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'Newell Company' Chain Letter

Netlore Archive: Another 'email tracking' hoax claiming a company will pay you for forwarding a message to all your friends is circulating online.

Description: Email hoax / Chain letter
Circulating since: Feb. 2000
Status: False

Email example contributed by N. Brown, Feb. 28, 2000:

Date: Sat, 19 Feb 2000 07:00:11 -0600

I have no clue if this is possibly true, but I figure someone out there has way too much money and if it's true, I could use some vacation money!!!! So here goes....

Important, The Newell Company is trying to Figure out how many people pass along those stupid e-mails along and supposedly get money. So heres how this one works.

For the next month Our family has rented an e-mail tracker and we are tracking this e-mail. So if you get this e-mail and forward it we will be able to make you very happy. For every person you send this to you will get $399, and for every person that you sent this to who forwards this you will get $199. Now this is not a hoax.

I, Ryan Newell, thought myself that this was a hoax but I sent it to you all and ten(10) days later I got a check for $3990. I urge you to do the same. Good luck and don't spend your money all in one place. ===== signed and copyrighted by bb

Analysis: Is it ridiculous? Yes. No person or company is paying out money to people who forward email chain letters. Are tons of people forwarding it anyway on the flimsy hope of getting something for nothing? Yes. This hoax been circulating since early February 2000.

Since more than one company uses the Newell name, it's anyone's guess which of the possible candidates this email purports to originate from. The Newell Company of Plymouth, Minnesota, which provides media management services, has apparently borne the brunt of user inquiries about it. A notice on their website reads as follows:

Don't be hoaxed. There is a hoax email circulating that claims Newell Company will pay you to forward email. Don't believe it. Don't forward it. Don't email us to ask about it. It is a hoax and Newell Company has nothing to do with it. Thank you.

Oh, the perils of doing business in the Misinformation Age.

See also:

Phony Freebie Chain Letters
We've got a million of 'em

Current Hoaxes / Netlore
The Urban Legends Top 25

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