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How Can De Beers Market Diamonds When Beautiful Lab-Made Stones Exist?

De Beers, the company that had a near-monopoly on jewelry-quality diamonds for much of the 20th century, has a problem. Synthetic diamonds (or “lab-created,” as their marketers would prefer that you call them) have made amazing progress in the last few years, and now can be grown faster, better, and colorless. You need special equipment to tell the difference between a diamond made in a lab and a diamond made deep underground. Why should consumers pay more for a difference they can’t see? [More]


Not Everyone Is Disappointed With De Beers Class Action Checks

Yesterday, we shared the news that people have started to receive their settlement checks from the class action lawsuit that accused diamond merchants De Beers of price-fixing. (Gasp!) The first reader we heard from, Sean, was upset that he only received $48 back on a $3,000 claim, or about 1.6%. Other readers are happier with their settlements…but, to point out the obvious here, people with larger settlements are a lot happier, and people who spent more on shiny rocks in the first place received larger checks. [More]


Oh Look, It’s My $48 De Beers Class Action Settlement Check

Do you remember May 2008? That’s when we reminded our readers to get their claims in to get their piece of the $135 million class-action settlement against diamond miners, merchants, and pseudo-monopoly holders De Beers. Since then, class members have been waiting for their settlement checks. And waiting. Then waiting some more. [More]

De Beers Diamonds Now Only 74% Evil

De Beers Diamonds Now Only 74% Evil

South African diamond cartel De Beers has announced that it will be transferring a 26% share of its mining operation, De Beers Consolidated Mines, into a holding company that is half-owned by De Beers employees and pensioners. (Which we suppose could be mathed out to mean they are still 85% evil, depending on who owns the other half of the holding company.)