09 June 2006

No-one enjoys feeling stupid. Unfortunately that’s exactly the boat I’m in this morning. Once again I’m a victim of online fraud, only this time it’s thanks to stupidity and greed on my part.

For several months I’ve been interested in getting a newer video card than the lowly Geforce 2 MX I’m currently making do with. It mostly serves well, but I’d like dual-head, and a chance to play around properly with Apple’s OS X, neither of which it can do.

After deciding that an older ATI Radeon was my best bet, I found and paid for a second hand one through the Overclockers Australia Trading Forums. Unfortunately, the card didn’t exist and the seller stopped responding to messages. I wasn’t the only one caught out, and the case is now being investigated by the Queensland Police.

Not to be deterred, I took my search to eBay, and found an absolute bargain on this Radeon 9800 Pro. I took the usual precautions of buying on ebay, and checked the user feedback of the seller. At first glance it was very nearly all good, but when I looked closer, he had only been a member for three months, and had only sold cheap sets of batteries. Now he had listed many hundreds of dollars worth of computer gear, all finishing within a couple of days. I was suspicious, but decided, it’s eBay, what can go wrong, so bid, won, and paid for the item.

Today, the item hasn’t arrived, I check on eBay, negative feedback is starting to filter through, the seller is no longer a member, and I’m feeling very silly. It’s too soon for me to take any action, but it seems I’ll get to try out eBay’s disagreement services. Wonderful.

If something seems to good to be true. It probably is. Listen to your own common sense, don’t be as silly as me.