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'Like' and 'Share' Harvesting Hoax - Boy Beaten for Liking One Direction

Outline
Facebook message that features an image of a boy supposedly beaten around the face with a piece of wood claims that he has been bullied all his life and now beaten because he is a fan of the band One Direction. The message claims that "all face companies" will donate $10 per like and $50 per share to help pay for the boy's surgery.

One Diection Boy Bullied Hoax

Depositphotos.com/Yu Lan



Brief Analysis
The message is just a silly and very poorly constructed hoax designed to trick Facebook users into liking various Facebook Pages and sharing their bogus material. The photograph is quite obviously staged and does not depict a real injury. No company will donate money to help this boy just for liking or sharing. The purpose of the hoax is to gather "like and "shares" under false pretenses. If it comes your way, do not like or share the image. And let the poster know that the message is a hoax.

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Example
This poor boy was bullied most of his life and then beaten with a 4x2. All because he liked One direction. He is in hospital but he can't pay for his surgery. All face companies have agree to donate $10 for every like. and $50 for every share.
please don't ignore.

[ Like >[ page name removed] to see disturbing video ]

Boy Bullied One Direction


Detailed Analysis
This Facebook driven message, which features an image of a young lad who has supposedly been beaten with a piece of wood, claims that "all face companies" will donate $10 per "like" and $50 per "share" to help the boy pay for surgery. According to the post, the boy in the picture has been bullied all his life and has now also been beaten because he likes the band, "One Direction".





However, the message is just another nonsensical Facebook like and share hoax. And, this one is even more stupid and transparent than other hoaxes in the genre. The supposed beating depicted in the image is quite obviously staged and poorly staged at that. The "blood" on the boy's face looks very fake indeed. And despite an apparent beating with a thick piece of wood, the boy's glasses are still intact and on his face and there is no other signs of bruising or injuries. Also, given that One Direction has only been active since 2010, the claim that the boy - who was clearly born much earlier than 2010 - has been bullied "all his life" for liking the band is just a little hard to swallow.

Moreover, the claims that a company would donate as much as $10 per like and $50 per share is simply ridiculous. Such a charity campaign would very quickly spiral out of control leaving the said "face companies" obligated to hand over very large sums of money indeed.

The rather obscure reference to "all face companies" is seemingly derived from a phrase in an earlier hoax that claimed that "all Facebook companies" would donate money to help an injured child each time users shared a message.

So, why, you may ask, would anyone go to the trouble of creating such a silly hoax? Apparently, the hoax is an attempt by Facebook like-whores to trick the unwary into liking their dubious pages and promoting their interests further by sharing messages. The example included above attempts to get people to like a particular teen related page. As further incentive, it promises users access to a "disturbing video". Another version tacks on the claim that users must also click a link to show "full support". The link leads to a suspect Facebook Page that has no connection whatsoever to the supposed beating case.

The like-whores who create such hoaxes are intent on garnering large numbers of likes for a particular Facebook Page. A Page with high numbers of likes can be later sold to other marketers or used to promote products or services to a large audience. Some such Pages also include links to dodgy websites designed to trick users into participating in bogus surveys in the hope of winning further prizes. 

If this hoax comes your way, do not like or share the message. Do not click any links that it contains. And tell the person who posted the message that it is a hoax.

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Last updated: April 2, 2013
First published: April 2, 2013
Written by Brett M. Christensen
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References
Xbox 720 Bogus Facebook Giveaway
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