April 9th 2012 2:46 pm
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Part 1: Easter Eggs and The Birds
What a surprise it was when Mom checked her email on Sunday night and saw that there were 175 messages! Upon closer inspection, it appeared that Toffy and I had received multiple (must have been over 100) special gifts from a handsome black cat from New Zealand named Tyson (#476218 - I'd link to his page, but since it takes forever to load, you'll probably just get stuck there like I did, waiting and waiting and waiting, until you realize that you'd be better off if you just left.). The special gifts that Toffy and I received from Tyson were the beautiful Easter Eggs that you've most likely seen gracing many a Catster cat's page, including your own. Thank you, Tyson! We are infinitely grateful for your friendship and generosity! We'd have loved to send you our own special gift as a token of appreciation but as I mentioned before we got stuck on your page and couldn't do much except to eventually leave in frustration. (I'm sure that Tyson didn't intend to give us so many Easter Eggs and maybe Catster should find a way of preventing incidents like this from happening. These Easter Eggs may have been free but imagine the same thing happening with one of the expensive gifts!)
Anymeow, as Mom began checking her 175 messages, she thought it would be a good idea to watch TV at the same time and as she flipped through the channels there was a movie that caught her attention and she decided to watch it, as it was just starting. It was a well-known Alfred Hitchcock movie from the early 1960s. So, as she's watching this movie, all of a sudden she notices that Toffy is standing on the small stool beside the TV trying to get at the screen. Now, why on earth could that be? Well, I'll give you a hint: the movie was called "The Birds," and a bunch of birds were chirping madly, which piqued Toffy's curiosity, obviously. The movie, which I too was watching from atop my cat tree, turned out to be quite a scary one. The feathered creatures--there were lots of them--had invaded a small town and were attacking the people who lived there, trying to get into their homes. I witnessed a murder of crows swoop down on a group of innocent school children who were trying to run to safety. How frightening! By this time, Toffy had already retreated to his basket in the opposite corner of the room.
Meanwhile, Mom was having major problems trying to read her email messages, even after deleting all of the multiple messages from Catster announcing Tyson's many special gifts. It was futile and she eventually just logged out and decided to let us visit Catster. I think we were on my page admiring my special gift Easter Eggs when we clicked on Tyson's picture to get to his page. We weren't able to see much of his page except for row upon row of Easter Eggs in the special gifts given section. We were intrigued by Tyson's primary photo, which shows him being held by a funny-looking big bird with an extra long bill. What a coincidence to be watching the movie "The Birds" at the same time as finding out that we had been bombarded with all these emails from Catster announcing multiple gifts of Easter Eggs from a cat whose primary picture is of him posing with a giant bird!! Yet, stranger things have happened!
Part 2: Identity Theft
Mom may have been the victim of multiple messages clogging up her email program; the people in the movie were the intended victims of all those evil birds that had invaded the town (most of the people managed to get away in the end, or so it appeared); and I was recently the victim of… Identity Theft!! No kidding, cats! My lovely friend Sabrina alerted me to the situation several weeks ago. Well, I didn't find out until I finally logged onto Catster after a long hiatus. Some person had stolen one or more of my photos, my name and bio from my Catster page and used it on another website (Cat Channel) in order to enter contests and win prizes. Can you imagine that!? Unfortunately, there is a downside to being cute and photogenic… but seriously, this could happen to you too and unless you frequent other websites besides Catster, you won't even be aware of what's going on unless someone happens to notice and mention it to you, like my friend Sabrina did. I'm so thankful that Sabrina suspected that it wasn't really me on Cat Channel and took the time to question me about my supposed page there. Believe me, I did not create a profile on that website and have no intention of doing so! Mom wrote an email to the people in charge there explaining that this was a case of identity theft and asked them to remove the fake page. If any of you happened to see my page there and thought it was really me, I can assure you that it wasn't the real me but someone who was pretending to be me, or rather someone pretending that I was their cat. Don't some people have better things to do with their time?! All I can say is… hhhhhiiiiiiiiiiisssssssssssssssss!!!!!!
P.S. To make it harder for someone to steal your Catster photos, follow these instructions:
1) Go to your Catster account.
2) In option #2 Account preferences, click on the link "Review and set all your custom preferences".
3) On the Account Preferences page, you'll see #4 Photo sharing preferences. Click on the words "Modify now".
4) Read what it says on the page titled "Photo Sharing and Security Preferences" and then select the first option at the bottom of the page beside the sentence "Please add extra security to my photos so people cannot easily use them."
5) Click on the "SUBMIT" button at the bottom of the page and you're done.
P.P.S. I saw the funniest breaded cat photos of my friends TT and Tasha (look for the photos on their pages, you can't miss them)! Aren't they pawsome?! Strangely, Mom recently caught me eating a hole out of a piece of multigrain bread. Yes, it sounds bizarre for a committed carnivore like myself to have a craving for grains, doesn't it? But should you ever happen upon a photo of my face sticking through a piece of bread, somewhere on the Internet, rest assured that it's not really me it's someone who has stolen my identity! MOL!
We noticed the same spam on Morgan the PirateGato's page. Did you report it to HQ?
I'm glad you were able to tell Cat Channel about the ID theft.
Manx so much for alerting us to such stuff.
Hi Vanessa! Hope you had a Happy Easter!
We also noticed the spam Easter eggs on lots of other kitties' pages. Glad we didn't get any!
Oh, how horrid that someone stole your identity! Glad you reported it to Cat Channel and hope they take action and kicks the fraud off their website. Unfortunately, it's very easy to copy photos even when you've added the security feature.
Mommy saw that movie when she was young and it terrified her. :))