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In Which I’m Not Typing AMEN

February 16th, 2017 Leave a comment Go to comments

Amen profile


I get it. You’re so religious that you feel the need to tell everyone on Facebook how religious you are because…that will change people’s minds? Ok. So maybe I don’t get it. I’m an atheist and not a joiner. I’m honestly happy and supportive of your religious choices. I’m not an anti-theist. If religion is how you make sense of randomness of the world and it makes you feel better that it was God’s Plan() that three year-old Jimmy shot his baby sister in the head rather than finding a way to prevent that from happening then more power to you.

Was that judgmental? Probably. But here’s the reason why.

Because your obsessive need to make sure that God and social media know how devout you are actually leaves you open to attack by what I guess you’d refer to as “the forces of Satan.” You’re profiling yourself to the bad guys and inviting them into your computer and possibly your bank account.

There has been a “copy and paste” post going around recently about animal abuse. As well as the directive to “Do not share” but instead “copy and paste” this, the post contains a key phrase with incorrectly spelt words.

A person who copies and pastes it can easily be found by searching Google with the operand site:facebook.com “key phrase here”

The potential scammer can now see a long, long list of Facebook users who have copied and pasted the exact message about animal abuse.

Now they have a target list of people who they can be reasonably sure will react to a new post, an new “like” request, a new friend request, or some other “support us” plea that is related to animal abuse….

Key phases to look out for run along these lines:

“don’t scroll without typing amen.”
“if you woke up this morning and you are thankful every day while being bless scroll down and type amen”

Confidence schemes work because the grifter exchanges confidence for money. This is how it works.

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Sadly, too many people have a Pavlovian response to the word Jesus. Using the name “in vain” provokes anger. Using it in praise leads to euphoria. Or vice versa if you’re a non-believer. The nefarious understand this and use it to their advantage. Thus, you get Facebook pages with millions of viewers that do nothing but post pretty memes with bible verses so that the user can…remember they’re Christian? Seriously. I don’t understand it. What I do understand is that the higher the number of likes the higher the probability that someone is counting there money and giggling. I don’t mean to single out Christians per se. The clickbait political sites on both sides of the aisle do the same thing. Any Facebook page with tens of thousands of likes that asks you to like and share rarely cares about what they’re promoting. Each click makes them money and raises their profile. Just to be clear, they’re not all scams. Reputable enterprises turn to this tactic because that’s the tactic that works.

So what’s the difference and why should you care? Because Proctor and Gamble, the ACLU and the GOP are businesses. I Believe In Jesus Christ shouldn’t be. Am I implying that the proprietor of that page isn’t a Christian? No. I’m saying they’re leveraging your belief to make money. Not directly because it doesn’t cost you anything except your personal information and if you’re ok with someone turning your sincere belief into cash money that’s fine. Just understand that when you copy/paste/share that altruism isn’t their top priority. Unless explicitly stated, that money is going into the pockets of the moneychangers in the temple. Even if explicitly stated there’s no guarantee they’re telling the truth. Have you seen Joel Osteen’s many houses? Sincere Christians paid for him to have a temperature controlled wine cellar.

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