As the number of my computer-illiterate friends that get an email address grows and grows, the number of mails containing hoaxes that I receive from them increases every day (things like “please forward this mail or the child would die”, “this music group helps financing a terrorist group”, “Mars will be as big in the sky as the moon”, etc). So, yesterday I got one about a restaurant charging 250€ instead of 2.50€ for the recipe of some cookies, giving the name of a real restaurant in Spain. Yolanda did a quick search for that restaurant and found a forum where people were complaining about that, and where one (clever) person pointed everyone to a page explaining the same hoax (word by word) for some restaurant in the US.
So yeah, a typical Internet hoax, you would say, but if I’m blogging about it is because I wondered yesterday what the purpose of these hoaxes is. Is it really just making fun of people? sociological studies? or using this for a revenge against a restaurant/shop/etc? There are clear cases, where you are asked to keep all people in the CC when answering, which seem, to me, related to getting email addresses for spammers, but all these hoaxes where people are just asked to forward the mail to their friends, what’s the purpose of them?
Please ask quick, as I couldn’t sleep last night because of this existential doubt Another thing for further study would be how is it that so many people believe those hoaxes, but I’ll leave that for another time…