The Hunting of the Snark

11/05/2010

At last we know whom we can trust

Filed under: Snarky — Jeremy Irish @ 16:05
Tags: , , , , , ,

This just in:

Date: Tue, 11 May 2010 15:01:03 +0300 (EAT)
Subject: SCAM ALERT…
From: “DR. DAVID IKENNA”

NIGERIAN FOREIGN PAYMENT INVESTIGATION AGENCY
ANTI- TERRORISM
CLEARANCE/FRAUD UNIT
FALOMO OFFICE COMPLEX IKOYI
LAGOS-NIGERIA.
Motto:Security watch

FROM THE DESK OF :
DR. DAVID B. IKENNA
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
FORIEGN PAYMENT AGENCY
CABLEGRAM: NAPTCOR

Good Day,

RE: FRAUD ALERT/FINAL NOTICE

Based on our findings in this investigation department we wish to warn you
against some Miscreants, Hoodlums and Touts who go about scamming innocent
people by claiming to be who they are not and thereby tarnishing the image
of this wonderful country. We were informed that some Hoodlums are
contacting you in respect to the collection of your fund which was long
approved in your favour with the Central Bank of Nigeria.

As a matter of fact we have been on this investigation assignments for
some time secretly known to no one but the Presidency and some top
government official who are in support of this investigation team to help
stop fraudalent activities in this country and as well restore the image
that has been tarnished by the below listed group of people.

Although we have been able to come up with some good result about the
people that have extorted money from you illegally and I wish to list them
so that you will personally indicate them by writing back to us with the
name of whom scammed you among them as we want to make sure your payment
is routed to you without any further delay and note that we will surely
deal and bring to book the names of people below if only you will
cooperate with us by co indicating correctly any of them.

… (etc etc etc) …

Finally, we are expecting to hear from you today unfailingly so as to
enable us serve you better and wire your funds into your Bank account as
nominated. Thank you very much for your anticipated co-operation and
understanding while we wait for your urgent response.

Yours sincerely,

DR. DAVID B. IKENNA.
(Director, Nigerian Foreign Payment Investigation department)

07/05/2010

Re: Fwd: Fwd: fw: fwd: FWD: Your forward

Filed under: Snarky — Jeremy Irish @ 07:00
Tags: , , , , , ,

To: A.Friend
From: Jeremy.Irish
Subject: Re: Fwd: Fwd: fw: fwd: FWD: Your forward
Date: 7 May 2010

Hello,

Thank you for sharing this. I’m glad you enjoyed it and I appreciate your thinking of me when you decided to send it on.

It was indeed amusing/inspirational/touching/intriguing. So I understand why I have been asked to continue passing the message to others who may like it, although that probably is best left to my judgment, don’t you think?

On the other hand, the request to send a copy of it directly back to YOU puzzles me. You’ve seen it already, haven’t you? Do you actually want to read it again that many times? Sending a message with graphics/sound clips/videos uses up a lot of bandwidth and energy, and I feel certain you would agree it’s not good to burn trees for no reason. (To avoid confusion: sending an email ‘back’ takes just as much bandwidth and energy as sending it ‘forward’.) Tell you what, I’ll try hard to send you a quick note or a different forward once in a while instead.

Likewise, it would be very nice to avoid emotional/spiritual/circumstantial blackmail in forwards regarding how I use them—after all, in the distant past, i.e., a couple of weeks ago, it was a complete stranger to me who originally wrote these promises of inner peace/unexpected riches/deep shame/true love. Would you mind just deleting such lines before sending future messages? Not only does it make them nicer and more readable, but it’s a chance for you to demonstrate that you care enough for ME to take those few minutes.

If you have any thoughts about this, I would love to hear a reply from you.

As long as you DON’T simply return this message unedited, I’ll know we are cool.

– The@Snark

02/05/2010

Another way to re-define ‘free’

Since our family live in the US, my wife and I decided to get a broadband package from Orange that includes calls at no additional charge to some popular overseas destinations. And for calling our parents, it works great.

But get this. You know ‘toll-free’ numbers in America—the equivalent of freephone in the UK? When I call one of those, I hear a recording, ‘The toll-free number you have dialled is not toll-free if called from outside the United States. You will be charged at international direct-dial rates. If you do not wish to be charged, please hang up now.’

And it’s true. With this package I’m on:

  1. American toll-free numbers are charged.
  2. American toll numbers are free. Relatively.

It’s only a few pence per minute, and I don’t need to call often, but what gives?

The other thing is that quite a few American companies exclusively use toll-free numbers, perhaps (one might charitably think) out of genuine courtesy to their customers. Their customers resident in America, at any rate.

So I think I’m stuck with this bizarre and mildly obnoxious irony until Orange realises they’re being numpties about it.

– The Snark

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