Don’t fall for the System Sellers Paradox!

Roll up, roll up!

‘I have this VERY simple set of rules that can make loads of risk-free money with very little effort. It can be yours for only $37 and you increase your chance of winning money as long as you buy it before this weekend. ‘

Sound interesting?

Maybe it shouldn’t…!

Well this blog post is looking into the system sellers paradox which can explain a lot about these ‘systems’ and what a typical system requires.

System sellers paradox: the issue with people who are trying to push sell, effectively ‘extort’ money from people for buying duff systems.

Money grabbers?

Generally, speaking, the vast majority of systems are written by people who have never, ever put there own cash on the line in any capacity. Sometimes people have done things and can’t really make much money from it, so they decide to embellish and sell it as a system. Sometimes people just do that from the outset, they don’t really believe anything can make money, so they revert to the best money making system of all, telling people how to make money.

Typically, most of the system sellers are people who have no interest in actually trying to make these things work. They’re just looking an appealing idea, a neat marketing angle and a few tricks to try and get money out of people.

Of course, there is a huge paradox here, because can you imagine if you buy a system and it says ‘if this, then that, do this – if that do this, then that’. It is set up with some simple rules to follow so that you can replciate the system sellers ‘success’.

But there is a clear flaw here. In years gone by it was impossible to really proof or test these systems. Also, trying to scale something on your own was tricky as you have to give away exactly what you were doing. But these barriers no longer exist. With modern technology and things like Betfair, Betdaq and software like Bet Angel, you can automate a lot of those things.

If you say the system, is find a race or a football match like this and when this happens, do this and when that happens, do that. If this doesn’t happen, then do that. You can automate all of those things really easily nowadays. So why wouldn’t you just do that?

If the system is profitable, it’s going be a lot simpler to do some Betfair automation using a automated software like Bet Angel.

Set it up, let it run, forget about it and hey presto, there’s a massive pot of gold at the end of the day!

Now, of course, the reality is a little tougher than that. But I’ve discovered loads of little niches, some of them too small for me to exploit by sitting at my desk. But the soltution is simple. I work out the specifics of what I want to do, then I automate it. At first, I test it carefully then as my confidence grows I put the system to use on full stakes.

On the day I make this blog post one bit of automation that runs fully automatically has made about £700 while I am busying trading pre-off horse racing. That result is at the top end of expectations, but it’s pretty good for just pressing a button this morning to turn it on.

Achieving this though is a slow process and often requires a lot of fiddling before you can find something that works well. But this sort of thing is something I have been doing for most of my 20 years in the markets. This particular peice of automation took quite a while to come together, but now it’s done it’s consistently profitable and I can just set it up everyday and leave it on it’s own. It’s worth a lot to me, more that $37 anyhow!

The ‘Well I can’t do it on my account…’ lie

Now, unfortunately, press button a when b systems are generally quite difficult to find. If you do find it, you tend to keep it to yourself. So let’s really think about a possible reason why somebody may not be able to ultilise their invention. If the system sellers says ‘well, I can’t do it as my account won’t let me…’ realistically, all you would do is find somebody with another account. Then you would let them do it.

You would probably give them a little bit of a cut in order to do it and you would probably fund the account for them. So whether you can do it or not, it doesn’t really matter because you’d find somebody else.

Selling your system rather than scaling it

Let’s say that the system was magically scalable, so that you could actually do it amongst three thousand people or something for small stakes.

You could then just look at it as an investment and say ‘well, okay, I’m going to put a £1K in this account, it’s going to earn £2k over the course of the year and if I can do that one hundred times, then I’m gonna be significantly up!’ and I’ll just cut people in with a little bit of money for that opportunity.

You would earn much more that way than you would if you actually attempted to sell the system. If you can exploit this ‘loophole’, to use snake oil parlance, then you just scale it with or without an account. Just start getting people to work for you.

The core problem of course is…..

Of course, the core issue here is that people who are selling systems are just trying to do it to make money. They’re not good traders or bettors, they don’t have a magical system, they haven’t put the hours of work in to find an edge….

They don’t have some magic system, they are just very good at marketing and pressing your hot buttons.

But the problem is that people always fall for these systems. I don’t know why that is, but I’d imagine the allure of easy money is just too great to resist. The way they are often presented also nudges you psychologically that you don’t want to miss out. The fact is, that if somebody is promising you an easy income with the minimum of fuss, it’s probably a con. Before the works ‘income’ or ‘passive income’. Tempting but unlikely to be true, particularly in a betting market.

I never have fallen for these things and probably never will because I’ve had to go through the hard work to create profitable ideas and strategies in the market. I do get sent a lot of systems however, but most of them revole around the same two themes. Winning freqeutly or recovering a loss, neither of these are typically how you approach a trading strategy.

If you did have some completely goldern, the last thing that you would want to do really is to just go out and and sell them. So I think the the upshot of this really is, is that typically it makes absolutely no sense to buy any systems.

Advice, stats, data all those things are valid to some extent, but a simple system rarely makes sense. Even the former items can be dressed up a bit in the same manner, so do some research before buying anything.

Incredible deal – more like In credible!

Typically, as soon as a new system comes on the market everybody knows about it fairly quickly. It gets posted on forums and so on and I imagine these people will never take action you if you republish the information because they will then have to admit that it’s all a pile of poo anyway!

There’s no sense or logic behind it and they actually haven’t made any money, so I imagine that redistribution of these things is very difficult to enforce. I don’t believe that it would be possible for somebody to defend it on the basis that it was a rip off in the first place. A formal request needs to have a legal entity on it and that would present the opportunity for a class action against the seller. A lack of an address is usually a red hot clue you are about to be had!


The system sellers paradox is the issue that, if you have something that’s good enough, you would use it yourself. Or perhaps you would find a way of using it yourself because investing in that and compounding the gains and finding ways of doing that would be much more profitable than actually selling a book itself.

This is why professional syndicates exist. To share the risk and reward with developing and deploying systems. I’ve worked with and interfaced with many syndicates in the least twenty years. I’m not aware of any that have released an ebook, yet!

Naturally, because systems don’t work, there’s no reason why they would attempt to use it. In fact, is much more profitable to sell the system than to use it and as I have witnessed, most systems are just rehashes of existing systems in essense.

So that’s the system seller paradox! If you want to make some easy money in a betting market with just a few clicks, just sell people a duff betting system.

My view is that is certainly not worth looking out for these systems, but feel free to discuss in the comments if you’ve ever got tangled up in one of them, help warn others of their flaws.

System seller paradox

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