Thursday, May 11, 2006

Greedy People fooled by 419 scams

A fascinating article from the New Yorker about a guy who got scammed by Nigerian 419-ers (the old Abacha swiss bank account email), but as the article mentions "You can't cheat an honest man." As I was reading the article, I just couldn't help but be impressed by the brilliant subversiveness of these scammers, who have perfected the art of ambiguity between fiction and reality. Of course, they should be arrested and stop giving Nigeria a bad name, but I can't help admiring their talent (and feeling rather sorry for the sort of obsessive compulsive yet arrogant person who would fall for such a scam--got what he deserved probably, but what mental torment to keep gambling and gambling because you can't stop, you're so desperate to make things right again)!

Another thing that might be an interesting conceptual art/literary project at some point is to collect as many variations on the scam emails and make them into some kind of coffee table/art book. I'd be interested...

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