*takes a deep breath and exhales*
Ok...I think I'm at a point where I can finally wrap my head around this topic to comment on it without typing cuss words out of sheer disbelief and frustration. This topic has been in the media quite a bit lately with the emergence of the MTV show, the sad, pitiful story of Notre Dame football player Manti T'eo, and as I type this I'm watching a Dr. Phil show on the very subject. Internet schemers, "Catfish", online hoaxers... I have but one question for these poor, desperate, gullible souls "WHAT THE &%#* WERE YOU THINKING? (I had to resort to cartoon cussing tho)
Now I'm not saying there is anything wrong with making friends via social media. I'm woman enough to admit I met a few men back in my late college days and when I first moved to Atlanta on Black Planet, Yahoo, and the likes. But that was back in the day when online profiling was new and technology wasn't what it was today. Most people didn't have digital cameras, so in order to post a pic chances are you had to scan an actual picture in the computer lab, save that scan to a square disc and take it to another compute to upload it which took quite a bit of effort. If someone didn't have a picture up yet, they either went to a school that didn't have the technology or they weren't that attractive. (Honestly there were some folks we wished didn't scan in a picture, but those are the ones who always had tons of pics. Mud ducks!)
But back to my point... Fast forward to present day. For as long as I can remember since having an email address for the last 15 plus years we have been getting these chain emails about Nigerian scammers, and yet people are still falling for them. I consider myself a pretty trusting person but I'm also not stupid, which seems to be the only word I can use to describe the people that find themselves wrapped up in these predicaments. Even when I meet someone in person I'm asking all sorts of questions, and doing my due diligence before I go out on a first date. Where are you from? What school did you go to? Where do you go to church? What do you do? Who your people? Oh you're around my cousin's age and they went to school with somebody who went to that high school... Oh I'm playing Six degrees of Separation to put the pieces together. So it baffles me how you can fall for someone sight unseen to point you're lauding your exclusive relationship status and you're sending them money. There is absolutely no reason you should be in a relationship with someone you've met online never met someway, somehow. Cell phones have cameras, computers have Skype, OoVoo, you can Google most people and something will come up. I don't think I would be involved in this kind of foolishness but if I did, I would be asking for a cell phone picture every day and random times and looking for details. Why are you always dressed to the nines, I need a timed stamped pic of you in a wife beater so I know it's you dude! Gents, ask her to send you a time stamped pic of her in a velcro head wrap so you know she's legit. Skype me in your workout clothes or PJ's so I know it's real. Dudes you need to know the voice on the phone saying she's in bed with rollers is the same person you're gonna see on that screen. I've never heard of a girl lowering her voice to get another girl, but I can't even start on these guys creating effeminiate voices to trick dudes.That's provoking wrath and you're trying to catch a beat down. Catfish ain't documenting the whole story cause I need to see more beat downs!!! Even in this day and age distance shouldn't be a concern. If you can send a person hundreds or thousands dollars over 2 plus years, surely you can benefit from the Priceline Negotiator to get a plane ticket and/or a hotel.
This lady on Dr. Phil had given her internet lover (which turned out to be a Nigerian scam) $30,000 over 7 months. This clown was writing her emails laced with broken english and confusing responses (because he didn't understand her part of the conversation), yet you wired him a total of $30,000. How crazy does this make you look??? You can't even blame that on the flesh because you've never even seen this person in the flesh!!! You can't even say you were "whipped" and blinded by the booty!!! Lord help her if she ever experienced him in all his "Africanness", then I might be able to cut her a little slack. (yep, I went there cause you did too...GOODBYE!) $30,000 in this economy...that's more than a lot of folks make in a year. Perhaps the US government should make a few dummy profiles and find some of these desperate folks who have nothing better to do than send money to internet lovers. I just gave Congress the answer to the teetering "fiscal cliff". You're welcome America!