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Cell Phone Credit

Claim:   Forwarding a text message to ten other people will get you a $60.00 or $160 credit on your cell phone bill.

FALSE

Examples:

[Collected via e-mail, December 2008]

Today I got 3 text messages on my phone stating the following, "SPRINT FREE-MSG: All Sprint Customers send this message to ten people and sprint will credit your account $60.00* both billing or prepayed. enjoy ur holiday"
 

[Collected via e-mail, December 2008]

i just recieved this text message
"AT&T FREE-MSG. Attention! All AT&T Customers send this message to ten people and AT&T will credit your account $60.00. * both billing and prepaid
MERRY CHRISTMAS"
 

[Collected via e-mail, December 2008]

I received the following text this morning. It seems too good to be true.

"Msg: T-MOBILE FREE-MSG.

Attention all T-Mobile Customers send this message to ten people and t-mobile will credit your account 60.00 *both billing or prepaid. Happy Holidays."
 

[Collected via e-mail, December 2008]

I have received 2 text messages, from two different people on my cell phone the message is:

Msg: ALLTEL FREE MSG. Attention! All Alltel customers send this message to ten people and Altel will credit your account $60.
 

[Collected via e-mail, December 2008]

I've received a text message to my phone that says Verizon Wireless will credit $60.00 off of next months bill if I forward the text to 10 people.
 

[Collected via e-mail, December 2008]

I was sent a text yesterday stating:

Sprint together with Nextel: send text to 10 people and get 60.00 dollars of your bill in the next hour.

I contacted sprint and they let me know this was not TRUE!!
 

[Collected via e-mail, December 2008]

i just recieved a text message that says

"CINGULAR (THE NEW AT@T)-F2DE-MSG. Attention! All Cingular Customers send this message to ten people and Cingular will credit your account $60!"

Is this for real????
 

[Collected via e-mail, June 2009]

R.I.P. Michael Jackson: All cell phone Customers sent this message to ten people and cell company will credit your account $60.00. No Joke!
 

[Collected via e-mail, April 2010]

AT&T FREE-MSG.
Attention! All AT&T Customers send this message to ten people and AT&T will credit your account $160.00 *both billing or prepaid. This is true I called at&t

Hey everyone this is true I called them tooo
 

Origins:   December 2008 saw a new outbreak of a variant of the long-running "get stuff for free by
forwarding a message to other people" hoax hit the cellular world, with customers of several different cell phone networks receiving text messages promising a $60.00 credit on their bills for forwarding those messages to ten other people. (This same variant previously appeared at least as far back as May 2008.)

At the end of June 2009, the leg-pull reappeared, that time seemingly providing a reason for the phone company's supposedly beneficence: a gesture of mourning for pop star Michael Jackson (who passed away on 25 June 2009).

In April 2010, the hoax came back for another go-round, that time targeting AT&T and promising a $160 credit for the forwarding of the text message to ten other people.

The medium may be slightly different, but the underlying hoax is still the same: Businesses aren't giving out money and free merchandise to people who forward messages, but pranksters are having a laugh at getting people to fall for it.

Last updated:   9 April 2010

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