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Baby Girl Heart Transplant Message Forwarding Hoax

by Brett M. Christensen

Outline

Message claims that a seriously ill baby girl will receive a donation from the phone company to help pay for a heart transplant every time the message is forwarded. 

Brief Analysis

This message is a hoax. It is yet another variant in a long line of hoaxes that falsely claim money will be donated to help a sick child whenever the message is forwarded to others. All such claims are untrue. Forwarding this message will NOT help any sick child and is simply a waste of time.

Examples

A 6yr old precious baby girl needs a heart transplant, phone companies agree to donate 5 cents everytime this text is fwd (No lie) remember karma

 

Fwd: A baby girl needs a heart transplant & the phone company is donating $2 every time this is fwd. (no lie) karma Will repay you

 

Detailed Analysis

This message circulates mainly in the form of a mobile phone text message, but has also been posted on Twitter and other websites and has seemingly spawned an email version as well. The text claims that whenever the message is forwarded to others, the phone company will donate money to help pay medical costs for a baby girl in need of a heart transplant.

Some versions claim that 5 cents will be donated in exchange for every forward, while others inflate the amount supposedly donated to two dollars. Some versions claim the child in need of the transplant is 6 years old while others just identify her as a “baby girl”. 
However, the claims in these messages are untrue. No phone company, or any other organization for that matter, will be donating money just for forwarding a message. No baby will be helped by sending on this message. In fact, this text message is just one more variant in a long line of similar hoaxes that falsely claim that recipients can help raise donations for a sick child by the simple act of forwarding a message.

The majority of this version’s predecessors circulated primarily via email rather than text message. But, regardless of the method use to distribute such hoaxes, all make the same absurd claim that a particular company or organization will donate money based on how many times the message is sent to others. Several such hoaxes target charitable organizations such as the Make-A-Wish Foundation or the Red Cross. Others target companies such as AOL.

This version is even vaguer than earlier versions. It does not even name a particular company as the entity supposedly doing the donating. It just identifies the donator as the “phone company”, which of course would constantly change depending on which service provider the recipient was using. Nor does it name the child who is supposedly the recipient of the funds or even identify her location.

Any message that claims that money will be donated in exchange for forwarding an email or text message is virtually certain to be a hoax. It is simply absurd to suggest that any legitimate company or charity would sponsor or endorse such a ridiculous fund-raising scheme. And, even if they did, there would be no accurate, ethical or reliable method of tracking how many times the message was forwarded and therefore how much money should be ultimately donated.

If you receive such a message, via email, text message, or any other format, please do not forward it to others. Sending on such messages will not help any sick child in the slightest.

 

Importance Notice

After considerable thought and with an ache in my heart, I have decided that the time has come to close down the Hoax-Slayer website.

These days, the site does not generate enough revenue to cover expenses, and I do not have the financial resources to sustain it going forward.

Moreover, I now work long hours in a full-time and physically taxing job, so maintaining and managing the website and publishing new material has become difficult for me.

And finally, after 18 years of writing about scams and hoaxes, I feel that it is time for me to take my fingers off the keyboard and focus on other projects and pastimes.

When I first started Hoax-Slayer, I never dreamed that I would still be working on the project all these years later or that it would become such an important part of my life. It's been a fantastic and engaging experience and one that I will always treasure.

I hope that my work over the years has helped to make the Internet a little safer and thwarted the activities of at least a few scammers and malicious pranksters.

A Big Thank You

I would also like to thank all of those wonderful people who have supported the project by sharing information from the site, contributing examples of scams and hoaxes, offering suggestions, donating funds, or helping behind the scenes.

I would especially like to thank David White for his tireless contribution to the Hoax-Slayer Facebook Page over many years. David's support has been invaluable, and I can not thank him enough.

Closing Date

Hoax-Slayer will still be around for a few weeks while I wind things down. The site will go offline on May 31, 2021. While I will not be publishing any new posts, you can still access existing material on the site until the date of closure.

Thank you, one and all!

Brett Christensen,
Hoax-Slayer