Send In The Clones… Ethically?

By | March 21, 2007

UPDATE: The products in this article are now outdated, and I do not necessarily recommend them any longer. Additionally, I have removed some of the links from this article. To get the most up-to-date information and recommendations, please join my free newsletter.

Edition #118 – 3/21/2007

In my review of X-ray Domination, I mentioned that a purported “clone” of the product was released mere days before its launch.

I also reported that I found the knock-off to be inferior quality to the X-ray product, and that the creator of the knock-off was marketing it in an unethical manner.

This prompted some discussion in the comments, as well as ongoing email communication between myself and the creators of both programs.

I was able to put them directly in touch with each other, and it seems that they have worked things out well enough to avoid any potential legal action. That’s a good thing.

I think this is a good time to talk about “cloning” products. Whenever the topic comes up, there are always a lot of questions about it, so I know it’s on a lot of people’s minds.

I believe I’m also a good person to write on the subject because I’ve been on both sides of the coin; I’ve copied other people’s ideas, and I’ve had other people copy my ideas.

Before we dig into the issue, I want to take just a moment to give a little more info about the X-ray clone/competitor, because a lot of readers have been asking me about it. And now that X-ray Domination is closed, even more interest has been raised about a possible alternative.

The product in question is called Xtreme Conversions, and it was created by Amir Darwish, a programmer from Jordan.

First of all, after further review I do stick by my original review and I feel that X-ray Domination is a better product. For those who were quick enough to get a copy of X-ray Domination, I say congratulations and I think you’ll be happy with the product and the training material. Or if you’re on their waiting list and they offer to sell another copy, by all means go for it 🙂

For those who did not grab a copy of X-ray Domination or just can’t afford it, I think it might be worth looking into Xtreme Conversions as an alternative.

I would not be giving this quasi-recommendation, except for the fact that Amir has been very cooperative, and seems that he will continue to develop his product to make it better.

Now let’s talk about this whole product cloning thing. It’s a subject worth investigating, because there is potentially a lot of money to be made from it.

It’s also a subject sure to stir up controversy, because people have strong feelings about it. Some people are vehemently opposed to any form of it, because they have been burned in the past. Others see it as a no-brainer opportunity to capitalize on anything new.

Part of the problem is that there are misconceptions about what’s legal and what’s ethical.

In the offline world, it’s everywhere, and it takes many different forms.

On the one extreme, we’ve got counterfeit products that are generally manufactured and sold outside of the US. Most of us have probably seen or heard about fake Rolex watches, Gucci bags, and all the other classic rip-offs.

Today those classic brand names have been joined by countless other fake consumer products. Basically, if we can build it– so can they.

Often targeted are the high end products that can be easily replicated to look, but not necessarily perform, like the original.

An example might be high end audio systems, painstakingly manufactured to mimic the real ones, but containing vastly inferior components inside.

Another counterfeit market that has received some attention lately is car parts. You wouldn’t want your mechanic to put an inferior look-alike part into your car that might break down while you’re on the road.

Counterfeits are illegal in the US, and unethical by the standards of most people, especially in the western world. For one thing, they are literally stealing from the real companies, whose brand names they’re copying or imitating. One of the main problems is that applicable laws are either nonexistent or unenforceable in some of the countries where counterfeiting takes place.

The online world is increasingly becoming a haven for counterfeiters to hawk their goods. Instead of hounding tourists in a flea market, all they have to do is start up a website or get an eBay account.

Likewise, cloned digital products and software have become a huge market. Fortunately for us internet marketers, they’ve left the small businesses alone for the most part, focusing mainly on the mass-market products like Microsoft Windows and Adobe PhotoShop.

In our market, the effects could be disastrous. In the case of ebooks, and simple software programs, reverse engineering and/or cloning would not even be necessary. The thief could simply buy one copy of the product and resell the EXACT same digital file thousands of times over, using your brand name or their own.

OK, so that’s what I would call the “dark side”– now let’s move into a bit more of a “gray” area…

For as many products are counterfeited, I would guess there are as many or even more “legitimate” knock-offs.

These are the products that do not try to deceive their buyers into thinking it’s a brand name product. They are generally marketed under a brand name of their own.

Knock-offs are generally thought of as being inferior imitations of other products, but that’s not always the case. I can think of some cases where the knock-off is better quality than the original.

Since manufacturing costs may be drastically less for the company that is creating the knock-off, they might be able to create an equal or superior quality product for a lower price.

This might be seen in the automotive industry, which we previously mentioned. While we wouldn’t want to get ripped off by buying a cheaply manufactured engine part, most of us would be happy to save $100 buying a “cloned” part if we knew it was equal quality as the original manufacturer.

It’s the same reason that many of us buy the “generic” products at the grocery store. It’s essentially the same thing, but you’re paying less because it doesn’t have the brand name.

In the grocery store, we don’t usually view products as being “knock-offs” of each other, because we’re very accustomed to seeing the competition. Many of them even draw direct comparisons to their more expensive competitors.

In our house I might see a medicine that says, “compare to the active ingredients of Tylenol,” or a shampoo bottle that says, “works as good as Paul Mitchell.”

While those kinds of comparisons ARE legal when done right, it’s important to keep in mind that companies often sue each other too, and if you’re a small business owner it may be best to avoid potential legal issues.

OK, so that’s sort of a grim look at product-cloning– now let’s look at the benefits, and why you might want to consider getting involved in it for your own business.

First, it’s profitable when done right. If someone launches a product and makes $1 million with no competition, you might be able to weasel in and make a couple hundred thousand just by riding the wake that the original marketer already created for you.

If it’s something new, the first person to launch it already did most of the hard work for you. They got the word out about the product, and educated people about what it is.

Now when you launch yours, you don’t have to focus so much on educating the consumers. You can just state what it is, and sell it at a lower price.

It is this type of competition that often IMPROVES the quality of products in our marketplace, and spurs on new technology.

While it doesn’t sound as “sexy” as being an INVENTOR, being an INNOVATOR is probably more realistic for most people. If you’ve struggled with trying to come up with something new and unique, maybe it’s time that you look at OLD things from a new angle.

I like to think of myself as an “idea guy”, but the truth is that most of my ideas are hardly original. They’re just improvements upon other people’s ideas.

Our society loves innovators, and that’s why a good innovator can knock-off any product without receiving much criticism. After all, if they’ve done something to improve it, they’ve done society a favor, right?

Our government loves innovators too, and that’s why they restrict the ability to form monopolies, protect our right to compete, and even protect our right to reverse engineer products.

As you would see in the Wikipedia article about reverse engineering, the practice of reverse engineering has taken an important place in our modern scientific process. In fact, federal law expressly permits reverse engineering of virtually anything– regardless of the wishes of the creator of the product that is being reverse engineered.

I’m not a lawyer, so don’t quote me on it, or start reverse engineering your competitor’s product before consulting someone who “really” knows what they’re talking about. The law does seem to be tailored toward “fair use” of material, and not designed to help you create knock offs.

The law also definitely protects patented inventions, and patents may provide protection from reverse engineering. But even then, it can not prohibit someone from developing competing products as long as those products do not infringe on the patent.

In some industries, it is virtually impossible to compete without infringing on the patent (like if it’s a specific molecule combination). But in our internet marketing business, it seems like it is possible to legally compete with almost anything.

So how should you go about cloning a product?

If you are reverse engineering anything, do it in the most ethical way possible. Your product should not contain ANY source code from the original product.

In most cases (since we’re not dealing with complex nuclear reactors and such), true reverse engineering is NOT even necessary.

For example, when I wanted to create a program similar to Butterfly Marketing, I didn’t give my programmer a copy of it. I simply told him the features I wanted, and he created it without ever having seen the source code of the other program.

Most programs in our industry are simple enough that you can take that approach. You have to be careful if you’re outsourcing it though. For example, you might go onto Elance or RentACoder and post a new project saying, “I need you to create a clone of XYZ program”. Depending on what country the coder is from and/or their personal standards, they might not have the same ethics as you.

You need to be very explicit in your instructions of not copying any code, and diligent in verifying that they indeed created all original code.

When someone created a knock-off of Joel Comm’s AdSense templates, they took the wrong approach. Instead of simply telling his programmers to create new templates, he gave them a copy of our product. The end result was that his product contained much code directly from ours.

He also took the wrong approach in his initial marketing efforts of the product. Instead of marketing it as a totally new product, he gave it a very similar name, and put a video of Joel on the page. While I don’t know of the specific legality of the situation, I’d have to say it was a grey area at best. It was sort of like the copper-top “Duravel” batteries made to look like Duracell but with one letter changed (look here for funny pictures of knock-offs).

This is part of the reason I was alarmed when I first saw Amir’s Xtreme Conversions product. He was drawing several direct comparisons to X-ray Domination, and saying his product did the “exact” same thing.

My assumption is that since X-ray hadn’t even launched yet, his knowledge of the X-ray product indicates that he gained that information as a beta tester. To be a beta tester for a product, and then to launch your own product in an effort to undercut that product BEFORE its launch, seems highly unethical to me.

However, in further talks with Amir, it seems that he did not reverse engineer X-ray, but rather created most of his product before learning about X-ray. Nevertheless, he is playing with fire by undercutting their launch.

This should also serve as a warning for anyone launching their own products. Do NOT release more information about the product than necessary, and if you have to release any copies of the product before launch, be VERY CAREFUL who you’re giving it to.

In the offline world, companies have to worry about the knock-offs showing up and stealing their profits after the first year or so of business. In the online world, it has now become possible for a knock-off to be released BEFORE the original.

All a potential cloner would need to get their hands on is a list of features or perhaps a sales letter. Since digital products can be created so quickly, the cloner could potentially have an overseas team of programmers create the product overnight and launch it the next day.

When I say that you SHOULD innovate, and create “clones” to compete with existing products, I’m NOT talking about this sort of cut-throat guerilla tactic where you try to beat your competitor to their own launch.

While it may be legal, it’s not going to help you make any friends. Your reputation is more important than the money, and that’s a truth that I have to remind myself of daily (and sometimes my wife or friends like Joel have to remind me, lol).

With the potential to make insane money in this business, you’re at risk no matter how dedicated you are to your moral standards– no one is immune to the temptation of valuing money over their own reputation (which is why we need good friends to keep us in check).

In conclusion, here is a summary of guidelines I would suggest adhering to if you decide to clone a product–

  • Look for something that is making a LOT of money. Why clone it if it’s not?
  • Check for patents at
  • If possible, don’t reverse engineer it. Create all new code.
  • Be extra wary if you outsource it.
  • If you want to be in business long-term, make your product BETTER than the original.
  • Try to be fast so you can be the first cloner, it seems like the first clones make more money than subsequent ones.
  • Avoid making mention or direct comparisons to the competitor. While it may be legal, it will often cause headaches.

    On a totally unrelated issue, I wrote some papers about human cloning and genetic engineering in high school and college. Maybe I’ll figure out how to tie those into my newsletter some day 😉

    As always, you are encouraged to leave your comments here in the blog.

    Have a great day!

  • 27 thoughts on “Send In The Clones… Ethically?

    1. Rosie Cottis

      I know I would freak if somebody cloned my work. But when I am calm, I think competition (if it is competition, and not counterfeiting) is a good thing. It makes people see that the products are popular and valuable, gets the word out wider, and increases the customer base. You could even end up with more sales of the expensive original product than you would have had if there was no clone.

    2. Robert

      Hi Eric

      Thanks for all of your reviews. Based on your recommendation I purchased the X-ray Domination. It is interesting to note that the actual software was free. The way it works out people are paying for the training program that comes with the purchase of the system. I have seen many reports from other beta testers and the product has been getting rave reviews.

      As I have a curious mind I am also thinking about purchasing a copy of Amir’s product. Just so I can do a review of both products for myself.



    3. Steve McKay

      I don’t know. You write very well, and I like what I hear for the most part. I am a Wall Street guy, and I don’t need to make money this way, although I’m very into the internet, and internet marketing, as we may invest in, or begin our own venture creation along these lines.

      That said, I just have a strange feeling that “Amir” is really The Rich Jerk, (just a shell to sell what he can in addition to his original launch). I don’t know. I won’t make claims that I have no proof of, but the more I read about this aspect of internet marketing, the more I think it’s a bunch of educated, nicely dressed “snake oil salesman”

      Tell me if I’m wrong.

    4. A Kettelhut

      While I am not at a point in my business to be brazen enough to clone a product, this advise is still valuable. I have been smited a couple of times due to ill advice without knowing the consequences. In searching for existing products that might duplicate my own ideas, I strive to improve on what competitors offer. It’s good to keep up with gotchas, I’d like to see more of this info…


      A Kettelhut

    5. Kenneth Washington

      Hi Eric,

      Normally I agree with your commentary on various products, but I believe you’re wrong about Xtreme Conversions. Yes, I did purchase it yesterday and am currently using it now. I’m very pleased with it. I participate heavily in the forme helping others learn how to use the script properly. The main reason why people purchased RJ’s X-Ray Domination for $1,497 is the for the script that offers the same basic features that Xtreme Conversions does for 1/10 the price. It works well for me and for once I’m glad I didn’t react to the flood of promos encouraging me to buy RJ’s product. Have you seen Amir’s product and can you comment on the differences between the two in regards to features.

    6. Eric Post author

      Thanks for the comments so far…

      Steve- Amir is definitely not RJ 😉 I know RJ personally

      Kenneth- I’m glad Xtreme is working for you, but I would disagree on the script being the “main” reason to purchase X-ray. I think the massive training package is at least equal to the script in terms of total value in the product…

    7. Walter Gavurnik

      Very nice article Eric and thank you!
      The timing is great for me since I have a couple of programs I created
      only to find someone marketing something identical. For that reason they
      have not been released. My desire to butt heads with someone like
      Mike Filsaime is not that great. 😉 Although not really true clones, they
      are just the same ideas at the same time and I pulled the trigger too late.

      Any way, this article taught me to go ahead and release MY product. It
      also will keep me from comparing my product to others on the market
      with similar capabilities. (Some better, some not)

      Thanks again my friend.
      Walter Gavurnik

    8. Richard Hill

      Hi Eric,

      First of all, let me say that your blog is a breath of fresh air in a hype-filled room! Your comments are right on and always refreshing to read.

      And now for my two cents worth. It’s relatively hard to counterfeit software, though it can be relatively easy to perform the same functions in a somewhat similar manner. I see nothing wrong with that, if it is marketed under it’s own name. But using a very similar name and ad text is just plain wrong, and also stupid.

      The auto shows are very well attended each year, largely by members of the auto industry, who are mostly there to check out the competition. And, of course, the best new features quickly get incorporated into the next year’s model of lots of other car maker’s lines. How long did it take GPS to become almost part of the standard equipment in so many cars? That certainly isn’t cloning or counterfeiting.

      It’s called competition.

      And, usually, the “newer” version of the product, including software, is often better than the “original” simply because a whole set of new ideas has had time to become a part of the new offering.

      There are a number of desktop security softwares around, but I chose to write another one with a couple of different twists. The fact that all use one of several public encryption algorithms does not make any of them somehow cloned or counterfeited. Mine’s called StarCrypt and its on my website.

      I also have an infomercial coming out for a patent pending system that runs off a flash drive. I got the idea from watching Katrina victims search their destroyed homes for papers, pictures, etc. No, I’m not gonna tout it here either. If interested you can find it on my website, too. What was that URL anyway?

      My point is that I started the patent process as a protection and also a marketing ploy. It looks good to say “patent pending.” Is it truly a new invention? Well, all I can say is that no one has done it before, but if it sells as I expect it to once the infomercial starts in a couple of months, it will be copied, knocked off, counterfeited, etc. I fully expect that.

      FYI, you can get a “patent pending” tag for your whatever very easily yourself. It is not hard, nor expensive. And you do NOT need a patent attorney at that stage, though you must use one later, if you pursue the patent.

      The patent pending is good for one year after you receive it, so use that year well and go for the gold!

      Lastly, to end this long-winded commentary, I shall say that the infomercial process is one verrrrrrryyy loooonnnng process that I would think very long hard about doing again. It’s second mortgage time with no guarantees. Take care. (Ask me if it was worth it in 6 months!)

      Take care,

      Richard Hill

    9. Gene

      Hi Eric,
      I seem to recall sometime ago, in college, that an “idea” is not patentable. Henry Ford builds an automobile in a plant does not stop some other group from also building an automobile in a plant. Getting Ford’s plans and copying what he has done is somewhat different, and illegal.

      RJ attempted to persuade a group of people to give him a fairly large sum of money for an apparently very good product. These people were most heavily involved in making huge profits on the internet by exploiting various ideas and techniques, and restraining their distribution to the public, hence the “500 & out” units. Hard to understand why RJ wanted this, he is a brilliant marketer. From what I have seen, One of the best.

      Amir is trying to market a product he has developed which happens to be addressed toward solving the same problem Google had created for enterprising people on the net. The fact is that RJ agreed that Amir did not pirate anything and could make RJ satisfied that a 4 line disclaimer prevented damage. Another example of good people working on a problem which
      was widely recognised.

      Prediction?, the subject software will make a great deal of money for each, but will not enable a chosen few to run everyone else out of business. Besides “PAPA Google” will probably come up with something to move the chairs again soon enough.

      Free Enterprise Triumps One Again!

    10. Judy Andrews

      Hello Eric,
      I have been on Paul Kleinmeulman list for along time and read his blog today. He posted about one of his mentoring students and That was Amir. I trust Paul and I’m sure he would not back people that he doesn’t believe in. I can not see him being involved with unethical people. I have purchased many of his products in the past.

      I’m sorry I didn’t mean for this to be an ad for Amir or Paul. I have enjoyed reading your blog. Take care and have a great week everyone.


    11. Josh

      Xtreme Conversions is good ! Yes, I would like to have look at featurewise comparision. I think all so called BIG MARKETERS support each other and don’t allow new creative people to break in. On what basis you’re calling Amir’s product inferior?

    12. Kenneth Washington

      Yes Eric the training materials being offered with X-Ray Domination are pretty good, but I also came across another training package which offered even better quality in training material for only $697. It’s called Pay-Per-Click Formula and it’s a complete Home Study course featuring DVDs, CDs and manuals. Pretty thoroughl and I’m looking forward to receiving my package in the mail.

      So lets see… I spent $127 on Xtreme Conversions and $717 (Includes $20 s/h) on PPC Formula. All together about $844. Yes, that’s still a great deal of money, but at least I saved over $650 for if I was to purchase the same material being offered in RJ’s package.

      Truthfully, the way RJ talks to his customers turned me off from buying his package also. A little kindness goes a long way. Thanks again Eric for your input.

    13. Gary Martin

      Well considering Xray is a $1497 limited edition product, its no wonder others would develop something cheaper. For those who missed out and those who couldn’t afford it.
      Obviously copying a product, and the salesletter would be illegal.
      However, producing a product which has the same features, and is even better than the original, and using a different name. Well thats as mentioned above, is innovation.


    14. Fermin


      Great article! As I was reading it I was already formulating my response to it. But as I kept readking you kept covering everything I was going to counter with. In the end, you covered the topic very well. There isn’t much that I can ad to it, except it is alwasy better for the government to err on the side of the people when it comes to fair use and patents, copyrights, etc.



    15. George

      Hi Eric,
      The discussion on cloning / copying brought to mind a couple of stories I heard about CDs that were released in the US, the production costs aprox $2.50 retail $15. It was discovered that copies were being made in Asia, production costs $1 and retailed at $5. The US company
      tried to have the counterfeiters shut down, no luck. So the US company bought counterfeit goods and resold them on the the market at the original retail price of $15. The counterfeiters did not harm the US company, they actually helped the US company to make more profits.
      A similar story about exist about a well known European watchmaker who was being
      plagued by counterfeiters in Europe. They set up their own counterfeit workshop and undercut the genuine (ha ha) counterfeiter prices and drove most of them out of business and were able to control the market and price.
      The moral may be, if you cannot beat them join them. I must say I am surprised that anyone in the IM business is concerned about copying / cloning etc. The whole IM business is based on copying and cloning. Take PLR, this is based on rebranding and passing it off as your own. Setting up content on websites from other sources. I believe their is very little genuine
      content being produced by the so called gurus. I think I have said enough, where is that copy?


    16. Franck Silvestre

      I think that this is only competition. Since he didn’t copy the original product, what is the problem?

      For example, in the IM niche, last month I bought a book from someone, and the marketer released the exact same techniques I use to get top rankings in SEs.

      If I write a book, it would be almost the same!

    17. Just Me

      Umm… where are the “Eric’s TIPS ” that I used to look forward to ????

      The emails and excellent TIPS were the reason I subscribed to Eric’s Tips.

      But as of late the Eric’s Tips seem to bear a frightening resemblance to mini, hype “pre-launch” emails that then direct me to an affiliate sales letter. Granted, in your case the sales letters are at least disguised as blog posts, but they are sales letters just the same.

      And this “blog post” heading is on…. what was it again?? Oh yes, right ….. Ethics. 😉

      “Big ol’ orderuh Eric’s TIPS please…with a tiny side of hype gravy…thanks…..keep the change.”

      Well now I can’t just leave after having given you a hard time – at least not without adding my thoughts on this “cloning – ethical” topic, so here I go…………

      I enjoyed reading your post and found it interesting. Here are the ramblings I found bumping around in my head after I finished:

      As far as what is ethical behavior and what is not ethical behavior, I would hope most people would trust and rely on their own ethical compasses to sift through and filter out the truly serious “wrong-doings”, “emergencies” and “disasters” that are happening in the world as we speak. I would also hope that they would recognize that the issue of “software imitation” is not one of them.

      And I say imitation because if it were a true clone then it would be in copyright violation and I am sure the copyright holder of the original software would in that case take legal action.

      Producing inanimate cloned “widgets” is absolutely ethical. They are purchased, created, used and relied upon by each and every one of us every single day. From cheeseburgers to cars to the keyboard I am typing on right now, each is simply a variation – an imitation of the original. It’s natural to want to try to impersonate or copy something we are fond of. “Biggest Sign of Flattery” I believe they say.

      We all copy…. we all imitate…. some people call it learning or progression….. honestly I can’t believe that this is even a worthy “ethical” question to begin with. “Cloning”, isn’t stealing. It’s imitation – impression – impersonation – variation – interpretation…. and yes even copying. But only Stealing is stealing.

      If I can buy an imitation of any high priced product and that imitation does the same thing for a lot less money, and is similar in quality… well of course I’m going to buy it! As a responsible, intelligent consumer I would most definitely buy it….. as soon as….


      I checked to make sure that the reason for the MUCH lower price had NOTHING to do with unfair work conditions, sweat shops, child labor etc. If they came out clean – then you betcha I’d order.

      THIS is when we need to check our ethical compasses. Cloning software? Gimme a flippin break!

      (Oh and btw…. if the cost difference were really extreme, I may even send an email to the higher priced company asking how it was that they came to the conclusion that “price gouging” was ethical, acceptable or for that matter financially wise – and finally I would permanently relieve them of their duties of “ever having to rip me off in the future” and never knowingly frequent their business again.)

      That’s all I have to add about this blog post

      Now can we get back to the Tips part of Eric’s Tips please……… hold the gravy! 🙂

    18. Akili Kumasi

      Thanks Eric, good review. A wife and close friends are good to have around! I look forward to reading more. As a “newbie” this is eye-opening. Seems there is a great deal of money to be made and it can be done without compromising. Think I’ll stick around.

    19. Sam Meilach

      Same thing here with this Xtreme Conversion…why would I buy something like this when I can do the same thing (maybe even better) with an Excel spreadsheet. There doesn’t appear to be any automation in this software. He says: “Log into your clickbank, account get the tracking ids and load them into Xtreme Conversions. ” Why couldn’t I just load it to my Excel spreadsheet instead? Also, the Landing Page System (mentioned by Eric a while back), handles transporting the original keyword from Google–>YourLandingPage–>Clickbank so you will know if it converted.

    20. Eric Post author

      Just Me- first of all if you’re going to criticize publicly you should at least own up to it 😉 I’ll try to keep more tips coming, but how is this not a tip? Cloning and/or innovating is a technique I have used on multiple occasions to generate tens of thousands of dollars… I don’t see many of my subscribers out there cloning products already, so it seemed to me like it would be an applicable topic. Let me know what kinds of things you want me to write about. Perhaps I’ll do a survey soon…

    21. Sharon Dequer

      I’m looking at this issue as a consumer. It is very frustrating and wasteful of MY money when I buy a well-marketed product and discover that it is a rebranded version of something I ‘d already purchased elsewhere. This has happened to me several times with a particular individual. Then when I immediately ask for a refund, my request is ignored–no doubt it’s assumed I am one of those rip-off people. Cloning and rebranding may not be the same thing, but they are close enough and the effect is the same.

    22. Walter Gavurnik

      Well Eric
      It would appear you have hit another great post.
      Having a continuous dialogue is great for blog traffic!
      After reading the posts since mine, I just HAD to add another.

      While I agree with mostly all of Just-Me’s post, there are a few things to add;
      Yes a true ‘Clone’ would be an ‘exact copy’ and therefore illegal. Isn’t illegal and
      unethical pretty much the same, other than the sentence?

      Now if a copy was both illegal and unethical, Ford Motor Company would still be
      the only company using an assembly line. Just ask Henry. 🙂

      This brings me to one last point. If a program is written in VB and I rewrite the entire
      program in C++ or JavaScript, AND I add a few of my own functions, is THAT stealing?
      Loosely interpreted, YES! Unethical, in my opinion, YES! As a programmer, I would feel
      cheated if someone stole my program and the only REAL change was the language used.
      I say stole since I would have been the original creator of the software. It was me that put
      the time and effort into creating the original, getting rid of the bugs, and eventually showing
      how the dang thing worked.

      Now someone comes along, hacks the code which is already known to work (already proven)
      and rewrites it in a different language, they HAVE essentially STOLEN my program. They
      never had to sit down and flowchart it. They had no debugging to do. It was all there in front of them.

      Sorry for the diatribe, but this is something which irks me to no end. (Which is why my program sits
      idle on my desk top)

      My friends, there is a very fine line between ethical and legal. Being fairly well versed in PhP and JavaScript,
      most of my programs are witten in both languages. Some cannot since PhP requires the engine installed
      on the server while JavaScript simply uses the browser.

      Back to ‘The Line’. Be careful where you tread when ‘copying’ a program. You may find yourself on the WRONG
      side. You won’t be very happy with a selling ‘copy’ of a program if the programmer has my attitude about it.

      Just something for you all to think about.
      Walter Gavurnik

    23. charles ndari

      I feel overloaded with one after another launch of sofwares this month.See..! Upon receive your review X-Ray Domination,I try to do some research futher about Rich Jerk.I found he has a unique
      style of writing,maybe for some people its insult way.
      What I found there is another sofware be launched on Tuesday March 27th at 12 Noon EST.It’s totally opposite with X-Ray Domination even He claim to Destroys The Rich Jerk’s Affiliate XRAY Software.
      For my point of view(as non Guru),looks this software take more advantage than others.If the X-ray domination for example,you still have to test and to lost the money before it can track which keywords can make conversions and continue work with those profitable keywords.But this one,you just spy competions profitable keywords and start work with it.He also have the video on sales page.
      Eric…,would like give me your oponions and reviews about this software if you are not bussy – Undercover Profit-cracking the code profitability at

      thank you
      charles ndari

    24. Steve

      Ok so you’ve all thrashed the “Cloning” topic pretty well.

      Now when I read the RJ sales hype the one thing that really
      bothered me was “cookie stuffing” Talk about ripping somebody off?

      This is the real ethical issue here; RJ is talking about ripping off 1000’s
      of us at the same time. Not just on one type of software, but on them all.

      The kind of person who can sleep at night when they know they are ripping off
      hundreds of people a day by cookie stuffing is the type who should be drawn
      and quartered until he gives us all that money he’s taking out of our pockets l
      ike slezzy pick-pocket.

      For shame RJ. And he proudly stated in his sales hype that he’ll do until
      somebody makes it so he can’t do it anymore. I heard others who “know”
      the two guys that make up the RJ and they are really nice, not like the RJ
      which is their online persona. I say they are not in fact nice, and they should
      not ever be allowed another affiliate commission again. Same goes for
      every “student “who bought their sales info that went with the X-Ray program.

      Unethical is too nice a word. Thieves is a more appropriate term for people
      who steal.

    25. Beryl

      Thank you, Eric, for the article.

      I find your writing style easy to follow. The subject matter–what’s right, wrong, neutral–more than programs and products, is obviously on people’s minds, by the responses, which I very much appreciate. It’s good to know folks are thinking on these lines and are not just IM dull and/or sharks.

      Your personal honesty, Eric, i.e about yourself–motives, money, etc., I also very much appreciate. Those comments may be the most valuable of the post, since in them is no conjecture, no vague opinions, and there is no law against such, as the Bible says.

      In this world of technology, ethics, legalities, competition, etc., my favorite Book and guide keeps me right with two plain statements: “The first and great commandment is, Thou shalt love the YeHOVAH thy God with all thy heart, with all thy soul, with all thy mind, and with all thy strength. And the second is like unto it: Thou shalt love they neighbor as thyself….Upon these two hang all the law…” Yehowshuwa’ The Anointed quoted these from the 1st Testament in answer to a lawyer about what is right.

      It is wise, good, comforting, and profitable to remember that we are not judged by the ideas of men, jaded men at that–us all, but by the Most High and Holy God, according to His standard created in His image, the standard always for all mankind, and as brought to view in the model man, Yehowshuwa’ The Anointed. Working by this model we are capable of judging all else correctly.

      In that man (commonly called Jesus Christ), by the grace and mercy of Almighty God YeHOVAH, as some before and some after him (like Enoch, Elijah, Luke, John, Barnabas, Paul, etc.), is revealed to us what a man in true dominion, in DOMINATION, thinks, speaks, acts, performs, prays, loves, worships like, how man is to exercise God-given and Godlike authority over demons, darkness, oppressions, how to set the captives free of all evil and non-sense.

      Yehowshuwa’ was/is true in his life and testimony to the principles of the Most High and Holy God YeHOVAH, which, in following his lead, we are saved from a lot of superfluous and devious questions and theories, and from being on the wrong side of every issue, or from being involved with an issue at all. There’s so much distraction and time wasters!!! Do you notice it, too?

      But, maybe to most this approach is not as interesting or lucrative as other thinking and doing. Nevertheless, nothing will change the nature of it all.

      This is my first time ever to comment on a blog (and not many more read), so I hope the following is okay to do, seeing others’. If anyone is interested, over the next few months I will be putting up a few websites, some blogs, on the line of my comments:,,, http://www.Israel‘, how to understand the Bible. From my own Bible studies and communion with God in His Word, I no longer believe or teach popular or conventional Christianity, though the Bible true, and the man Yehowshuwa’ Anointed (Jesus Christ). I mention this in case you don’t want to visit a “heretic’s site”.

      This was longer than I thought, but so was the time I used reading everyone else’s comments.

      As someone else said, I like the tips but not so frequent promos. We all know the newsletters are to turn the readers into buying customers. Sometimes the promos are helpful, but most of the time redundant and sort of just snares for the unwary, as we’ve all experienced.

      My wish is that this has interested and helped someone, as all has been to me.

      Remember, God is always blessing each one. Are we?


    26. James

      That launch that RJ did for was really close to the X-Ray Domination and I found it a little strange also. I signed up for a membership at and found that the information inside is just CRAP! It doesn’t deliver anything it promises on the sales page, it is not updated, the articles are just superficial sales letters written by other “Gurus” trying to sell us their programs.

      I have requested a refund and a cancellation of my membership. Unfortunately, according to the forum in the membership section, there are A LOT of us who have requested a refund and/or cancellation of our membership and NONE of us has gotten a response from the company AT ALL.

      RJ’s first e-book may have been great, but his current stuff is CRAP and he is starting to look a bit like a scam artist to some people. I ordered Xtreme Conversions and it’s great so far, the creator is quick to respond to questions and has updated the software twice already, with no update fees.


    27. Marcs Prosper

      Eric Dear,
      Good day once more. This is my second mail forwarding to you this day,Monday,26th March,2007.With regards to your request of my location presently. As you asked,Am I in Lagos Area?

      Presently,I am in Lagos,commercial capital and most populated state in combination of citizens and foreigners.A city with different business ranges and investing oppotunities.

      Coming to your question,the climate is now 50/50.In the sense that temperature is somewhat hot {high} and when it fall rains,it cools a bit.It is a place where every citizens of every country can call his or her second home in hospitality and harmony.No racial discrimination nor migrational disturbances.

      So,Dear Eric, I am posting you my place below.I am self employed, poor but optimistic of bringing myself to the height of perfection that will grant niche to me.

      So,as we proceed,I will tell you my data with Aweber in future.
      Anticipating to hear you soon.

      Have a fulfilling day !

      Marcs Prosper.


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