Fake GoFundMe pages are nothing new, but a recent trend takes it to a whole different level.
On Wednesday, GoFundMe viewers may have been surprised to see a page for “Ronnie” accompanied by a picture of actress Jada Pinkett Smith.
Only movie buffs with a thing for Black films from the 1990s set in South Central LA would know that Pinkett Smith played Ronnie in the 1993 film “Menace II Society.”
The page, which has since been removed by GoFundMe, sought to raise money to help Ronnie and her young son get to Atlanta:
In the movie, Ronnie was planning to leave Watts for ATL in pursuit of a new job. She invited Caine — her hoodlum with a heart-of-gold love interest who was also searching for a better life — but before they could leave, Caine gets gunned down in a drive-by shooting.
Reactions to the page ranged from disgust that someone would use the GFM platform for jokes to those who were totally floored by the hilarity of it all.
It seems to be something of a trend, since last week, there was a fund to cover the funeral expenses for Ricky Baker along with a photo of actor Morris Chestnut.
Did you guess it?
That’s right, poor Ricky Baker was gunned down in the alley in John Singleton’s 1991 film “Boyz N’ the Hood.”
As the page pointed out, Ricky left behind a one-year-old son, who would now be 25 and in need of money.
In both cases, the pages were shared quite often but only received marginal funding as most people seemed to catch on to the joke.
It was certainly pretty harmless compared to some of the serious fraud documented by the GoFraudMe — Tales of GoFundMe Fraud Facebook page which most recently shared the story of a New York mom of two teenage boys who is under investigation for allegedly swindling friends and strangers out of $60,000 by faking terminal cancer.
The woman claimed to have leukemia and only 18 months to live but has relocated to Florida and shut down the GoFundMe campaign. The investigation is ongoing according to authorities.
According to GoFundMe, users should only report a GoFundMe campaign if they believe the campaign organizer is committing fraud or breaking the law. They do not engage in personal disputes between two parties.
It’s unclear where Ronnie and Ricky Baker fall on the fraud spectrum, but before this trend goes any further, here’s a tip for the GoFundMe staff.
Be on the lookout for funds like these: Send Felicia to rehab, help Jason and Lyric start a new life and wedding expenses for Justice and Lucky.