(Topic ID: 220847)

Avoiding Scams: The Brocolli Method


By sataneatscheese

10 months ago



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  • 18 posts
  • 17 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 10 months ago by BC_Gambit
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    #1 10 months ago

    I have never bought a pinball machine online, but have dealt with providing evidence that something really is in your possession. The easiest way I can think of to verify that a user has something, is to demand a picture of something random. I would think, "Send me a picture of the machine with a large piece of Broccoli under the glass but on the playfield" would verify that A. The Machine was in their possession B. They have the keys. C. The condition is really as it says and not photos of another machine.

    I have seen this method used successfully in "aquarium grow out contests", where you have to prove that a tank is empty at a certain point in time.

    #2 10 months ago

    The easiest way on here would be to have members write down their username and the date on a piece of paper and throw it on the playfield, and take pictures.

    #3 10 months ago

    A good idea indeed. Somehow reminds me of the 419 eater scambaiting website Trophy room!

    http://www.419eater.com/html/trophy_room.htm

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    #4 10 months ago

    It's a lot easier to photo-shop paper than broccoli!

    #5 10 months ago

    On the other hand, who wants to lose out on a machine because the owner has other takers and doesn't want to be bothered with opening the game and putting produce on the playfield?

    There are a million ways to tell a for sale ad is a scam that won't offend and annoy actual sellers, this seems rather elaborate.

    #6 10 months ago
    Quoted from lancestorm:

    The easiest way on here would be to have members write down their username and the date on a piece of paper and throw it on the playfield, and take pictures.

    A decent photoshopper can fake this. I know of one member here who almost got fooled by one of those images a few months ago.

    Quoted from sataneatscheese:

    Send me a picture of the machine with a large piece of Broccoli

    I don't have any broccoli. A scammer could claim the same.

    And again, a decent photoshopper could put just about anything convincing enough on a game to fool most people who don't have an eye for fake images.

    And also, if you make a seller try to jump through too many hoops, they will get the impression that you're wasting his time and move on to other potential buyers.

    There isn't any one specific catch-all technique that will work every time. Scammers are smart and are always upping their game.

    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/how-to-not-get-ripped-off-in-pinball-vids-guide/

    #7 10 months ago

    I've never owned a piece of broccoli

    #8 10 months ago
    Quoted from Venom_249:

    I've never owned a piece of broccoli

    You are missing out!!

    #9 10 months ago
    Quoted from Venom_249:

    I've never owned a piece of broccoli

    I picked up a LE (NIB) new in basket.

    #10 10 months ago

    Today's paper on glass works for me. Literally. How I bought my JP.
    Mmm broccoli.

    #11 10 months ago

    Your idea might work if you are the only one interested in it. If a seller receives calls from two potential buys say, and one asks for pics of broccoli under the glass, which one do you think the seller will sell to?

    Seller might also think, well if I’m going to do all this extra nonsense then I’m not going to go as low on price as I would have before (remember that an honest seller knows he’s honest all the while). Point is that every extra thing you ask of sellers becomes part of the negotiation - really nothing is free.

    #12 10 months ago

    I always ask for nudes to weed out the scammers

    #13 10 months ago

    Fwiw, I don't jump through hoops to sell a machine and if asked for some crazy broccoli pic I will laugh and say goodbye. I don't have time for that stuff. That's just ridiculous.
    -Mike

    #14 10 months ago

    I have always had better luck with the Albert R. Brocolli method personally...

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    #15 10 months ago
    Quoted from Grizlyrig:

    Fwiw, I don't jump through hoops to sell a machine and if asked for some crazy broccoli pic I will laugh and say goodbye. I don't have time for that stuff. That's just ridiculous.
    -Mike

    You're making it easier for scammers if you refuse all requests to prove you really have the machine you're selling.

    It's also a red flag if you ask a seller to jump through hoops and they jump time after time. The 419eater folks have hilarious examples.

    I think a short video is harder to fake than a photo.

    #16 10 months ago

    Agree with requesting a video or quick FaceTime video call, that is simple enough and what I usually request and offer.

    #17 10 months ago

    Or you could um like go check it out in person...

    #18 10 months ago

    FWIW no method is fool proof. I have a nice personalized pic of a LOTR LE where I paid a deposit and the seller evaporated. I was willing to risk that small deposit amount and it was a risk that did not pay off.

    That particular seller ended up doing jail time for pulling scams like that.

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