too good to be true
Back in 2015, a video promoting a consumer camera drone went viral. The product, called Lily, wasn’t just adorable. It promised to be easy to use, waterproof, and fly and record autonomously for 20 minutes at a time, following behind the wearer. Just under two years and tens of millions of dollars later, Lily Robotics was raided by federal agents, the company has filed for bankruptcy, and customers never received their drones. [More]
The news went out around December: a startup in Seattle would give engaged couples loans for their weddings, and some couples receive $10,000 toward their wedding expenses with no obligation to pay it back… for as long as the couple stays together. Then it abruptly changed the entire business model when it launched. [More]
No, Mark Zuckerberg Is Not Giving Away Millions In Facebook Stock To People Who Copy, Paste Something
Have you ever heard of someone who was rewarded with millions of dollars just for copying and pasting text? It sounds like a hard job to get, because it is — it doesn’t exist. That’s why no one is going to get free shares of Facebook stock simply by slapping a chunk of text into a status message and posting it. You will, however, get more people to realize how gullible you are.
No matter how many times we remind everyone that stores are generally under no legal obligation to honor a pricing mistake, some folks still seem to think that a retailer must make good — and lose hundreds, possibly thousands, of dollars — on something as obvious as a decimal error. [More]
Earlier this month, several people figured out that they could book super-cheap airfares on United Airlines’ website if they made it look like they were accessing the site from Denmark. The airline canceled those tickets after getting wind of the loophole, which it blamed on a software glitch. Thousands of people complained to the Dept. of Transportation, arguing the airline was illegally raising airfares post-purchase, but the DOT has decided that isn’t the case. [More]
Yesterday, a travel blogger figured out that by changing United Airlines’ online booking page to Denmark, travelers could take advantage of what appeared to be a crazy conversion rate to buy super cheap tickets between London and Newark. But what do they say when something seems too good to be true? Yup. It probably is: United now says it won’t be honoring those fares, blaming a third-party software provider.
When you’re about to follow a company on your social media site of choice or share an image or status in the hopes of receiving free stuff, stop. Apply critical thinking. Is it likely that an airline will give free flight passes to twenty thousand of its Instagram followers? Twenty, maybe, but not twenty thousand. [More]
If you’ve listened to the radio, glanced at a pop-up ad or checked your spam folder, you’ve no doubt been subjected to highly questionable ads that guarantee you “free” iPods or iPads if you do a whole lot of fine print stuff, and more. Apple is fed up with being associated with such offers, and is attempting to shut them down.
Lauren jumped on an amazing offer she found on Office Depot’s site and combined it with a coupon code to slash a ridiculous $179 off a desk and hutch. She waited a while to find out if the deal was too good to be true even though she got a confirmation email, then discovered to her disappointment that the company canceled her order.
Akshay thought he’d found a great deal on a Thanksgiving weekend flight from San Francisco to Mumbai — $554 for a round trip — and booked it excitedly at ba.com, getting a confirmation number.