maintain a monthly purchase quota to qualify for payments.
Pyramid schemes market to prospective participants while Multi-Level Marketing plans market to prospective consumers. Pyramid schemes fail because scam participants are not a viable market. Most of the participants pay more money to participate than they receive for participating because there aren't enough suckers left to recruit.

Once the suckers figure that out and quit paying into the scheme, those who recruited them start losing money too, and then they quit. The scam shrivels even faster than it grew.
by Downstrike September 9, 2004
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hail xenu: the master of the the ultimate money-grubbing pyramid scheme
by placental soup July 4, 2009
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illegal money-making arrangement where great wealth is promised, usually in a relatively short period of time.
very few people, if anyone, end up making any money, and in fact end up GIVING money in their vain hope of striking it rich.
there are many organizations which are, in reality,legalized versions of the pyramid scheme - Amway is probably the most well known and has been around the longest.
by James January 22, 2004
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Not actually a scheme but an incredible way to make money fast by being involved in a Multi-Level Marketing Business!
You can even be your own boss!
We recruit you and you recruit other people to sell more!
Don't look into it any further!
Our Premium Package starts at 199.99$ a month!
Act fast because this is a limited time offer!
Get involved now!
Guy 1: fuck i love pyramid schemes
Guy 2: ikr! they are like bitcoin and nfts and stocks and bonds and money combined
Guy 1: I am going to invest in my future today!
by FRICKO MODE January 5, 2022
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The best sceme to ever set up once you learn to never underestimate the stupidity of the human majority. Just make sure you don't get caught, though.
I started a pyramid scheme eight years ago, and made $32,761,449 before people found out about it. But by then, I had already retired to the remote jungles of Brazil, where I built my deluxe compound equipped with the latest anti-tracking technology.
by suckers! October 31, 2003
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Any form of business proposal in which one pays a fee to begin, and rises up in a pyramid-like form, being given money by people under the original payer. Usually considered a hoax.

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That's a pyramid scheme! Don't fall for it!
by Falconrath October 24, 2003
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When three bros form a triangle, and partake in anal sex. Make sure you take turns, you don't want to pop out.
I walked in on my three friends doing the pyramid scheme, I wish it was a mlm instead.
by The phantom diddler January 15, 2019
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