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Save Toby dot scam?

Well, my philosophy class has been recently discussing the rights of non-human animals. Fittingly my teacher stumbled upon savetoby.com. It is very interesting and raises many moral and ethical questions. After class I decided to see what other people have been saying about it and it turns out that Snopes.com has an article in which they find savetoby.com to be a hoax. I took issue with that and sent them this email:
In regard to your article about http://savetoby.com:

"The premise of the threat ("Send money or I'll kill the rabbit") gives away the jest."

It is true that rabbits aren't highly regarded in today's society, but that doesn't mean that this is a hoax. It may imply that we shouldn't care about the fate of Toby, but it says nothing about whether or not this person plans on eating Toby. The premise says nothing about whether or not it is a jest.

" Clicking on savetoby.com's 'Donate' link brings up a Paypal error page which announces "This recipient is currently unable to receive money.""

savetoby.com has recently stated (http://savetoby.com/updates/2.php) that it is aware that paypal has been inconsistent with the handling of its account. Savetoby.com also says that it will start using another company's services. That being said, the bottom line is that this is not an indication of the threat being real.

"The 'Balance:' figure... is a fixed graphic, not a counter."

I'm not so sure that it is possible to provide live results from paypal. I don't know what you would have savetoby.com do in order to prove the amount in its paypal account. Again, this doesn't really indicate that it is a hoax.

basically, you have provided lots of reasons that one should not donate money to savetoby.com but you haven't really shown that there isn't an impending death of a rabbit at hand. This is not something you can prove or disprove. Only the owner of Toby and his butcher know Toby's real chances of death.

The presence of other, similar scams could be an indicator that this is a copy-cat scam....but again there is not proof. I would have thought that Snopes would be above dismissing a hoax on such loose footing. Savetoby.com could be real, and it could be a hoax.

Thank you for your time.

Stephen Murphy

Personally, I think that it's pure genius. Suppose that he only makes a few bucks, or enough to take care of the rabbit. That is still a really good deal because it is basically a free lunch. All of that aside, he isn't required to do anything. He could get the $50 K and still eat Toby. He could get $5.00 and let Toby live. There is no governing body in play and he's done nothing contrary to the law. I wish that I had thought of this first.

[I do not think that you should donate any money to the savetoby.com site.]
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at 17:23 | Blogger Troy Reeds said,

I saw the same article. Glad to see that you sent them a letter. I sent a letter to support@savetoby.com just to see if anything will come of it.

btw, did your philosophy class ever come to any consensus or conclusions about non-human animals' rights?    



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