And here's a letter from a listener who heard our recent show, A Billion-Dollar Bet Against Weight-Loss Shakes.
Hi Planet Money,
I am constantly amazed by the things I learn from your show, but for the first time one of the subjects hit home more directly than I'd expected. I have been using Herbalife products for about a year and I had NO IDEA that it could be a Ponzi scheme.
I am just a regular customer. I have a distributor in California who I met in an online knitting forum. We both also play roller derby. Herbalife is pretty big in the roller derby community because they help sponsor a fitness/nutrition challenge (called Derbalife). The Herbalife products are not at all required for the challenge, but of course they are glad to educate us about them if we want to try them out.
So, if you are wondering who the Herbalife customers are — a bunch of them are rollergirls. The shakes are great and if the company goes under because of this short-selling nonsense then I am totally going to go knock that guy down.