Self-Sustaining Generator Scam (Quick Power System) - Krazy Ken’s Tech Talk
- Hey, everyone. Sorry it's so dark down here. Apparently, electric companies want you to pay them every month, so my power got cut. Thankfully, I have some leftover radioactive material just lying around my lair. I think it has a nice glow to it. Holy (beep), that could have caused a nuclear explosion! Anyway, I found this book called the Quick Power System, and it should teach me how to make my own generator so I don't have to lose my power again.
Let's try it. Sponsored by Linode. Hey everyone, how are you all doing? If you're new here, welcome. My name is Krazy Ken, and the power is back on, hallelujah! It was easier than I thought. There's just a button over there that says power. And I just had to press it, piece of cake.
Now you're probably thinking, Ken, what about the Quick Power System, did that help? And my answer is no, it didn't help at all. And here's why. One, it violates the laws of thermodynamics. Two, it's marketed poorly. And three, it kind of doesn't exist. Probably could have said that one first.
So what exactly is Quick Power System? In short, it's an online guide that teaches you how to build your own self-sustaining generator so you can power your home. I don't know what fairytale these product designers are living in, but this is not possible. That's just what's on the surface of the story. The Quick Power System has a 33 minute and 55 second sales video attached to it, or as they like to call it, a short video. And yes, I watched every agonizing second of it.
So today we're gonna break down their video, then we'll look at their website, and finally, we'll see if we can test the system out for ourselves and see if it works, let's go. The video starts with a news countdown with beeps, a tactic I've seen used in other videos to try to get your attention on a landing page. But thankfully, modern web browsers have put a stop to auto-playing audio. Then we're introduced to Ray Allen, who claims to have a life changing story on how to easily generate insane amounts of energy.
And he's gonna tell us about it in this short video. And throughout the whole video, the captions are baked in, and we'll explore why in a moment, there's a reason for it. And Ray claims to have invented a technique, which over 17,000 people used to overcome hurricanes, snowstorms and floods. And he positions big electric as the bad guy, saying you'll be outraged you ever paid a single cent to the greedy power companies, and you need to watch this short presentation today while it's still up. Then Ray says he's a 45-year-old geography teacher in Memphis, Tennessee.
And he tells a story about how the Mississippi River flooded and his family lost power. Then he cuts to a clip of some random dude. Doesn't look like him, oh well. He discusses how he felt bad that he could not protect his family, and they had to suffer the cold weather while the power was out.
And not to make light of a potentially serious situation, but just listen to his emotional outburst right here, just clearly Oscar-worthy acting. - [Ray] I felt powerless! I simply felt furious. And I was furious about the fact that for so many years I let it slide and thought, "Maybe it'll be better next year." - [Ken] He really comes down hard on himself, saying he was the only one to blame for getting in this situation.
So he set out to create a new source of energy, a constant power source that doesn't need sun, gas or wind. - Like electric, solar, or what? - No, Randal, just pure energy. - [Ken] So then we're introduced to Ray's late uncle Jack and the incredible technology he pioneered. A spinning principle used in electric cars, apparently.
Then Ray says, as you probably already know, there is the multiplication principle that translates into inducing a small amount of energy in a system and multiplies it with the spinning principle. Yeah, I mean, of course I knew that. I don't know what this dude's obsession is with principle.
He says that a lot. So he says, vaguely, this principle can produce a lot of energy. And the secret is this energy is really simple to obtain, and that this system can recharge itself when it's not being used at its full potential. And Ray mentions uncle Jack has plans and blueprints at his house. So he drove over to examine them, but he couldn't understand them. So he worked with uncle Jack's colleague, Jason.
So after all this vagueness, the video finally shows us something more tangible. And soon they achieved a brilliant design, which used only three wooden wheels, a hard cylinder and two cog wheels, two cog wheels. Listen, Ray, my man, I don't know if they didn't teach math at your school in Tennessee if that's where you're really from, but let's count how many cog wheels are here. 1, 2, 3, 4. Hey, math is power! More power than your generator is making.
Now at this point in the video, you're probably thinking Ray is an insane human being, but pause for a second. I don't think that's a fair thing to say, because that's not a strong enough adjective. I would call him imbecilic or asinine or probably cuckoo bananas, but fear not, there's still 21 more minutes of scrumptious video to chew through. Mm-mm, I'm excited.
So what do you do with all these parts? Well, you simply have to place them in the correct position~ - Science! - [Ken] Then you can generate an extraordinary amount of energy, which can be converted into usable electricity. And at the same time, it powers itself without wasting any energy. And it's easy to hook up to any device. Wait, what? That's kind of disappointing.
I thought we were making a cool generator to power the whole home. We have to hook up individual devices to this thing? Seems a little inconvenient. Then the video shows Ray's miraculous generator in action, which does not match any of the parts shown earlier in the video.
And Ray claims this generator is self supplying itself. - [Computer Male Voice] Not possible. - [Ken] They show multiple appliances working and the house is lit up. And Ray says he couldn't believe how simple this all was. Then Ray drove back home to recreate the generator with the newly refined plans and lots of blurred footage, apparently. And it worked, wow! Instead of paying $190 for their energy bill, they paid nothing! They were running on belts and wooden wheels! The video continues showing all these lifestyle shots, but it never shows the generator hooked up to any appliances, weird, right? Then Ray says his friends and family were begging to know the secret, and they were having a hard time believing something so small could create so much energy.
Yeah, I bet they had a hard time believing that because they probably took, I don't know, a high school physics class and they know that this thing is impossible to build! Anyway, so many people were asking him how this was done. So he refined the blueprints even further. And boom, the Quick Power System was born. This was a guide showing you how to make this self supplying generator, or as he calls it, a home power plant.
And you can cut down your electric bill by 60% or more. 60% or more? Don't even bother with this generator, just get one of those Electricity Saving Boxes. You can save up to 90% or more or something like that. And clearly good help was hard to find these days, 'cause it looks like they had to hire a seventh grader who uses Microsoft Publisher 2000 to create this extraordinary cover artwork.
It's beautiful, but hey, at least we finally hear the name of the product that's trying to be sold to us. And we're only halfway through the video. Oh my gosh, this is hard. And I love how Ray says you'll be shocked by how few steps there are in making this generator. Yet they show a really thick book, just 10 out of 10 marketing. It's a piece of cake, all you gotta do is read a dictionary five times blindfolded, but wait, it's not a physical book? It's an online guide? So they didn't even bother to print this book at all? Well, I guess you gotta keep those profit margins high somehow.
Ray continues talking about the guide and now uses the words unlimited power supply to describe the generator. Unlimited, huh? Okay, let's add that to the buzzword pile. Then Ray says Quick Power System is virtually maintenance free. The generator will constantly produce the energy, so there's no fire burning or gasses being released. And it's weird because he keeps talking about these blueprints and these easy illustrated instructions and everything, but he never shows a single page of this book in the sales video. But hey, don't worry about that.
Just think about how much money you're gonna save! You can save 14,000 and maybe even $24,000 after 10 years of using this generator. What are you waiting for? Join the 87,435 families that have already invested in the Quick Power System, which is normally a fair $149. But for a limited time only, uh-uh... you can get it for just $49 with these special bonuses that Ray never talks about.
So come on, just click the button, click that button, just click it so hard! Seriously, he says click the button about 4 billion times in the sales video, but there's a reason for that. We'll talk about that soon. So after lots of repeating and more sales pitchy stuff, he finally wraps up. - [Ray] And I'll look forward to seeing you inside that members only area in a few minutes from now. Thanks for watching. Still here? - Don't do that! Yeah, this video is still not over.
Ray now moves into an FAQ section. He reiterates on previously mentioned parts of the sales pitch, and he says there's no maintenance whatsoever because the system powers itself continuously. And after more and more and more talking, he finally says... - [Ray] So go ahead and seize your energy independence now.
Click the yellow button. - And it's over for real this time, that was a lot. So let's break down the sales video and see what's wrong with it. But first I would like to talk about the formula behind this type of video, because the way it's made is very intentional.
This type of sales video is called a video sales letter or VSL. And I know great ideas have many founders, so other people have probably made similar formulas to this stuff, but if you research VSLs, you'll probably come across this guy, Jon Benson. I just wanna say Jon Benson is not bad. VSLs are not bad. I have no problem with them. So Jon, we cool, right? What I am saying is bad is when people take these tools and abuse them.
VSLs are structured in a specific way to induce a hypnotic effect. That's actually what Jon calls it. - Before I do that, I wanna talk about one of the most interesting aspects of a VSL, and that is the hypnotic effect a VSL can create. - [Ken] There's multiple attributes in a VSL, but we'll cover a few. On-screen text, pattern interrupts, open loops, and calls to action.
We saw baked in captions throughout the whole Quick Power System VSL, but we also saw white slides only with text on them, nothing else. Both of these traits help the viewer pay attention more and make the video more accessible. Another attribute is a pattern interrupt where the video shows and tells you something unexpected at the beginning, like Ray's bold claims. Those claims peak your curiosity, and now you're more inclined to keep watching. Next is open loops, open loops occur when the speaker states something but doesn't finish the thought, and he comes back to it later. In fact, you saw me do that a minute ago when I said let's break down the sales video and see what's wrong with it.
But first I would like to talk about the formula. Pretty neat, huh? The Quick Power System video does this at the beginning after it makes these bold claims, and it says... - Before we continue, let me tell you who I am and how it all started. - [Ken] And the last attribute I wanna talk about today is calls to action or CTAs. There was a lot of repetition from Ray when he kept saying click the button, click the button. And that may sound annoying, but it's by design.
It follows the VSL formula and helps more people take an action, click the button, and potentially convert to customers. So now that we have a brief understanding of VSLs, let's break down this horrendous video. There's four big problems in this sales video. Number one, the editing and production value. Jon Benson says the production value in a VSL can vary from video to video. And typically it's not a big problem, but what I've noticed in my scam busting investigations is crappy video usually means crappy product.
And that's the same situation here. Ray is filmed on a green screen with green spill on his face, the editor punches in on his frame without punching in the background, making the cuts look awkward, and there's tons of conventional errors in the onscreen captions. And the product image is also poorly edited. The book doesn't even fit on the computer screen, and the laptop's edge is incorrectly cropped. Also, there's some awkward editing choices with the B-roll. So for example, when Ray is talking about plugging in the generator to a TV, the B-roll shows a shot of a gaming PC.
Weird choice, but okay. I guess there was a TV in the background, so it kind of counts. And that brings us to problem number two, vagueness.
The B-roll footage never shows the generator actually plugged into any appliances. And sometimes when the video shows something that could look like a generator, it's blurred out? And this hardware still doesn't look like the ridiculous wooden wheels Ray discussed earlier. The most realistic hardware they show are these motors, and I'm pretty sure this cord runs to a power source they're hiding off camera.
They never really explain this. And when we finally see this product Ray is trying to sell, it turns out it's not even a generator, it's a book, and it's not even a real physical book. It's a digital book, and we still don't see any pages of it. We don't even know if it's real.
They don't show any proof that it actually exists! If a sales video doesn't show you what it's trying to sell, that's a red flag. When apple introduced the iPhone, they showed the fricking phone. Just show what you're trying to sell. Moving on to problem three, inconsistencies.
I say this all the time, more inconsistencies equals more red flags. And there's many inconsistencies in this video. For example, in the beginning the video says over 17,000 people have used, quote, "the same technique," assuming they're talking about the Quick Power System, but later the video says 87,435 individuals slash families. So what's the real customer count? Ray never explains this discrepancy. Another example is when he says the system is virtually maintenance free, implying that you may need to fix it up once in a while.
But in the FAQ section, he says there's no maintenance whatsoever. Another issue is how Ray explains how you hook things up to the generator. In the beginning I think it's fair to say it's implied that he's making a generator that powers your whole home, but then later he talks about plugging in individual devices into the generator.
So, which is it? What does that mean? Do you have to have a bunch of generators lying around your house with a bunch of appliances plugged into each one? That sounds kind of inconvenient. Gee, I wish they would show us how it actually works. And that brings us to the fourth problem, the biggest problem in this whole fricking sales video, the claims Ray makes about what this generator is capable of are 100% impossible to produce.
You cannot make a generator that powers itself and other appliances continuously, especially if it's just made of wooden wheels. Heck, take the whole appliance and wooden wheels things out of there. Let's say you have a legit generator that can somehow connect to itself to power itself. That's still impossible. It violates the laws of thermodynamics.
And unless there's some magical discovery that mankind has yet to decipher, there is no getting around this roadblock. Now, many of you are probably using common sense and going, duh! And that's because you've had life experiences, right? You have to fill your car with gas when it runs out of gas, you have to recharge your phone. When you kick a soccer ball, it eventually stops rolling.
Heck, you even have to sleep at night to recharge your body. Just through life experiences, you realize energy moves from one place to another. You can't have infinite power, but let's have some fun. I don't like to merely say the claims are impossible. I like to explain why, so why are Ray's claims impossible? Let's talk about the physics behind them. Take a look at this spinning fidget toy.
When you spin it, you expect it to eventually stop spinning, right? Why does this happen? First, let's ask ourselves, where does the energy to spin the toy come from? It comes from our hands swinging and hitting the toy. Now it's spinning. And the second question is, where does that energy go? There's energy spinning this thing right now, but it has to go somewhere. That's where the first law of thermodynamics comes into play.
The first law says energy cannot be created or destroyed. It can only be transferred from one place to another. That's just how the universe, as we know it today, works. And unless you're God, you probably don't have a say in this.
So in this example, the energy is transferred from my hand to the spinner toy. But the toy won't spin forever because forces are acting upon it, namely friction and air resistance. The bearings inside the spinner experience friction.
As the materials rub together, the kinetic energy of the spinner is transferred to heat energy and sound energy. And once the spinner runs out of energy, it will stop spinning, and it won't start again unless acted upon by an outside force. This applies to other contexts too, like the bearings inside a large motor. No motor can generate enough energy to power itself because no motor is 100% efficient. Energy will be lost in the transfer as it's altered into heat energy and sound energy. Now, when you look into this self-sustaining or unlimited power source topic, you may hear about perpetual motion devices, but keep in mind, these things don't exist either.
Even the famous Drinking Bird, which at a glance seems like it could rock back and forth indefinitely, still needs energy to keep working. The water in a way acts like it's fuel source, it's power source. If I take away the water, the beak will soon dry up, the evaporation will stop and the motion will stop, because this knack relies on evaporation to affect the chemicals and pressure inside the body, which affect the bird's balance. You've probably seen ads for those forever tops, and although they look cool and they have forever on the name, they can't spin forever too. Even their website says that, they'll last for many minutes, because eventually they will succumb to friction and just fall over.
In fact, the only way I can think of that perpetual motion actually makes sense is when you're talking about booze. - [Narrator] Start with three to four mint leaves, add one ounce of Baijiu, one ounce of Saint Germain, two ounces of Blood orange Puree, muddle, add ice, shake and strain over fresh ice. This cocktail's called "Perpetual Motion." - Ooh, that's good. It's very fruity, it's thick. - [Ken] Special thanks to Jeremy for making this cocktail. Go check out his channel, and just look at those vintage computers, mm-mm.
So what next? Let's take a look at their website, but super quick, I want to thank Windows on Windows and Shaman007 for helping me research parts of this episode. You guys are great, thank you very much. All right, website time. The homepage of the website auto plays the sales video with the headline, "This crazy 45 year old geography teacher in Memphis, Tennessee believed he could change the energy world, and somehow he did it." The video does not show a scrubber so it prevents you from fast forwarding, which is a trait commonly associated with VSLs.
They don't want you skipping parts, but if we examine the sauce code, we can see this video is from an unlisted YouTube upload, and it has this amazing thumbnail, must have been the same designer who made the book cover. The website also has some annoying popups. Stop, get 45% off, get 40% off, this offer will only appear once! Spoiler alert, it appeared more than once. Wait, by clicking out of this page, you'll forfeit the chance to learn about an amazing solution! Yeah, maybe, but I can just go back to the website later using my modern internet web browser technology. To give them credit, the annoying popups actually gave me a legitimate discount, which I did put in my cart, so we'll talk about that later. Also I noticed this website uses another Benson trick, the Magic Buy Button.
- I was the guy that created the Magic Buy Button, which is now built into a lot of video applications, which is where at a certain time in a video sales letter, they don't see anything but the video, and then everything pops underneath it. - [Ken] The landing page with the video will not show a buy button until a set amount of time passes, in this case, seven minutes. And I think this trick is used to try to get people to convert and watch the video longer, because you're not faced with some sort of commitment to buy anything right away. It doesn't come up until later after you're more psychologically invested in the video and in the story.
So we've seen the horrible video, and again, we know the generator can't be made, and now we've seen this so-so website. So with all of those things combined together, you'd think I'd be smart enough not to purchase this thing, right? Yeah, I went ahead and bought one. (Duck Quack) At least I tried to.
The discount did actually apply to my cart, but every time I clicked pay now, I get an error saying my payment was declined. I tried with two different cards and none of them worked. I tried again in a few days, nothing worked. I emailed their tech support twice and never heard back.
So I think we're never gonna see this product. Maybe it doesn't exist. - [Macintosh Fred] Your satisfaction is really important to us. - I didn't wanna give up there. I wanted to research the internet to see if anyone else bought this thing. So I looked up videos, I looked up images, but I could never find a single page shown from this so-called guide.
And I didn't see anybody with their own makeshift generator in their house. All I could find were other fakey-looking reviews with in this case really bad text-to-speech voiceover. - [Male TTS Voice] Hi, my name is Jones, and today I'm going to tell you everything you need to know about the Quick Power System before you buy the product. - So when you Google Quick Power System, don't expect to see anything legit.
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It's a better deal than the Quick Power System. And also when you do that, you're supporting the Computer Clan, so thank you very much. So that's the Quick Power System, a seemingly non-existent guide which teaches you to build something that can't physically exist in this universe. Great business strategy! And again, I'm not dissing Benson or VSLs. Those things are cool. But what I don't like is when people abuse those tools to try to sell you snake oil.
So really, all the guys that do those scams should just take a hike. Actually, you know what? Maybe they shouldn't, because the more they release this kind of stuff into the world, the more episodes I get to make debunking them. (laughs) That's my business strategy. I'll see you all next time, catch the crazy and pass it on. (upbeat music) Still here?