The other day I got involved in a discussion with what is either a really good chatbot or a really bad human. You decide! My text is in bold, the response is normal.
Annotations (my external comments now that I’m a few moments removed) are in italics.
Chat started on 12 Dec 2019, 03:31 PM (GMT+0)
|(03:31:48)||*** Ian joined the chat ***|
|(03:31:48)||*** Visitor 44671434 joined the chat ***|
|(03:31:51)||Ian: Hi there|
|(03:31:52)||Ian: — Are you looking to get a website design & Developed ? I am Ian Sr Web Developer Allow me to assist you 🙂|
|(03:32:02)||Visitor 44671434 (Stephan James): hi ian, what’s twelve minus nineteen?
I often pose a question like this to check and see if I’m chatting with a bot.
|(03:32:23)||Ian: -4 : D|
|(03:32:33)||Ian: I am not a bot don’t worry|
|(03:32:55)||Visitor 44671434: close. it’s actually -7. i hope your web design is better than your math.
Well, that was surprising. First time I’ve seen a bot actually try to answer.
|(03:33:11)||Ian: Ofcourse it is|
|(03:33:30)||Ian: because that is our specialty and math is not|
|(03:33:44)||Ian: So what is the nature of your business and what sort of a website you are looking for ?
At this point I wasn’t looking for anything. I don’t even remember what website it was on, so I don’t know what I was trying to do! I think it was some web design company. Hm… how can I really freak out this bot?
|(03:34:34)||Visitor 44671434: well, i’m a porn scammer. i want to create automated e-mails that spam inboxes of unsuspecting grandmothers and ask them for ransom so I don’t publish the pictures of their granddaughters banging boyfriends.
That ought to do it.
|(03:34:45)||Visitor 44671434: is that something you can help me with?|
|(03:35:47)||Ian: I am sorry i cannot help you in such activity and i wish you also don’t do that ! However thanks
Surprising! Generally you don’t get much pushback. And I don’t understand the “thanks” either, so I’m going to poke this bear a little bit.
|(03:36:12)||Visitor 44671434: why are you saying “thanks” there?|
|(03:36:21)||Ian: for wasting my t8ime|
|(03:36:34)||Visitor 44671434: hey, you waste my time, I”m gonna return the favor.|
|(03:36:53)||Ian: Please do that ASAP !
see, now it seems like this isn’t a bot, because of the typo and the correction, but then it says it wants me to “return the favor” of “wasting my time”, which a human wouldn’t do.
|(03:37:01)||Visitor 44671434: Already on top of it!|
|(03:37:12)||Ian: Don’t be on top its very sharp
Again sounds like an automated kind of response. No way this is a human. A human would be offended and pissed off.
|(03:37:42)||Visitor 44671434: sharp doesn’t please the ladies, Ian, you know that. you’ve got to be thick but with a gentle touch. sharp is only going to poke and possibly cut.|
Does this thing understand innuendo? Maybe it’s not a bot after all.
|(03:38:37)||Ian: Well let’s be honest i really can’t help you in something like this as i really don’t know what kind of a web service will that be for|
|(03:38:59)||Visitor 44671434: good bot. good job. I almost believe you are a human.|
|(03:39:09)||Visitor 44671434: You’re like *this close* to passing that Turing test.
In case you don’t know, the Turing Test is named for Alan Turing, who said that artificial intelligence is achieved when an observer would not be able to tell that one of the parties to a conversation is actually a machine.
|(03:39:57)||Ian: Well i would suggest you to stop judging who i am and start telling what i can do for you so we could get this on track – as i really won’t get anything even if you pass me
See, now we’re back to the bot trying to sell me on its services. If it were a human, he would have been disgusted with my desire to create a scammy website, and would have ended the chat.
|(03:40:53)||Visitor 44671434: no “judgment” here. As I said, you can help me build a website for my business. Do you have a problem with profit? Do you have a policy against certain types of business? or is it your individual evaluation as to which are worthy of your help?|
|(03:41:10)||Visitor 44671434: I need the website to attract investors. Mostly information.|
|(03:41:28)||Ian: Well if it was really a business then i don’t have any problem in creating one for you tell me what things you want on it and have you secured a domain name yet ?
100% right, the bot doesn’t care about what kind of business it is, so long as it can close the sale.
|(03:42:12)||Visitor 44671434: I want someone else to front the $50k that the guy on the dark web told me he needed in order to build the scammy email automation. I’m just the middleman.|
|(03:42:35)||Visitor 44671434: I don’t have a domain secured. Do you have any recommendations?|
|(03:43:11)||Ian: Well you can let me know what domain you would like to secure and i can see if that can be done
Ooh! Options! Mind spinning… What would be something that might not yet exist in the real world?
|(03:43:56)||Visitor 44671434: I’d like “shadyinvestments.com“.|
|(03:44:13)||Ian: First of all it would be a website which needs to be created so as far the content is concern tell me what pages you would like to have and how soon do you want this to be completed ?
And now that you ask, I am absolutely loving this “create on the fly” aspect that we’re getting in to.
|(03:45:42)||Visitor 44671434: I need one front page with a “welcome to this crappy website” type of stuff. Then I need 3 pages each with a profile of a grandmother that we’re going to scam. Finally I need a contact page, and I need a separate web forum where we can have private conversations.|
|(03:45:56)||Visitor 44671434: Listen Ian, I’ve got another call in about 15 minutes. Think we can wrap this up before then?|
|(03:46:07)||Ian: Yes we can do that before that –|
|(03:46:15)||Ian: now as far the profiles are concern you have all that data ?|
|(03:46:22)||Visitor 44671434: I can make something up.|
|(03:46:34)||Ian: Okay let me see the domain if it is available|
|(03:46:41)||Ian: how soon do you want this site to be up in running ?|
|(03:47:15)||Visitor 44671434: i’m not in a hurry, i’ve got until like Christmas.|
|(03:47:52)||Ian: We can make it up before christmas
I bet you say that to all the warm leads, Ian.
|(03:47:57)||Visitor 44671434: Yay!|
|(03:48:21)||Visitor 44671434: Now, I’m a little fuzzy on whether or not you’re a reputable business. can you give me some links to prior customers of yours?
This was a true request. I’m now invested(ish) in this thing, and I just might create a fake website.
|(03:49:22)||Ian: Also the domain is available and it is for $4000 but i do have other options in the same name available for you Shadyinvestments.co Shadyinvestments.org Shadyinvestments.Us|
|(03:50:31)||Visitor 44671434: whoa, $4,000 is too much.|
|(03:50:45)||Visitor 44671434: What can I get for tree fiddy?|
|(03:51:15)||Ian: shady-investments.com < We can secure this one for $500 – for 5 Years|
|(03:51:27)||Visitor 44671434: only $500? that’s more like it!|
|(03:51:58)||Ian: and let me share you some of the sites which we have done www.sammydress.com https://limnia.com/ http://www.lillypulitzer.com https://dogstudio.co/ https://rocka.co/ https://travelshift.com/ https://www.penarosawatches.com/|
|(03:52:21)||Ian: yes $500 for 5 years Domain Name will be www.shady-investments.com|
|(03:53:00)||Visitor 44671434: Hold on, I’m working on something on this end… give me a minute.
I was; I decided to register shady-investments.com for myself, rather than paying them for it. Not sure I’m dropping $500 just yet.
|(03:54:12)||Visitor 44671434: so, quick question – I just registered shady-investments.com myself, and it only cost $8 for a whole year. Why are you charging $500 for 5 years?
I used namecheap.com. I like using a domain registrar for searching whether or not a website is already active, because in the off case that it’s not, there are other trawlers out there that will note what you searched for, note that there’s no website, and go register that one automatically. Then when you want that one, boom, it’s taken, too, so performing searches as clandestinely as possible is better.
|(03:54:34)||Ian: Because that include the hosting Server for 5 years as well on which your website will be hsoted|
Oh, that makes sense.
And look, another intentional typo.
I wonder if I could get a data scientist to analyze this type to see whether there is any regularity to the typos?
|(03:54:49)||Ian: With the Dedicated connection including SSL (Secuirty for the website )|
|(03:55:00)||Visitor 44671434: oh, well why didn’t you explain that before?|
|(03:55:35)||Ian: We send invoice mentioning everything or when confirming the domain name you heavn’t confirmed yet which is why the information was not shared|
|(03:55:58)||Visitor 44671434: see, you’re going to have to go slow with me here. I’m a little new to this whole scamming everyone thing. Most of the businesses I’ve run before have been legit.
Trying to bring it back to “shady investments”.
|(03:56:34)||Ian: Even i am thinking that you are about to scam me as well with the offer so it would be better to talk over the phone so we could wrap this up shortly|
|(03:56:39)||Ian: May i have your number to call you ?
No way this would be “Ian” calling me, if I actually gave a number it would be some other sales schmuck. Not interested.
|(03:57:01)||Visitor 44671434: sorry, as I said, I’m going to be on a call in about 3 more minutes.|
|(03:57:26)||Ian: You said 15 minutes and according to my watch you still have 9 minutes left
We had about 3 minutes left. The bot is as bad at math as I was.
|(03:57:40)||Visitor 44671434: I’m bad at estimating time. I gotta be honest, Ian, I did not expect this to go so well! thank you for everything.|
|(03:58:33)||Ian: Not a problem hopefully will wait for you to come back after the call 🙂 as i found this business very interesting which is why will get you extra discount on it to catch more granny’s !
Again with the sales pitch! I don’t believe that was a real person (like, who would find this business “interesting”), but I’m not kidding. I totally enjoyed the chat, and I now have another website I might develop.
|(03:58:57)||Visitor 44671434: Awesome!|
|(04:30:01)||*** Visitor 44671434 left the chat ***|
So, what comes out of this? If you’ll notice, “shadyinvestments.com” is actually registered, as well as “shady-investments.com”. That’s not a problem.
In the next couple of days I put in a request on “shadyinvestements.com” for a quote to buy that domain name. It was something ridiculous like $4,000, and I ended up getting a call from a dude on the phone. He wanted to scare me into buying the name, because people wouldn’t remember the ‘-‘, and then someone would develop the site shadyinvestments.com and scam off all my members, but, remember, I don’t actually have a product.
All I have is an idea.
So I didn’t buy his crappy $4k domain name. I’m gonna make my own crappy domain and get rich!
Let’s make Shady-Investments.com into an entertainment website, where each month we’ll create a questionable, but perhaps plausible, business idea and post about it. The first one is that grandma-scam website. The “shady” part is not that we’re going to scam grandmothers, but that we’re investing $50k to build the website. Will solicit ideas from readers, maybe make it interactive. I bet there’s more that could go up there, and we could gin up some Excel spreadsheets to make it look legit. Do it right, we’ll get some of those “investors” hooked. And then?
Totally worth it.
Be on the lookout for a launch announcement in Q1 2020!