Several times a month, I hear about a new scam making the Facebook rounds. Inevitably, they all seem to involve the same pattern: this company is giving away a free gift card (or item) to everyone on Facebook if they like this page!
I don’t always write a new article about it because I would just end up with a template; “There’s a new scam on Facebook, claiming that ____ is giving away $_____ gift cards for liking a page. Don’t do it.” I’d rather just talk about the principle than rehash the specifics every single time.
For one thing, think about the numbers: Ikea is giving away $1,000 gift cards to everyone on Facebook? There are 800 million people on Facebook. That means their budget for this one promotion would be $800 billion. Ikea’s profits in 2010 were “only” 2.7 billion. Heck, the entire GDP of Sweden was $338 billion last year.
But, just in case you’d like a few examples of things you’re not going to get for free just for clicking “like” on a page, here’s a brief list:
- $100 Costco gift card
- $1,000 Ikea gift card
- Amazon.com gift card
- $100 KFC gift card
- $1,000 Walmart gift card
- Free iPad2
- $50 Starbucks gift card
- $25 iTunes gift card
- A free gift card in any amount, or a free trendy high-tech device, from any retailer in the entire Universe, including all possible parallel Universes and/or dimensions, from now until the very end of Time itself (and in all future incarnations thereof if it turns out Time is cyclical and is repeated on a Cosmic infinite loop of some kind), ever, just for “liking” page on Facebook. This includes if you find yourself in a whimsical land of magic and wonder after chasing a white rabbit down a hole, or after hiding in a wardrobe and ending up in a forest and being greeted by the Faun Tumnus.
That last one is a little more general.
The point is: these are scams. They always have been, and they always will be. Don’t “like” the pages, don’t even visit the pages. If you’ve got friends who keep falling for this stuff, tell them it’s a scam. Every single time if you have to. A little public shaming can go a long way.