Social Question

rebbel's avatar

Are scams and shams the same?

Asked by rebbel (31340points) December 5th, 2018

To me, they have a similar ring (both to hear, and definition), but surely I’m not so sure they are.

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5 Answers

janbb's avatar

A scam is a deliberate con. A sham is something that is fake or pretend but it does not have the connotation of necessarily being deliberate. Different.

For example:

“Trump’s pretense of empathy for the working class is a sham.”

“The Nigerian prince’s e-mail about hidden riches was a scam.”

elbanditoroso's avatar

Shams are also pillow covers. link

ucme's avatar

Sounds like a Bay City Rollers song.

Zaku's avatar

Without looking at the dictionary, it seems to me that:

a scam is a deliberate attempt to deceive someone in order to achieve some goal, such as getting someone to give them money. It involves a completely invented story and probably also not letting the victims know who you are, so they can’t come get reparations.

a sham is a deception, or something done for appearances that has little or no substance, or isn’t what it appears to be, or acting as if something is the case but it’s not really, but it doesn’t imply a full conspiracy or hidden identities. i.e. The people participating in the sham are doing it as themselves to deceive people about their actual situation.

Response moderated (Spam)

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