Business: Crime
Multilevel Marketing Piracy   (+3, -6)  [vote for, against]
Sell memberships in a piracy support system

It's pretty basic.

I put in a dollar. You put in a dollar. We do the usual multilevel marketing thing and convince other people to put in their dollars.

The money is used to acquire and support a pirate vessel and crew in the current hot spot those romantic businessmen are operating in.

When they trade in their captured vessel for the ransom, all the investors divide up 25% of the ransom price, factored by some arcane formula that favors those who bought in earlier. The pirates divvy up the remaining 75% in the usual manner.

On a more serious note, I heard an interview with a negotiator for one of the shipping companies on the radio yesterday.

He said that one of the requirements for paying the ransom was that the pirates had to have all the details sorted out in advance which of their band were going to get how much of the money, in an effort to prevent things getting chaotic at the last moment.
-- normzone, Apr 14 2009

Wikipedia: Privateers
Those who don't know history are condemned to post it as an idea on the halfbakery? [jutta, Apr 14 2009]

The origins of MLM http://www.firstcla...the-history-of-mlm/
( as pitched by an MLM supporting organization, it appears ) [normzone, Apr 14 2009]

I guess we could do it like Mary Kay - capture enough vessels and we'll give you a pink pirate ship http://farm4.static...9348_dabef42515.jpg
[normzone, Apr 14 2009]

Yeoman duty
[normzone, Apr 16 2009]

Piracy stock exchange http://www.reuters....1Z920091201?sp=true
From Bruce Sterling's blog: "Another breakthrough in black globalization, and this one is straight out of Margaret Thatcher. A real ownership society, for Somalians. I wonder if narcotics and suicide bombings could be privatized in this way" [normzone, Dec 03 2009]

The aroma of baking http://www.nybooks....irates-are-winning/
"...because of the extended network of relatives and clansmen, “it’s not like three people split a million bucks. It’s more like three hundred.” [normzone, Sep 24 2010]

Aaaaar! Our Egyptian cousins with their fancy Pyramid Schemes!
High Seas Borrowing Commission?
Ribald Blagging Sceme?
-- gnomethang, Apr 14 2009

I'm not sure why you bring MLM into this. How exactly the investment is achieved seems pretty arbitrary - in the end, there's money that pays for privateers/pirates (they're called "privateers" if they're ours), and the return on investment stems from their actions, not from the pyramid growth.

If you remove the multilevel marketing reference and throw in the home country's explicit permission to raid other countries' ships, this is pretty much how privateers worked for about three centuries - investors on land often paid to equip their ships, and shared in the earnings.
-- jutta, Apr 14 2009

Being unable to fund this idea at the appropriate level by myself, I would require partners.

And having been only moments ago solicited to participate in an MLM / online advertising sales operation, it seemed a logical extension to use the model to not only gain investor's support but also a portion of their investment as part of my return.
-- normzone, Apr 14 2009

"Nice eye patch matey. What did it cost yer?"

"Oh, an arm and a leg."

"Arr. Blast."
-- reensure, Apr 15 2009

[jutta] it is in these times of credit crunch that marginal industries like porn and pirating/privateering suffer. I think [norm...] is using the benefits of recession resistant financing, a la MLM, to rescue, for one, pirates. Next, I presume, there will be a "Branch 25" line in the producer's credits in an exotic natured film.

And "Branch 27" mortgage loans. Oh wait, that has been done before...
-- 4whom, Apr 15 2009

I, for one, welcome our new MLM Overlords.
-- 4whom, Apr 15 2009

Hey, I see in the news our pirates did good. When are they going to pay us?

oh, right - they're pirates.
-- bungston, Apr 15 2009

Yeah, the role of onsite person would be an interesting one. But if we enlisted the aid of enough members, we could hire a specialist.

Hell, with enough potential for ROI I would be willing to do yeoman duty.
-- normzone, Apr 16 2009

Funny this topic should come up....I got an e-mail from a Nigerian pirate the other day asking me to invest in his operation. All I needed to do was give him my bank account details so he could tranfser some money that he wanted me to hold... Seriously though, I suspect this sort of funding actually does go on in the shadowy world behind priacy.
-- Hairy Sock, Apr 17 2009

Interesting - [Hairy Sock] has a history of annotations but has never posted an idea.

Priacy - a amalgamation of privacy, piracy, and priapism. Treatments are available but legislation and education seem to be most effective.
-- normzone, Sep 07 2017

// a amalgamation //

Sp. "an amalgamation"

// privacy, piracy, and priapism //

"The ACLU Stole My Erection" ... ?
-- 8th of 7, Sep 07 2017

random, halfbakery