Category: Time-Wasters

Any time-wasters not normally classed as scammers or spammers

Those Terrible Time-Wasters

So, what rubbish emails and calls have there been to Brooklands Radio station in the last few days?

A final award notification notice telling me that I’ve won $4.75 million in the Bono Lotto – I must be very lucky – winning a lottery I didn’t even enter. I’ll tell them to donate the money to charity.

A video to watch that warns how my family could end up in a FEMA concentration camp. This is part of a very strange conspiracy theory to do with America’s Federal Emergency Management Agency. Very weird.

An offer to let me join the Millionaire beta testers of the Dubai Lifestyle APP. The APP apparently lets me rake in ‘insane’ profits with just a few mouse clicks – I don’t think so – only the scammers make money.

Apparently I’ve subscribed to a newsletter but it appears to have no name and I need to click on my profile to set preferences. My preference would be for an end to scammers like these ones.

Asda wants me to redeem my £500 Asda gift card. I don’t think so, as it doesn’t exist.

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So Many Pointless Emails and Calls

So, what rubbish emails and calls have there been to Brooklands Radio station in the last few days?

An email telling me that I will save £40 by throwing away my kettle. I just need to replace it with a water boiler. No thanks. I don’t need to live in a café – so I’ll keep the kettle.

An advert for absentee control software and even a 30 day free trial. We’re a volunteer organisation so this is irrelevant and in any case – snooping on staff won’t create loyalty.

A ridiculous scam email. A Dr John Wilson of The Dubai Property Show has arranged for $18 million to be transferred to me by Sky-Line courier. He just needs a set of information first – including name, address, telephone numbers, email address and password, annual income and so on.  Then it goes on to describe the consignment box as being 46m by 52m which is half the size of a football pitch. That’s pretty huge and it weighs only 41 kg apparently. I won’t be taking up this offer.

A new wonder slimming product used by the singer Adele. No chance.

Apparently research has shown how to reverse your hearing loss in 7 days. Doesn’t matter what caused the hearing loss – it can be magically restored. I’ve heard that one before.

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Have You Been Caught Out by Clickbait?

Clickbait is the name for eye catching links  on a website that when you click takes you to a website that has paid for traffic but maybe unrelated to the graphic or text on the link.

Generally these rely on sensationalist headlines or eye-catching thumbnail pictures to attract people to click and to encourage forwarding of the material on social networks. Clickbait headlines typically aim to make people curious enough to make that click.

Why do people want traffic to their website?

The obvious answer is because they believe their website has something worthwhile to offer. But money is also a big reason for many. The more traffic a site appears to have then the higher the charges that can be made for advertising.

The Most Popular Types of Clickbait

1. Lists

e.g. “The Top Ten Celebrity Haircuts” or “The Top Twenty Places in Surrey to Visit”

The user expects this will be a list as described above, but often it’s a page full of adverts with a small reference to one of the top items and the user has to click to get the next one and so on. So, you have to visit lot of pages to see the total list.

2. Humour

Everyone likes a good laugh.

3. Nastiness

e.g. “Celebrities With Ugly Partners”.

This is just sad.

4. Sarcasm

E,g, “12 Reasons Not to Visit New York”

People who like New York want to see what they’ve missed and people who want to know about New York will click to see what to beware of.

5. Kittens and Puppies

Anything that appears ‘cute’ can make large numbers of people click to see more.

6. Pictures of Scantily Clad Women

Using pictures of women dressed in very little is nothing new but it still attracts the attention.

7. Controversy and Shock

Some people will use a falsely controversial headline to lure people in, and then backtrack on the headline in their article.

e.g. “You’re Going to Lose All of Your Customers”

Even if the content is interesting, this just annoys people.

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