Creative Shopping

Yes, I’ve said before that I do not review shopping sites—because my feeling is that we should shop locally and support our local businesses whenever possible. This week’s list of websites are not your average shopping sites, and I bring a few of them to your attention more as curiosities.

Be More Creative . Frank, this site’s creator, notes that he started this website as a collection of quotes that got out of hand. And it’s true that there are a huge number of quotes, conveniently organized, that you can find here. In some ways, Frank’s compilation of quotations are easier to sift through than some of the other websites offering the same. The “out-of-hand” quote collection here has expanded to include: Famous Creative Women; Creative Golfing, Soccer, Fishing, Musical Instruments, Health, Computering, Languages, Hats, Hardware, Candles, Perfumes, and even Creative Sleep. There are more categories, but you can see for yourself. Now here is where the shopping comes in. After finding the category that interests you, you’ll have an extra choice to view oodles of merchandise for sale relating to a particular category. It appears that Frank has found a creative way to make some extra money by affiliating with merchants. He has organized his “inventory” under the many different categories that list quotations. Bartlett never thought of that. But then, computers and the Internet weren’t invented yet.

Cool Hunting . This was a Yahoo Best Pick a few weeks ago and for good reason. You can shop or just scan some new, leading edge products that you would be unlikely to find (at least right now) at your neighborhood store. The site describes itself thus: “Finding things in the intersection of design culture and technology that excites the imagination and inspires creativity.” On that note, I’d say that Cool Hunting is ten-thousand times more creative than BeMoreCreative.com. Much of the stuff here may appeal more to the hip, 20-somethings, but there are gadgets and other items that will wow anyone of any age.

Shaw Guides . Okay, so I sneaked this one in. This is not about shopping for merchandise at all. But if you are looking for a workshop to tweak your creativity or perhaps even your golf swing, Shaw Guides is the first place to look on the Internet. Its monthly listings include workshops or retreats for writers, photographers, artists, independent travelers, cooks, and more. Browse by date, by state or country, and by category. Remember, you’re “shopping” for creative type of learning vacation. As an extra bonus, singles might be thrilled to know that Shaw Guides has partnered with Travel Chums to set you up with a compatible roommate so that you don’t have to pay that annoying and often pricey single supplement.

PayPal Phishing. I hope you have heard about this warning well before now, but in case you have not, be careful with any email that purports to come from PayPal (for those of you who have PayPal accounts). Scammers have learned how to “clone” letterheads and even some websites so that they look like the real thing, and most vulnerable are the online banking websites. I’ve talked about this before in at least one former column—probably still over at the old CyberScribbles site. So the advice is to not rush into filling out any sensitive information asked of you in an email. Keep current about the latest scams and protect yourself.

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~ by IndianaDunesPoet on June 20, 2005.

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