Saturday, June 06, 2009

Great Singapore Sale : Miracle Laundry Ball

I became a participant of the GSS earlier today and met a young salesman trying to sell something that will help me to "save on the cost of detergent + water and will result in cleaner laundry". The product turned out to be a plastic ball with beads inside that you put with the laundry instead of using detergent . The salesman showed the big a folder full of scientific studies that showed the ball performed better than detergent. He had newspaper cuttings and a documentary to back up his product. He claimed that many laundry mats in Hong Kong have switched to using this plastic ball instead of detergent to save costs. The ball which uses "nano technology" can be used up to 1000 times and costs $59. I didn't have time to watch his video but found something on the Internet about it:

$59 for a ball that can be used with 1000 batches of laundry would save me something like 9 years of detergent. Wow. Irresistible. When something is too good to be true, I usually have to do some checking but the other shoppers around me were completely convinced and snapped up the ball like hot cakes.

A quick check on the Internet yielded the following:

"The Laundry ball is a pseudoscientific product whose sellers claim that when placed in a washing machine it will clean clothes without detergent.[1] The product is often sold by participants in multilevel marketing schemes.[1]"
- Wikipedia article[Link]

"The Oregonian newspaper (not available online last time I checked) ran an expose on this product a couple months ago, which was in trouble for making unfounded claims from the Oregon Attorney General's office. It does nothing but bounce around in the wash, possibly providing slightly more agitation, but cannot and does not provide any change in the "ionic makeup" of the wash water. This is chemically impossible. It is one of those "if it sounds too good to be true it is" products. You could go purchase a toy ball and put it in your washer, it would be the exact same thing. Don't get scammed!!" - The Dollar Stretcher [Link]

If this product does not work and the authorities do nothing to stop these sales people from selling it, we are going to have many people in Singapore walking around with bad smelling clothes. Many people appear to believe the claims and it is selling like hot cakes.


Anonymous said...

i agree. it will be interesting to see if this scam can be pulled off with impunity.

i wldn't hold my breath though. the gahmen will say it's a matter of civil suits.

Anonymous said...

I have lost faith in the govt. Their attitude convinced me that they won't care if you are cheated.

Just look at the time shares scheme, some banking products.

Living here, we have to take care of ourselves cause there are always people trying to cheat us. Unfortunately, most people are susceptible.

Anonymous said...

Actually clothes 'do' come out cleaner when you use it. Why? Not because of the ball but because just merely washing it in water without detergent would get rid of some dirt. The effect of soaking it in water and spinning, nothing to do with nano-technology.

this scam has been around for a long time. As long as it doesn't involve medical claims (and endanger lives), I think the government would close one eye.

Anonymous said...

That's fine.
We need more people in Singapore who cannot spend a minute to think why they got hoodwinked by PAP to feel frustrated.
Sufficient frustration on the ground will culminates something good for the establishment - like another PAP MP missing his/her head.

Anonymous said...

Actually anything that has got to do with MLM, please be careful.

Chances are it is a scam.

So don't take chances!

Anonymous said...

aiya, Singapore under PAP itself is a MLM.

The FamiLEE and their top cronies take everything, some rewards trickle down to their RC running dogs who do the retail selling, and the sucker peasants are the ones who lose everything.

I predict 100% that this scam WILL be pulled off.

There will be no enforcement, unless some favoured RC running dog (or Lionel de Souza) complains.

Anonymous said...

aiya, Singapore under PAP itself is a MLM.

The FamiLEE and their top cronies take everything, some rewards trickle down to their RC running dogs who do the retail selling, and the sucker peasants are the ones who lose everything.

I predict 100% that this scam WILL be pulled off.

There will be no enforcement, unless some favoured RC running dog (or Lionel de Souza) complains.

Anonymous said...

too much is at stake to blow the scam.

consolation though is, our men in white who endorse the product will still look white....from far that is.

can't say the product doesn't work right?

just don't take a closer look :)

Anonymous said...

What about the products that claim to grow your hair, clear your pimples in 3 days, help lose weight? Clearly they are useless but they hide behind the disclaimer of individual results vary.

Anonymous said...

Lucky Tan,
even the Laundry ball is patent !

It will be useful to wash Temasek and GIC.

Anonymous said...

Let me also highlight the scams we experienced which is practically not considered to be important. There are perhaps thousands of small retailers selling bad quality products and this has been going on since Singapore existed. A few examples are listed below. I am wondering what the local authorities and CASE are planning to do about it.

1. Poorly made plastic toys for our children is a good example. You can buy one and found it does not work after opening the packaging, or it breaks easily and has sharp edges which can cut if you step on it with bare feet. There is no control by the authorities nor any safety standards similar to SISIR. The proliferation of these dangerous toys sold in local stalls are meant for us locals. Should not there be some form of control?

2. Another example are the poor quality tissues and toilet papers also meant for local buyers. Double sided but comes apart in two seperate sheets when pulled. Brands such as Scotts and some branded ones too have the same problems. Should we buyers be shortchanged by unscrpulous sellers/manufacturers?

3. Then there are those shops selling alkaline batteries which are sold cheaply. Upon opening the packaging, wither they have no more life or they are leaking, and all should know that leaking batteries are poisonous and these batteries are meant for use in the homes.

These are but 3 of the glaring examples of how we are cheated and scammed. The authorities do not care, do any one of us care? Who should we approach? I called Ministry of Trade and their typical response leaves very much to be desired. Instead of assuring me that my complaints will be looked into, their reply was that parents should be discerning in making choices and also to call other Government authorities and talk to them too. Despite the fact that Thailand and the Phillipines has already issued bans on the importation of unsafe toys 2 years ago, we a 1st World Nation lags far behind.

Anonymous said...

you cant be an "inclusive" society if you ignore blatant injustices and corruption( especially those related to hard earned money)no matter how insignificant it may be.

garmen should set up more independant bodies( with bites) to address different sectors of market and social injustices if a single ministry find it too daunting a task to resolve all these "pins and needles".

Anonymous said...

Singapore is pro business to the extreme. As long as you don't cheat the government, any consumer is fair game.

Look at the Timeshare companies which are obviously fraudulent, yet the government prefer to treat them as companies which gives poor customer service.

And the human trafficking companies bringing in workers with false promise of jobs. MOM is not doing anything.

What about the banks which sold poison financial products to people?

The never ending telemarketing calls which you have no way of stopping.

.::: .: :.:. :.: ... ::: :. .::. .: :. ::. said...

it's "irresistible" not to correct your spelling.


great piece of citizenry journalism though.

Anonymous said...

ahh....y dun u write something of substance like lucky insted of being a grammer nazi hah?

u insult many people who live right but not edukated u toad!

live let live and stop promoting no brains corrupt people but can spell and hold pen and tell those below them how they ought to spell or live their lives

fiak off

Anonymous said...

It's called Caveat emptor...Buyer Beware!

Anonymous said...

caveat emptor is also another way of die your business

or..i dont want the dirty work of discovering corruption and offend many people etc etc

Anonymous said...

"You die your business" is PAP motto.

Mr Lee Kuan Yew's "You went in with eyes wide open" sums that up pretty nicely.
Mr Lee needs this fradulent companies to pay taxes to him mah, so he obviously cannot shut them down. He's not the one suffering from dirty laundry, he's pinching the pennies with eyes WIDE OPEN 'cos Citibank's penis is in his ass.

angela said...

Another kind of such selling is Detoxification through your Feet. Imagine, an educated person like my sister, who drives 2 cars and lives in a freehold property also convinced such things works and bought a package which costs nearly 400 bucks. When I explained to her abt my concerns, her reply was the same like the rest: If these people are out to con, how come they are still operating and not caught? Well, I just have to say we Singaporeans only want to see end results, if we are convinced when we see physcial results, we will definitely buy the idea. Just like how the kiasu mothers do with their children, send them for endless tuitions, irregardless if they benefit their kids or not. They just wanna see results.

Anonymous said...

For the people who bought it, they all went in with their eyes open. They cannot complain.

Anyway, if they do want to complain, they can take it up individually with the manufacturers of the ball.

The use of these balls are for the long-term, so short-term stinkiness of clothes is something we have to endure.

The govt has taken its own discussions with CASE and has agreed that these sellers should deal with their customers independently.

Members of the Laundry and Detergent Agency that were involved in allowing these balls in, mainly some gurkha officers, have been dismissed and others reprimanded.

And to end this discussion, what to do - it has happened. Let's move on.

Anonymous said...

This is one COuNTRY that will never survive without conjobs. So, get used to the CONWAY Lifestyle.

Hope no grammar or spelling mistakes in my post.

Amanda said...

The Laundry ball is a pseudoscientific product whose sellers claim that when placed in a washing machine it will clean clothes without detergent. The product is often sold by participants in multilevel marketing schemes.

Irina said...

As glasses were manufacturer, we are also well-accepted products around the worldwide. It also means of state-of-the-art equipment, expertise, consummate management and rigorous quality inspection.

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mrdobi seo said...

A great place to wash your clothes, if you're rushing for time, is Coin Laundry Singapore (aka Mr Dobi). Their machines are fast and it's really time-saving.

mrdobi seo said...

I found a really good service for laundry pick up and delivery in Singapore, it's called
Mr Dobi: Laundry Services in Singapore. They do dry cleaning, laundry as well as self-service coin operated laundry. Cheers!

Daphne Lim said...

Miracle Laundry ball is amazing, Irresistible and cleans the clothes without using Detergent. My friend who runs a business uses Fresh and Clean Laundry Services Singapore. So far he's found them quite reliable,fast, affordable and effective dry cleaning services so perhaps you should try them out =)