back to article Toddler snaps up mechanical digger online

A New Zealand three-year-old was temporarily the proud owner of a mechanical digger after successfully bidding online for the earth-moving kit. Pipi Quinlan, of Stanmore Bay north of Auckland, got up while her family were still akip and managed to find her way to the TradeMe homepage where her mother was already logged in. …


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  1. SuperTim

    Hmmm, Publicity methinks....

    How reasonable are TradeMe? Very..... And that's coming from an unbiased source.....sorry, a vested interest.....

  2. Dennis
    Thumb Up

    hmmmm I'm a little sceptical

    I would love to buy a big digger for doing the gardening.

    Maybe Dad bought it, panicked and blamed the kid!

    A 3 year old that can spell 'digger' and type in the winning amount and submit that bid. Nah don't think so.....

    Maybe if Mum had of been looking at a huge tool and left the page open with the cursor in the bid box and the kid fumbled in some numbers, that might work.

    Hmmm icon for a huge tool.......

    Ah thumbs up the only tool that should be used on a computer after everybody has gone to bed

  3. Danny

    so lets get this straight

    They were all asleep. A toddler could navigate around unrestricted by safety gates etc. The computer was already logged in with all payment details saved.


  4. jeffrey

    I did this once

    I was 4 at the time, and I was sitting on my dads shoulders at an agricultural auction at the local auction house, everyone was putting up their hands when the man said some numbers, looked like a fun game so I joined in. My dad was then the proud owner of a combine harvester, and had to apologise profusly and question why the auctioneer was taking bids from a smal child, luckily they saw the funny side and re-auctioned it a few lots later. needless to say I haven't been allowed back since.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I believe it.

    I recall my 3 old old son a week after XP had been released. he logged on changed settings uninstalled programs and generally wrecked the pc. I was standing behind him for the last bits and watched him log off correctly, then shut down saying, "Bye Puter"

    Clicking big and mashing the keyboard then clicking ok to login with a saved password is not to difficult. Members of the BNP can manage it why not a small child

  6. Anonymous Coward

    Missed title chance...

    Tiny Tot's Terrifying Tonka Transaction....

    Anon because I really, really should know better than to sound like a Sun or Daily Fail headline.

  7. Anonymous Coward


    Ah, the old "so easy, a toddler could use it" advertising campaign. There was a time when news outlets posting this fiction would risk their reputations, but no longer it seems.

    What's next, BBC News runs an item claiming "Women cured of cancer by never missing an episode of Eastenders"?

  8. Anonymous Coward

    "Re-Imburse Selling Fees"

    I dont think so. eBay dont like doing this. And I cant see a smaller site doing it either.

    And they are owned by the same company. Damn fake stoies

  9. Eddie Edwards

    @ AC

    "What's next, BBC News runs an item claiming "Women cured of cancer by never missing an episode of Eastenders"?"

    Or "Google saves the world by keeping click stats"?

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Buyers remorse?

    How often have we had buyers remorse on the likes of feebay? I will have to try the 'my 3 year old bid on this by accident' line the next time.

  11. Dick Emery

    I believe it too

    You should see what my brothers littleun gets up to on his fathers PC!

  12. Lionel Baden

    kids !!

    my kid at 1.5 anum old managed to log onto our dedicated and shut it down !!

    not funny

    but very possible !!

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    @Eddie Edwards

    I emigrated to Australia last year and while I love the place, this kind of thing really makes me miss the BBC (and the unique way it's funded /Hislop). Advertising is passed off as news all the time on most of the major channels. It can be very confusing as to what is a genuine story and what is a promotion of either another program on the same network or a business the network has a stake in.

  14. Dan
    Thumb Up


    Brilliant story!

  15. Anonymous Coward


    My 1 year old daughter managed to change the language settings in pidgin messenger (running on the original eeepc i think, in xandros) to Chinese using keystrokes somehow.

    Took a wee while to figure out how to change them back again ...

    Bidding on a digger online is probably a bit of a stretch, all the same ...

  16. Gav
    Thumb Down

    Amateur Publicity Stunt

    Amateurs, if they want a story that's halfway credible it has to involve a kitten walking across the keyboard.

    Involving a kitten rather than toddler has increased furry-creature cuteness factor, and neatly side-steps any risk of unsupervised-think-of-the-children backlash.

    They could also come up with something a tad more interesting than a digger.

  17. Bumhug

    Its amazing how quick kids learn

    My nephew at 8 months knew what a tv remote was for, while it was cute at first to watch him attempt to change the channel when he couldnt get it to work he resorted to throwing the remote at the tv, luckily he wasnt strong enough and the remote bounced harmlessly on the floor.

    These days though at 20 months he has mastered the art of changing channel, he even knows that the sky remote doesnt always turn the tv on so uses the tv remote to do that. He knows how to switch on PC's and laptops and that to do things on them you need to use a mouse and keyboard, though after a while of hitting random keys and waving the mouse around with no luck he resorts to hitting the keyboard with the mouse. So already he has the technical knowledge of the average Windows user

  18. John Miles

    re: So already he has the technical knowledge of the average Windows user

    Surely you mean the average call centre support staff (or company director) :p

  19. Bassey
    Thumb Up

    Toddlers are remarkably resourceful

    I have no problems believing this.

    At a year old our son turned on my sister's digital camera and was found sat on the floor navigating through the photos. At 2 1/2 he can (just about) use a PC and can easily operate a DVD player. I got a phone call from a friends 8 month-old only last week! Didn't say much, mind. Just slurping sounds as she tried to fit the phone in her mouth. Well, I assumed it was the baby.

    And (Re: Danny) why on earth would a Toddler be gated in?

  20. This post has been deleted by its author

  21. Matthew
    Thumb Down

    remember people..

    this is trademe, not ebay. you can (and everyone does) save password automaticly, so you dont need to login each time. and the article on says it was already on trademe.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Dead Vulture

    me too

    I would just liike to add that my 2 year old toddler is genius at technology .... just like every other toddler.

    Of course the fact that every parent believes their child to be the cleverest, best looking little tot in the whole wide world doesn't stop this story from being shameless PR.

  23. John Latham

    Typing toddlers

    There are many amazing things to discover about the world, very few of which can be appreciated in front of a computer screen.

    Am I the only parent of small children who tries to keep them away from computers for as long as possible? I'd rather have them out the back digging for worms.

    I always assumed it was just the IT illiterate or born-agains who got enthusiastic about kids and IT.

  24. Vortigern

    Yeah, right

    I used to get this excuse every day when I had an ebay shop.

    "Sorry my kid must have bid on it and I've not replied to any of your emails for 3 weeks as I had a family funeral"

    Rarely did it get any more inventive than that and made me quite disappointed with the state of the nation.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    4 year olds...

    My son can not only navigate the Wii, XP, Youtube, iTunes etc but understands about shopping carts etc. I once had to disable iTunes one-click purchase as he managed to buy a track.

    Its scary as I've seen other children with similar grasp of technology and user interfaces. Makes me wonder how they will use computers when they are our age.

  26. RW

    @ Gav

    "...a kitten walking across the keyboard."

    Doesn't work. When I acquired my fluffy white cat, Lily, 12 years ago, she was so thrilled to be part of a real household in which she had tenure that she loved to jump up on the computer desk and march back and forth on the keyboard, blissfully unaware (and uncaring - she *is* a cat!) that I was trying to write an email. My friends got used to strings of random keystrokes embedded in the middle of my e-missives.


  27. D

    Dad's a stoner

    And after a heavy session on the bong, decided to buy the best toy ever. The next day, in the grips of reality, he blamed his indiscretion on the little one.

  28. /dev/me

    Am I the only one...

    Who feels really bad about the deal-gone-off? Having your very own digger as a kid is easily the coolest thing EVER.

    Unless of course you live in an apartment building. That would $uxXX0rs.

  29. Paul Young

    My Kid

    at 1.5 years could change the desktop setting of his mums laptop so he could see it upsidedown !

    He is now 2 (and a bit) and will happily sit and use a laptop mouse to scroll and point at

    the correct letters and numbers on a program aimed at 5 year olds.

    He hasn't quite mastered a real mouse but given time he will & I will bet

    when he becomes an MP, his expenses will be a doddle.

    I give you...... Tristan Calum Young or TC for short

    If you search him he's first in google, where do I get..... nowhere

  30. SuperTim

    Has anyone looked at the buyer's feedback?

    It seems that the 3 year old has now learned how to gob off to the other sellers they have traded with when they didnt want what they bid on!

    Give that toddler a ceegar!

  31. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I could beleive this

    Funnily enough I haven't seen this mentioned locally, I have to read a website based on the opposite side of the planet to hear what is going on in my own country. So if it is a publicity stunt I don't think it has been publicised very well where it would matter, Trademe being pretty much an NZ only site.

    For those likely to have toddlers, yes, they can be surprisingly observant and will copy what they see you doing, especially if they look entertaining. We decided it was better to teach them how to operate things like CD players and the computer than to try to lock things away. Of course you only leave acessable the disks that you want them to use. The home machine was an Amiga back in those days, and most things that they would want booted off floppies so the disks each had to have a little picture drawn on them to show what they would do. We still joke about the first thing they learnt to read being things like "Game over player one" or "Insert disk 2 in any drive". Well, the two oldest ones now have Engineering degrees and the youngest one is halfway through his, so the approach was not a total failure.

  32. Alex Thompson

    Thats nothing, my 3 year old spent $17 million on ebay

    She ran into the room saying she had 2 green ticks, when we investigated we found out she had bidded $9 million for one teletubbie in one auction and $8 million for another on ebay and won both auctions. My wife had left the machine up and open, how she got thru the whole buy process we don't know, but she had been watching us for a while.

  33. Elrond Hubbard

    For the Daily Mail readers who are claiming that this is fake

  34. Winkypop Silver badge
    Thumb Down

    100% Bogus

    Viral marketing, vested interests and self promotion tricked up as news -- nothing new to see here folks.

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