World wide web cashing in on bird flu | india | Hindustan Times
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World wide web cashing in on bird flu

The world wide web is full of bird flu warnings, and if by any chance, you heed to them, you may end up emptying your pockets.

india Updated: Feb 22, 2006 18:42 IST

"What can you do to survive Bird Flu? How Will You and Your Loved Ones Survive The Imminent Bird Flu Pandemic? Do The Recent Bird Flu Stories Scare You? ... They Should! Experts put the probability of a global influenza pandemic at 100% - an absolute certainty!"

The world wide web is full of such warnings, with hundreds of websites having come up overnight. And if by any chance, you heed to them, you may end up emptying your pockets.

The websites simply ask you for your credit card number, and promise to send you within 24 hours books, CDs, 'survival guides' and prescriptions.

"Five steps you can take to protect your family, loved ones, friends and neighbours from what some are predicting as an inevitable killer Bird Flu virus which will kill 50% of all infected humans. Don't make the mistake of ignoring this information, the lives of you and your family may well depend on it...," says another website noting everything you need to know and do has been published in our book 'Beating Bird Flu' (Price $24.97) and outlines the top methods of protection against Bird Flu.

A DVD of Bird Flu is available for $14.95 while Bird Flu: Expert Advice To Help You And Your Family Stay Safe -- Special Report is being offered for $24.97.

"Bird flu is gaining lot of attention at global level. While experts say there is nothing to be scared of, focus at present has certainly shifted to bird flu," says Vasanthi, Director, Centre for Media Studies.

"As a result, number of websites have also come up. But then most of them are presenting a grim scenario because of hits and advertising revenues," she says.

"Lot of funding agencies are also concentrating on this issue. These websites also want to draw their attention for funds," says Vasanthi.

"When it hits it is estimated that it will last 12-18 months, will touch every corner of the globe and kill anywhere between 30 million and 380 million People!," says one website.

"Bird flu, this is not science fiction; this is real and happening now," says another website.