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Bottle Caps For Charity
The latest victims of the decades-old trash-for-charity hoax are the students of PS 46 in Staten Island. They were collecting plastic bottle caps in the belief that for every 1000 caps collected a child with cancer would get chemotherapy. Finally one of the students did an online search for "bottle caps" and "charity" and figured out it was a hoax. []
Posted by The Curator on Mon Apr 13, 2009

I wonder where they were planning on sending the bottle caps, if they hadn't actually done any research into the claim?
Posted by Accipiter  on  Mon Apr 13, 2009  at  06:57 PM
I was just going to ask a variation on your question, Accipiter.

Who exactly is it these well-intentioned people think will pay for the bottle caps? After all, millions of bottle caps pass through recycling centers every day. It seems as if there's more than enough bottle caps available without these organized collection drives.

Putting that aside, the value of 1000 bottle caps can't possibly be more than a few dollars, FAR below what chemotherapy costs.
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Mon Apr 13, 2009  at  07:35 PM
I think this is awesome. The kids got a lesson in skeptical thinking, and that's lesson they can use the rest of their lives. I also think it's amazing that 4th graders are organizing charity drives.
Posted by Kristen55  in  Seattle, WA  on  Tue Apr 14, 2009  at  12:19 AM

Baba Boey!!
Posted by Baba Boey  in  Your Head!  on  Tue Apr 14, 2009  at  12:43 AM
2 years ago, the local community college started to do this too. I read in the school paper that a student government member was coordinating this as a student charity event. I blasted them in a letter to the editor. Hopefully everybody wised up. They supposedly even had a particular kid recipient lined up.
So it's not just 4th graders.
Posted by Kevin  on  Tue Apr 14, 2009  at  10:20 AM
Back in the 70's Nestle organised "competitions" at schools in Papua New Guinea (and presumably other 3rd world type places).
The deal was that the class that collected the most Nestle wrappers etc won a pencil and the school got a new book.
This fitted in suspiciously well with their promotion of Baby Formula rather than the better and free Breast-feeding. tongue wink
And I've got vague recollections of Wrigley Chewing gum having a competition, although that may well have been an example of "cargo cult".
Posted by Joel B1  in  Hobart, Tasmania  on  Thu Apr 16, 2009  at  04:20 AM
Oh man, don't get me started on Papua New Guinea! One of my long-term fantasies is to be worshipped by the John Frum cargo cult on the island of Tanna.

All I need is some money and I can pull that off. You laugh now but you won't later when you read about me being a God to a village on a remote island in the South Pacific.
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Fri Apr 17, 2009  at  04:15 AM
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