The Boston Diaries

The ongoing saga of a programmer who doesn't live in Boston, nor does he even like Boston, but yet named his weblog/journal “The Boston Diaries.”

Go figure.

Tuesday, February 18, 2003

Guess who? Not me …

From: xgrwAlyse <>
To: (fake To: address, by the way)
Subject: Guess who? khvqs
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 2003 11:43:12 -0800

This is our second attempt at contacting you. We have been hired to contact you because someone you know is interested in you. Please follow the link below to find out who.

I figured Why not?

It piqued my curiousity and what with other services like it I've seen it is conceivable that someone I know may have indeed gone to the site and registered a crush. Such sites are annoying, wanting you to register to see who has the crush on you, but hey, why not try?

So, I hit the site (don't bother yourself though). Page comes up, pictures of cute corporate women, a progress bar stating that it's loading up my crush's profile and then hey! Click here to continue.

So I click and then my browser (Mozilla) pops up a dialog box asking me where I want to save an executable.

An executable?

Ooookay …

I save it, and since my curiosity is really piqued now, I even consent to running it (and have probably damned myself to a computer virus from Hell, but why not?). A window pops up, with the EULA and being one of the few people who bother to read such things (to find out just how hideously one-sided these things usually are) I start seeing what I'm about to agree to.

Warning: By using this software, your modem will dial a 900 telephone number. The number your modem will dial is 1-900-288-1109. You will be charged $34.99 on your telephone bill for the call and will be issued a username and password that will give you unlimited access for 30 days. No credit card is required to access this service. There is no minimum charge for this call. Scroll down for further instructions.

End User License Agreement for Workplace Crush

Not a problem, I think. I don't have a modem installed on this machine. Good thing too:

That's some pretty expensive porn there, given that you can plug just about any sex related term into your search engine of choice and get all the free porn you could possibly handle.

And then some.

So now, because I'm more amused than curious at this point, I click that “Accept” button. Not too worried since 1) I don't have a modem installed and 2) I haven't typed in a credit card number or bank account number.

I was rather impressed that the program didn't crash.

Instead it said it couldn't find the dialing unit and prompted me for some additional phone numbers it might need to dial out on.


Reading the EULA is rather amusing and I especially like the following bit:

Once connected, your computer modem will terminate this 900 telephone call automatically once a username and password have been obtained. You disconnect manually using one of the methods described below:

Yes, that is exactly how I disconnect manually—I take other, drastic and unusual acts to terminate the telephone connection.


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