Little girl buys big online

After Mom signs into an auction site, a toddler takes over the computer and buys a huge earth mover for $12,300.

This case could either be seen as cute or maddening.

Pipi Quinlan, New Zealand's youngest big-time online consumer. Rodney Times

Sarah Quinlan, a New Zealand mom, went to take nap after having made some online bids on toys. When she came back, her 3-year-old had taken over the computer and bought a much more serious toy: a real earth mover for a cool 20,000 New Zealand dollars (about $12,300).

According to Rodney Times, Pipi Quinlan was happily clicking away on the keyboard while her parent was asleep and ended up being the winner of a Kobelco digger, a gigantic earth-moving vehicle.

Sarah had the shock of her life when she found out via e-mail which auction her account had won. She immediately called popular New Zealand auction site TradeMe, and the seller, to explain what happened. She added that her little girl was kind of a girly girl and not generally into earth movers.

TradeMe reimbursed the seller for the successful auction, and the product was relisted.

I'm pretty impressed that TradeMe resolved this matter so quickly. If it were eBay, you'd have to wait up to two weeks to get your fees back.

Lesson learned. However, don't leave your computer without locking it or at least logging off the Web site you were using.

About the author

CNET editor Dong Ngo has been involved with technology since 2000, starting with testing gadgets and writing code for CNET Labs' benchmarks. He now manages CNET San Francisco Labs, reviews 3D printers, networking/storage devices, and also writes about other topics from online security to new gadgets and how technology impacts the life of people around the world.

 

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