A long time ago, in the wee hours of the morning, I made a post to Gadgetopia entitled Fake Escrow Sites. It was a posting about how crooks use fake escrow sites to cheat people out of money. It was just one or two sentences, and it linked to a news article. I was a little disturbed at what I read, calling it “ugly stuff.”
It’s gotten great search engine placement, and, consequently, it gets an enormous amount of traffic every day and a ton of comments. The average entry on Gadgetopia has 0.83 comments — this one has 130+.
There’s apparently a real need for people to know which escrow sites are good and which aren’t. I like this posting a lot because — at the risk of sounding dramatic, it’s really helping people. Here are excerpts from some of the comments.
I have someone trying to get me to go through this site as well, instead of via amazon. I’m very glad I haven’t sent off anything yet […]
Thanks to this site I’ve been saved from sending off a £6000+ diamond ring […]
Like Nick Allan, I too have just been saved from what appears to be the same person in Moldova […]
I too have been saved a ton of money by this site. I was almost duped for a Rolex Yachtmaster watch […]
So, as you can see, this is a very good thing. Since it’s SO good, we’re happy to announce:
Nothin’ but a big discussion board that will hopefully continue the great discussion and impact that the blog posting has had. It’s an expirement really — if you throw up a simple collaboration platform to address a real need with a real audience, will it thrive? We’re about to find out.
There’s still some work to do in configuring the forum, but since this isn’t a revenue-generating operation, I wanted to get it up and out there before other pressures took me away from it. It’s a case of, “if you wait until you’re ready, you’ll never be ready.”
In doing this, I had to work very hard to stifle over-analysis that would scare me out of it — namely, the potential for lawsuits. I wrote some very clear and frank policies for the site, and I’m simply going to brave the legal waters and hope for the best. I have faith that we’ll do much more good than harm.
I have never used an escrow site. I’ve only used eBay once. But in seeing some of the stories in that news article, and some of the comments that were posted, I really think we have a chance to make an impact here.