Tuesday, July 7, 2009

The Infamous Chain E-Mail

Occasionally I get e-mails forwarded to me from well meaning people who are concerned about a current issue. The topics range from Bill Gates giving away money, pending laws that the government is trying to pass, safety warnings, conspiracy theories, and some times even Amber Alerts. I figure if a legitimate Amber alert has gone out it will be official looking and factual and will not appeal to your emotions and beg you to pass it on to everyone you know.

Many times these e-mails are just an urban legend making the rounds, like the boy who is dying and wants everyone to send him a business card to add to his collection. What dying kid would want business cards? I can understand Legos, video games, a visit from Lebron James, etc. but business cards? I think one key to discerning if an e-mail is legit is by looking at how it ends. Anytime an e-mail ends with the author pleading with you to forward it to everyone you know and says "this is not a joke" about 5 times then you can expect it to be bogus.

I am aware that many people run things through Snopes in an attempt to verify authenticity, but now many of these bogus e-mails even claim to have been cleared through Snopes. By the way, I think Snopes has too much power. It's starting to rival the Bible and the Constitution as the ultimate source of truth for some people.

The exception to these e-mails is anything that originates from Africa and begins with Dear Sir or Madam and entails providing a bank account to temporarily house several million dollars for a recently deposed Ambassador of Uganda. These are usually legit and have worked out well for me in the past.

Just say no to chain e-mails, unless it is an e-mail encouraging people to follow Chaka's world, then go ahead and pass it on. By the way, thanks to all the new followers and those who have referred them. It looks like at this pace I will be sticking around. Just 10 more to go.

19 comments:

Me said...

With the evolution of mail to email..the chain letters get worse with each passing day! It amazes me!

I echo the 'Just Say No To Chain Mail'

Kristina P. said...

I prefer to pass my chain emails through Oprah. If she says they are legit, that's good enough for me.

Bobby G said...

Chain mails are lame, i also just do my shit and not forward it and nothing bad has ever happened to me!

Bee and Rose said...

Chain mails drive me nuts! I just hit delete without even opening them. Even worse are the people who continue to send them when you've asked them to stop!

(gave another wee shout out at my blog today!)

Eric said...

Good post!

I always keep some chain emails handy to fire back at those who send to me. Chain email warfare, it is...

Juls said...

I feel the same way about chain e-mails. YUCk-o
I'm your 91st follower, sent over by the lovely Bee and Rose

I'm at 81 followers... I know how it feels to think "If I could only reach 100..."

Candy's daily Dandy said...

my standard reply to a chain e-mail is as follows:

dee-lete

Kelly said...

Hate the chain letters! There is a lady from church who sends them to me almost daily. Mostly they are politically minded and I just want to tell her so bad that I am not a republican so she will be embarrassed and stop sending me this trash.

As it is I just ignore and move on.

Andrew Rodriguez said...

I actually got an actual paper chain letter, in the mail even! Sure the mailing lable was not lovingly hand written, but it was nice to be scammed with a more human touch, don't you think?

Hillbilly Duhn said...

I like the spam or delete button best. That's usually where those emails end up!

Lana@The Kids Did WHAT?! said...

So... does this mean I haven't won $1,000,000? Or inherited 45,870,000,045.29 rupees? Man. My first visit here and you just suck the fun right out of everything.

(The loverly Dawn from bee and rose sent me on over. I'll be back!!)

Comedy Goddess said...

I hate the "change only one letter and pass it on" Scrabble chain email. Very bad.

Raine said...

Agreed!! I havent heard of Scopes. I use truthorfiction.com but Ill have to check the other one out.

Fancy Schmancy said...

I forward nothing unless it is totally original and extremely funny, which is pretty much nothing any longer. Only 4 more to go! Yay for you!

Sheila said...

Hoppin in to say hi. Great blog, I am following you now. You are SOOOOO close to a 100 now!

DiPaola Momma said...

I'm such a hoe for random faceless stranger "friends" on the web (sound familiar anyone? he he) that I read them ALL! If I deleted them I'd never know that I could dail *67 on my cell phone to see if the cop stopping me was actually a cop and not George Michael looking for a hook up. I'd also NEVER have learned that there was unclaimed cash out there waiting for me if I only entered my social security number into their "secure" database.. and I would have NEVER been able to save Shannon.. who by the way is the step daughter of the digital girlfriend that Pachino had it that saddly Oscar over looked film a few eons back. Viva la crap mail!

Hillbilly Duhn said...

PS - I also spent a large amount of time feeding the silly fish I put on my side bar. LOL!

Mimi Lenox said...

I can't believe after reading that, I'm about to leave an invitation in your comment box that might loosely be interpreted as "spam"....Wait! Hear me out. I promise I'm harmless and nowhere near as lethal as a chain letter.
Smile.

I'd like to invite you to play The Queen's Meme every Tuesday with Mimi Queen of Memes.
The fun begins next week on July 14, 2009. I will send another reminder to everyone on Monday.
The Queen's Meme

I hope you will join us!
Mimi Lenox

miseryandsuffering said...

remember chain letters, in the mail? i miss those.

'mail. it was called mail'
'stamps. envelopes..'
'you know, i've heard of it!'