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A sociology of scams

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Scams tell us a lot about the nature of our society—more than about the gullibility, greed, or ignorance of our people. Sociologists try to understand how these criminal schemes work, not by figuring out the motives and interests of the individuals they victimize, but by determining the types of social relationships they are able to tap. Moral terms like gullibility and greed contain no analytic value. But, the degree to which communications in a society like ours remain undifferentiated may explain why scam victims are quick to entrust their money to swindlers with no economic credentials or record.

Posted: November 29th, 2012 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

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