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Beware These Scams!

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posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 12:52 PM
Intro: This thread was inspired by a Southpark episode titles "Cash4Gold" and another thread I made HERE . If you can see past all of Southpark's fart humour there is often times a deep underlying message they are trying to get across.

So, I have been scammed many times already in my lifetime through both people and companies. Averting a scam is the best feeling in the world, where as, finding out you've been scam puts a little fire in your belly. I would like to share with you what to avoid

#1 Penny Auctioning

These websites require you to purchase "bids" to use in the auctions on their site. Most will not let you use real money... So, say you spend USD60.00 to purchase 120 bids on a penny auction site. Everything on the site has value represented by actual money and the numbers are always ridiculously low. Once you bid on something, whether you win it or not, you lose those bids. The people who own the site are privy to some very nasty tricks. The really expensive items you see priced extremely low are probably not even owned by them. They simply freeze the auction at the last second and add a bid to beat the highest bidder and never have to provide the item bidded on, but you will never see those bids again. Other less expensive items they will let people win to better conceal the scam and keep it running.

#2 Cash4Gold

In the episode of Southpark I mentioned above, the boys try to find who is responsible for making Stans grandpa pay 6,000 dollars on a piece of jewelry that they couldn't even get more than 15 dollars for at a Cash4Gold place. To keep from spoiling I will not elaborate on the episode just the part I am talking about. India produces the jewelry, ships it to the jewelry channel people, they sell it for way more than they are worth or anyone can even get for it, the people who buy it give them as gifts, the people who got the gifts take them to Cash4Gold, Cash4Gold sends them to be smelted, after being disassembled and smelted the gold and jewels go back to India for the process to be repeated (forgive my run-on but I found it appropriate). You may think that it's just a tv show but that is how this scam is running. They scam people out of their money and never really lose anything out of doing it.

#3 Coin Buying Companies

If you go to sell your old coins be sure to do your research on how much silver or gold is actually in the coin. Did you know that Quarters and Dimes dating 1964 and before contain 90% silver? They sure as heck don't want you to know that because, you will be lucky if they offer you twice the face value of the coin. If you let them know you have done your research and know how much silver is in the coins you are trying to sell, then they will offer a much better deal to you. If not, take your coins and walk out, see if they don't ask you to wait a second

#4 College textbooks

A new edition comes out almost every semester or year, which you have to purchase to take the classes. The new editions really do not have much new context. They can simply add a few things, reword some stuff, and maybe a few new pictures but the basics were there from the beginning. Please know that I agree with new editions after a few years have passed, but this just isn't the case anymore. Each new edition will almost always cost more than the last. If you are a college goer, try to find the books used or share a book with someone. You might not even need the book so ask your professor.

#5 Cell phones (Extends to almost every product out there)

They come out with the newest, latest, greatest phone at least once a year and place it on a pedastal to make the previous version look obsolete. In reality, the new functions and design of the phone aren't even worth all the extra money they cost. They get people hooked on a brand with commercials geared for different audience groups. The product doesn't even have to be that great, but by flashing nice words and pictures of people being happy, whether they are using said device or not, you will feel compelled to go out and get one. If it doesn't appeal to you, then after seeing most of your friends with the product, you will want to fit in with them and buy one yourself.

These are some basic scams that happen on a day-to-day basis. Why do I care if people are being scammed? Well I certainly won't tell you how to spend your money, but I will warn you so you may become aware and then decide. I did not link any references or sources because I encourage you to do your own research. The examples I gave above are from experience so I am the reference/source. My goal is to save some people some money on stuff they don't really need because in this type of economy a few extra dollars goes a long way.

Conclusion: There are many, many different scams that go on without any legal intervention. Why? Most people don't know they are being scammed or just like to get screwed. It would take a huge group effort to take any of these scams down, boycott anyone? Anyway
hope you enjoyed.

posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 01:03 PM
I would also stay away from the check into cash type stores. The interest rate they charge is obscene. Same with the rent to own businesses. Better to save up the money than to pay those interest rates.

Good thread. S&f

posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 01:05 PM
reply to post by NotApplicable

That was a cracking episode of Southpark,with Grandpa buying all those lovely plastic "gems" !

Its good to be on the lookout for the latest scams.

Check this link for some creative ways to get the scammers back:

Gotta love that wooden keyboard!!!

There's even a book full of ideas:

For telemarketers,my favorites are:

Pretend to be deaf,mental or both.
Or try to chat them up.
In deaf mental character of course.

posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 01:06 PM
I am very familiar with the coin scam, and I no longer collect coins because of the attitudes and practices of the coin dealers. If you buy a coin, it is "mint" and worth a lot, but when you try to sell it back, it us only "very fine" and worth a lot less. My father spent about a quarter of a million dollars on coins from one of those outfits in Texas, and after he passed away, my brother handed me the invoices and said, "Read it and weep!" Let's just say that the coins were nice, but I'd much rather have had my inheritance in cash. More locally, I was told about a coin and metal detector shop to which a lady took a $20 gold piece. She told the man that she thought it was worth a lot of money, but he offered her $20, saying, "That's all I'm going to give you for it." She sold. I've never set foot in his shop since. Damn their hides!

posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 01:22 PM
Make you're own solar ovens, smelt you're own gold and sell it back you're self. Make 100% what you're gold is trully worth. Besides, you can do it with copper, silver, tungstun and other precious metals too. Doesnt cost much to make either. Just be careful, solar ovens are hot enough to melt rock.

posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 01:50 PM
My favorite:

Scamming the scammers

Read some of the threads and results. Funny stuff.


posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 01:53 PM
Great thread.

I remember about a week ago I got a call from a random number. They told me I had recently lost money to a homeowner scam (do not own a home, I live in an apartment) and that they would need to collect my personal information in order to help me. I hung up.

That was a lame attempt I must say.

posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 01:59 PM

Originally posted by AaronWilson
Make you're own solar ovens, smelt you're own gold and sell it back you're self. Make 100% what you're gold is trully worth. Besides, you can do it with copper, silver, tungstun and other precious metals too. Doesnt cost much to make either. Just be careful, solar ovens are hot enough to melt rock.

Any suggested reading on solar ovens and fabrication?

posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 02:08 PM
Theres an easy rule for all this.

When dealing with a business they are going to make more of a profit than you..simple!

posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 02:18 PM
I kind of feel bad for saying this but....
As far as the cell phone scam is concerned, Someones ''I need a new phone now!'' attitude works nicely for me. Refurbished phones are much cheaper, and they are usually not terribly out of date.
A friend decided to sell their phone back to the company for pennies, turned around and bought a newer phone w/ pre-paid service card. Cost him $245 all together before tax. We went to the companies site, got the exact same phone he had traded up for (refurbished of course but we have 0 complaints) ours came with the memory card (the $200 phone did not) and the pr-paid was $95.
I really feel for people who get involved in the other scams mentioned but as far as the cell phone thing...don't get greedy and think you HAVE to have that new one coming out, or your loss is my gain. The company will make as much money off that same phone as possible, and isn't fair at all, but no one MADE you trade up. As cheap as the refurbished ones are I assume the people selling them back get almost nothing in return.

posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 02:29 PM
reply to post by PhoenixOD

I understand businesses have to make profits to continue to exist but they are going about it all the wrong way when they scam. IMO scamming is lieing and that is false advertisement.

posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 02:37 PM
reply to post by NotApplicable

I agree but im not seeing a great deal of lying in the examples you have given. It just companies that are making a lot of money.

posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 02:43 PM
reply to post by PhoenixOD

The lies aren't direct, rather indirect. By making people think a certain way that isn't true to make a profit they cross a boundary that continues to go unchecked.

posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 03:01 PM
Expanding on my earlier post, in which I mentioned not patronizing coin dealers, I have done so with many other kinds of dealers, car dealers, banks, audio salons, camera shops, and most any dealer who gives me the short end of the stick. When I got married the first time, we needed a phone, so I called the phone company. I had to insist before they would admit that they did, indeed, have a basic black telephone. It cost $50. Nowadays, I have wised up, and I buy phones at thrift shops for a few bucks. If they do not work right, or if the audio quality is not up to my exacting standards, I take it back and try another one. Scrounging has served me well - I'm typing this on an excellent garage sale keyboard, into a second-hand computer. I'm listening to music also as I type this, almost all the audio gear I have is scrounged at garage sales, thrifts, eBay, or Craig's List.

Don't feed the mouth that bites you!

posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 03:16 PM
reply to post by Lazarus Short

You are absolute right and I applaud you
People make it possible for this stuff to happen and I'd like to see less of it because I want my fellow humans to be happier and smarter.

posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 08:18 PM
Beware of those inkjet printers that claim you'll spend less for ink. The ink cartridges just hold less ink, that's why they cost less. Corporations are always trying to rip-off the consumer. I always thought there were laws to keep advertisers honest to protect the consumer. Have we lost that right too?

The TV infomercials are all scams. They offer a free supply of products but they charge you shipping and handling that cost as much as the product itself. The main product never works the way it does on TV.

Shouldn't congress start passing laws to protect the consumer?

posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 08:30 PM
reply to post by WeRpeons

They should, but in order for them to we have to let them know they need to do it. I have always thought the same thing, they should be honest with their selling. Here is a video I found quite funny and rang true, but it uses a lot of words that do not follow the T&C so view at your own discretion. It's from The Onion Link

posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 08:45 PM
The South Park episode about jewellery was a legitimate joke.

I can't speak for infomercial product, but I know the trade well. People regularly assume that the price tag is criminal. The thing is, these are rare items. Infomercial sites might make it all look like a joke by attaching themselves to the same marketing as expensive brands which are overpriced but that isn't to say the materials are worthless.

You all know the price of gold, so there's a start. Let's assume that all jewellery is produced in 3rd world countries for nix. This is far from true. Traditional jewelers still exist and get typical wages for their work, and it takes around 10 years practice to be proficient. I digress. Diamonds are mined at great expense and then cut. People pay for rarity. There is no avoiding high costs for anyone along the way. The miners do okay, the cutters do a bit less ok, the setters even less ok and then the pieces end up at the retailers who in fact make less than your typical clothing store. The mark-up these days is often under 50% and this is for companies holding $millions in stock. Many are going broke. (Infomercial mark-ups are probably even lower).

What I've said relates to most types of jewellery. The cheaper the item the higher the mark-up. Rare gems are sold with very little mark-up. High quality hand made jewellery is becoming more rare because people's price expectations are based on mass-produced product from 3rd world countries.

I know that most men hate jewellery as it represents a great expense that they don't understand.

South Park got it very wrong. It hurt my eyes to see half-wits drop sparkly things into garbage that we are supposed to believe is wrongly priced. It should show professionals with at least 10 years experience wearing lab-coats spend days laboring over one piece. In case of the stuff that pretends to be more expensive than it is, such as infomercial product, the same is still true but to a lesser degree.

gold bar $1000
gems $1000
Manufacture including, mining, smelting, wholesale costs, gem mining and cutting, jewellery designing, and jewellery manufacture (casting, hand setting, hand polishing, quality control etc) $1000

wholesale Cost $3000
Wholesale price (note 3rd world counties inc' tax avoidance and slave labour), in your country $3500

Retail cost including taxes and the price to purchase enough stock to give people a choice
$5775 (that's 10% tax and 50% mark-up, which is lower than any other form of retail)

You go and sell your $5775 purchase, and you want what $?

Are you being scammed if you get offered less than the material value; even half material value? The purchaser of your stock won't buy your second hand piece for less than he pays the wholesaler. The wholesaler won't pay more than he pays the bullion / gem dealers. What do you expect?

People are being scammed alright but only by the marketing from the cheapest companies that buy the most shoddy goods, but those companies are in the market to undercut their competitors and though they give the jewellery trade a bad name they are no more descriptive of the trade as a whole, than McDonald's is to fast food restaurants.

It's strange but jewellery is one of the products you can buy that has real tangible value. People can't handle an aspect of that because of greed, so you see it here being called a scam, yet nothing else you buy has any intrinsic value. You pay for a brand in luxury items that aren't jewellery. Unfortunately jewellery is becoming more and more branded and people pay for marketing, more and more.

If you think jewellery is expensive, don't buy gold, or stop investing in paper gold, and don't drive car's that use platinum and convince your girlfriends that diamonds are not so great because there are other shinny things that aren't so rare.

If you still have a problem, I'm afraid that you must move to a 3rd world country where the retailers just don't need that much money to survive. What's more you must avoid paying for services like roads, public toilets and crime prevention. Now, that you're in a 3rd world country you will have to be employed in the 1% of jobs that pay as much as Western companies, or else, you in fact are also dead poor and you still can't afford precious jewellery.

Rant over

One more thing. The OP got the SP episode wrong. It wasn't meant to be an example of a scam. It is how capitalism works. The only twist is where 3rd world countries fit in.

posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 08:55 PM
reply to post by bowtomonkey

Thank you for opening my eyes more on the subject matter. Do you think the episode was meant to be interpretted in only one way? I was only sharing my perspective on the episode.

Do you think since there are so many bad compaines offering such low buy back values, people just assume its the best they are going to get and just sell it?

posted on Jun, 3 2012 @ 09:02 PM
reply to post by NotApplicable

Also stay away from women wearing lots of perfume. They are hiding something down there.

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