important to note here that there is a BIG difference between natural cell and small cell. it is small cell that i think is a waste of time and money. natural cell, i'm all for . let them build what they want and the size that they want it.
there is no study that back small cell for mite or disease control. it's a money making gimmick at this point.
Who the heck is making any money to speak of, off of SC???
Not sure if pointing fingers at individuals is a good thing. Your finger may very well get smacked.
But there is a whole group of folks who get speakers fees (500 dollars and up) for the promotion of their ideology. Some sell books. Some sell queens and bees. There are a couple beekeepers who have sold a good number of nucs from the active participation and promotion of just being on a couple forums. I could list a number of folks who have sold their bees on the promises of smallcell claims.
I see a few speakers in every category, whether smallcell, TBH, Warre hives, etc., that are in demand for their services due to claims of being "more" natural, etc.
I will add that I also think that ego and self promotion probably come in play also. Beekeepers are great at tweaking a thing here or there, building a new design or hive, and making themselves standout. Years ago, there was probably one book per year (if that) put out by well established beekeepers. Today, it seems everyone is an expert. Everyone wants to put out a book. And everyone has a website. So to stand out, you need a niche. You need to sell an ideology different than the others. As example, I have read two different articles on "super" bees this year being promoted as the next thing to save beekeeping. And you better believe that these two folks are lining up the speaking engagements based on this promotion, asking high rates, and high prices for their bees.
Beekeepers are the ultimate optimists. They are always looking for a better tomorrow. Always thinking someone will solve their problems. Always willing to be sold the next thing coming down the street. And yes, there is money to be made off of selling pipe dreams and false hopes.
While I don't really think huge amounts of money is being made, one should at least understand the dynamics of the game at hand. ;)