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Cagier than scammers, more savvy than spammers

Somebody will do it out of sheer curiosity.

The persistence of Spam
The persistence of Spam

Dear Hipster:
I have one of #lifeslittlemysteries for you. HOW IS SPAM STILL A THING? I know of literally NOBODY who has ever bought sexytime drugs from an email, yet somebody is always keeping my spam filter occupied. Why does this continue when proven ineffective?
— Janelle

Dear Sir and madams,
Have a good day! At the end of this month, Our company would like show you a favor to the new customer. if you confirm the try order in one month. We would like to show you a good price for our Led Gloves. The prices are directly ship to your hand by DHL express. pls check enclosed Bill for your ref . Just for sevral hundred dollars for your try order ? it is a small invest for you . I promise you should happy for this try order . look forward to hear from you . thanks a lot!
— Janice Cai, fancyglow.com

I’m afraid I have no answer for the first query. I was arranging complicated, international bank transfers to pay for 800 LED gloves. How lucky am I that Ms. Cai chose me, one hipster among the quarter-billion internet users in this country? Don’t be sore, friends, I’ll let you borrow some of my LED gloves if you ask super nice. Soon, everybody will be wearing them, but only I will have been into them before they were cool.

We in the business of paying attention to these phenomena have heard the story before: spam persists because the spammers’ efforts pay off if only 1 out of every 12 million emails nets a response. We assume that it’s just the occasional oldster getting duped into buying medicines that induce finest sexytimes. After all, scams that prey on the elderly have been around for ages.

I don’t buy it.

Nobody gets “fooled” into buying 200 pairs of LED gloves at $3.19 a pop. But, somebody will do it out of sheer curiosity.

My friend once ordered a carpet cleaner from a midnight infomercial. Knowing full well that the product was a 99-percent waste of money, he couldn’t resist. He neither wanted nor needed it, but, once piqued, his curiosity demanded satisfaction.

I have other friends who went to the Lawrence Welk Resort time-share sales pitch scam in Escondido filled with the knowledge that they were walking right into a bait-and-switch scheme! Later, they said they figured they could extract something from the trip, since they considered themselves cagier than the scammers.

I know my samples of one carry little weight, but there’s some allure in signing up for a known scam because you think there’s a minuscule chance it might turn into a good deal, and since you know it’s a scam you can protect yourself from getting ripped off. There’s this little white lie, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, “It’s different for me, because I am special.” And if you think that applies only to internet spam, well, clearly you’ve never found yourself wearing an ironic T-shirt, getting a tattoo of a mustache on your finger, scouring thrift shops for obscure vinyl, or drinking kale juice in an effort to stand out from the crowd.

In a weird way, we capitulate to the occasional spammy request because we love ourselves and think we are great. That’s weirdly heartwarming, and I’m actually kind of okay with it.

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The persistence of Spam
The persistence of Spam

Dear Hipster:
I have one of #lifeslittlemysteries for you. HOW IS SPAM STILL A THING? I know of literally NOBODY who has ever bought sexytime drugs from an email, yet somebody is always keeping my spam filter occupied. Why does this continue when proven ineffective?
— Janelle

Dear Sir and madams,
Have a good day! At the end of this month, Our company would like show you a favor to the new customer. if you confirm the try order in one month. We would like to show you a good price for our Led Gloves. The prices are directly ship to your hand by DHL express. pls check enclosed Bill for your ref . Just for sevral hundred dollars for your try order ? it is a small invest for you . I promise you should happy for this try order . look forward to hear from you . thanks a lot!
— Janice Cai, fancyglow.com

I’m afraid I have no answer for the first query. I was arranging complicated, international bank transfers to pay for 800 LED gloves. How lucky am I that Ms. Cai chose me, one hipster among the quarter-billion internet users in this country? Don’t be sore, friends, I’ll let you borrow some of my LED gloves if you ask super nice. Soon, everybody will be wearing them, but only I will have been into them before they were cool.

We in the business of paying attention to these phenomena have heard the story before: spam persists because the spammers’ efforts pay off if only 1 out of every 12 million emails nets a response. We assume that it’s just the occasional oldster getting duped into buying medicines that induce finest sexytimes. After all, scams that prey on the elderly have been around for ages.

I don’t buy it.

Nobody gets “fooled” into buying 200 pairs of LED gloves at $3.19 a pop. But, somebody will do it out of sheer curiosity.

My friend once ordered a carpet cleaner from a midnight infomercial. Knowing full well that the product was a 99-percent waste of money, he couldn’t resist. He neither wanted nor needed it, but, once piqued, his curiosity demanded satisfaction.

I have other friends who went to the Lawrence Welk Resort time-share sales pitch scam in Escondido filled with the knowledge that they were walking right into a bait-and-switch scheme! Later, they said they figured they could extract something from the trip, since they considered themselves cagier than the scammers.

I know my samples of one carry little weight, but there’s some allure in signing up for a known scam because you think there’s a minuscule chance it might turn into a good deal, and since you know it’s a scam you can protect yourself from getting ripped off. There’s this little white lie, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, “It’s different for me, because I am special.” And if you think that applies only to internet spam, well, clearly you’ve never found yourself wearing an ironic T-shirt, getting a tattoo of a mustache on your finger, scouring thrift shops for obscure vinyl, or drinking kale juice in an effort to stand out from the crowd.

In a weird way, we capitulate to the occasional spammy request because we love ourselves and think we are great. That’s weirdly heartwarming, and I’m actually kind of okay with it.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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