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April 19, 2011

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Garbage? No, it's a bag of surprise

IF you happen to receive a "garbage bag" by courier, don't cast it aside, it could be a special gift from friends.

Local youngsters are now taking to the Internet to buy bags of "garbage", which have the same shape as normal black litter bags but contain various kinds of gifts depending on the buyer's luck.

Such bags are being sold on the popular e-commerce platform for between 9.9 yuan (US$1.52) each to 999 yuan, with some vendors claiming that a few unlucky guys end up purchasing a bag of "real trash" for a huge price.

The bags with special gifts have become a hit with young people, who favor purchasing them or sending them to each other simply to get a surprise when opening the bags.

"I like the game as I can test my luck with a little money. But sometimes you can be really upset after seeing what's inside," said a 23-year-old buyer surnamed Fang.

Although vendors of the online shops never disclose the surprises inside the trash bags, some buyers have complained about feeling cheated after receiving useless goods, such as ill-fitting T-shirts or low-quality toys, after paying nearly 100 yuan.

But the surprises could be worse. A Shanghai Daily investigation has found that some dishonest vendors were using it as a way to dump low-quality or even damaged goods into the market as the buyers don't know before hand what's inside the bags.

In most cases, buyers cannot get a refund for returning the trash bags to online stores because that was not included in the "game's rule."

"Let's say life is like a bag of trash, you just never know what's inside," according to a Shanghai-based vendor surnamed Wu. "Don't be so serious. It's just a game."


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