IT IS OFFICIAL. IT WAS EVEN ON THE NEWS. FACEBOOK WILL START CHARGING DUE TO THE NEW PROFILE CHANGES. IF YOU COPY THIS ON YOUR WALL YOUR ICON WILL TURN BLUE AND FACEBOOK WILL BE FREE FOR YOU. PLEASE PASS THIS MESSAGE ON, IF NOT YOUR ACCOUNT WILL BE DELETED IF YOU DO NOT PAY
The caps heighten your unnecessary sense of doom; however, some of these hoaxes will give you some real, not imagined, problems! Either in Facebook or in eMails you receive, be wary of warnings that quote an authority, or like this one, say it’s “official news”. Some of these are just pranks. Others are more malicious.
What Should You Do?
Think about it. Wouldn’t a large corporation notify you, well in advance, of switching from a free account to a monthly charge? Also, if Facebook really were going to start charging, why would they offer an opt-out plan (as in the above message)?
Check online for the truth, searching for some news sources. I found a current post from Mashable (a good source) which reminds us that Facebook is making billions and doesn’t need to charge. (Facebook actually wants to encourage more people to join in order to generate more income. Keeping Facebook free helps them grow).
What Is The Real Concern?
I also went straight to Snopes.com and discovered the track record of these rumors concerning Facebook. (Snopes is a popular site which is devoted to researching hoaxes… again, this rumor about Facebook is false).
I was surprised to learn that some Facebook rumors of the past even introduced malware on to some computers. According to Snopes:
In December 2009, Facebook users were encouraged to visit a Facebook group to protest a supposed monthly charge. “The protest page was a trap for the unwary; clicking on certain elements of it initiated a script that [took over] their computers [with] a series of highly objectionable images while malware simultaneously attempted to install itself onto their computers”.
It’s a good habit to only pass along Facebook messages or forwarded eMails that you have personally verified. In that way, you won’t spread rumors or even pass malware to others.