The web site Facebook is all about community. Unfortunately, companies that prey on the human desire for love and companionship have come a-courting. However, the Washington State Attorney is now courting, as well, fining the Washington company Tattoo Media, which served up ads for the ripoff site MyLuvCrush.com to Facebook users.

MyLuvCrush, taking a page from the controversial if not fraudulent playbook of sites such as Classmates.com, ran ads customized to the Facebooker's location. For example, a Facebooker in Topeka might see an ad declaring that someone nearby had named him/her as a new luvcrush, following up the hook with a pitch for its real product, a $9.99 per month autorenewed subscription to its horoscope service, with an upsell opportunity that sucks another $37.50 out of the unwary customer's pockets each month.

The Washington AG ordered Tattoo to halt the ads, and fined it around $20K. No action seems to be in the works yet to address MyLuvCrush, but take a look at the terms of enrollment for MyLuvCrush's Flirting Tips service and see if it doesn't frighten you. It should.

"By calculating your Flirting Tips and by entering your personal PIN Code which will be sent to the cell phone number supplied by you on this website, you acknowledge that you are subscribing to this daily Flirting Tips service. You may stop this subscription service at any time by sending a text message with "STOP" or "ARRET", to shortcode 33444. The daily Flirting Tips offer is only for compatible handsets on Fido Solutions, TELUS Mobility, Rogers Wireless, SaskTel Mobility, Aliant Mobility / Bell Mobility, NorthernTel Mobility, MTS Mobility, Virgin Mobile Canada and Telebec Mobilite. Customers will be billed $1.25 per day."

$1.25 a day is $37.50 a month, $456.25 a year. If this doesn't smack of a scam, you need to spend that money on reality counseling. If you need a horoscope, here's one: I see MyLuvCrush members scrambling to find rent money at the end of every month.


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