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Issue 117 - August 2011 - Page 17

Hoax: Facebook to Start Charging This Summer - Facebook Icon Will Turn Blue

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Outline
Message circulating on Facebook claims that Facebook will soon start charging for access but those who repost the message on their walls will get to keep their free accounts if their Facebook icon turns blue.



Brief Analysis
The claims in the message are totally false. The message is nothing more than an updated version of an old hoax and should not be reposted.

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Detailed analysis and references below example.

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Last updated: 5th July 2011
First published: 5th July 2011
Article written by Brett M. Christensen
About Brett Christensen and Hoax-Slayer


Example
It's official.. signal at 12;20 it even passed on tv. Facebook will start charging this summer.If you copy this on your wall your icon will turn blue and facebook will be free for you. Please pass this message if not your count will be deleted. p.s, this is serious the icon turns blue, So please put this on your wall.

Facebook Blue Icon Hoax




Detailed Analysis
According to this message, which is currently rocketing around Facebook at breakneck speed, Facebook is set to start charging users this summer. The message claims that in order to keep your Facebook account free, you must repost the information to other users. Supposedly, once you have passed on the message, your Facebook icon will turn blue signaling that you account will remain free. Otherwise, warns the message, your account will be deleted.

However, the claims in the message are utter nonsense. Facebook has no plans to start charging users. And, even if they did have such a plan, they certainly would not impose the absurd and ridiculous condition that users must pass on a silly status message in order to keep a free account. In fact, the message is just a revamped version of a whole series of silly hoaxes that have circulated for several years.

Facebook has repeatedly denied rumours that it is about to start charging its users access fees. These utterly unfounded rumours seemingly resurface every few months and are once again passed around Facebook by users who mistakenly believe that the rumours are true.

This version is obviously based on a much older hoax that targeted MSN users as far back as 2006. As the following example reveals, both the new Facebook version and the old MSN version make the utterly absurd claim that an icon will turn blue after you repost the information, thus "saving" your account.
Hey it is Andy and john the directors of MSN, sorry for the interruption but msn is closing down. this is because too many inconsiderate people are taking up all the name (eg making up lots of different accounts for just one person), we only have 578 names left. If you would like to close your account, DO NOT SEND THIS MESSAGE ON. If you would like to keep your account, then SEND THIS MESSAGE TO EVERYONE ON YOUR CONTACT LIST. This is no joke, we will be shutting down the servers. Send it on, thanks. The use of msn and hotmail will cost money from summer 2006. If you send this message to 18 different people from your list your little icon will become blue and that will make it free for you. If you dont believe me go on (www.msn.com) and see it yourself. Dont foward this message copy paste it so people will actually read it.
And the MSN version was itself a mutation of even earlier Hotmail account closure hoaxes that have circulated since at least 2003.

A simple rule of thumb. Any message that claims that a particular online service provider will start charging you or will close your account unless you send on the information to others is certain to be a hoax. If you receive this Facebook version or any of the other versions of this hoax, please do not pass it on to others. Reposting such nonsense does nothing other than clutter social networks and inboxes with even more utterly useless information.

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References
Facebook dismisses rumours of charging plans
False Rumours Claim That Facebook is About to Start Charging Users
MSN 18 Contacts Hoax
Hotmail Account Hoax



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Issue 117 Start Menu

Pages in this month's issue:
  1. FB Security "Hacker" and "Virus" Warning
  2. Hoax: HIV Infected Blood In Pepsi
  3. Advance Fee Scam - Facebook 2011 Sweepstakes Online Lottery
  4. Hugh Hefner is NOT Dead - R.I.P. Hugh Hefner Facebook Virus Warning Hoax
  5. Wrench 3D Printing Viral Video
  6. Fake News Report Falsely Claims Mark Zuckerberg Arrested for Child Molestation
  7. Shutdown Cell Phone Virtual Kidnapping Scam Warning
  8. Facebook 'Virus' Warning - Girl in a Plaid Skirt
  9. Credit Card Overdue Malware Email
  10. Mobile Phone Misinformation - XALAN and #90 Hoax
  11. Hoax Warning: Lost Child Lure - 'New Way for Gang Members to Rape Women
  12. Hoax: Nadia Comaneci's Gymnast Granddaughter Viral Video
  13. 'Facebook Has Sent You a Message' Pharmacy Spam
  14. ''Uniform Traffic Ticket' Malware Email
  15. IRS 'Unable To Process Your Tax Return' Malware Email
  16. Nestle Banana Baby Food Recall Warning
  17. Hoax: Facebook to Start Charging This Summer - Facebook Icon Will Turn Blue
  18. Hoax - Nagasaki Arch Survives Both Atomic Bomb and Tsunami
  19. Alert From Facebook Security Team Phishing Scam
  20. Dollar Bills Stamped With 'NO GOD BUT ALLAH'


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