I've spent quite a bit of time lurking the fatwallet Hot Deals forum over the last few months. I was mainly hoping to find a good deal on an LCD or odd castaways from the dot com era. I haven't really come across any deals I could use - most that are of both legitimate and of real interest are marked "DEAD" within hours - but it has been somewhat interesting.
The Hot Deals area of the forum is very active. Many of these posts are just hastily typed or pasted versions of weekly ad flyers from office supply and consumer electronics chains. Some are one-off deals from liquidators such as overstock.com or refurbished goods at Amazon.
A lot of these folks go for free-after-rebate items from the chains. How many spindles of CDRs and CF readers can one person use? These posts are pretty harmless, but I can't help but think a lot of these folks must be drowning in clutter.
But the deals that get the most page reads are the ones that sound too good to be true. And they are. For most of us.
They normally involve an incredibly convoluted path of adding filler, applying coupons, applying for rebates, and asking for price matching from competitors. Through this process the reader can get paid $300 to take a new Dell PC, Horton Internet Firewall, a color cell phone camera, a bag of doritos, paperclips, etc, etc. Sometimes it's legitimately possible, at least until stock runs out, but very often involves some degree of fraud in addition to chutzbah.
The tip off is the phrase YMMV. This phrase once meant "available in cedar rapids, but may not be stocked west of the Pecos." It now is used with alarming regularity in describing how to deceive the store manager, order taker, or rebate center.
Apart from that, getting details on any posted deal is extremely cumbersome. This is mainly due to the many people who feel obliged to post the words "This deal is HOT! Thanks OP!". You will literally scroll through pages of this same post, over and over, while reading an especially popular thread. I kid you not. I guess people just like seeing their own avatar.
Greed abounds there. Any time people can get away with taking cases of an item, they will, whether they need it or not. One time I saw people ordering 1000s of an item they which had no description, simply because it was free. I'm sure they were hoping to have something they could immediately turn around on ebay for a tidy profit. Turned out to be the store catalog. So what happens now? Most of the assholes who ordered the things throw them in the fucking dumpster.
Always buy the cheapest shit you can find. When it is broken or used up, just throw it away! Hey this is great!
I'm done with fatwallet. These are the McDonald's eating, SUV driving, Dell buying losers of America. And they depress the shit out of me.