Some people will do anything to make a buck online...

Do you linger on my every word like a lovesick schoolgirl? Or would you like to take a rusty ice pick to my jugular to make me shut the hell up? For, or against? Point, counterpoint? Discuss.

Moderator: Jackie

Post Reply
User avatar
Venomous
Site Admin
Posts: 1576
Joined: Sat Jan 29, 2005 6:00 pm
Location: Social Deviancy
Contact:

Some people will do anything to make a buck online...

Post by Venomous » Sat Aug 06, 2005 6:07 am

<a href="http://www.socialdeviancy.com/cgi-bin/v ... .jpg"><img src="http://www.socialdeviancy.com/gfx/thumbs/jesustoast.jpg" width="120" height="120" border="0" align="left"></a>Man, I tell you, I thought I'd tried some crazy things to make some money on the internet, but after a conversation I had with StreetRodRacer in the SocDev Chat Room the other day, I realize that compared to some people using eBay's 'Totally Bizarre' and/or 'Mystery Auction' categories, nothing I've done could be considered unusual in the slightest...

Gods, where do I begin...

Well, there's always some tool trying to flog home made Jesus Toast on eBay... they never sell anymore though, and I'm surprised anybody bothers to waste the listing fees anymore...

Speaking of "I can't believe you wasted a dollar on listing that!" auctions, how about this guy... he's selling individual corn chips that are shaped like the sides of the Great Pyramids... that's right, these corn chips are.. {gasp!}.. triangular! Oh my God, it's a miracle! =|

Oh, and while we're on the topic of crap nobody would ever buy, some dipshit is selling a yellow plastic shovel - but wait, this is not just ANY yellow plastic shovel... it's a MAGIC yellow plastic shovel! Yes, believe your eyes, readers - this otherwise utterly worthless second-hand child's toy grants wishes.. oooooohh...

But hey, we have to give the eBay population some credit. Nobody's bid on it yet, and that auction is nearly finished as I'm writing this. When are these sellers going to realize that people just aren't stupid enough to pay money for just any old crap?! I mean, it's not like we live in a world where people would be willing to pay $57.00 or more for say, a fifteen year old jar of old tomatoes from the back of somebody's pantry, now is it? No, surely there isn't a single person, let alone 19 people, who would be stupid enough to bid on something like that!

Anyways, all I can say about that really, is that at least none of those 19 people were stupid enough to be the guy that actually bid on Chris and Eric's pubic hair. If that auction doesn't get shut down as a violation of eBay policy and basic human decency, some poor idiot just paid a buck for an envelope full of pubes. And people wonder why I have lost all faith in the human race?

It's a shame to see that somebody is willing to pay a buck for the nether hairs of two bored nobodies, but nobody paid five bucks to own a photo of a dog standing on a piece of toast. If I had to choose between wasting my money on one of these two auctions, I'd take the stupid photo without a second thought.

While I'm on the topic of things that hugely violate standard eBay policies though, check out the guy who just sold a human skeleton that he claimed to have found in his coal bin. This is either completely fake, or completely illegal, but hey, some lucky fool just parted with $38 for the chance to find out the hard way!

And to close the category of outright ridiculous shit people are trying to offload on eBay, I'd like to close with this interesting piece of, err.. well.. I'm not sure. It's either somebody trying to sell spoons in a creative way, some kind of money laundering scam, an online game, or a complete farce to trick people into paying money for worthless crap. You'll have to look for yourself to decide which you think it is! Whatever the verdict, it's been running for less than 48 hours and at the time of this post, is already going to milk somebody out of at least $36.

But enough of that. What about the age-old practice of using a hard luck story to make sympathy sales? I don't think we see nearly enough of this kind of racketeering in today's online market. Take, for example, this poor woman who had a tree or two fall through her house during a storm, recently. Naturally, it happened moments after her home insurance expired, which she had to let lapse because her ailing husband lost his job and they couldn't afford to renew, and... well, you get the drift. Luckily though, their beloved young nephew Devin was on hand to save the day. Yes, for only five dollars apiece, you can purchase crappy scribbles drawn by somebody's brat kid, all proceeds of which will go towards the fix some stranger's house foundation. Fraud, or child labor? You decide.

Then again, say you wanted to sell a ring on eBay. Now we all know that sex and sympathy are the two biggest marketing aids of all time. And having a picture of a busty blonde in a bikini wearing the engagement ring you're trying to hock isn't quite the right angle. But hey, make up a story about how you're selling the ring for your best friend in the whole world, whose mean asshole ex-fiancée used to cheat on her and god knows what else, and who has now finally met the Mr. Right of every girl's dreams, and how you're selling her old engagement ring on eBay to help pay for the wedding, and BOOYAH, you have a dynamite sales campaign, my friend!

But hey, as far as marketing aids go, you can't go past traditional methods, like offline billboard space for your marketing ad. I mean, why would you want to mess around with banner exchanges, e-zines, PPC traffic and the like to advertise your business, when you can pay $99 to place your ad on some fucking idiot's skateboard? Surely your ad under some ass-monkey's feet all day is a prime advertising position, no?

Well, how about this then... for a modest price, a fat guy will wear a t-shirt with your company logo on it while he exercises! You can't pass that up, can you? At least 10 people at the time of this post thought not. I guess the free advertising that Nike, Adidas, and whatever other brands are cool with the kids these days will be taking a backseat on one wide load this month.

Though if having the weight-challenged advertise your junk isn't your thing, what about having the disabled do your work for you? That's right, for a short time only, you can slap your logo on somebody's wheelchair, somebody's prosthetic leg, or even an old lady's dentures! Everybody stares at the disabled, so rent this prime ad space for your business today!

But believe it or not, even these creative folks are dilettantes in today's greedy corporate world. Why settle for pathetic temporary advertising that will be here today, gone tomorrow? My hat goes off to the young lady willing to go the extra mile to get her daughter into private school. Not only does she have a nice pair of breasts, but she's willing to change her legal name for LIFE to whatever (within reason) the winning bidder decides. Yes, poor pretty little Mary Sue Hick over there in Altoona, PA, could be legally named Microsoft Windows XP (or "Mikey", for short) in as little as 48 hours from the time of this post if somebody snaps up her auction. Also, for just a few thousand dollars extra, she will permanently tattoo for life both her arms and both her hands with your URL, company logo, slogan, or what have you. Now that's dedication.

If branding another human being with your corporate logo is your thing though, why stop at hands and arms? Your website URL couldn't be more noticeable anywhere on the human body than across the front of a balding man's forehead. One fellow, who seems to have forgotten to put a reserve price on his dignity, could be sporting some new forehead ink for as little as $26 in his pocket - not even enough to cover the cost of the job! - if somebody doesn't get in there and drive that bid price up a little for him!

Or, if you think $30 is far too much to pay for a lifetime of using a man's forehead for a billboard, you could always bid on this similarly balding man instead, who is only asking the modest price of $5,000,000 for 30 days of temporary forehead advertising. Hmmm, such a tough call. $30 for a lifetime, or FIVE MILLION DOLLARS for 30 days? It never ceases to startle me how people don't seem to check the market before listing their auction. But hey, the big money is for a good cause - some spoiled private school kids want a bigger cafeteria, it seems, and also some fundamentalist mid-western church wants a slice of the pie too. Mr. Wright says he's a math teacher at the school he's trying to raise the bulk of the funds for. Surely he can calculate this simple equation then: $5,000,000 / 30 days = you've gotta be fucking kidding me, you stupid old asshat!!

Though, when it comes down to pure ego, Mr. Wright's expectations aren't quite as high as Michael here, who for a humble one million smackers, will let you pay for and then dictate the improvement of his sad miserable life into something his kids might actually take some pride in. I shit ye not, dear reader. Michael here is "willing" to let you make him learn a new language, take up an instrument, get a new hobby/extreme sport, and change his career from being a welder to anything from a doctor, a lawyer, a teacher, to a photographer or artist. Of course, the million clams you cough up for this privilege will pay for the old man going back to college to pick up these new skills, and the remainder will go into investments to make sure that Michael and his kids and their kids live and die very wealthy, thanks to your willingness to buy Michael out of his shitty life as a blue collar worker of 40+ years, and into a professional position for what little will be left of his working life before what will undoubtedly be a very early retirement with his million dollars.

Good luck, Michael. You ass monkey.

If you want to spend money and make a difference in somebody's life on a modest budget though, you could always pay for this woman to change her hair color. Yep, currently sitting at $7.50 (though a reserve price has not yet been met - our friend here obviously isn't willing to go through such a traumatic experience for mere pennies!), you yourself could purchase the right and the privilege to tell a perfect stranger to tint her hair any color you could possibly imagine, from red to blue to green and beyond!! What a thrill!! Already six people apparently thought so.

Enough of that though. Let me tell you about my personal favorites at the moment - the auction scammers. With very carefully worded listings to avoid violating policy, you can purchase an "envelope", containing "cash" of a random amount for five bucks a pop. Of course, in accordance with eBay's policies, you're actually purchasing one envelope for your money - any cash it may contain is legally considered a "gift" from the sender. However, in a lazy but foolhardy twist, this particular auctioneer states that you must pay via PayPal, and when your payment is received, he will "open" the "envelope" you have "purchased", and send whatever amount you have "won" back to you via PayPal. Hence, you don't get your precious envelope that you paid five bucks for after all. Wonder how long that little scam will remain not busted for!

My personal favorite of the auction scammers is this woman, though. She's got a great little scam going, though I must admit I can't quite pinpoint what the scam is! You see, she sells images. Now, I don't mean photographs. I don't even mean digital photographs. I mean digital images - clipart, if you will. But not clipart galleries, or a range of unique or public domain graphics for your website or documents. She sells what appear to be six small random images, probably ripped off a Google Image Search, for anywhere from $1 to $10 apiece. For one dollar, she'll email you a JPEG of an apple. For ten bucks, she'll send you a JPEG of a message in a bottle. Or your choice of four other pictures for ranging prices in between.

Here's the rub though - the pictures are shown in the auction listing, so you can see what you're going to be sent. I can only assume that perhaps the one you purchase is a larger image, or higher resolution. But still, it is made quite clear in the auction that all you are purchasing is an image which will be emailed to you.

This woman has made $175.50 at the time of this post, just for sending 104 emails with a graphic attachment on each one.

Actually, she's sent even less than that most likely, since for fuck knows what reason, most of her buyers actually bought multiple images!! One guy bought 15 copies of the apple picture!!

Now, I don't know what the scam is here, but I want in, damnit! I can send a hundred emails in less than an hour, and I certainly wouldn't scoff at a home business where I get paid $200 an hour to sit on my ass and send emails!

Baffles the mind...

Anyway, to wrap it up, here are a few more gems for you... first of all, the eBay revolutionaries... there's the Notebook to get you Noticed, in which every person that bids, submits a question on the auction, or contacts the seller and just asks, gets their name, nickname, or whatever they like written in an everyday 10"x8" ring bound notebook, which is then sold to the winning bidder. Why, you ask? Why not, apparently! It has four bids already and still three days to go.

In a similar vein is eBay's "First" Photo Album. This genius is charging a buck a head to put your photo in his photo album. What happens to the album once it's full? Well, either he doesn't know, or he's not telling. Either way, you're paying for the privilege of sending this freak your photo - what he does with it after that is anybody's guess, though I personally choose not to think about it too much. The piece de resistance, though? This bright spark has set his auction up as a Buy It Now for one dollar, no Dutch quantity settings. So the very first time some bored idiot wants to send this weirdo their photo, the auction closes and he's going to have to re-list if he wants any more photos. Man, there's one born every minute.

Back to adspace, one woman seems to have decided that she's sick of feeding and housing her three dogs and not getting any kind of financial compensation back from them for her trouble, so she's pimping them out as walking billboards for your company logo or whatever else you've always wanted to see written on a dog. And she's spared no effort on the details, either. For $10 and up, you get to put your logo on Oliver, the Boston Terrier, for one month. For $25 and up, you can also advertise on Oliver's twin sister, Ivy. For $50, you get your logo on Hank the Bassett Hound too. If you pay $100 or more, this broad will also advertise for you on her car - though no stickers or anything that might mar the paint job on her 2004 Jeep Liberty! If you top $125, hubby will also logo up the ol' Chevy Silverado for you. For $150, young Oliver will be your business mascot for three months, complete with photo shoots, convention appearances, whatever you like. For $200, you get him for six months. For $250, this family will put your company's billboard in the front yard of their house. And last but not least, if your bid reaches $350 or more, the entire family - parents, kids, dogs, and everything listed above, will proudly wear your logo on them everywhere they go for one month. And there you have it. Dignity is officially a distant legend of mankind.

The high bid is currently at $26.00 with nine hours remaining.

And in closing, my personal favorite for today - beginning at $20, you can have the pleasure of talking to somebody on the telephone. That's right. Are you terminally lonely, friendless, or desperately craving some attention? Well, for the cost of one crisp Andrew Jackson, you can chat on the phone for one hour with a 20-something guy from Evansville, Indiana, about anything you like except for "sex, pornography, violence towards anyone, and generally any topics that could get either one of us in trouble". Aint that a blast? It's more expensive than most phone sex, but at least you don't have to talk about rude things.

My hat goes off to you, random stranger from Indiana. If somebody actually pays $20 or, heaven forbid, more, for the pleasure of getting to shoot the shit with you for 60 minutes over the wires, then I truly believe you will have located the most pathetic person on the face of the Earth.

Aint eBay a riot? >=D
Last edited by Venomous on Mon Aug 08, 2005 12:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
- Venomous -

The internet is a tool, and so are most of the people who use it...

Social Deviancy

Ambrosia

Post by Ambrosia » Sat Aug 06, 2005 9:22 am

What is the world comming to? Is the world poputation getting more & more stupid? Ok, these auctons do offer some entertainmen value, but you would have to be a complete dipsht to bd on some of these things. You've realy got to wonder what sort of people actualy bid on this crap, do they realy think they gettng something that is worthwhile?
One thing I'd like to know is, isn't selling your body, for sex/advertsng/whatever, concidered prostitution? Surley eBay has some requlations against that.

Mythic
Lonely Lamer
Posts: 171
Joined: Sat May 07, 2005 4:57 pm
Location: The Dark Side of The Moon

Post by Mythic » Mon Aug 08, 2005 2:47 am

I'm speechless.

Tyranny

Post by Tyranny » Mon Aug 08, 2005 3:57 am

Well, that's just... well... hmmmm... I guess some morons will do anything to make a buck... like make up stupid stories for decaying fruit in a jar. And they say *I'm* weird? HAH!


T.

Renae the Boozehound

Post by Renae the Boozehound » Mon Aug 15, 2005 7:26 am

Hahaha! Words fail me as well! I didn't even know Ebay had the bizarre items/mystery auctions thing... Surely that flagrant ripoff/pathetic money laundering scheme with the envelopes is illegal?! If that guy can get a whopping $US 20 for an hour-long phonecall, then I should start bartering my phone voice as well! Do these people actually take themselves seriously or what? I suppose they must if they actually pay to put the ad on in the first place. Hmm...
And that fat guy doesn't even look fat, he just looks built, so he probably wouldn't get a lot of attention anyway. Why would businesses think it's a good idea to pay some schmuck to wear their logo? It'd probably lose them business in the end!
Bah, they're idiots. Enough said.
--Renae

User avatar
Venomous
Site Admin
Posts: 1576
Joined: Sat Jan 29, 2005 6:00 pm
Location: Social Deviancy
Contact:

Post by Venomous » Mon Aug 15, 2005 11:27 am

Ambrosia wrote:One thing I'd like to know is, isn't selling your body, for sex/advertsng/whatever, concidered prostitution? Surley eBay has some requlations against that.
Generally speaking, the definition of 'prostitution' is to engage in a sexual act or perform a sexual service for financial remuneration, so selling your body for completely non-sex related purposes, such as corporate advertising, wouldn't be classified as prostitution. However, Dictionary.com gives the secondary definition of 'prostitution' as "The act or an instance of offering or devoting one's talent to an unworthy use or cause." So, depending on whether you considering tattooing some company's logo or slogan on yourself for life, these auctions could be considered protitution. (Then again, that's a pretty vague and subjective definition - with a little creative interpretation, one could argue that 99% of the working civilized world are prostitutes, by going to work every day, and devoting their talents to an "unworthy" cause! =P)

Though, I think one would have to apply the legal definition of prostitution here, rather than the dictionary definition. And my Googling skills aren't that good. =P

To answer your question though, yes, eBay does have policies against selling sexual services or listing prostitution-related auctions, which technically all those sad college dorks trying to auction off their virginity on eBay are actually violating. But a lot of auctions that violate eBay policy get through every day - they only have so much manpower to enforce these things, and they rely heavily on the narc system of other users tattling on the offending auctions to locate and cancel them.

But yeah, I pity da foo' who actually bids on any of this crap...

Here's another piece of crap while I'm here... =)
- Venomous -

The internet is a tool, and so are most of the people who use it...

Social Deviancy

User avatar
MP81
Chronic Spammer
Posts: 571
Joined: Wed Aug 17, 2005 12:34 pm
Location: Michigan, USA
Contact:

Post by MP81 » Wed Aug 17, 2005 1:44 pm

God, I saw some moron, who like your first image sold a Pirogi (sp?) sandwhich with Jesus's face on it.

I know that a certain Grilled Cheese Sandwhich, with Oh my God! Mother Mary's face on it (probably a clever trick, done by putting the butter on so it formed the lines of her face, and cooked differently) sold for $25,000.

God, the thing probably would be either A) rotton when It got to you, or B) damaged from shipping it was "illegible"...either way, you wouldn't see this so called "Holy face in my grilled cheese" you paid $25,000 for.

Also seen on eBay: A Child sold his "Air Guitar" to some poor soul with no intelligence for $6 and a random amount of cents

-"George Washington's pocket lint!" Did they even have that back then? How much did it go for? $12 MILLION. Some idiot probably went broke trying to buy some persons pocket lint because he was stupid to fall for the trick..

Heh...

User avatar
Hellmark
Pissed Off Gimp Farmboy
Posts: 455
Joined: Wed Aug 24, 2005 6:54 pm
Location: O'Fallon, Missouri
Contact:

Post by Hellmark » Wed Aug 24, 2005 8:00 pm

I've seen several airguitars sell. Also one was for a tupperware bowl filled with air from a hurricane (bowl was an extra charge).

As long as their have been cloth, there have been lint. Most of the insanely high ones probably never pay that.

Supernovae
Desperately Bored Loser
Posts: 351
Joined: Wed Aug 24, 2005 7:42 pm
Location: Massachusetts
Contact:

Post by Supernovae » Wed Aug 24, 2005 8:47 pm

I'm gonna continue looking for stupid and retarded things found on ebay.

I'm glad all of you share some digust in the intelligence of people to pay for this crap.

-SRR

User avatar
Venomous
Site Admin
Posts: 1576
Joined: Sat Jan 29, 2005 6:00 pm
Location: Social Deviancy
Contact:

Post by Venomous » Thu Aug 25, 2005 6:39 am

Cool man, post 'em up here in this thread if you find anything... same goes for anybody else, if you see some ridiculous shit that people are trying to sell - or worse, people are actually buying! - online, post the links here!
- Venomous -

The internet is a tool, and so are most of the people who use it...

Social Deviancy

Ambrosia

Post by Ambrosia » Fri Aug 26, 2005 7:27 am

Are you sure that's a good idea? Encouraging someone like me to play on eBay??

Thoes sites are bad and evil. Do I need to remind you about Furby?

Supernovae
Desperately Bored Loser
Posts: 351
Joined: Wed Aug 24, 2005 7:42 pm
Location: Massachusetts
Contact:

Post by Supernovae » Fri Aug 26, 2005 7:37 am

Do I even want to know about Furby??!??!? lol

-SRR

User avatar
Venomous
Site Admin
Posts: 1576
Joined: Sat Jan 29, 2005 6:00 pm
Location: Social Deviancy
Contact:

Post by Venomous » Fri Aug 26, 2005 8:13 am

Furby = teh Antichrist.

Wiki this, bitch!
- Venomous -

The internet is a tool, and so are most of the people who use it...

Social Deviancy

User avatar
Venomous
Site Admin
Posts: 1576
Joined: Sat Jan 29, 2005 6:00 pm
Location: Social Deviancy
Contact:

Post by Venomous » Fri Aug 26, 2005 8:17 am

Actually, I just realised something funny actually... a Furby was actually the very first thing I ever bought off eBay!! Speaking of totally useless crap people spend their money on, yeah... heheh...
- Venomous -

The internet is a tool, and so are most of the people who use it...

Social Deviancy

User avatar
MP81
Chronic Spammer
Posts: 571
Joined: Wed Aug 17, 2005 12:34 pm
Location: Michigan, USA
Contact:

Post by MP81 » Fri Aug 26, 2005 9:56 pm

Them things were one of this biggest fads of the day, lol..

They'd never shut up once they started talking unless you beat them many-a-time with a baseball bat.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest