For almost two years, the two most known money-making forums, Money Maker Group and TalkGold are no longer active.
I’ve checked both their Twitter accounts and Facebook pages, and there’s no news about it.
UPDATE from admins:
We decided to take the sites down as we no longer wanted to be a part of them as it’s not worth the possibility of getting sued and having to defend ourselves yet again. Additionally, the websites were costing money to run.
In this article, I’ll explain several reasons why MoneyMakerGroup and TalkGold forum are down and why the owners decided to pull the plug.
Both these forums are in operation since 2004, which makes them almost 14 years old. I’ve been a member of these two communities for some years but decided to create my own community – TopGoldForum.
- Who owns MMG and TalkGold.com?
- 1. The gangs of scammers on TalkGold: Michael Patryn and Gerald Cotten
- 2 Now Social Media is getting most of the attention
- 3. The decline in traffic
- 4. The decline in Google visibility
- 5. The decline in revenue
- 6. Errors due to old software
- Will they come back?
- Was that the best decision?
- Do you know TopGoldForum.com?
Who owns MMG and TalkGold.com?
According to domain information, both domains are owned by E&B Advertising incorporated in the United States.
Edward Krassenstein claims himself on Twitter as an Entrepreneur, Editor, Investor, Consultant. Politically Independent, Fitness, Anti-Trump., Bitcoin, Philly Phan
#impeachTrump #TheResistance.His last tweet was several hours ago.
Brian Krassenstein is also on Twitter but not so active; his last tweet dated more than 4 years ago on 26 Jul 2013.
Also, on their Linkedin profiles, they claim to own and grow several other online communities running as usual: 3DPrint.com, VRTalk.com, IR.net.
The whois record of the MoneyMakerGroup.com domain name.
The whois record of the TalkGold.com domain name.
Several former MMG forum users speculated that the closure of the websites was connected with the one year ago incident when the police raided the Krassenstein brothers’ house.
Edward Krassenstein claimed that the closure is not related to the police raid and there is no case against them:
There is NO case against us. Also, there was never any criminal charges or case brought by the DOJ against us, and there never will be. There was never a court hearing, nor will there be.There is no crime in selling ads to a third party. The First Amendment clearly protects Facebook as well as us.
In an interview for Money-Monitor.com, Brian Krassenstein claimed that he sold Talk Gold but remained part of the management.
1. The gangs of scammers on TalkGold: Michael Patryn and Gerald Cotten
Besides legitimate users that simply wanted to make a decent income online, these two forums were the party place for several cybercriminals and scammers’ rings.
Back in those days, e-currencies like eGold and LibertyReserver and cryptocurrencies attracted scammers like flies. The reason was very simple: Both e-currencies and cryptocurrencies are anonymous and non-reversible so once you paid someone you couldn’t get your money back if things went south.
Gerald Cotten was posting on TalkGold under the username Sceptre. At the same time, Patryn, known as Omar Dhanani before he changed his name, posted on TalkGold as “Patryn.”. Patryn also posted as Patryn on MoneyMakerGroup and BlackHatWorld. Sceptre posted as Lucky-Invest on TalkGold to promote a Ponzi scheme. You can read more about their criminal past in this blog post.
If you haven’t watched the NetFlix documentary, here it’s the trailer:
According to CoinDesk, Michael Patryn is now involved in a De-Fi project called Wonderland.
But this was not the only cybercrime gang on TG and MMD. Also, there were networks of scammers that did many “pump and dump” investment schemes to lure innocent investors in and leave them without their money. This attracted authorities’ attention and those forums were closely monitored.
2 Now Social Media is getting most of the attention
Discussion forums are rapidly and surely losing members in favor of social media sites like Facebook and Linkedin.
Facebook groups are quite popular now, which is unfortunate, in my opinion, as most Fb groups are filled with affiliate marketing links spam. Still, for some reason, most of the users prefer to spend time on them.
3. The decline in traffic
Both MoneyMakerGroup and TalkGold forums have seen a big decline in traffic over the years, according to alexa.com. The images below speak for themselves:
In October 2016, both forums had a similar global rank of 40,000, but in less than a year, they lost around 100,000 positions, clearly showing that the traffic collapsed.
4. The decline in Google visibility
The traffic from Google is significant for a website to get new members and have solid ad revenue. Again, we see a sharp decline in organic traffic on both sites, similar to the Alexa chart.
According to SemRush, MMG Forum lost 91% of its traffic from Google. And the situation for the TalkGold forum is similar.
There may be multiple reasons for this, but in my opinion, this happened because of Google algorithm changes that penalized websites with questionable backlink profiles and poor content.
5. The decline in revenue
With such a sharp decline in traffic is obvious that the ad revenue of both sites sunk. Both MMG Forum and TalkGold relied on advertising sales for their most of the revenue.
Adblockers became very popular in the latest years, making it difficult for sites to sell advertising quite difficult to make a buck, which is the case for these two forums.
Also, keeping up and running such communities requires expensive hardware (dedicated servers, firewalls), which can easily take up to $2000 from the admin’s pocket.
6. Errors due to old software
MoneyMakerGroup was powered by Invision Forum v2, which was released around 12 years ago. As I’ve visited the forums from time to time, I have seen that they haven’t upgraded the community software, which was quite buggy and slow.
I suppose they had to deal with many bugs and errors, which are both time and money-consuming.
Unfortunately, the administration team didn’t invest in upgrading the platforms and keeping them up to date, preferring to “milk” the communities of advertising sales.
Will they come back?
Most probably not. As you could see from the reasons explained above, there are low chances to see those two forums back.
There is too much work and small chances to become profitable again. They are now part of the online money-making history and should remain like this.
Update Jan 2019: Both domains have been let to expire and have been purchased by other people. While TalkGold Forum now has a simple page that says the forum will sometimes be back, MMG redirects to HYIP.com. So these two forums are now part of the online money-making history.
Update March 2021: While TalkGold Forum still remains closed it seems that the MMG forum got back to life by another administration team that started everything from scratch. Yet the forum is way behind its glory as it has only a couple of thousands of members which talk mostly about HYIPs.
Are you looking for a decent money-making discussion community to be part of? Join Top Gold Forum.
Was that the best decision?
Unfortunately, the members of these two forums remained without any way to back up their data, personal messages, contacts, etc., which is unfortunate.
The administration team should announce several months in advance so users could download/save their information.
Do you know TopGoldForum.com?
I’m a forum advocate, and I’m running a money-making discussion forum called Top Gold Forum. We are not as popular as those forums used to be, but we have a strong etiquette and a solid members database of over 42,000 folks.
I’d love to personally welcome members from these two communities – MoneyMakerGroup and TalkGold to the community I administrate for over 11 years and make TopGold Forum their own new home.
P.S. If it is done right, online communities can still be profitable for admins. See our step-by-step guide on how to make money with forums.
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