Are You Sharing a Hoax

by RevMark

FB-fLogo-Blue-broadcast-2You’ve seen them. A post on Facebook or an email; a post with a picture of a little kid, a cool RV; a political figure groping somebody on a stage. They might even show logos from a popular news website. It seems important and it really shows how you feel about the particular subject. Well, not all is the truth. Especially in these tough political times.

So, the hoax-revealing site posted 5 tell tail signs that you are about to share is a hoax. I have added some and edited some. Please note that is not related to the French site So if you see any of these in your feed or email, please for the love of all things internet-webs, don’t share or forward it!

Facebook Hoaxes (Posts in Your Feed)

In a recent study at the University of Sydney (Australia), they have determined that most of young people, 16-29 years old, get their news from their Facebook feed. Which is why these hoaxters post these bogus news stories, knowing that these LIP’s (Low Information People) will click, like or friend these posts/posters.

The posts come in several formats. They look legit. I personally have been duped several times (so no condemnation here!) by these wretched things.

  • The Bogus News Story
  • The Bogus Give-Away or Free
  • The Mark Zuckerberg is giving his money away
  • The Bogus Facebook Feature Installer
  • The Bogus Making a Pseudo-Legal Statement to Protect your privacy
  • The Bogus Sympathy Post

The Bogus News Story

The Bogus News Story has really become popular today because of the current unrest around the world. Praying upon the political leanings of the person reading the post, the hoaxsters love you.

These stories range from Former First Lady and Presidential Candidate, Hillary Clinton groping a younger man on stage. This one is funny because it is very obvious that it is NOT HRC, but Florence Henderson. Secondly, when you click on the image you are taken to a site that has Fox News logos but the URL (that website address) is NOT Fox News but a bogus free blogging website with a bunch of ads.

The Bogus Give-Away or Free

I’m sorry folks but Disney is not giving away 4 Balcony Suites on a Disney Cruise ship because they didn’t sell. RV Vacation is not giving away a $750,000 Prevost Millennium Coach. Nor is some group giving away 100 1970 Super Bee Chargers.

The Mark Zuckerberg / Bill Gates / Mark Cuban Giving Away Their Wealth

Believe me none of these guys are going to giveaway their billions. That is not to say that they all do wonderful philanthropy projects. But they are not gonna give you their money by liking a Facebook post.

The Bogus Facebook Feature Installer

This is generally the ubiquitous “Dislike” Button. When you get this scam in your feed, you will be asked to click on a link to install the button. However, you are taken to a fake Facebook page where you will be asked to like and share the bogus status update, that you got this cool new Dislike Button. But of course by this time, it’s too late you already exposed yourself and no button is installed. This liking and sharing ensures the scam’s continued life as it is now in the feeds of your friends, who will themselves share it.

There seems to be two main versions of this scam. One sends you to a page to “verify your profile”. You will be asked to take part in surveys and reveal your personal information. The scammers then profit from selling your info to data brokers.

The other version of the ruse is that you will be asked to click on a link to get your button, and instead you will get malware, spyware, or even a virus.

The Bogus Making a Pseudo-Legal Statement to Protect your Privacy

Every now and then you will see one of your friends post something that looks like legal jargon, restricting Facebook from using their photos or posts content. :

As of (a date) I do not give Facebook or any entities associated with Facebook permission to use my pictures, information, or posts, both past and future. By this statement, I give notice to Facebook it is strictly forbidden to disclose, copy, distribute, or take any other action against me.


As of (date), I do not give Facebook or any entities associated with Facebook permission to use my pictures, information, or posts, both past and future. By this statement, I give notice to Facebook it is strictly forbidden to disclose, copy, distribute, or take any other action against me based on this profile and/or its contents. The content of this profile is private and confidential information. The violation of privacy can be punished by law (UCC 1-308- 1 1 308-103 and the Rome Statute). NOTE: Facebook is now a public entity. All members must post a note like this. If you prefer, you can copy and paste this version. If you do not publish a statement at least once it will be tactically allowing the use of your photos, as well as the information contained in the profile status updates. DO NOT SHARE. You MUST copy and paste

Hey, Matlock, that’s not how the law works. Publishing that rubbish to your Facebook wall does only one thing: it displays your ignorance to the world.

When you signed up for Facebook, there were clear terms and conditions you agreed to, and posting something to your wall doesn’t change that, as several lawyers have noted over the years.

If you actually want to discuss what Facebook can use and what it can’t, you need to individually negotiate that with them. Otherwise, if you want to control all your data, the only option is to quit Facebook entirely.

The Bogus Sympathy Post

Molly Shen with has an excellent quick post on this, which basically says there are scammers that will steal photos and post them as their own with either bogus story or maybe even a valid incident but they redirect the click, like or share of their own post. Then once they get enough likes, and shares they will strip all the sympathy photos and put in links to a product. At this point they get paid for all the likes and then the purchase of the product or service. But by this time the original sympathy post is long gone and forgotten about and they make money off your sympathy. I have posted many times on this myself.

All of these are in fact are “Like Farming”. But here are some excellent posts on the topic.

If you follow the MORE link below I have some older Email hoaxes explained.

EMAIL Hoaxes (Subject Lines)


The e-mail will have a great sense of urgency! You’ll usually see a lot of exclamation points and capitalization. The subject line will typically be something like: 

  • URGENT!!!!!!
  • WARNING!!!!!!
  • IMPORTANT!!!!!!
  • VIRUS ALERT!!!!!!
  • THIS IS NOT A JOKE!!!!!! 


There will always be a request that you share this “important information” by forwarding the message or sharing it to everybody in your e-mail address book or friends list or to as many people as you possibly can. This is a surefire sign that the message is a hoax. 


If they have to tell you it’s not a hoax . . . It probably is. The body of the e-mail may contain some form of corroboration, such as a pseudoquote from an executive of a major corporation or government official.  The message may include a sincere-sounding premise, such as this, for example: “My neighbor, who works for Microsoft, just received this warning so I know it’s true. He asked me to pass this along to as many people as I can”. 

Sometimes the message will contain a link to Snopes to further confuse people. The references to Snopes are just red herrings, though, meant only to give a sense of legitimacy to the hoax (hoping you will not actually check it). The author knows that lots of folks will believe it because they see it in print and won’t bother to really check it for themselves. Anyone actually bothering to check the story with Snopes would, of course, discover that it was not true. Hoax writers count on folks being too lazy (or just plain dumb enough, not) to verify those stories before they hit the forward button. It’s all a bunch of baloney. Don’t believe it for a second. 

Watch for e-mails containing a subtle form of self-corroboration. Statements such as “This is serious!” or “This is not a hoax!” can be deceiving. Just because somebody says it’s not a hoax doesn’t make it so. 


The e-mail text will predict dire consequences if you don’t act immediately. You are led to believe that a missing child will never be found unless the e-mail is forwarded immediately. It may infer that someone won’t die happy unless they receive a bazillion business cards. Or it may state that a virus will destroy your hard drive and cause green fuzzy things to grow in your refrigerator. 


Look for a lot of >>>> marks in the left margin. These marks indicate that people suckered by the hoax have forwarded the message countless times before it has reached you. 

  • >> >>>Subject: READ IMMEDIATELY AND PASS ON! >>> >>>
  • >>>Card for You”. >>> >>>


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