"" Writer's Wanderings: Invitation to travel/speak? NOT

Monday, January 09, 2012

Invitation to travel/speak? NOT

Every so often, someone goes phishing in the pool of speakers' directories online and extends what appears to be a really good speaking opportunity. Couple that with the prospect of it being in a great place--like London--to travel to, and you almost have me hooked. This is what the most recent one looked like (note: I removed the email address contact which was a gmail.com account).

Dear Karen Robbins,

I am Professor D K Arvind from the Edinburgh University Here in
London UK. We want you to be our guest Speaker at this Year Edinburgh
University Seminar which will take place here in UK. We are writing to
invite and confirm your booking to be our guest Speaker at this year’s

VENUE: The University of Edinburgh Old College,
South Bridge Edinburgh
United Kingdom.

Expected audience: 1500
Duration of speech per speaker: 1 Hour
Name of Organization: EDINBURGY UNIVERSITY
Date:20 January 2012

We came across your profile on http://nazarene.org/ and we say it’s
up to standard and we will be very glad to have such an outstanding
personality in our mist for these overwhelming gathering. Arrangements
to welcome you here will be discussed as soon as you honor our
invitation. If you have any more publicity material,please do not
hesitate to contact us.

A formal Letter of invitation and Contract agreement would be sent to
as soon as you honor our Invitation. We are taking care of your
traveling and Hotel Accommodation expenses including your Speaking
Fee. If you will be available for our event, include your speaking
fees In your email so it can be included in your CONTRACT AGREEMENT.

Professor D K Arvind

Sounds very professional, doesn't it. Clue #1, the email address. No university or professor would use a gmail account when there is one associated with the university that would most likely end in edu. Clue #2, there is a Professor D K Arvind and when you search his name, you can find a disclaimer that says to ignore the email as it is a scam. Need I go on? Note the mispelling of Edinburgh in the signature.

Ah, but a trip to London would have been so nice and then there was that expected 1500 in the audience. What an ego builder. Alas, my speaking ministry is not directed at that sort of audience. It is directed at those who want to come together and find ways to draw closer to their Savior, Jesus--no matter how large or small the audience and no matter how exotic the destination.

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