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Snake Oil and Cybercide

There’s been at least one incident in the knitting community of a yarn purveyor faking an illness, then death, in order to get out of her obligations and as a way of dealing with the complaints about the product quality. Ravelry folks know this is under the “Mystical Creations, Yo” group, and what a kerfuffle it was/is. Apparently this woman is perfectly fine, reportedly driving a new car, and was initially spotted at a Wal-Mart (isn’t everyone’s undoing going to be at a Wal-Mart?).  The announcement of her fraud caused an uproar, and mind you, we knitters have resources. It cracks me up to think just how mobilized we really could be, if someone would just stop distracting us with yarn sales – we truly could take over the world, what with all the various professions out there. Including lawyers, who know how to search legal databases and what charges should be filed in the case of fraud!  I stopped following the thread because, well, I have to work, and the conversation itself was rather life-consuming. But for an onlooker, what a rubbernecking train wreck, indeed.

Turns out, this is not the only death-faker in the yarn community! Another one has done this – did it before MCY, in fact, and was discovered through, of all things, a social networking tool. See, even if you successfully fake your own death online, and shut down your blog, your Etsy shop, all that stuff, if you DON’T CHANGE YOUR EMAIL ADDY, someone will eventually click that button on their Facebook/Twitter/Plurk screen that says, “Check to see if my contacts are on here!” And boy, will that person be shocked to see you alive & well, tweeting and blogging away.  With your same first name, and uh, pictures of your TATTOOS. Really? Have you not even heard of CSI? Or go to the post office and see the descriptions of the FBI’s Top Ten Most Wanted? Tattoos fall under “Scars and Marks”.   (Point of clarification: This discovery did not happen to me. Again, I’m just rubbernecking. But I got the account of this firsthand from a former defender & champion of the Undead Knitter, and she is rightfully fit-to-be-tied by this twist of events.)  Now Undead has slammed the privacy doors shut on those portals, because she realized she’d been found, but here’s what you didn’t think about, sweetie: we all have an IP address. And the fact that you opened up a second dummy account on Ravelry, three months before your  untimely “demise”, right about the time things started piling up? Oh yean,  and you posted from both accounts? Means the source of those account postings can be checked. And they will be checked.

And all those people who paid for things they didn’t get are going to be pissed. All the people who wrote heartfelt condolences will feel their hearts harden, just a little bit.  Which really sucks. Knitters are typically pretty generous, and unused to being scammed by con artists. They would have been upset, but far more forgiving of a straightforward atonement for your predicament, whatever it was that drove you to hoodwink so many.  Your karmic acts will need to triple, for the rest of your life, to atone for this.

There’s a sucker born every minute, as the saying goes. But it’s best to remember that sometimes the suckers carry really pointy objects, and have resources to even the playing field.  Stay tuned, for this essplosion has only just begun to erupt….

12 Comments

  1. Fortunately, what goes around, comes around. She’ll get her due.

  2. Rumors of my death have been greatly exaggerated!

  3. I never believed it to begin with. I can’t wait for her to be called out!

  4. Wow. It shocks me that people are so stupid to actually try and pull this off and yet hang around the ‘net still. I mean, c’mon.

  5. She/they should be tarred and yarned!
    I make light, but seriously, what kind of asshat does that?

  6. No, wait…someone sold products online, and in order to avoid fulfilling the orders pretended she was dead?! That is mind-bogglingly stupid. And, uh, fraudulent.

  7. There some violent and vengeful knitters out there. Next: serial killer librarians.

  8. i must have been living under a rock because i never heard of this on ravelry…you bet i’m going to go snoop now! 🙂

  9. I am still so in the dark about this, it is funny. Yet, I do love the rubbernecking opportunity. I will add it to my list of things to never do on the internet.

  10. Uffta, my whole week was taken over by this.

  11. No point looking on Ravelry – the story has been heavily censored!

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