I was rolling through Facebook the other day when “free money” caught my eye. What caught my eye next was the small word in the upper left: “Sponsored.” What used to simply be labeled “advertising.”
What was being advertised was – supposedly – a new nationwide program that returned up to $3,708 to people as part of a stimulus program. The “person” who posted this said it was on Fox News.
With the text were pictures of two checks. Each of them had the bank on which they were drawn out of focus. But they were clear enough to make out “Bank of America,” and the amounts looked like they were $3,700-something.
Having seen all that free money – “Just click the box below” to get started and “see if you qualify.”
Hmmm-hummm. Come to Papa.
Before starting down that rabbit hole, let’s do a bit of research. A few key words turns up a link to AARP, an outfit with the interests of retired people in mind. As it turns out, there are mortgage-relief programs that are administered by the states – but that’s not what all these Internet ads are touting.
The ads are posted everywhere. The “source” of them is varied: Fox News. CNN – or a sort of web site that looks like it may be CNN. The CNN logo is never used. But there is a news…