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Diamonds - Are They Really Worth the Cost?

Cliff posted more than 12 years ago | from the ethics-in-the-diamond-age dept.

News 2388

hardDiamond asks: "I'm going to get engaged. I know my 4 C's. I know I'm going to get screwed by the jeweller, but that's okay: after all, a diamond engagement ring is a time-honoured tradition... NOT. Having checked out the goods, looked for the flaws, I found the biggest one of all. Diamond engagement rings are the creation of a well orchestrated advertising campaign for most of the last century - according to this article. Would you buy one for the love of your life? I know my girlfriend would love a diamond, but ethically I have my doubts. Diseased-miners, child slave labour, cartel inflated prices... and as if that wasn't enough, diamonds have no resale value. Naddah. Zilch. They'll sell you the shit, but damn it, they're not taking it back at any price. So what have my fellow slashdotters done with regards to engagement rings? What's a good substitute for diamonds? My girlfriend understands my thoughts regarding diamonds, but deep down, I'm sure she would like a diamond. Even a small one." I've never even thought about questioning such a time honored tradition, but now I'm curious. Have any of you looked at the issues surrounding diamonds and found them wanting? What alternatives have you found and were they acceptable?After researching this a bit, one of the key facts to surface is that 2-4.5% of diamond sales will go to finance terrorism or forms of violence. Such diamonds, for want of a better term, have been named "conflict diamonds". For those of you interested in following up on this subject, here are a few more links:

Fatal Transactions
Conflict Diamonds: Sanctions and War
The Campaign to Eliminate Conflict Diamonds
The Kimberly Process, which will attempt to track diamonds to their origin. This is to begin in November.
For those of you who have a subscription to Science News, the cover story, this month, deals with this issue as well.

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smile people. be happy (-1)

TrollBurger (575126) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065442)

hello. have a nice day everyone

C# Sourcecode for Slashdot Troll Bot!!! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4065443)

C# Sourcecode for Slashdot Troll Bot!!!

Published under the TPL (Trolling Public License)

usingSystem; [goatse.cx]
usingSystem.Drawing;
usingSystem.Co llections;
usingSystem.ComponentModel;
usingSyst em.Windows.Forms;
usingSystem.Data;
usingSystem. Data.OleDb;
usingSystem.Runtime.InteropServices;n amespaceSlashman{
publicclassMainFrm:System.Windo ws.Forms.Form{[DllImport("winmm.dll")]
publicstat icexternlongPlaySound(Stringlpszname,longhModule,l ongdwFlags);privateboolmanualMode=false;
privateb oolcontextTroll=false;privateboolcontextTrollOnly= false;
privatestringlatestStory="";privatestringl atestStoryDisplay="";
privatestringlatestURL="";p rivatestringlatestTime="";
privatestringlastStory ="";privateintselTroll=1;
privateSystem.Randomran d=newSystem.Random();privateDateTimenextCheck=Syst em.DateTime.Now+System.TimeSpan.FromSeconds(6);
p rivateSystem.Windows.Forms.Labellabel1;privateSyst em.Windows.Forms.LinkLabellinkURL;
privateSystem. Windows.Forms.LabellabelTime;privateSystem.Windows .Forms.ButtonbuttonCheck;
privatebooltrying=false ;privateSystem.Timers.TimertheTimer;
privateSyste m.Windows.Forms.LabellabelNextCheck;privatestringm ainURL="http:privatestringreplyURL="http:privateSy stem.Data.DataTabletrollTable;
privateSystem.Data .DataSettrollSet;privateSystem.Data.DataTableconte xtTable;
privateSystem.Data.DataSetcontextSet;pri vateSystem.Windows.Forms.ButtonbtnPost;
privatebo olisposting=false;privateintpreinctroll=0;
privat estringdirBase="";privateSystem.Windows.Forms.Butt onbtnOptions;
privateSystem.Windows.Forms.Context MenutrayMenu;privateSystem.Windows.Forms.MenuItemm enuItem1;
privateSystem.Windows.Forms.MenuItemmen uItem2;privateSystem.Windows.Forms.MenuItemmenuIte m3;
protectedSystem.Windows.Forms.NotifyIcontIcon ;privateSystem.ComponentModel.IContainercomponents ;
privateOleDbConnectiondbConn;privateOleDbDataAd apterdbTrollsAdapter;
privateSystem.Windows.Forms .LabellbResult;privateOleDbDataAdapterdbContextAda pter;
publicMainFrm(){InitializeComponent();

SlashCfg.SetDefaults();ReadDB();}
protectedover ri devoidDispose(booldisposing){if(disposing){
if(co mponents!=null){components.Dispose();}
}base.Disp ose(disposing);}
#regionWindowsFormDesignergenera tedcodeprivatevoidInitializeComponent(){
this.com ponents=newSystem.ComponentModel.Container();Syste m.Resources.ResourceManagerresources=newSystem.Res ources.ResourceManager(typeof(MainFrm));
this.lin kURL=newSystem.Windows.Forms.LinkLabel();this.labe l1=newSystem.Windows.Forms.Label();
this.labelTim e=newSystem.Windows.Forms.Label();this.labelNextCh eck=newSystem.Windows.Forms.Label();
this.buttonC heck=newSystem.Windows.Forms.Button();this.theTime r=newSystem.Timers.Timer();
this.btnOptions=newSy stem.Windows.Forms.Button();this.btnPost=newSystem .Windows.Forms.Button();
this.tIcon=newSystem.Win dows.Forms.NotifyIcon(this.components);this.trayMe nu=newSystem.Windows.Forms.ContextMenu();
this.me nuItem1=newSystem.Windows.Forms.MenuItem();this.me nuItem3=newSystem.Windows.Forms.MenuItem();
this. menuItem2=newSystem.Windows.Forms.MenuItem();this. lbResult=newSystem.Windows.Forms.Label();
((Syste m.ComponentModel.ISupportInitialize)(this.theTimer )).BeginInit();this.SuspendLayout();
this.linkURL .Location=newSystem.Drawing.Point(16,48);this.link URL.Name="linkURL";
this.linkURL.Size=newSystem.D rawing.Size(432,23);this.linkURL.TabIndex=0;
this .linkURL.LinkClicked+=newSystem.Windows.Forms.Link LabelLinkClickedEventHandler(this.linkURL_LinkClic ked);this.label1.Location=newSystem.Drawing.Point( 16,16);
this.label1.Name="label1";this.label1.Siz e=newSystem.Drawing.Size(80,23);
this.label1.TabI ndex=1;this.label1.Text="LastCheck:";
this.labelT ime.Location=newSystem.Drawing.Point(104,16);this. labelTime.Name="labelTime";
this.labelTime.Size=n ewSystem.Drawing.Size(128,23);this.labelTime.TabIn dex=2;
this.labelTime.Text="00:00";this.labelNext Check.Location=newSystem.Drawing.Point(240,16);
t his.labelNextCheck.Name="labelNextCheck";this.labe lNextCheck.Size=newSystem.Drawing.Size(208,23);
t his.labelNextCheck.TabIndex=3;this.labelNextCheck. Text="NextCheckin0Seconds";
this.buttonCheck.Loca tion=newSystem.Drawing.Point(376,120);this.buttonC heck.Name="buttonCheck";
this.buttonCheck.TabInde x=4;this.buttonCheck.Text="CheckNow";
this.button Check.Click+=newSystem.EventHandler(this.buttonChe ck_Click);this.theTimer.Enabled=true;
this.theTim er.Interval=1000;this.theTimer.SynchronizingObject =this;
this.theTimer.Elapsed+=newSystem.Timers.El apsedEventHandler(this.OnFireTimer);this.btnOption s.Location=newSystem.Drawing.Point(200,120);
this .btnOptions.Name="btnOptions";this.btnOptions.TabI ndex=5;
this.btnOptions.Text="Options";this.btnOp tions.Click+=newSystem.EventHandler(this.btnOption s_Click);
this.btnPost.Location=newSystem.Drawing .Point(288,120);this.btnPost.Name="btnPost";
this .btnPost.TabIndex=7;this.btnPost.Text="PostNow";
this.btnPost.Click+=newSystem.EventHandler(this.bt nPost_Click);this.tIcon.ContextMenu=this.trayMenu;
this.tIcon.Icon=((System.Drawing.Icon)(resources .GetObject("tIcon.Icon")));this.tIcon.Text="SlashM an";
this.tIcon.Visible=true;this.tIcon.DoubleCli ck+=newSystem.EventHandler(this.DblClickTrayIcon);
this.trayMenu.MenuItems.AddRange(newSystem.Windo ws.Forms.MenuItem[]{this.menuItem1,
this.menuItem 3,this.menuItem2});
this.menuItem1.DefaultItem=tr ue;this.menuItem1.Index=0;
this.menuItem1.Text="O pen...";this.menuItem1.Click+=newSystem.EventHandl er(this.menuItem1_Click);
this.menuItem3.Index=1; this.menuItem3.Text="-";
this.menuItem2.Index=2;t his.menuItem2.Text="Exit";
this.menuItem2.Click+= newSystem.EventHandler(this.menuItem2_Click);this. lbResult.Location=newSystem.Drawing.Point(16,80);
this.lbResult.Name="lbResult";this.lbResult.Size= newSystem.Drawing.Size(432,23);
this.lbResult.Tab Index=8;this.lbResult.Text="LastResult:None";
thi s.AutoScaleBaseSize=newSystem.Drawing.Size(5,13);t his.ClientSize=newSystem.Drawing.Size(472,149);
t his.Controls.AddRange(newSystem.Windows.Forms.Cont rol[]{this.lbResult,
this.btnPost,this.btnOptions ,
this.buttonCheck,this.labelNextCheck,
this.lab elTime,this.label1,
this.linkURL});this.Icon=((Sy stem.Drawing.Icon)(resources.GetObject("$this.Icon ")));
this.MaximizeBox=false;this.Name="MainFrm";
this.StartPosition=System.Windows.Forms.FormStar tPosition.CenterScreen;this.Text="SlashMan";
this .SizeChanged+=newSystem.EventHandler(this.SizeChan g);((System.ComponentModel.ISupportInitialize)(thi s.theTimer)).EndInit();
this.ResumeLayout(false); }#endregion
[STAThread]staticvoidMain(){
Applica tion.Run(newMainFrm());}privatevoidReadDB(){
try{ dirBase=System.Diagnostics.Process.GetCurrentProce ss().MainModule.FileName;
dirBase=dirBase.Substri ng(0,dirBase.LastIndexOf("\\"));System.IO.Director y.CreateDirectory(dirBase);
stringmdbFile="Provid er=Microsoft.Jet.OLEDB.4.0;DataSource="+dirBase+"\ \Slashman.mdb";dbConn=newOleDbConnection(mdbFile);
dbTrollsAdapter=newOleDbDataAdapter();OleDbComma nddbInsert=newOleDbCommand("INSERTINTOtrolls(ID,Su bject,Body)Values(?,?,?)",dbConn);
dbInsert.Param eters.Add("ID",OleDbType.Numeric,0,"ID");dbInsert. Parameters.Add("Subject",OleDbType.VarChar,255,"Su bject");
dbInsert.Parameters.Add("Body",OleDbType .Char,65535,"Body");OleDbCommanddbUpdate=newOleDbC ommand("UPDATEtrollsSETSubject=?,Body=?WHEREID=?", dbConn);
dbUpdate.Parameters.Add("Subject",OleDbT ype.VarChar,255,"Subject");dbUpdate.Parameters.Add ("Body",OleDbType.Char,65535,"Body");
dbUpdate.Pa rameters.Add("ID",OleDbType.Numeric,0,"ID");OleDbC ommanddbDel=newOleDbCommand("DELETEFROMtrollsWHERE ID=?",dbConn);
dbDel.Parameters.Add(newOleDbParam eter("ID",OleDbType.Numeric,0,"ID"));dbTrollsAdapt er.InsertCommand=dbInsert;
dbTrollsAdapter.Update Command=dbUpdate;dbTrollsAdapter.DeleteCommand=dbD el;
dbTrollsAdapter.SelectCommand=newOleDbCommand ("SELECT*FROMtrolls",dbConn);dbContextAdapter=newO leDbDataAdapter();
dbContextAdapter.SelectCommand =newOleDbCommand("SELECT*FROMContext",dbConn);dbCo nn.Open();
trollSet=newSystem.Data.DataSet("troll set");trollTable=newDataTable("trolls");
dbTrolls Adapter.Fill(trollTable);trollSet.Tables.Add(troll Table);
if(trollTable.Rows.Count==0){System.Windo ws.Forms.MessageBox.Show("Thetrollsdatabaseismissi ngorempty.");
thrownewSystem.Exception("Thetrolls databaseismissingorempty.");}contextSet=newSystem. Data.DataSet("contextset");
contextTable=newDataT able("Context");dbContextAdapter.Fill(contextTable );
contextSet.Tables.Add(contextTable);this.Visib le=true;
this.Update();}finally{
dbConn.Close(); }}
privateboolSendMail(stringfrom,stringto,string subject,stringbody){try{
System.Web.Mail.MailMess agetheMail=newSystem.Web.Mail.MailMessage();theMai l.From="your@email.com";
theMail.To=to;theMail.Su bject=subject;
theMail.Body=body;theMail.BodyForm at=System.Web.Mail.MailFormat.Text;
System.Web.Ma il.SmtpMail.SmtpServer="your.server.com";System.We b.Mail.SmtpMail.Send(theMail);
returntrue;}catch( Exceptione){
System.Windows.Forms.MessageBox.Show (e.Message);returnfalse;}
}privatevoidUpdateForm( ){
this.labelTime.Text=latestTime;this.linkURL.Te xt=latestStoryDisplay;}
privatestringGetTaggedTex t(stringfrom,stringtagBegin,stringtagEnd){intbegin =from.IndexOf(tagBegin);
if(begin==-1)thrownewSys tem.Exception("tagBeginnotfound");stringretstr=fro m.Substring(begin+tagBegin.Length);
intend=retstr .IndexOf(tagEnd);if(end==-1)thrownewSystem.Excepti on("tagEndnotfound");
returnretstr.Substring(0,en d);}privatestringStripTags(stringfrom){
stringret =from;intbegin=ret.IndexOf("");
while(begin=0){in tend=ret.IndexOf("",begin);
if(end==-1)break;ret= ret.Remove(begin,(end-begin)+1);
begin=ret.IndexO f("");}returnret;}
privatestringGetHref(stringfro m){stringtagHref="AHREF=\"";
stringret=from;intbe gin=ret.IndexOf(tagHref);
if(begin0)thrownewSyste m.Exception("GetHreffailed(1).");begin+=tagHref.Le ngth;
intend=ret.IndexOf("\"",begin);if(end0)thro wnewSystem.Exception("GetHreffailed(2).");
ret=re t.Substring(begin,end-begin);if(!ret.StartsWith("h ttp:"))ret="http:"+ret;
returnret;}privatestringD oHttpPost(stringinURI,System.Collections.Specializ ed.NameValueCollectionvalues){
System.Net.WebClie ntcli=newSystem.Net.WebClient();byte[]resp=cli.Upl oadValues(inURI,values);
returnSystem.Text.Encodi ng.ASCII.GetString(resp);}privatestringDoHttpGet(s tringinURI){
System.Net.HttpWebRequestreq=(System .Net.HttpWebRequest)System.Net.WebRequest.Create(i nURI);req.CookieContainer=newSystem.Net.CookieCont ainer();
req.CookieContainer.Add(newSystem.Net.Co okie("user",SlashCfg.userCookie,"/","slashdot.org" ));System.Net.WebResponseresp=req.GetResponse();
System.IO.StreamReadersr=newSystem.IO.StreamReader (resp.GetResponseStream(),System.Text.Encoding.ASC II);returnsr.ReadToEnd();}
privatevoidPrePro(refs tringtheData){theData=theData.Replace("Ask Slashdot: Diamonds - Are They Really Worth the Cost?",latestStory);
theData=theData.Replace("191 ",selTroll.ToString());theData=theData.Replace("19 8",trollTable.Rows.Count.ToString());}
privatevoi dUpdateStatus(stringstat){tIcon.Text=stat;
labelN extCheck.Text=stat;labelNextCheck.Update();}
priv atevoidPromptTrollData(outstringsubj,outstringbody ){subj="";
body="";GetTrollgt=newGetTroll(latestS tory,latestURL);
gt.ShowDialog(this);if(!gt.accep ted)thrownewSystem.Exception("AbortedEntry");
sub j=gt.thesubj;body=gt.thebody;
if((subj=="")||(bod y==""))thrownewSystem.Exception("AbortedEntry");}p rivatevoidGetTrollData(outstringsubj,outstringbody ){
inti=contextTable.Rows.Count;subj="";
body="" ;if(contextTroll){
for(i=0;icontextTable.Rows.Cou nt;i++){if(latestStory.IndexOf(contextTable.Rows[i ]["IfContain"].ToString())=0){
intidx=(int)contex tTable.Rows[i]["Post"];subj=trollTable.Rows[idx-1] ["Subject"].ToString();
body=trollTable.Rows[idx- 1]["Body"].ToString();break;}
}}if(i==contextTabl e.Rows.Count){
if(contextTrollOnly){thrownewSyste m.Exception("Nocontexttrollexistsforthispost.");}
preinctroll=SlashCfg.curTrollIndex;if(SlashCfg.cu rTroll==0){
SlashCfg.curTrollIndex++;if(SlashCfg. curTrollIndex=trollTable.Rows.Count)SlashCfg.curTr ollIndex=1;
selTroll=SlashCfg.curTrollIndex;}else {
selTroll=SlashCfg.curTroll;}if(selTroll=trollTa ble.Rows.Count){
thrownewSystem.Exception("Thesel ectedtrollisgreaterthanthenumberoftrollsinthetable .");}subj=trollTable.Rows[selTroll]["Subject"].ToS tring();
body=trollTable.Rows[selTroll]["Body"].T oString();}if(SlashCfg.appendPostfix){
body+="P"+ SlashCfg.appendPosttext;}PrePro(refsubj);
PrePro( refbody);}privatevoidPostComment(){
/*stringxtheS ubj,xtheBody;
GetTrollData(outxtheSubj,outxtheBod y);System.Windows.Forms.MessageBox.Show(xtheBody,x theSubj);
return;*/
if(isposting)return;ispostin g=true;
if(manualMode)PlaySound(Application.Start upPath+"\\alert.wav",0,1);try{
stringtheSubj="",t heBody="";if(!manualMode){
GetTrollData(outtheSub j,outtheBody);}UpdateStatus("Readingcommentspage.. .");
stringpageText=DoHttpGet(latestURL);stringta gSID="INPUTTYPE=\"HIDDEN\"NAME=\"sid\"VALUE=\"";
stringtagCID="INPUTTYPE=\"HIDDEN\"NAME=\"cid\"VALU E=\"";stringtagPID="INPUTTYPE=\"HIDDEN\"NAME=\"pid \"VALUE=\"";
stringtagKEY="INPUTTYPE=\"HIDDEN\"NA ME=\"formkey\"VALUE=\"";stringtagEND="\"";
string SID=GetTaggedText(pageText,tagSID,tagEND);stringCI D=GetTaggedText(pageText,tagCID,tagEND);
stringPI D=GetTaggedText(pageText,tagPID,tagEND);stringrepl yPage=replyURL+"?";
replyPage+="sid="+SID+"&";rep lyPage+="pid="+PID+"&";
replyPage+="cid="+CID+"&" ;replyPage+="op=Reply&mode=flat&commentsort=0&thre shold=-1";
UpdateStatus("RequestingReplyPage...") ;pageText=DoHttpGet(replyPage);
SID=GetTaggedText (pageText,tagSID,tagEND);PID=GetTaggedText(pageTex t,tagPID,tagEND);
stringKEY=GetTaggedText(pageTex t,tagKEY,tagEND);System.Collections.Specialized.Na meValueCollectionnvs=newSystem.Collections.Special ized.NameValueCollection();
nvs.Add("sid",SID);nv s.Add("pid",PID);
nvs.Add("mode","flat");nvs.Add( "startat","");
nvs.Add("threshold","-1");nvs.Add( "commentsort","0");
nvs.Add("formkey",KEY);nvs.Ad d("rlogin","1");
nvs.Add("unickname",SlashCfg.use rname);nvs.Add("upasswd",SlashCfg.password);
nvs. Add("op","Submit");nvs.Add("posttype","1");
if(ma nualMode){PromptTrollData(outtheSubj,outtheBody);}
else{UpdateStatus("Waiting20seconds...");
Syste m.Threading.Thread.Sleep(21000);}nvs.Add("postersu bj",theSubj);
nvs.Add("postercomment",theBody);pa geText=DoHttpPost(replyURL,nvs);
stringtagErrorRe sult="!--Errortype:--";stringtagPostResult="FACE=\ "arial,helvetica\"SIZE=\"4\"COLOR=\"#FFFFFF\"B";
stringtagPostResultEnd="/B";stringPostResult=GetTa ggedText(pageText,tagPostResult,tagPostResultEnd);
boolisOK=(pageText.IndexOf(tagErrorResult)==-1); if((!isOK)&&(PostResult=="PostComment")){
try{Pos tResult=GetTaggedText(pageText,tagErrorResult,".") ;}catch{}
while((PostResult.Length0)&&((PostResul t[0]32)||(PostResult[0]127)))PostResult=PostResult .Substring(1);}if(isOK){
CID=GetTaggedText(pageTe xt,tagCID,tagEND);lbResult.Text="PostedComment";
stringlink="http:}else{
lbResult.Text="ERROR:"+Po stResult;}isposting=false;}
catch(System.Exceptio n){isposting=false;
throw;}UpdateStatus("PostComp lete.");}
privatevoidTryRead(){if(trying)return;
trying=true;stringtagTitle=@"FACE=""arial,helveti ca""SIZE=""4""COLOR=""#FFFFFF""B";
stringtagTitle End="/B";stringtagUrl="PB(/B";
stringtagUrlEnd="B ReadMore.../B";UpdateStatus("CheckingNow...");
bo olretryPost=false;try{
stringpagestr=DoHttpGet(ma inURL);latestStory=StripTags(GetTaggedText(pagestr ,tagTitle,tagTitleEnd));
latestStoryDisplay=lates tStory;latestURL=GetHref(GetTaggedText(pagestr,tag Url,tagUrlEnd));
latestURL+="&threshold=-1";lates tTime=System.DateTime.Now.ToString();
if((lastSto ry.Length0)&&(latestStory!=lastStory)){PlayAlert() ;
PostComment();}}
catch(System.Exceptione){if(e .Message.IndexOf("(404)")0){
SlashCfg.curTrollInd ex=preinctroll;retryPost=true;}
latestStoryDispla y=e.Message;latestURL="ERROR";
latestTime="ERROR" ;}if(retryPost==false){
lastStory=latestStory;nex tCheck=DateTime.Now.AddSeconds(SlashCfg.checkInter valMin+rand.Next(SlashCfg.checkIntervalMax-SlashCf g.checkIntervalMin));}
else{nextCheck=DateTime.No w.AddSeconds(5);}
UpdateForm();trying=false;}
pr ivatevoidbuttonCheck_Click(objectsender,System.Eve ntArgse){TryRead();}
privatevoidOnFireTimer(objec tsender,System.Timers.ElapsedEventArgse){if(trying )return;
if(isposting)return;if(DateTime.NownextC heck){
TryRead();}UpdateStatus("NextCheckin"+(int )((nextCheck-DateTime.Now).TotalSeconds)+"Seconds. ");}
privatevoidNavigateLink(){try{System.Diagnos tics.Process.Start(latestURL);}
catch{}}privatevo idPlayAlert()
{}privatevoidlinkURL_LinkClicked(ob jectsender,System.Windows.Forms.LinkLabelLinkClick edEventArgse){
NavigateLink();}privatevoidbtnPost _Click(objectsender,System.EventArgse){
if((lates tURL==null)||(latestURL=="ERROR")||(latestURL.Leng th==0)){System.Windows.Forms.MessageBox.Show("Must getthepostfirst!(PressCheckNow)","Error",System.Wi ndows.Forms.MessageBoxButtons.OK,System.Windows.Fo rms.MessageBoxIcon.Stop);
return;}try{
PostComme nt();}catch{}}
privatevoidbtnOptions_Click(object sender,System.EventArgse){Slashman.OptionsFrmopts= newSlashman.OptionsFrm();
opts.trollTable=trollTa ble;opts.ShowDialog(this);
if(opts.pressedOK){dbT rollsAdapter.Update(trollTable);
trollTable.Accep tChanges();}else{
trollTable.RejectChanges();}}
privatevoidShowMe(){this.Visible=true;
this.Activ ate();this.WindowState=System.Windows.Forms.FormWi ndowState.Normal;}
privatevoidHideMe(){this.Visib le=false;}
privatevoidmenuItem1_Click(objectsende r,System.EventArgse){ShowMe();}
privatevoidmenuIt em2_Click(objectsender,System.EventArgse){this.Clo se();}
privatevoidSizeChang(objectsender,System.E ventArgse){if(this.WindowState==System.Windows.For ms.FormWindowState.Minimized){
HideMe();}}
priva tevoidDblClickTrayIcon(objectsender,System.EventAr gse){ShowMe();}
}}

I don't know anything about diamonds! (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4065446)

So, why the hell are you asking me?

The Answer (1, Insightful)

Chester K (145560) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065448)

Diamonds - Are They Really Worth the Cost?

Do you love her? If so, then they're worth the cost.

Re:The Answer (2, Insightful)

electricmonk (169355) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065468)

Thank you, Mr. DeBeers shill! So... did anybody read the article yet besides me?

Agreed (3, Insightful)

LBrothers (583483) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065530)

While diamonds may have a low resale value, that's not a critical point. Are you planning on selling this diamond any time soon? No. If you're fortunate enough you may have a better option, see if your grandmother's (or great grandmother's) engagement ring is in the family and available. That's both sensible and heart-touching.

apparently, an ugly rock == proof of love. (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4065532)

oh, the mind of a woman.

Do you love her? If so, then they're worth the cost

Re:The Answer (5, Funny)

RenHoek (101570) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065557)

*grin* I let my girlfriend read this article..

To all the replies that say that diamonds should be bought she replied "Whipped!" "That one's whipped too!" :)

Re:The Answer (1)

BravoZuluM (232200) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065586)

You'll make the perfect husband... I promise.

(snicker)

alternatives? (3, Insightful)

garcia (6573) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065449)

There are none. The girlfriend will be bombarded w/her friends pissing her off w/the fact that she doesn't have one, and how dare her fiance not buy one for her.

My gf's brother just got engaged. His fiance announced this to my gf by saying, "here's mine, where's yours?"

Whether or not this is obnoxious is not the point. Her friends are going to do much the same.

Time honored is true, but expected is more the reality.

Hmmm... (2, Interesting)

antirename (556799) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065451)

Are you SURE that you're not just trying to weasel out of the ring ? :) While you do have some valid concerns, it is a tradition. Traditions don't have to make sense... that's why they're traditions. Plus, your fiance might wonder if you DON'T give her one. Just cough up the cash and best of luck to you both.

Re:Hmmm... TRADITIONS!? WTF!!!? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4065549)

it used to be tradition for every white family to have (and inherit) a family of black slaves.

nowadays, even the suggestion of such a thing disgusts many people.

times change. traditions change. break the mould, don't get stuck in it.

Re:Hmmm... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4065582)

A diamond ring for an engagement was a tradition started by Hollywood movies. It was briefly mentioned in the Nova TV show Diamond Deception [pbs.org]

Opals (4, Informative)

atrus (73476) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065454)

Opals are always a nice stone and do have a decent resale value. Of course they're rather hard to find in the US.

Re:Opals (1)

turman81 (204429) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065545)

I always liked the idea of an alternative stone. My mother actually does not like diamonds, so her engagment ring is a modest emerald set in platinum. I have always liked the blue of a saphire myself. What about getting a pre-owned (for lack of a better word) diamond from an estate sale or some such thing? You could probably get a decent discount, and the resale depreciation wouldn't be quite as big a deal.

Oh. (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4065456)

Hey, what happened with my slashdot?

You know, it's just too easy (5, Funny)

RaboKrabekian (461040) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065457)

Slashdot readers?

Girlfriends?

Marriage?

This has to be some sort of hoax. Is it April already?

Laptops are a girl's best friend (0)

skwirl42 (262355) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065460)

Seriously... but make sure she's cool with it first. It's utilitarian, it's fun, and if you're as big a geek as I am, it's meaningful. I've given one myself to seal an engagement, and she was happy with it. The problem is, it's harder to get back when you break it off down the road. hehe...

Re:Laptops are a girl's best friend (1)

YrWrstNtmr (564987) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065511)

She won't cherish that laptop 50 years form now.

Re:Laptops are a girl's best friend (1)

skwirl42 (262355) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065583)

And why not? Oh wait... not everyone has the same fascination with antiques as I do... In any case, the point is, there are better gifts than diamonds. As far as gifts go, diamonds are rather shallow. They say something like "Everyone else is doing it, so I figured I'd do it too." What a way to show your love. <smirk>

Dude... (-1)

Eso (205333) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065461)

Buy the damned diamond ring. You said yourself, that's what she wants. Therefore, it is your duty to provide it for her.

Easy (1)

TheKubrix (585297) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065462)

Get her a copy of Everquest and a 1yr subscription!

Good (2)

Raul654 (453029) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065486)

I love your idea -- it's an elegantly simple way to prevent the nerd genes from getting into the next generation. How ingenius.

Re:Easy (1)

Penguuu (263703) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065515)

This would be the last thing I do if i had gf :)

It's your (future) wife. (2, Insightful)

Patik (584959) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065467)

A proposal means you're asking her to dedicate the rest of her life to you, and yours to her. Give her what she really, really wants (a diamond). An engagement is a once-in-a-lifetime event; save your consumer ethics for more trivial occasions (anniversaries, Christmas, etc).

Re:It's your (future) wife. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4065553)

If she really wants it, you better just give in. You can always avoid the diamonds later. Personally I hate diamonds, so I asked for and got a ruby ring instead.

Nerds dont get the girl (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4065469)

They always lose out jocks and other whole people.

Terrorism vs. Cars (5, Insightful)

fishy jew (452414) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065471)

one of the key facts to surface is that 2-4.5% of diamond sales will go to finance terrorism or forms of violence

What percentage of gas sales do you think finance terrorism? Money goes from our hands to the gas companies to oil companies in the Mid-East to (possibly) terrorist organizations. Probably true about many other products as well...

My wife (2, Insightful)

olclops (591840) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065472)

I bought my wife's engagement ring from a wholeseller. They're tough to get in with, but if you do a little research and pull it off, you can get a decent sized diamond for literally half the price a "real" jeweler would charge. I got a 1.21 carat for 5 grand. And the problem with the advertising campaign is that it's worked. She may not know the origins of her desire, but you're right, your girlfriend would like a diamond. Almost all of women would. Good luck.

Re:My wife (1)

intheory (261976) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065559)

I've been looking for a reputable wholesaler, as I too am in the market to propose...any suggestions? I've seen a few smaller companies from the Mid-East online, but given recent events, I wonder how great a couple thousand (okay $500) transaction to a dealer in say Syria would bode? :)

Easy alternative (5, Funny)

stere0 (526823) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065473)

Build up a geek website with a couple of friends, make it popular and propose on the front page a couple of years later.

Do what Taco did... (1)

Pzykotic (72530) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065476)

...Propose on the internet... virtual diamonds are oh-so cheap!

cubic zirconia (1)

voisine (153062) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065480)

Hmmm... dimond engagement ring, or cubic zirconia
and a hot tub. It solves the, "Where's the ring?"
problem and you and your fiancee will have the
piece of mind knowing that you aren't financing
terrorism, while soaking in your new hot tub.

Re:cubic zirconia (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4065568)

That is what I did. My wife was much more concerned about getting the setting that she wanted so she was willing to forego the expensive diamond for a cz and a very nice setting.

Very few people know and my wife loves it. Most girls will get compliments on the ring setting and not the diamond anyway.

How can they have no resale value? (5, Insightful)

phr2 (545169) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065481)

If they have no resale value, they you could buy a used diamond very cheaply and get a jeweler to put it in a new setting for you, and that would kill the market for new diamonds. They don't wear out, of course. "Diamonds are forever" and all that.

I agree with most of your other points about the disgusting practices used to produce diamonds and market them.

Re:How can they have no resale value? (2)

TheSHAD0W (258774) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065520)

Actually, diamonds AREN'T forever; they can shatter, and they can burn. Don't go looking for the missus' engagement ring in the ashes of your fire-ravaged house, you won't find it.

Re:How can they have no resale value? (2, Insightful)

haystor (102186) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065542)

Used diamonds can save a wad of cash with just a little effort. You should also realize that the markup on diamonds is huge. If you walk into a store with cash on hand its quite easy to walk out with a huge discount beyond their regular 50% off sales.

Two Words: (5, Interesting)

Null_Packet (15946) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065482)

Antique Ring.

I gave my wife a pretty cool engagement ring from an antique jewelry outfit. Sure, it's 2nd hand, but it has the personality and it doesn't get crazy as far as prices go either.

Purpose of Article? (3, Insightful)

Valdrax (32670) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065483)

It seems to me that the purpose of this article really isn't to ask a question, but instead to be a bully-pulpit to rally against the DeBeers monopoly. I don't know if "Ask Slashdot" is an appropriate place for this.

As for the tagged on question at the end, have you considered your fiance-to-be's birth stone? My grandmother had a beautiful ruby and silver engagement ring. If you're not looking for a ring, then it really depends on how much a traditionalist your girlfriend is. Just whatever you do, if you're going to skip the ring option, don't try to weasel out with something less than the cost of a diamond ring, or it's likely she'll suspect that money was the real motivation.

Canadian diamonds (5, Informative)

simetra (155655) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065484)

They're really expensive, but are guaranteed not to have the ethical overhead of others. Plus, they have a cool little polar bear laser-etched into the side (very tiny, you have to use a loupe to see it).

They're called Polar Bear Diamonds.

yeah right (1)

zBoD (86938) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065487)

As if *you* would ever have a girlfriend ;)

Fuck tradition (5, Insightful)

nicfit (25347) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065490)


My girlfriend told me not to WASTE our money and instead we spent three crazy weeks in Hawaii AND had money in the bank.

God I love her!

Wow... diamonds finance terrorism? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4065492)

Can we expect a public service advertisement about this too?

Rubies and sapphires (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4065494)

aren't rubies and sapphires more rare, worth more than diamonds? we have been fed that diamonds are what 'shows love', but wouldn't a rarer gem do better?

You'll regret it if you don't give it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4065496)

Look, put aside from all the moral issues you might have about it, you will put a very serious dent into your relationship. So, as a word of advice, don't even consider not giving her the ring. It maybe the most ridiculous way to spend a whole lot of money (most men would think this way) but for a woman it is a lot more than just a stone. It is a sign of your total committment to her, your love, etc. So, it is not just a stone.

Cubic Zirconia (0)

windowpain (211052) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065497)

CZ is the only way to go man. Prettier than diamonds and cheap. Just don't let the low prices persuade to geta ridiculously big ring.

Stick to a carat or so.

diamond sponsored terrorism (5, Funny)

Snuffub (173401) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065498)

Great, i fully expect the bush administration to put out new commercials linking diamond sales to terrorism and urging all "true" americans to stay clear of them. I mean they did the same thing with pot without one proven link between marijuana sales and terrorist organizations.

What does she want? (1)

Stuart Gibson (544632) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065499)

My better half wasn't fussed on a diamond at all, so her ring is an amethyst. Not sure what the US is like, but in good old Blighty it's quite common for "alternative" stones to be the main setting in a ring.

Basically, go round the jewellers and try to ignore prices and wait until you've really found one you like. Took us about a month of constant seraching and we ended up with one that wasn't massively expensive but that we both thought was beautiful.

Love isn't measured in pounds/dollars.

Goblin

Re:What does she want? (2)

Darren.Moffat (24713) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065575)

I think the "diamond engagement ring" tradition started in the US and spread outwards.

If the resale value is zilch (1)

Therin (22398) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065501)

as you say, then why not just buy a used one (estate sale, whatever).

Or cubic zirconium; pretty hard to tell from diamond without a loupe

up to you (1)

hakalugi (162528) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065503)

it's up to you if you think they're worth it...

but if you want to learn about them, go here: http://www.pricescope.com/tutorial.asp

and the vendor I bought mine from, who also has lots of great info, can be found here: www.goodoldgold.com


sims... do google searches on ascher and a search on www.diamondtalk.com forums for "simulants" as long as she 'knows' its a sim, more power to ya...

Other GEMS or no gem at all (2)

Darren.Moffat (24713) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065504)

The obvious thing to me is to look for other gem stones that don't have such a dubious cartel infrastucture around them. My wife has a diamond ring but I'm sure she would have been happy with a saffire if I had refused to by a diamond for the reasons you gave - she is ware of "industry" but still likes diamonds none the less.

Many of the Royal wedding engaement rings don't use a single diamond as the centre stone but have used others like Ruby's and emeralds instead - some also have diamonds a "support" stones but you could drop that.

Your other alternative is not to go with a gem stone ring at all. Quite a few of my married friends only have wedding rings. Not because they were marring cheap guys but some for the reasons you cite. In these cases they have much more detailed metal work on the wedding band than the traditional gold band.

2 Words - (1)

huckamania (533052) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065507)

Pawn Shop.

This is where my wife's engagement/wedding band comes from and it worked out really well for both of us.

You have to be selective though. Don't just buy any ring, find one you know she'll like. Maybe go shopping with her at a real jewelry store and let her pick a few.

After you know what she likes, go to a few pawn shops and find one that is similiar. Then take it to a jeweler and have them clean it. They will also sell you a nice new box to put it in.

Final piece of advice, never ever admit that that is where you got it. If anyone asks say it's not important, just so long as your sweetie is happy.

Cheers!

Do it for her you selfish nit! (1, Insightful)

hv (108589) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065508)

You spend ~$2k for a machine that crunches numbers and lets you escape into a virtual fantasy world for a few hours a day. The machine is outdated and depreciated when you buy it, and it just gets worse as time goes by.

The diamond on her finger reminds her of the moment she fell in love with you. The good times you share with her, and her undying devotion to you.

Do it for her! Put a price on how it will make her feel. If she understands how you feel about making the purchase... ALL THE MORE REASON TO DO IT FOR HER... show her you understand how she feels.

Saphires (2, Informative)

BravoZuluM (232200) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065509)

The saphire was the traditional engagement ring until DeBeers and Hollywood sold the world on "A diamond is a girl's best friend" in the 30's. I bought my wife a big saphire with two small, high quality diamonds on the side. It is way nicer than a diamond ring, my wife loves it. I didn't save any money, but at least the saphire cartel doesn't rule the world like DeBeers does.

If you look around, there are many women who wear the saphires. Many women like my wife's ring. It is more unique and I didn't feel like I got screwed for the very reasons you describe in your post.

go get your own (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4065510)

go down to arkansas and dig up a gem for your beloved, with your own 2 hands how romantic
http://www.arkansas.com/outdoors_sports/ crystals/

We know it is you Taco (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4065512)

Don't be such a cheap bastard and make a decision on your own. Really, if 99% of the groupthinkniks tell you not to buy are you going to tell Kat "sorry honey but the fanbois said..." pshaw.

Ahr doo bee yah aes ?

time honored tradition? (1)

tigga (559880) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065513)

Maybe it depends on country,
maybe it depends on salary,
but I thought time honored tradition for
engagement ring is plain golden one.

No choice man.... (0)

Psyko (69453) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065514)

You could pretty much tell your fiancé that you bought the diamond from a terrorist and you have a slave carry it over on his knees and she would say "How Big is it?". Diamonds go right along with the whole princess mentality that's been spoon fed to women since they were born and there's nothing that's ever going to change it.

Cost (1)

MakerBreaker (583711) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065517)

you've been with her for how long? We all know that if we are going to propose, that it comes at a cost. Freedom, sanity, children, pc time and a big motherf%$#%ng diamond ring. We all know the costs are there, you should have been spending your "courting" years preaparing.

Primus (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4065518)

To quoute Primus "To defy the laws of tradition
is a crusade only of the brave."

Yeah, like you have a choice (1)

Mastos (448544) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065519)

Speaking as one who recently plunked down $4k for a decent diamond, let me give this advice: just buy the damn thing. I too went through the whole "Why support an artificially high cost product and support the dealer-supplied notion of love commoditized?" but the bottom line is she has always dreamed of a nice diamond, and all her friends - and perhaps more importantly family - expects one as well.

That said, don't fall for the "well, you can get a cheap small diamond for $8k" crap. Buy something nice and respectable, but don't think the more you spend the more you love her. Also, don't just buy the biggest diamond, go for color especially with white gold or platium.

good luck...

Don

Alternate Diamonds (2)

mbourgon (186257) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065521)

There are more than just DeBeers, thankfully, since DeBeers has become the epitome of sleaze.

Investigate other sources. Supposedly there are Canadian diamonds that are just as good, just not DeBeers. The Russians were reported to have some, but sold to DeBeers.

And yes, artificial monopoly blah blah DeBeers sucks blah blah. Get a diamond or something just as nice. No idea what qualifies, but a friend of mine's family has a tradition that the rings are Platinum, not gold. Ouch, but it's something.

Ethics - boycott diamonds (-1)

Reikk (534266) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065522)

If you have ethics, please avoid buying diamonds. Remember that if you buy a diamond, you are supporting the enslavement of diamond mine "workers".

Also, there has been proof of Al Queda and other middle eastern terrorist groups directly profiting from the sale of diamonds, tanzenite and other stones.

If you buy a diamond, you are a TERRORIST!!!

The alternative? Do whatever you wish! (2, Insightful)

Grey Haired Luser (148205) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065523)

You don't have to follow fads or give all your
money to deBeers.

I gave no engagement ring (only my word) and a
plain gold band for marriage. Lost my ring once
(long story) and got it replaced. It's just a
piece of metal. A diamond is just a rock.
It's what's in your heart that counts.

Been happily married 15 years, 3 lovely kids.
Good luck!

get a new girlfriend (1)

lubricated (49106) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065524)

Why would you marry someone that materialistic?

Simple Economics (1)

bbaskin (24236) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065525)

Do you value her? [Yes.] Does she want a diamond? [Yes.] Will her having a diamond make your life better? [Yes, if she marries you.] Then get her a diamond. That's all that really matters. It's not a financial investment, it's an investment in happiness and worth far more than it's price in dollars.

Bryan Baskin

Where's the Public Service Commercial? (1)

jonnyq (103252) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065526)

You know the one... "Terrorists are bad..., If you've bought a diamond, you're funding them."

Oh wait, they only have those to discourage businesses that don't make the gov't money...

The bottom line - (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4065527)

if you don't spring for a diamond, you're a cheap bastard. Ah, the power of marketing.

Learn (2)

nuggz (69912) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065528)

Do your research, deal with someone intelligent. Your wife to be would probaly have an extra $5k on her wedding or in her bank account then on her finger.

Buy a slightly yellower, with small inclusions diamond, you can't see the difference, but they are significantly cheaper. You do want a good cut, it will catch the light and nobody will know the difference.

(Small inclusions can't be seen unaided, a good jeweler will even admit this)

As I understand it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4065529)

There is a single company, De Beers [debeersgroup.com] , which apparently owns a tremendous percentage of the world's diamond supply, and, I have heard, artificially props up the price by heavily restricting what goes out into the world.

From what I heard, if it wasn't for this company strangling the market, diamonds would be worth MUCH MUCH less than they are currently.

I guess in recent years, diamonds have been discovered to be much more plentiful than we thought.

The Slashdot Geek Solution (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4065531)

Get her a box of Penguin mints from Thinkgeek and tell her to shut the fuck up.

Show on Nova last week! (5, Informative)

Telastyn (206146) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065533)

About manufactured diamonds and their history.

currently Gemesis [gemesis.com] is America's primary manufacturer. They are building a $25m factory for making better/ different colored diamonds. Currently they can make yellow ones, though the show showed clear, and fanciful colored ones (in testing it seems).

They are "real" diamonds, pretty much seeded carbon crystal. Any gemologist can likely tell you they are real diamond, albeit manufactured. AFAIK the cost is a little higher, if not compriable for now.

Most women aren't nearly so shallow (4, Funny)

bman08 (239376) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065534)

My fiancee was totally cool with the idea of another kind of stone, or with a fake. Show your girl some pictures of the kids from the mines, you'd be surprised how receptive she gets.

Get a GIANT phoney and she can still brag/lie to her family/friends and secretly feel morally superior.

Blood Diamonds. (1)

pauly_thumbs (416028) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065539)

There was a good piece about this on NPR about
2 months ago and the reccomendation was this; use
the internet to shop around as much as possible
to find the best deal. The diamond industry is
hurting because of the internet and the flood of
blood (conflict) diamonds in the market.
Be patient and find the best deal, also go to
antique stores in the country and pawn shops
(she'll never know) ;) btw: Cubit Zirconia??

serioiusly: I owuldnt worry about funding
terrrorism... the CIA has that covered

Sometimes it can work (1)

rks404 (267508) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065540)

My wife and I both decided not to get a diamond for our wedding or engagement rings. She's cool and smart and not so caught up in the DeBeers propaganda that she wanted to be a part of the diamond trade. I was just relieved not to have to waste so much money on a shiny rock.

When people ask us why we don't have a diamond, we tell them that we used the money for the downpayment on a house. That seems to shut them up.

Just got married (2)

Kymermosst (33885) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065541)

I gave one to her... 1/3 ct, near-flawless (VVS2), I-colored stone... but the color isn't yellow, it's grey. When put next to similar, yellow-trended diamonds, it looks great.

My advice is to buy the stone loose, and pay a good jewler to put it on a ring. Always make sure you can inspect the stone before you commit the money.

Overall, the final ring with the wedding bands looks really nice, and believe me, she let me know it was worth buying it for her :)

honeymoon (2)

cpeterso (19082) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065544)

Instead of "investing" two months salary in a tiny diamond, why not use that money for a superb honeymoon? That is something you both can enjoy. For example, if you have $20M you might be able to visit Space Station Alpha. ;-)

If she just wants the ring, then perhaps she is a gold digger.

Do you two talk to each other? (5, Insightful)

A nonymous Coward (7548) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065546)

Seriously. If you can't talk to each other about this, then you are fools to even consider marriage. If you would rather get /. opinions on this than talk it over with the gf, then you aren't ready.

KISS (1)

kirkjobsluder (520465) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065550)

We did simple silver bands but we allready had reputations for eccentricity.

Honestly this is a good litmus for idetifying who is worth having at your wedding and who is better off being left wondering where their invitation is. Those that respect your relationship will be more concerned with helping you through the hell that is wedding planning. The rest can politely be told where to stick it.

Try eBay (1)

taustin (171655) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065551)

'nuff said.

Diamonds are semi-precious stones.

Show her your love is stonger than STEEL! (1)

KILNA (536949) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065552)

My ring is from TeNo [silverprince.com] , stainless steel jewelry.

The engagement ring isn't about you (1)

serverboy (128798) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065554)

I went through a similar debate (mostly around the stupidity of spending that kind of money) when I was getting engaged. A friend told me simple, sound advice, mainly; get the damn ring and make it a good one - no matter what your girlfriend says, she wants a diamond ring.

What's the first thing everyone will ask after she mentions she's engaged? That's right - let me see the ring. If you get her a diamond flake or something else, she'll feel shitty about it everytime and take it out on you.

My brother gave his fiancee a CZ. The engagement didn't last long (probably not related to the knock-off $200 ring, but who knows?!)

Troll's Advocate. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4065561)

I think you need to find another reason to put off long term commitment, instead of diamonds are a secret plan to fund terrorists.

How about just say that weddings are bad for the environment and that half of all marriages end in divorce anyways.

Or if you really are serious about this, how about forgoing ALL civil methods of proposal: just drag her back to your house by her hair and get her pregnent, trust me it works like a charm and you'll save hundreds if not thousands of dollars.

Seriously (1)

Snoopy77 (229731) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065562)

Marriage is all about what past events a partner can bring up in a fight in order to force the other to admit defeat.

Example:

Wife: Why didn't you take out the garbage?
Husband: I was in a hurry, couldn't you do it for once?
Wife: For once?!?! Let me tell you what I have to do ...

and so on until ...

Wife: And what about this damn engagement ring ... it's not even a diamond.

At this point the husband has lost.

So, buy the diamond, don't sleep around and you may win a fight now and then.

[giggle] (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065563)


You're getting married, and you'r worried that diamonds are a big scam?

Wow (2)

dghcasp (459766) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065564)

Interesting article...

But I can't decide what my reaction should be:

  • Rise up and Smash the State, or
  • Dang, I gots ta get me one ah those car-tells...

Look for the Polar Bear (1)

Filter (6719) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065567)

Simple...buy Canadian Diamonds.

Cubic Zirconium (1)

Qzukk (229616) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065570)

My suggestion is that you buy your girlfriend a cubic zirconium ring, it looks the same to an untrained eye. Just because its cheaper doesn't mean get it bigger... then there will more eyes.

Next, explain this to your girlfriend. Don't try to pass it off to her, because it won't work. She's going to show it to her friends, and one of them is going to say "Honey, that's a zirconium. I've gotten three of them in my life." Or something like that.

She might even find it touching how you care about these people and are willing to buck "tradition" to show it. Explain that you're getting the cubic zirconium to keep up appearances, and then come up with something to make up for it. (Thinking about it, while you're bucking tradition, you could help pay for a bigger wedding...)

Your other choice is to talk it over with her first. Sure, it will take away the spontaniety of the whole "popping the question" thing, but it will avoid much grief on both your parts if she's not going to be happy with a cubic zirconium ring, or doesn't understand why you worry about "those grubby, leeching third-worlders". She's the only one to tell you for certain what an acceptable substitute would be.

The Rock (2)

Moorlock (128824) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065571)

It's a rock, you dope! [sniggle.net]

Well, if people weren't willing to hand over tons of cash to overpay for somebody else's marketing campaign then more of the worthless a$$holes of the world would be asking us for change on the street instead of designing crass public art.

Really, now: Don't pretend you've got a brain and use it if you're going to hit its snooze button every time a Big Lie comes along.

Alternatives (1)

SRMoore (87075) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065572)

My Dad got my Mom a pair of the original Advent speakers instead of an engagement ring over 30 years ago.
(And they still have and use those speakers.. some of the best I've ever heard.)

A theory about diamonds (1)

Avumede (111087) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065573)

According to The Third Chimpanzee [amazon.com] by Jared Diamond, diamonds are a form of self-destructive competion for mates.

It's a similar situation to male peacock's tail feathers, which are obtrusive and make it difficult to walk around. A female, upon seeing such a male, will see that the bird has survived so far despite this massive tail that hinders its movements. Obviously it might be superior to a peacock that did not have such large tail-feathers, since that one did not have such a hurdle to go through. Sort of like if you see a skier with one leg, and a skier with two legs skiing down the mountain, you may assume the skier with one leg is a better skier, even though both are doing essentially the same thing.

So when you get a diamond, you are sending a signal that you can afford to spend money and still survive. The beautify of it is an extra. You might accomplish the same thing by wasting money in other ways as well.

This is Jared's speculation in this book. I'm not sure if I buy it, but it's an interesting theory anyway.

Trust me, diamonds are worth it (2, Funny)

Foxman98 (37487) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065574)

For all those doubting whether diamonds are worth it, please see this picture [steakandcheese.com] . You will learn to appreciate diamonds :-)

I doesn't matter (1)

MajorBlunder (114448) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065576)

Regardless of what ethics you personally hold, the fact is that in our present culture the diamond ring is one of the penultimate status symbols for women. Regardless of what a woman says, if her man doesn't give her the best color/carat/cut/clarity that he can afford without going bankrupt, the she will carry a secret nugget of resentment for as long as the relationship will last.

You have been warned...

Diamonds always have been sought after (1)

gupg (58086) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065578)

Diamonds are a jewel that have always been sought after and have adorned crown jewels for ages (for example the Kohinoor Diamond that the British stole from India is in the British Royal Crown).

Diamonds are beautiful; hence, they do naturally make a good present to your loved one. The fact that they have been made engagement rings by a marketing campaign is no different from the fact that Christmas and Santa Claus have been commodotized by various marketing campaigns.

The fact of the matter is that the clothese we wear, our attitudes towards things etc, etc, etc are all shaped by media around us.

So, this is what is in now - diamonds are appreciated by women, so, naturally guys will buy them for girls ...

Imitation? (3, Insightful)

kstumpf (218897) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065579)

If it really bothers you that much, maybe she would be happy with an imitation diamond. She still gets the ring to show to her friends and to stand as... a symbol of commitment or what have you. With the money you save, spring for a really great honeymoon, or figure out some other way to spend the money that's memorable and perhaps more genuine then the ring. Then again, women are irrational and none of the above is likely to work. :)

You answered it yourself. (1)

pstreck (558593) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065580)

You answered your question already.
diamonds have no resale value.

Buy a used diamond get a new ring for it and voila, you're the hero.

If you love her... well if she loves you... (1)

blunte (183182) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065584)

"if you love her you'll get her a diamond"...

well if she loves you, that means allowing you to maintain your ethics, which in this case may mean no diamonds.

*gasp* some people actually buy plain gold bands for their symbols of unity.

of course I prefer titanium [titaniumwe...dbands.com] or titanium [titanium-rings.com] , but gold or silver or platinum is good too.

do what you believe in. if your wife to be can't handle that, you're in for bad times down the road.

Give it up (2)

Reality Master 101 (179095) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065587)

Unless your girlfriend is likely to buy into any of this, it's a battle you don't even want to bring up.

The one alternative is to (carefully) ask her if she would like to have a plain wedding band for the sake of not being ostentacious. You have to do this carefully, however, so it will not look like you're just a cheap bastard.

Failing that (and you probably will), take a visit to your local city's jewelry district. I got my wife's good sized diamond at about 1/3 the price of a jeweler. In particular I went to the jewelrly district in Los Angeles. The prices are awesome.

However, they will rip you off if you give them half a chance. Either go to someone who is recommended to you, or bring along someone who is knowledgeable. Someone who is good at negotiation doesn't hurt, either.

If you do end up going to a normal store (or God help you, the mall), don't be afraid to ask for a discount. If you're getting into high triple digits or quadruple digit dollars, they WILL give you a discount. All you have to do is ask.

Progress in synthetics (5, Informative)

Phronesis (175966) | more than 12 years ago | (#4065588)

Progress in large gem-quality synthetic diamonds is proceeding so fast that DeBeers is developing quite sophisticated techniques (ultraviolet phosphorescence) to allow jewelers to tell synthetic from natural stones. Perhaps it will not be too long before the "conflict diamond" problem disappears because synthetics displace natural diamonds for most of the market.

A good account of the state of the art two years ago can be found in the transcript of a NOVA show on diamond synthesis: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/transcripts/2703diamo nd.html [pbs.org]

When you send one of our diamonds to De Beers, right, the only way they can detect that this is not a natural diamond is really through phosphorescence. They take this, and they put in, they hit it with a UV light, and after the UV light goes off, this thing will phosphoresce for about three to five seconds. That is typical of a synthetic diamond versus a natural diamond.
...
NARRATOR:Faced with the future threat of synthetic diamonds being imperceptible to the trade, De Beers is already preparing its bottom line - one low-tech way to guarantee detection. They are putting minute logos on their diamonds.

STEPHEN LUSSIER: If we can give the consumer a little bit more help in telling him what's a good diamond, that regardless of what they know or what their jeweler knows, De Beers has told them that this diamond is natural from - as it came out of the ground, created by nature billions of years ago and not one that popped out of a machine last Wednesday in Kansas City.

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