frustrated computer user

Are Facebook Ads Really This Easy for Scammers to Abuse?

A moment ago, whilst engaged in my usual Facebook creeping routine, my eyes were drawn to one of the advertisements; as often is the case. I have long since accepted that Facebook is more aware of my interests than me. Being a dirt poor college student, however, I never actually click them. This ad was special though. It was advertising something free.

Spoiler alert: it was a scam.

Before you judge me as an inept webizen of these United Internets, I’ll have you know this petty scam did not get the better of me. Though, it came closer than any which preceded it.

Here’s why. Upon reading the ad’s entirety, the thought that it might be a scam hadn’t crossed my mind. Facebook, with it’s sleek, simple-but-dynamic charm instilled me with a false sense of security. Surely, a website with which I have such history wouldn’t usher me toward anything malicious. Especially not with all my friends around.

Oh, and also because what it was advertising put me in an excited unthinking frenzy. The potential to obtain a pre-release copy of Grand Theft Auto V. Gimme a minute, I gotta watch that trailer again.



Yeah, it’s gonna be the tits.

So you can imagine the extent of my enthusiasm when I spotted this deceptive little bastard of a GTA V Facebook Ad.



If I’m not mistaken, it seems this Facebook advertisement purports to be created by Rockstar Games with the intent to find beta testers for their new awesome video game. Once the webpage it linked to opened, the implication was the same, despite a less convincing presentation than the ad. Blinded by desire, it wasn’t until I read its directions that I could no longer suppress the stinging realization that I wouldn’t be beta-testing Grand Theft Auto V for Rockstar.

Other than the words “Congratulations Visitor from Facebook” it scrawled upon my browser’s header, obviously written by either a foreigner or a robot, there seemed to be a certain urgency to its words. As though it wanted me to dart through the process in a careless haste. As though it sensed my yearning to do so.

Upon doing a Google search of the webpage, http://gamergiveaway.net/l/gtav-giveaway/2/, my suspicions were confirmed.

Here’s the actual page it took me to. I’m probably almost certain it’s safe to visit.

Since it likely won’t be up long, here’s a screenshot too.

As you’ve observed, this clearly wasn’t set up by GTA’s publisher. The absence of Rockstar logos, the tacky green text against black background, and the presence of what has to be the sorriest attempt at a faux ‘verified site’ icon that could possibly have been produced are all indicators that some Russian teenager threw it together in a hurry between being cold, and, well… being cold. What else do you think there is to do in Russia? Be cold and scam Americans. That’s it. Oh, and pretend Anna Chapman is attractive.

Ohh, but I kid the Russians.

I must say, I’m quite proud I was able to resist what was a tenacious urge to give every bit of my info to this insalubrious website. Way to go me.

This near-catastrophe left me with a question regarding Facebook’s ad policy. Namely, whether or not they have one.

They do. The next inquiry I faced was how effectively they enforce the ad policy. Since I never click the ads, it’s never been an issue. This being a harder question to answer, I was brought to write this in hopes that my fellow bloggers could share any experiences they’ve had with Facebook ad scams. I wanna find out just how big an issue this is over there.


Update: Grand Theft Auto V Facebook Ad Scam Still Running

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PoliticsNation

Rev. Al Sharpton’s Blueberry Pie Promo (VIDEO)

Al Sharpton loves blueberry pie. And metaphors.

Sharpton has been anchoring PoliticsNation on MSNBC for about four months now. Obviously, he’s earned his own promo. There’s no way in hell Sharpton is wasting it in a nasty shipyard like Ed. Not the great Reverend Al Sharpton. He’s gonna stick with what he loves.

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The American Lung Association’s Baby Wheezing Commercial

Holy balls. I just saw this advertisement on TV by the American Lung Association.

Yeah, holy balls. What an adroit use of babies as a mechanism for guilt.

I say bravo to the American Lung Association for two reasons. The first, but not foremost, of which is the fact this wasn’t an anti-tobacco commercial. Props to them for focusing on a factor effecting American’s lung health other than cigarettes.

The second reason, of course, is the fact that they’re airing thirty seconds of straight baby coughing on national television. That’s hardcore.

This mysterious gene often results in death.

Female Drivers

Okay, so this may evoke a few negative emotions from some of ya’ll. But oh well; it’d be disingenuous for me not to post it just because of what others may think.

Why the hell do we issue driver’s licenses to females? On the real. That shit blows my mind.

First off, don’t pin the misogynist tail on my ass right away. This has nothing to do with discrimination. It’s about common sense. Women are horrible fucking drivers. See what I did there? That’s bolded, italicized, AND underlined – AND followed by a ‘fucking.’ I think I’ve made my point.

Oh, but of course. My fancy textual ornamentation isn’t enough. Women desire elegance and wisdom. How vacuous of me. Now where was I?

Ummm… Oh yeah! This has nothing to do with discrimination. It’s about common sense.

Clearly there is something programmed deep within females’ genetic coding which, from the moment they enter a driver’s seat to the point they exit, cripples rational thought. It’s probably similar to the gene in deers that causes them to freeze when a vehicle is barreling directly towards them.

This mysterious gene kills.

It’s as though they lose the ability of depth perception once the engine starts. Every decision is hectically mulled over, and eventually executed a half second after no longer being a safe decision.

Example: Female driver preparing to turn left out of a parking lot onto a divided four-lane road. A mini-seisure of hesitation is brought on by the arduous task of judging whether or not the cars coming from either side will reach the intersection before completing the left turn. The cars are about ten seconds from reaching the intersection, and the turn will take about three. The mini-seisure lasts just long enough for the gap in traffic to close. Everyone in the car has long since assumed the driver has decided to wait for the next openingWHEN ALL OF A SUDDEN SHE GUNS IT!!!

Next thing you know, everything is moving in slow motion as Death’s boney index finger scathes the peach-fuzz on your Adam’s apple. “Holy fucking shit! What the fuck was that that!?!?,” the passengers curiously exclaim, “Why didn’t you just go in the first fucking place?!?!”

Humorous. Quirky. Cute, even. Right?

Wrong.

Female are none of those things whilst driving… Tripping over your high-heels at a formal event is humorous. Rapping Lil Wayne’s abhorrently misogynistic lyrics every time one of his songs comes on is quirky. Playing with your hair when you’re bored is cute.

It's funny 'cuz high-heels are stupid. (© StyleCaster.com)

Guess why? Because those things don’t result in multiple deaths every single fucking day. While, on the other hand, a small city’s worth of people are killed in car accidents every year. In fact, I take back what I said earlier about discrimination having nothing to do with it. It is discrimination. Discrimination in the name of saving lives.

But, alas, I have no hard evidence to support these grievances. On the contrary, most empirical data indicates the opposite. Of course, empirical data can’t take into account the male who swerves out of the way of an inept female into another male… But I digress. I could sit here all day and go through a litany of theoretical examples illustrating females’ inferior driving abilities without anything being accomplished.

Luckily, I’m a man of action. And ideas. Ideas first though, then action.

My idea? Revoke the licenses of every female in the United States for two years. Two years, that’s it. If traffic fatalities don’t decrease substantially after those two years, ya’ll can have them back.

That’s not it, though. I’m all about fairness. Here’s the part that the ladies will actually like: in the highly unlikely instance that no visible downward trend of traffic fatalities occurred during those two years, male’s licenses will be revoked for two years.

See? Totally fair. I should run for office.

Holy Effing Fuck

Have you ever set aside a food item or sugary beverage only to totally forget about it? And then you find it like four or five months later swarming with life? Like, not just a couple ants, but an actual array of taxonomically distinguishable biological entities?

This blog is that food item or sugary beverage. I haven’t logged-in in months, and I return to find that people are actually reading my shit. Less than a hundred views away from 15,000, with about 80-100 views per day on average.

Not to say that my readers are similar to mold and insects, just that they’re analogous to them – in this case, at least. Sure, mold and insects are nasty. But what isn’t nasty is life.

See what I did there? You were all: “I ain’t no moldy-ass insect,” and then I was all: “I know, ‘moldy-ass insect’ was meant to be representative of the miracle of life – which is what I was comparing you to,” then you were like: “Ohh word, you’re so awesome, man.”

Anyway, I find this new development rather exciting. If I’m not mistaken, I have pledged to begin writing regularly again in like my last two or three posts, so I won’t do that again simply because present James can make no predictions of what future James’s actions will be. I do have a few good marijuana-related ideas so I’ll probably end up doing those, but other than that I can make no promises.

Summer So Far

I’m in the mood to write right now. Accordingly, I’m going to try to assemble a readable description of my summer so far. I’ll start from the beginning, right around the time I stopped posting on this blog.

The feasibility of acquiring an internship being ambiguous, I accepted the job offered to me by my previous summer employer, whom I worked for the two consecutive summers prior. It’s a solid job at a small summer day-camp where I lifeguard and teach swim lessons to varying-aged groups of children throughout the day; I was to be hired as the “manager” (I put manager in quotes because there’s three guards other than myself). It involves working Monday through Friday from 9:30am to 3:00pm.

Let me take this opportunity to acknowledge the fear present in the hearts of my readers with children. You can rest easy knowing that I genuinely love the children very much and am extremely responsible when it comes to them.

And by “love”, I mean “fear”; and by “children” I mean “parent’s lawyers”, but the effect is the same.

So after committing to this job, I learned of an internship opportunity at a local radio station in my home town. Actually, it’s a company which owns a couple radio stations.

I really wanted to do an internship this summer as the only other alternatives were to do one during either Fall or Spring Semester, which I definitely didn’t wanna do. So about a week before my Summer job started, I began interning for them.

And so hence the position I find myself in now. The lifeguarding job, while stressful, is wholly uninteresting. There’s not really a whole lot going on during it for me to come home and want to write about it.

It’s just boring.

I come in, wait for screaming children to arrive, teach the younger ones how to swim, teach the older ones how to swim better, make sure none of them drown, go home. The other lifeguards are cool, but they’re just as bored as I am. The worst part is that, while boring, it can still be rather exhausting. It’s not construction work, but it’s not the same as most lifeguard jobs, which involve a lot of sitting around in the sun.

Oh yeah, and that’s the other thing. It’s an indoor pool. Do you know how much it sucks to work at an indoor pool during the summer? Let’s just say you can breath easier in a storm cloud. At least storm clouds don’t include noxious pool chemical particulates.

It’s not good for the “creative process” so to speak.

Working at the radio station is mostly pretty cool, except I’m usually so drained by the humid monotony of the lifeguarding job to fully enjoy it and be at my best.

The best slash worst slash best again part of working in radio are the people you meet when one or both of the stations goes out to events.

First and foremost, one of the stations is a contemporary country music station; the listener-base is “redneck” with a side of “southern redneck” and little bits and pieces of “racist redneck” sprinkled on top. So when we sponsor an event or do a broadcast remote, only the most dedicated of the station’s redneck constituency are in attendance.

So out of that sub-constituency of listeners who actually show up, the ones charismatic enough to come up and talk to us are the ones I get to interact with.

Often throughout life, when I’ve seen a person doing a typical redneck impersonation, I’ve thought to myself “Ahhh, they’re not really that bad…”

They’re worse.

It’s as if they’re making fun of the way they talk and act simply by talking and acting. If, within the crowd of rednecks at these events, there were five comedians doing blatantly cliche and offensive impersonations of rednecks, the rednecks and I would be none the wiser.

So that’s what I’ve been up to.

Enter title here (part two)

I think that my house does to my creative spirit what nuclear radiation does to living tissue. Hence my failure to write anything since I’ve been here other than the last post.

It’s a shame, too. Because I really do have a lot to share. If you were entertained in the slightest by any of my past bloggings, you’d be interested in reading what I’m seemingly unable to write.

I started this post in the hopes that my fingers would poop out something worthwhile, but so far it seems to just be poop. I start working with children this Monday, while continuing my radio station internship. So it’s likely something will happen this week that I must write about. I’m not giving up! (yet).

Umm… Remember Me?

Okay, so as those of you who used to read this blog (before I took this increda-long unannounced hiatus)… ………..

……..

I actually have no idea where I was going with that sentence. Let me try again.

My apologies to those of you who…

Wait… my apologies? How egotistical of me to assume that you guys were affected to such a negative degree by my lack of blogging that you must be apologized to. Hold on let me try one more time.

These past few days or weeks or however long it’s been since that last SEAK (Search Engine Ass Kissing [not to be confused with Search Engine Optimization, which entails integrity on the part of the writer]) can be described by use of roughly 80-85% of all negative adjectives in the American language. (And for the record, yes: I speak American, not English).

Basically any and all positive emotions I hold in regards to writing were sucked out through my pores and manifested into very dry, boring, monotonous writings having to do with constitutional law, the institutionalized mechanics of Congress, communications research, and (of course) John McCain (whom, as the least boring U.S. Senator, I chose as my object of study).

Sooo here I am, putting together a horribly composed blog post explaining why I haven’t been blogging. Which is one of the least fun forms of blog posts to both write and read.

Accordingly, I shall stop writing after stating that, due to both an internship and separate summer job, I most likely will not be updating every day as I was before my final college assignments viscously beat the fuck out of me. So… just putting that out there.

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Personified by the Writings of an Over-Functioning Pothead

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