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[Contest] "SFWA"

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AC Crispin

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Writer Beware has blogged about a scam writing contest where the crooks had the unmitigated NERVE to use SFWA's name in their scam.

Info can be found here:

http://www.accrispin.blogspot.com/

This is NOT REAL. Has no connection with the real SFWA.

Please pass the warning.

-Ann C. Crispin
Chair,Writer Beware
www.writerbeware.com
SFWA Committee on Writing Scams
Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, Inc.
 

alleycat

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I thought the writer of that was pretty clever, until I got to the part where they only wanted $10 and the check made out to "Science Fiction Writers of America." Why not SFWA and then open a bank account with that DBA name? I guess someone could open one with the complete name, but it seems more risky.

I wonder if this is more of a goof than an actually scam. If it is a scam, they set their sights pretty low. Or maybe they think they'll get 50,000 entries by offering such large prizes.

Anyway, thanks for posting the warning. I'm sure a lot of people could easily be taken in by it.
 

CaoPaux

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I'm just aboggle they could think they'd get away with it. It's on level with blokes who rob a convenience store right after showing ID to buy a six-pack....
 

alleycat

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I'm just aboggle they could think they'd get away with it. It's on level with blokes who rob a convenience store right after showing ID to buy a six-pack....
My favorite story in that vein is the guy who tried to rob a bank and used the back of one of his own deposit slips to write the demand note that he gave to the teller.

Gosh, if you can't even do crime correctly, what's left?
 

soma

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I wonder if this is more of a goof than an actually scam. If it is a scam, they set their sights pretty low. Or maybe they think they'll get 50,000 entries by offering such large prizes.
This could also have been a Poetry.com-esque setup where the "prizes" would be awarded to people already in cahoots with the fake publisher so that they wouldn't have to pay out. As a money making scan it sounds pretty mundane, but I can believe the idea of a few collaborators trying to gather funding for their self-publishing project by holding a fake contest and then awarding the prizes to themselves.
 

Gillhoughly

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He is literally "banking" on the fact that his victims are more likely to blow off losing 10.00 than to talk a lawyer into suing him.

Ditto for the Feds to prosecute for such a meager amount, though it may add up to much more than that multiplied by 100's of victims.

He's likely got an account open as "SFWA," and soon as a check clears he transfers/withdraws the cash. Heck, he could be across the street from the bank at a Wifi coffee shop, keeping track of the account and transfering funds as they happen.

The creep.
 

Alessandra Kelley

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I thought the writer of that was pretty clever, until I got to the part where they only wanted $10 and the check made out to "Science Fiction Writers of America." Why not SFWA and then open a bank account with that DBA name? I guess someone could open one with the complete name, but it seems more risky.

I wonder if this is more of a goof than an actually scam. If it is a scam, they set their sights pretty low. Or maybe they think they'll get 50,000 entries by offering such large prizes.

Anyway, thanks for posting the warning. I'm sure a lot of people could easily be taken in by it.

Actually, the low entry fee makes it more likely that this is a scam than an oversight. Someone who spends $1000 or $100 or even $50 on a scam is likely to try to get his or her money back. Losing $10, fewer people are going to wish to go through the fuss and unpleasantness and embarrassment of trying to get their money back.

Also, I believe people are more likely to enter competitions with what seem to be low entry fees.

The internet is a big place, and there clearly are a lot of hopeful writers. This is the sort of thing that can hoover up a lot of cash in the aggregate.
 

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