12 January 2009

crazy scams for crazy times

so we've all got those emails starting with "Dearest One, I am writing these letters with due respects and hearts full of tears since we have not known or met ourselves previously. I am asking for your assistance..." followed by tales of vast sums of money, dead relatives and banks in the cote d'ivoire. we assume they send out millions of those things to every available email address, hoping to find just one person who is completely senile, yet somehow email saavy enough to respond (good luck with that).

well, maison21 just came across a new scam aimed at a specific target audience: us (us as in interior design junkies, not maison21's royal "we"). we spotted the following ad on craigslist:
Interior modern design is a passion of mine and I consider it an art form. Having compiled a photographic library of current and vintage high-end, name brand modern furnishings over the years, consumers can now avail themselves of a unique service right from their lap top or PC via email and educate themselves for a one time initial flat fee. Clients are emailed expandable color photos, product information and retail pricing (USD) in accordance with client’s request parameters thus familiarizing client with various options/selections prior to purchasing interior furnishings through retailer or interior designer/decorator. Illustrated pics below have been arbitrarily selected as examples for potential clients to see. Initially please respond via email & provide contact phone number. Further more in depth conversation will be via telephone. Service is available via email within the continental United States. In the spirit of providing such information accumulated over the years I look forward to working with you. Sincerely, CJB
Six month resource service effective upon clearance of service fee
Email expandable color photos of interior furnishing options based on client space or category request
Email approximate retail pricing (USD) for selected furnishings
Email brand name, description & measurements for selected furnishings*
Email contact information for local or internet retailers for selected furnishings
Initial phone consultation / Email correspondence
$2500 one time flat service fee payable via PayPal**
* In the case of vintage furnishings, pricing, description & measurements
may vary, be limited or not available
** Client needs to address any questions or issues during client initial phone
consultation prior to remittance of service fee. Client agrees initial flat
service fee is non-refundable after issuance

ok, did you get that? if not, maison21 will gladly summarize: please send "CJB" $2500.00, and in return, they will send you pictures of furniture they have collected on the internets. omg- what an incredibly good deal!

here's an even better one: send "M21" just $250.00 (that's 90% off!), and he too, will send you pictures of furniture he has collected from the internets. wow! now, that's a deal!

and if this the ad sounds good to you, maison21 also has a picture of the brooklyn bridge you might be interested in purchasing...


ArchitectDesign said...

you too!!! The spammers are out of control!

Tracy said...

Holy cow! It's the "one time flat service fee" that gives this one away. And while your own 90% off offer is unbelievably generous, I am a very lucky person and have my own access to internet photos of furniture ;) Thanks anyway!

Suzy said...

I just wonder how many suckers will fall for that. I too can provide years worth of collected images for a ridiculous amount of money!

beachbungalow8 said...

I consider myself somewhat wiley. Especially when it comes to the internet and ebay in particular. but, i once paid, $50.00 for a copy of Madonna's 'sex' book on ebay.

I'm such an idiot, what I didn't read (at the way, way bottom in teensy writing) was that it was a pdf of a poorly scanned 'sex' book.

Cote de Texas said...

what a joke, you know - he is probably dead serious though.