The Greatest Story Ever Sold is a Fantasy Covered in Blood

By Lynn Truong on 4 January 2007 (Updated 28 June 2011) 125 comments

Want an easy way to save 3+ months' salary? Don't buy a diamond engagement ring. If your fiancée, friends and family scream hellfire, calmly explain:

(See also: The Ethics of Free: Is it Wrong to Get Free Stuff?)

It's just marketing. The whole "A Diamond is Forever" and the idea of a diamond engagement ring is not an ancient tradition to be revered and followed. It is Sprite's "Obey Your Thirst." It is Nike's "Just Do It." It is Gary Dahl's "Pet Rock." Not only did De Beers understand it had to control supply (buying up and closing down any diamond mine discovered), they had to control demand. They had to make it sentimental. And Americans were the perfect suckers. They targeted the U.S. specifically for our marketability. This campaign is less than 70 years old yet has become so ingrained in our culture that the diamond engagement ring has become the ultimate symbol of how much the relationship, the girl, and love itself is worth.

Diamonds aren't rare. Fine, using marketing tactics can't be blamed since that's part of the game of capitalism. But another part of the game is competition. It's all well and good if marketers can convince consumers to buy them instead of the competition based on a nice slogan, but the competition should be there to protect the consumer. All gems are valued based on their rarity (as are most things in life). But diamonds are abundant. De Beers has a huge vault where they keep most of the world's supply of diamonds. If it ever got released into the market, the way it would be if they weren't a monopoly, diamonds would be worth nothing. It's literally a pretty rock.

Diamonds have no resale value. The reason a "diamond is forever" is because you're basically stuck with it. You'll never be able to resell it except to a pawn shop. Even a jeweler (the few who would be willing to buy it) would offer a fraction of what you paid.

Synthetic diamonds will flood the market. Synthetic or "cultured" diamonds are already being made and within the next few years, will be efficiently made for the mass market. These are real diamonds. They are made in a machine that replicates the environmental forces that make diamonds. The only difference is that they're better. They have less flaws. And they cost a fraction of the going rate. Want a 2-carat pink diamond? That'll be a few thousand dollars.

Moissanite looks just like a diamond. Jewelers had to upgrade their equipment to detect Moissanite from diamonds when it came into the market. It's undetectable with the naked eye. And it's actually more brilliant. A 1-carat ring is under $1000.

Who is the ring for, anyway? Seriously. As The Dilettante so poignantly put it, "For women, comparing jewelry is our phallic posturing contest: look at how big MY dic….er, I mean, diamond is." It's fun to show off for about 30 seconds. After that there is little to show for the debt incurred for the shiny piece of rock. That money could have gone into furniture, an amazing trip (or many nice ones), your future kids' college funds!!

Are these reasons still not enough? Watch Blood Diamond. It is high time Hollywood dared to broach the subject of diamonds, especially when they had a hand in marketing it to the public in the first place. Blood Diamond, is an explicit example of the blood and war that has spanned the entire history of the De Beers' diamond cartel. The story of Sierra Leone isn't an isolated event, nor is the conflict over just because the movie says there's peace in Sierra Leone now.

What are conflict/blood diamonds? Conflict/blood diamonds are used by rebel groups to fuel conflict and civil wars, and by terrorist groups to finance their activities.

The Kimberley Process is just PR. It's an agreement that is supposed to prevent conflict diamonds from getting into the market but ended up being more of a PR stunt since it's based on a system of self-policing. The U.N. reported in October 2006 that due to poor enforcement of the Kimberley Process, $23 million of conflict diamonds from Cote d'lvoire alone entered the legitimate market. Sure De Beers won't buy diamonds coming out of Cote d'lvoire, but they'll turn a blind eye to the smuggling of diamonds from there through Ghana and Mali where they are certified as being conflict-free.

Percentage in the market. During the height of the diamond conflict in the 1990s, the diamond industry reported that no more than 4% of the diamonds in the market were conflict diamonds, when in reality it has been shown to be closer to 15% .

Asking for conflict-free certificates is not enough. In April 2006 after a scathing report by Partnership Africa Canada about activities in Brazil, an internal review showed that 49 of 147 Kimberley Process certificates were fraudulent. Besides these fraudulent certificates, real certificates could still be issued if conflict diamonds were smuggled and mixed with legally traded ones before being certified.

Children in India are cutting and polishing the diamonds. Children in India can become "bonded" — forced to work to pay off the debts of their family. These children end up working in the diamond factories.

Children in conflict zones are being used as soldiers. The images in Blood Diamond with child soldiers are very real. They are drugged and brainwashed to handle the manslaughter they are forced to do.

Jennifer Connelly says in the movie Blood Diamond, "People back home would not buy a diamond if they knew it cost someone their hand." Now you know.

Additional Reources:

Have you ever tried to sell a diamond - Article from The Atlantic Monthly that chronicles the DeBeers marketing campaign
The New Diamond Age - Article from Wired magazine about the cultured diamond startups
Blood From Stones - LA Weekly
Diamonds? Not This Girl's Best Friend - Isabella On-Line Publication
Put a Stop to Blood Diamonds - Send a letter to the administration
The Truth About Diamonds - A Global Witness Report
The Kimberley Process At Risk - A Global Witness Report
Killing Kimberley? Conflict Diamonds and Paper Tigers - Partnership Africa Canada
The Kimberley Process update, November 13, 2006 - Global Witness
Conflict Diamonds Fact Sheet - Global Witness and Amnesty International
Blood Diamond/Clean Bracelet - Help raise awareness
The Diamond Invention
A History of the International Diamond Cartel
10 reasons why you should never accept a diamond ring - The Ultimate Field Guide to the U.S. Economy
Diamonds Suck! A personal essay on the virtures of Moissanite...
Child Slave Labor in India

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Will Chen's picture

I've always known some vague things about the diamond industry being a fraud, but I never knew that even the certificates cannot be trusted. I'm really glad I read this article. Thank you.

Lynn Truong's picture

the decision to not buy a diamond ring is so small. when you think about not having it, the worse thing that comes to mind is you can't show it off. that's it. isn't it worth saving lives and limbs? isn't it worth taking down De Beers, a company that has knowingly and directly caused this turmoil? and it costs us nothing.

Guest's picture
Guest

I'm glad to see someone else with this viewpoint!

My fiancee told me (when we first started talking about marriage) that under NO circumstances was i to get her a diamond. I was shocked at first. I thought - isn't that what every girl wants? At the time it didn't really matter one way or the other to me... I never gave it much thought.. its simply that gold bracelets cost a certain amount.. rare stoned earrings cost a certain amount... and diamond rings cost a certain amount.

On the other hand - its a generational thing... thanks to some wonderful advertising post WW2, the diamond ring became the standard where it never was before, when it comes to betrothal gifts. 3 or 4 generations ago, heiloom rings passed down were the norm, and if not available - other precious stones were used. Frankly - rings were a whole lot more creative.

My fiancee and I decided to go with a ring of our own design - a large citrine, with moisonite accents, delicately wrapping around the stone, sort of like a snake... set in white gold exactly the way she envisioned it. Its an exsquisite ring, that we will happily pass on to one of our children one day if they wanted it. It wasn't cheap but it didn't break the bank either. The compliments we've received have been eye opening, and nearly everyone initially questions the choice of no diamond.. but once they actually take a look at the ring we created, they can't stop talking about it. Even friends of hers, wearing their own diamond engagement rings, completely fawn over it.

Most people don't even realize there are a world of possibilities. Many women start memorizing their color and clarity values, and their princess cuts, as soon as the thought of marriage enters their mind... they tunnel vision themselves into a stereotype. I count myself as fortunate, but most guys simply go along with it because a> its not important enough to them not to, and b> they, like myself, never really thought about it before.. things cost what they cost when it comes to jewelry. The movie blood diamond definitely helped a lot in that regard though... hopefully opened a few eyes.

Will Chen's picture

I think a lot of people say, "yeah! that's horrible!" But then secretly they still really want a diamond because it is all part of their whole fantasy of what it means to have a romantic, perfect wedding.

Guest's picture
Guest

stupid...people that is.

Greg Go's picture
Greg Go

I love how furniture is mentioned in the same sentence as diamonds, travel, and "your future kids’ college funds". I told her the TV was more important than a stupid ring, but nooooooo..... Thanks for backing me on this. :)

Guest's picture
Andrea Dickson - can't figure out how to log in

Wow, am I dumb. I can't seem to find a link to log into this page. So I'm a guest. Huh.

Regarding the diamonds, I saw a billboard in Los Angeles yesterday that showed a BIG diamond ring, with the caption "Make her mother happy."

A wedding ring is rarely FOR the bride. It's for older women and best friends to squeal and cackle over. This is not to say that women don't enjoy them - I'm sure many of them do. But if no one else was around to look at them, would we want them at all?

I've already told my guy that IF we decide to get married and IF that union is represented with finger-accessories, I'd like a manufactured diamond. Anything to help take down the De Beers mafia is good with me.

Great article abut the personal side of buying a diamond engagement ring posted below - it's from Salon.com, but I'm not sure if you have to be a subscriber to read this article or not.

Guest's picture
amybeth

are B.S. They are a man's way of promising the world to a woman (and then doing whatever the hell they want) and the industry's way of getting rich off us romantics.

Let's protest and buy those ring finger suckers/candy instead. At least when our men are no good to us, our rings will be yummy.

Guest's picture
Guest

I am supposing that you don't have a man who wants to buy you one of those "BS" diamonds.

Guest's picture
Guest

Are you really that stupid to think that it's the guys that perpetuate the 'diamond mystique' in American relationships???

Lynn Truong's picture

andrea, that article is fantastic, except i'm bummed in the end he still bought one, which says a lot about our priorities.

Will Chen's picture
Will Chen

We missed you! Actually, Greg missed you. I sort of just felt empty inside.

Speaking of diamonds, I'm interested in Sarah's take on this, given that she's getting married like, right now.

Guest's picture
Andrea

But you can see where people give in, right? The way society has TOTALLY bought in to the whole thing, and you feel BAD if you don't do it - it's changing, though. Heirloom diamonds are becoming more popular - my sister was married wearing my grandmother's diamond.

Me, I'm hoping that my unreasonable demands for a flawless 2 carat emerald cut diamond ring will mean that it will HAVE to be manufactured. I'm so devious.

I was watching Pride and Prejudice the other day (the newer version) and when Lizzie's younger sister got married to some no-good scoundrel, she was sporting a diamond engagement ring. Having never read the novel, I wonder if that was the original intent of Jane Austin, or a recent addition? Will?

Andrea Karim's picture

I missed you all, too. Felt weird to be so disconnected from the interwebs for so long. :) It DID NOT, however, feel weird to be go for five whole days without seeing rain. I could get used to that.

Well, here's hoping that Sarah can just finish up with her oh-so-important wedding and honeymoon, and get back to the important things in life, like entertaining her fellow bloggers. Priorities, hel-lo!

Will Chen's picture
Will Chen

We can challenge people to state on their blogs: "My name is ____ and I will NOT be buying/receiving a diamond for my wedding."

With more people stating that unequivocally, in written form, perhaps that will turn the tide against DeBeer's marketing machine. It'd be like the Youtube Atheist Challenge, but with 85% less damnation.

Andrea, I actually don't quite remember the diamond ring in the book. But it makes sense that she would show it off. That is SO Lydia.

Lynn Truong's picture

i'm in

Andrea Karim's picture

I'm too shallow - I want something big and sparkly. And manufactured. But I vow that it will NOT be a mined diamond, and I will have my veil embroidered with "Up Yours, De Beers!" in pretty cursvie script. Yes?

Back when my boyfriend was in college, he had a professor (physics? chem?) - one of those adorable nerdy types with unkempt hair and a dazed look on his face - who used to get very excited/upset over the idea of a diamond as a gift. "A diamond is NOT forever!", he would bellow, "It's only going to be around for a few million years, and then it'll become unstable and disintegrate into carbon again!".

I might be telling the story wrong, but I THINK that's what he said.

Lynn Truong's picture

we are going to hold you to the embroidered message to de beers. a manufactured diamond is totally great! pretty, sparkly, AND cost effective. plus you won't rob friends, coworkers, and enemies of an opportunity to squeal and cackle over a shiny rock.

Will Chen's picture
Will Chen

I think this awesome diamond can be certified "conflict free."

Guest's picture

I'm here from the Skeptic's Circle and was happy to find great writing and excellent links.  Thanks - I now have a new site to visit regularly! 

Guest's picture
Infophile

Also here via the Skeptic's Circle.

A very nice article. I've been telling people for years that Moissanite is better than diamond in almost every way, and CZ is almost as good, but no one ever seems to listen. All diamond really has going for it as a gem is its high index of refraction, yet Moissanite's is higher (as you pointed out).

Of course, in industrial applications where a particularly hard material is needed (say, rock drills), diamond's the best you can get. Still has nothing to do with it being used for jewelry, though.

Also, there's one other myth I'd like to dispel here:

Diamonds are not the most valuable gem. On average, ruby is worth more than diamond by mass, even with the price-fixing that goes on with diamonds. It's also a lot easier to resell a ruby.

Amy Lin's picture
Amy Lin

thanks for comment! the wired article also mentions that diamonds will be used in computers since it can handle so much heat, and can support faster speeds. imagine every household with computers running on diamonds. i really don't know how people will be able to justify spending all that money on them in a few years.

Sarah Winfrey's picture

Yikes! It took me a long time to get back to this. So, now that no one cares anymore, here's my 2 cents.

I wear diamonds. Gasp! It's true. We didn't really think about purchasing anything else. For a while, I had wanted an emerald, but it just didn't seem like the thing to do at the time. Part of it was that we had diamonds from his mom's engagement ring that we wanted to use, and I didn't like diamonds and emeralds together. Are our stones bloody? I'll never know. I didn't know about the issues before we purchased them, so I can live with that. Did we get suckered? Maybe. I'm open to that. I also love my rings! Dave and I basically designed them, they look awesome on my hand, and they're a lot of fun to wear. To some extent, loving them is worth the price we paid, even if it was too much.

We'll probably upgrade someday. At that point, I very well may add other sorts of stones. After all I've heard and read recently, I'd hesitate to buy more diamonds.

Andrea Karim's picture

I went to the Seattle Public Market with my ma on Sunday, and we stopped into an antique store just off of Post Alley. They had hundreds of antique rings, and most of them were stunning. The one that I would totally want if I were getting married anytime soon was a gorgeous art deco piece with two large sapphires and two small diamonds and a platinum setting - a relative steal at $1900.

That is SO the way I'm going to go when I need something for people to squeal over should I ever get engaged.

Will Chen's picture
Will Chen

Hi to all at Wisebread

I just want to introduce myself. My name is Nick and together with my
wife Lily, we run our website :

http://www.askmrcreditcard.com/creditcardblog/

I just wanted to hi to another fellow pf blogger. I found your site
through the latest pf carnival. I like your slogan 'living large on a
small budget'. After looking at your site, I would like to ask your
opinion on the following and I hope you will find this interesting
(for your live large on a small budget theme' :

A while ago at a party, a group of us were talking about a tv news
segment which shows how a comparable diamond ring at Costco would cost
thousands more at Tiffany because of the 'Tiffany premium'. An
argument that ensued as to whether a lady will accept that her
engagement ring was bought at 'Costco'. I just wrote a post about this
conversation on my blog and am conducting a poll to see what people
think.

I would very much like to invite you to participate in the poll as I
want to find out what others think about this topic. You can pop over
to the post here:

Anyway - it was good to know your blog and I will certainly be
checking it out regularly.

Regards
Nick (Mr Credit Card).

Guest's picture
Guest

Walmart and Sears (as well as other chain type stores) sell the same pieces of jewelry that the big jewelry stores sell at a fraction of the price! I found the exact same Tungsten ring that I bought for my husband at Walmart for $175, at the jewelry store I paid a little over $500... I was livid that I didn't do better research! Back to the diamond subject though, I did refuse a diamond and insisted on Manufactured Sapphires for my antique ring we found in an adorable shop in Downtown Pensacola Fl!

Guest's picture

Moissanite is an excellent alternative to diamonds. Moissanite is so rare that their is not enought gemstone material to produce jewelry. However in 1998, Charles & Colvard blending art and science introduced Charles & Colvard Created Moissanite to comsumers.

Charles & Colvard Moissanite is now available at many major retailers such as JC Penney, Kohl's, Macy's, Belks, Helzberg Diamonds and Zale.

Moissanite retails for about 1/10 of what a diamonnd of comparable quality and size. In fact Moissanite has 2½ times more fire than a diamond and has more brillance than any other jewel.

If you want to know more about Charles & Colvard Moissanite please see my blog called Moissanite Awareness

Thanks.

Guest's picture
Snappy!

In a sense, this whole diamond fantasy is fueled not just by the sellers, like De Beers, but also by both man and woman.

Woman, because they just need that affirmation that they partner really love them. And trust me you, that affirmation is an ongoing process, and not a one time thing.

Man, on the other hand, don't really buy into it, and don't really give a hoot about how precious a diamond ring is. What he does care about is that getting the ring would make the girl happy, and that is what matters. And honestly, it does make things alot simpler for the guys as well isn't it? So smart guys just go along with the fallacy and get the ring while politically correct (read: Dumb) guys would go on and on trying to convince the girl why it's not worth it and why it is fueling others' misery ... and risk having many miserable nights with the girl! ;)

Lynn Truong's picture

i managed to convince my girlfriend that diamonds suck but when she told her boyfriend she didn't want a diamond ring, he was offended.  he said he'd never get her a "fake" diamond (moissanite or cultured) and he was definitely going to get her a nice ring.  she said she didn't care and told him all the reasons why diamonds suck and he was adamant about getting one for her.  i can't believe that it's the guy that needs convincing here.

Guest's picture
diamond

buying a diamond ring for the one you love,sp you are going to marry her. it is a complety different.diamond is the hardist stone,means your marrage is not going to break-it is forever.your man should buy you a best ring in his payck.just let your man how to look for good diamond.i am a diamond lover.

Guest's picture
Gav

quite ironic that your adwords are enticing people to buy diamond jewelry!

Guest's picture

Moissanite Awareness web address is
http://wbmoissanite.blogspot.com

The address in the previous response is incorrect.

Thanks,
WB

Guest's picture
David

Surprisingly diamonds are actually 'forever'. Everything degrades, and your precious diamonds are slowly turning to pencil lead, just like radioactive waste is slowly turning to non-lethal sludge. The only difference is that some radioactive things have a half life of thousands to millions of years, for a significant (relatively, a visible amount) to turn to graphite takes and estimated longer time than the universe has existed.

On that note, there are no new natural diamonds on earth, the conditions to make them haven't existed since the big bang other than 'synthetic' diamonds. Compare this to gold, which there's only an estimed 53x53x53 foot cube's worth on earth, or emeralds, which are rarer and more expensive than diamonds because they're easy to scratch.

Guest's picture
Colin

"On that note, there are no new natural diamonds on earth, the conditions to make them haven't existed since the big bang other than 'synthetic' diamonds."
I would be very curious to see where you found this information, especially as my understanding of the Big Bang entails that there were no atoms as we know them, much less decent sized ones such as Carbon. My understanding was that the intense heat and presure of the earth's techtonic forces were enough to produce diamonds, and had created all of the natural ones on Earth.

Guest's picture
Guest

“People back home would not buy a diamond if they knew it cost someone their hand.”

You're assuming people here care. They don't. DeBeers will continue to rape Africa and India and random third world countries because they can. Who is going to stop them? No one, because realistically there's very little anyone could do.

Will Chen's picture
Will Chen

I know the social pressure to buy diamonds is huge, but if each of us stand up and say no to diamonds, DeBeers will be stopped instantly.

Guest's picture
Guest

Although conflict (or 'blood') diamonds are a serious issue, it's also important to realize that the profit made from the sale of conflict diamonds account for an incredibly small percentage of the product of the diamond market. Remember, as well, that rings and necklaces only contribute a fraction of the world's use of diamonds - the majority of mined diamonds go into use in industry performing tasks that synthetic diamonds, due to their still less-than-perfect production, are incapable of doing, especially in the fields of optics and abrasives. And last, but certainly not least, it's important to remember that not all diamond miners in Africa are suffering, poor, war-torn victims; most mines pay their workers (relatively) well, considering the only other employment opportunity is in the almost dead agricultural environment.

Guest's picture
Guest

Thats an interesting comment.

Would you be able to provide some information backing that up?

Guest's picture
Guest

Even if it is only a fraction of the problem, why contribute in anyway. Have you heard of economics? If people continue to buy natural diamonds, whether conflict-free or not, it will increase the demand of them. Hence, giving more power to the corporation of De Beers. If I can do anything to not contribute to violence I will, if it is .00001%. Just because it isn't our family members being murdered or in poverty doesn't mean we shouldn't care.

Guest's picture
Guest

I am a bit confused on the whole diamond value thing. I have read quite a few articles and websites that claim to be knowledgeable about diamond economics (scarcity, supply, demand, etc.). The vast majority are like this site, claiming that the value is inflated by hoarding and diamond supply control by DeBeers. Many also predict the imminent decline in diamond value. However, it seems that these predictions have been around for years. For example, the article under 'Additional Resources' above (Have you ever tried to sell a diamond - Article from The Atlantic Monthly that chronicles the DeBeers marketing campaign) was printed in 1982. It also predicted diamond price decline due to new mines not controlled by the DeBeers cartel. I have more recently read that DeBeers no longer controls anywhere near 100% of the diamond supply market. Is that true? If so, then why do diamond prices stay high? Could it be because of a greater demand (more people in the world with greater disposable income, more industrial uses, etc.)? It seems there is no good source for true information on the subject. By source I mean somebody in a position to cite verifiable facts and figures, not just some random weber who swears up and down that what they say is true. Every piece of information seems to come from only two positions: somebody trying to sell you diamonds, or somebody trying to convince you not to buy diamonds. Does anybody out there have any actual information? BTW, David, your comment about the conditions necessary for diamond creation not having existed since the Big Bang nearly made my brain explode. Congratulations.

Guest's picture
Guest

"BLING: Consequences and Repercussions"
NSFW (contains graphic scenes)
http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=09e6d9a722

Guest's picture
Jerk Boss

The evil of the diamond trade is well known.
This is new news to you ?
Evil management practices so to speak.
The whole diamond trade is based on appearences.
Throughout manking the most lucrative product has been gemstones. It was 5,000 years ago and it will in the future as well.
The control and manipulation of the diamond trade and the de beers monopoly is more than widely known.
After all diamonds are nothing more than a rock from the ground and a common rock at that.
The whole trade on the end is based on the vainness of human beings , ego and greed.
These abuses are news to you ?

Guest's picture
Anon

There are two assertions made in this piece which I blindly accepted first time round.

1. Diamonds aren't rare. Really? Name your local diamond mine. Betcha can't. They ARE rare.

2. Diamonds are intrinsically worthless. That's just plain wrong. Is it only me that was brought up being told they were the hardest substance on earth? And you're telling me that's NOT intrisically desireable??

Excuse me while I buy De Beers' now worthless stock, and wait for companies to come begging for the hardest substance on the planet to 'diamond tip' their products..

Now there are a couple of other observations:
Diamonds are able to be replicated with modern technology, granted. But only in respect to hardness, these artifical diamonds aren't suitable for your lady's wedding rock.

And finally.. De Beers might have a stockpile but seriously, nowhere near the scale implied by this article. Can you imagine the cost of keeping this 'mountain of diamonds' secure (underground vault 300ft high, dozens of guards, 2ft thick walls) vs. selling them on? I think there's some maths to do there and I'm not so sure even De Beers could justify it.

Guest's picture
DS

@ Anon "Diamonds are RARE and INTRINSICALLY valuable"

To say diamonds are worthless is a hyperbole statement. The author's point was that their price is artificially inflated and DeBeers does own stock piles of diamonds of a wide variety ready to flood the market should a potential competitor come out of a particular variety of diamond. They have killed competitors in the past and given it's history will do so in the future.



Your challenge to name a local diamond mine is an immature and irrational.
Name me your local zinc or titanium mine in your area hot shot.



"Diamonds are able to be replicated with modern technology, granted. But only in respect to hardness, these artifical diamonds aren't suitable for your lady's wedding rock."
Wrong. Lab grown diamonds are chemically and physically identical and not just in hardness Einstein. The current ones that are sold are focusing on selling the yellow colored diamonds since they are the rarest and most valuable form.
Do your homework.



" Is it only me that was brought up being told they were the hardest substance on earth? And you're telling me that's NOT intrisically desireable??
You can coat almost anything with diamonds using chemical vapor deposition (CVD) and black diamonds which are very common are using in industrial drill bits and used as an abrasive to cut many things. The diamond's hardness is desirable but the value of the engagement ring or jewelry diamond is wildly out of proportion to other true gem stones.

Guest's picture
Guest

Your first point is retarded, they are not rare, and i cant because i love in Kansas, are you a retard?

Your last point is a mere 3 points above legally retarded, yes it would be a worthwhile investment because if you control the cost you can make your return suitable to fund building the vault, allowing you to secure your control over the cost, don't pretend you undertsand economics next time.

From now on i am going to call you prdebeersman, instead on Anon.

Guest's picture
Guest

Jennifer Connoly is pretty hot

Guest's picture

Very good points and great reading. I haven't heard the story behind the diamonds. Now I know :)

Guest's picture

And here I thought the article was going to be about the Bible... :-P

Seriously though, great article.

And diamonds aren't even all that pretty! I'd much rather have a star sapphire, for example.

Guest's picture
DS

We men are up against a brilliant marketing machine from the DeBeers cartel which has had decades to ingrain this tradition into women in the West. As a person with a material science engineering degree I appreciated a diamond or crystalline carbon arranged in a tetrahedral structure for its hardness, heat conductivity, optical qualities of high refractive index but that's about it.
I was fully aware of the diamond trade, DeBeers illegal monopoly, the geo-political consequences and the recent trend to produce lab grown diamonds
(which are currently only yellow), yet no matter how many times I diplomatically brought these issues with diamonds my fiancée would still want one. I've been able to change her misperceptions on many things by showing her articles, news and traveling the world with her, but this is one area I have failed in changing her mind and I have had to resign to that fact I have lost this round to DeBeers.



The DeBeers marketing started out with 3C's, then when diamond sales plateau, they added the fourth "C" carats. It seems like you had to get around a 1 carat diamond otherwise your fiancée would feel inadequate compared to her other girlfriends. Women have only fueled the need for larger diamonds and I've seen this first hand when they only ask about the carat size of the ring. They don't ask about the color, clarity or if the cut ratio is ideal or not. Its all about who has the biggest rock on their finger to show to their girlfriends. In a subtle way it also is to ward off other would be suitors that she's off the market and that you'd need to do better than her current ring on her finger to change her mind about her engagement.



In any case she's very happy with her ring, I have to come to terms with the purchase knowing what I have always known about diamonds, the trade, the cartel and the human cost whether it be in Sierra Leone or small hands in India cutting the tiniest stones that are not cost effect for some high end diamond cutter in Antwerp to touch.

Guest's picture
E Kimball

...dated a girl who explained to me that when asked for her hand in marriage she would except nothing less than a 1ct Diamond Ring and that if she didn't receive that, she would turn that man down.

The jewelry companies have done an awesome job of burning into the minds of woman and men that a real diamond is the ONLY acceptable engagement ring. It is forced into our minds that if a man doesn't give his fiance' a diamond ring, and a big one at that, that he truly doesn't love her enough. Woman have taken this idea as gospel and will feel unloved and even jipped if anything other than a real diamond is offered.

My wife loves jewelry but loves her cubic zirconia. Anyone that has seen it believes without a doubt that it is real. So what's the difference. None, accept people didn't die for the pretty stones on my wifes hand.

Andrea Karim's picture

Perhaps the diamond trade merely helps us to sort out the pure-of-heart from the cruel, greedy gals that want nothing less than sevearl months' of your salary.

Guest's picture
Paul

I think that this 'article' is stupid. If the diamond supply was opened up to the market, diamonds wouldn't become 'worthless'. Of course the price would go down, but that isn't the same thing as loosing all value.

Will Chen's picture
Will Chen

How about "relatively worthless"?

 

 

Guest's picture
Asmat

Thank you for sharing this interesting article.

Guest's picture
Paul

"The reason a “diamond is forever” is because you’re basically stuck with it. You’ll never be able to resell it except to a pawn shop."

This is just false.

"Even a jeweler (the few who would be willing to buy it) would offer a fraction of what you paid."

Ha, ha. Have you ever tried to buy anything and then sell it back? You will almost always get a fraction.

Guest's picture
rsk

part of their scam is they will give you your investment back if you spend twice the price of the original. so you paid 200% for the first diamond and 200% retail for the 2nd. So you got double slammed. Diamonds are never an investment. Never. Pawn shops and general jewelers will give you 20% of what you paid at best.

Amy Lin's picture
Amy Lin

My man knows he's hit the jackpot because I don't want a diamond ring.  Should I suppose that you can't convince your woman not to demand a diamond ring?

Guest's picture
Guest

#1 It's just marketing- SO IS LOVE!
#2 Diamonds aren't rare- BUT YOUR GIRL IS
#3 Diamonds have no resale value- BUT IF YOU MARRY ME W/O AN ROCK ON MY
FINGER, AS TIME GOES BY YOU'LL QUICKLY LEARN ALL YOUR BELONGINGS HAVE A
RESALE VALUE!!!
#4 Moissanite looks just like diamonds- I"M ALLERGIC TO IT
#5 What are conflict/blood diamonds- I'M OKAY WITH A DIAMOND USED BY REBEL
GROUPS, I'M A REBEL MYSELF
#6 The Kimberly Process is just PR- SO IS HAVING A GOOD LOOKING WIFE WITH A
NICE ROCK ON HER FINGER AT ALL YOUR WORK FUNCTIONS!
#7 Percentage in the Market- COMPARE THAT TO THE PERCENTAGE OF WOMEN ON AND
OFF THE MARKET WHO ARE AS AMAZING AS ME...NO COMPARISON BABY? I THOUGHT
SO!!!
#8 Asking for conflict-free certificates is enough- I DON'T NEED A KIMBERLY
PROCESS CERTIFICATE- I NEED A CERTIFICATE AND TOKEN OF A FINANCIAL
INVESTMENT IN ME!
#9- Children in India are cutting and polishing the diamonds- WE'LL BE
ADOPTING SOME OF THOSE CHILDREN LATER DOWN THE ROAD, SO WE'LL ACTUALLY BE
PUTTING OUR DIAMOND TO GOOD USE...

Guest's picture
Guest

and you're breaking up with her WHEN???

Andrea Karim's picture

Rebel groups are funny. Ha. So is international adoption and child slave labor. I get it.

Guest's picture
Guest

I watched a flick on Discovery that talked about the Ekati Dimaond Mines in northern Canada. Intriged I used the power of the Internets to get a contact number. For my lady friend, I wanted to get a "diamond in the rough", or rather an unworked diamond, as it would be representative of how I think of my other half. I talked to the office up north, and they were confused. They provided a Belgium number, and I called there. Very polite individuals, but they were rather confused about my request. After hopping around to 3 or 4 people, I got a Manager (forget his name) in DeBoers. He was also very polite, but firm in the notion that it was illegal to sell an uncut diamond, as they couldn't estimate the price. I gave the scenario that you could probably high end estimate if it was a perfectly cut diamond, what it would be worth, and considering the amount of years they had in the business, they would probably be a good judge of value. Again, polite but firm, no not until it was cut. I seethed, but accepted. This article makes me remember this incident, and makes me angry still. I don't hold grudges but man....

C

Guest's picture
Mike

Tell all this to a girl, she does not agree but still wants a stone. Give here a immitation stone, without telling her that is is an immitation, and she is happy. Give her a real one, she is happy. It the guy who pays has to decide.

Guest's picture
Bukujutsu

Diamonds are absolutely pathetic. They're stupid shiny rocks that could only amuse monkeys. Shows how much people have evolved, I guess their brains have some catching up to do. I'd never wear a ring because they're uncomfortable and worthless. Don't do something, like refusing to wear a ring, to be different, don't do it because you realize how stupid it is. It's unbelieveable how stupid the average monkey brained person is. Little things like this are a window to the immense stupidity of man.

Guest's picture
Joost

Well this brings up the whole "The West needs to save the rest of the world" superiority complex that we saw with movies like Hotel Rwanda. Diamonds and gold are similar in that they are mere items of "perceived" value , in the same way Roses and Chocolates, and cars and IPods are value laden items.

The cost of Roses is proportional to the closeness to Valentines Day and the quantity of individuals that are romantically involved (in March, Roses can be bought cheaply because of the lack of demand and the need to get rid of them - now say there was an emphasis on staying single, the cost of roses would be less). This is what we call the "secret economics" or semiotics.

Guest's picture
Joost

Well this brings up the whole "The West needs to save the rest of the world" superiority complex that we saw with movies like Hotel Rwanda. Diamonds and gold are similar in that they are mere items of "perceived" value , in the same way Roses and Chocolates, and cars and IPods are value laden items.

The cost of Roses is proportional to the closeness to Valentines Day and the quantity of individuals that are romantically involved (in March, Roses can be bought cheaply because of the lack of demand and the need to get rid of them - now say there was an emphasis on staying single, the cost of roses would be less). This is what we call the "secret economics" or semiotics.

Guest's picture
superglue

I wish the west had that complex. This speaks more to the whole "The West is responsible for too many global consequences as a result of selfish consumerism (global warming and Iraq war just off the top of my head) already, so why NOT try to do something good for once" complex. Women are not demanding $10,000 worth of roses. Electronics and cars can always be found at lower prices if you know where to look - and resold for that matter. Diamonds, on the other hand, is contributing to a country-wide civil war.

Guest's picture
James Hathaway

Sorry, but the whole "diamonds aren't rare" spiel is a myth. In fact, quality diamonds are indeed very rare. Sure it might be relatively easy to dig up small/fractured/discolored/impure diamonds, but high quality stones are MUCH more rare.

Those dumpy, yellowed, 2 carat engagement stones you can buy for $999 at a Zales mall outlet are a dime-a-dozen. However, high quality, internally flawless 3 carat diamonds that sell for 25 or 30 thousand are exponentially more rare.

Too bad for all you silly playtime gemologists out there who think scoffing at the diamond market makes you look like an intellectual... Better luck next time you ignorant hacks. Better you just go get high and contemplate Ayn Rand... leave the heavy thinking to me. <@:)

Guest's picture
Guest

90% of the "commercial" diamonds are of that low quality. Very few people have high quality, internally flawless diamonds in their engagement ring.

Guest's picture
cephyn

To DS and anyone else wondering about cultured diamonds, while Gemesis only currently yellow ones, Apollo Diamond produces perfectly clear ones using a different process. Gemesis can make clear ones too, it just takes longer.
http://www.apollodiamond.com/

And to Mr. Hathaway - you don't know what you're talking about.
"However, high quality, internally flawless 3 carat diamonds that sell for 25 or 30 thousand are exponentially more rare."

Rare - relative to what? They're not as rare as you think (there's a LOT out there), and what do you need them for? If it's for jewelry, Apollo Diamond can culture one for you, bloodless, at a fraction of the cost. You want to know the true value of such a diamond?

As for you super amazing natural 3-carat diamond, try selling it. If they're so valuable, you should be able to get nearly what you paid for it. But you won't.

Guest's picture
Ariana

I saw the movie. It completely moved me.

Since I am an Anthropology student, I have known about this for a while. I have been able to convince many friends and family that diamonds are not the way to go.

Buy something other than them. So many victims suffer daily to supply our growing demand for a shiny rock.
So many people don't realize what goes on, either because they turn a blind eye or because they are simply oblivious.
Despite having a happy ending, many people were affected by Blood Diamond. Some didn't even believe there were child soldiers and that they were incorporated in the movie simply to make it seem more tragic. Not so. Child soldiers are more and more prevalent in war-torn countries. Many are torn from their parents at as little as five years old, forced to kill their families afterwards and not even recognizing that fact due to extensive brainwashing.

It started with us and it has to finish with us. We have the power to end this war, so why not start now?

Guest's picture
Guest

After researching this topic awhile ago I too made the decision to never buy or ask for diamonds. It's really easy.. It feels good to do something socially responsible, if you're having doubts just try it. I found the latest technology in synthetic diamonds, even more identical to natural diamonds than moisannite (not CZ either). DiamondNexusLabs.com has incredible stuff, I just got pair of solitaire earrings over 2 carat total weight for under 200 bucks! But even if you do get diamonds that can fool the average consumer, I believe you should still tell people they are not natural and are man-made and your reasoning behind it. This will spread the knowledge faster and help people along who are too caught up in the "image". Plus how much ridiculous pressure have I lifted off my future fiance to spend such a wasteful amount of money! Everyone wins (except DeBeers)!

Guest's picture
Bob Dog

When I saw the title, "The greatest story ever sold is a fantasy covered in blood" I thought the article was about the buybull and christian mythology.

Speaking of christians, do you know who is one of the worst profiteers of blood diamonds in the US?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/ac2/wp-dyn?pagename=article&node=&contentI...

Pat Robertson, the scumbag televangelist who openly supported the now-convicted war criminal, Charles Taylor of Liberia. He's also the dirtball who advocated the murder of Hugo Chavez, who is the reverse of the blood diamond profiteers: the revenues from oil profits go to improving the lives if Venezuelan citizens, something that any "god fearing fundamentalist" thinks is "unAmerican" and "communist".

.

Guest's picture
Hayley E.

This article was very interesting. It's really, an opinion - and I view the opinion of the jewelers just that - an opinion. I know there are "blood diamonds" in this world but for one group to say only 4% of diamonds in USA circulation are blood diamonds and another group claims 15%, does either one of those percentages actually make a new bride tell her fiance to return her precious stone? Absolutely not. Diamonds are just stones, but in our American society it has always been the standard to fix any problem w/your lady, if you want to propose, if you want to make her feel special - DO IT W/DIAMONDS. It is a status, a competition, an image contest and what is wrong w/that? On extreme levels, it's horribly vain and takes away from the sincerity of the gift, but status is what the American culture is all about. Cars, homes, clothes, etc. If the history of this romantic token, the diamond engagement ring, should be deminished b/c of the nightmare that is on the otherside of the world to bring it to the states, should we not also examine our SUVs, w/no cultural history - but they're supporting the gas/oil crisis. Our high end fashion, that has children working in sweat shops and also promotes the skinny model trend which is playing a very negative role on young women, etc - and the list goes on of our "luxuries" that we earn/work to get but than we are shunned for enjoying them. Look at your every day life and ask, am I willing to give this up b/c of what another country is doing to supply my demand, but are not governing the rebels successfully? Why should I not get my diamond ring, my symbol of devotion, love and a promise from my fiance and continue the tradtion b/c of the chance (don't even know the exact probability) of getting this blood diamond? I think on my priority list, and on many womens, this topic, though sad, is not enough to ignore what has been programmed or viewed as a tradition. Speaking for myself, I want a diamond engagement ring.

Guest's picture
Guest

I don't want one anymore. I'm pissed off that a company thinks that I'm a fool, markets to me like I'm one, and laughs at me for it. Goddamn it. I have this indignation boiling from inside as if I was being sold horse near masquerading as cow meat. I am a woman not a pawn.

Guest's picture
Guest

When my husband and I decided to get engaged, I told him I don't want a diamond ring. I actually prefer having him make me a crystal bead ring but he's not good at crafts. So instead, we bought a CZ ring. I am so proud of the fact that I've never been brainwashed into being those diamond crazy girls that just absolutely have to have a diamond engagement ring or they won't give their consent to marry the guy.
GO CZ!! GO MOISSANITE!! GO MAN-MADE DIAMONDS!!

Andrea Karim's picture

Look at your every day life and ask, am I willing to give this up b/c of what another country is doing to supply my demand, but are not governing the rebels successfully?

Actually, it's more than the blood spilled. There's the issue of whether a diamond is really worth anything to me, and frankly, no, it's not. If I can get the same thing for less money, with the only difference being that it wasn't dug out of the ground by a little kid in Africa, then I'm perfectly happy to get a manufactured diamond. In fact, if we are going to go ahead and say "American culture is shallow and status-based... oh, well", then I want a BIG ASS fake diamond. 3 carats. Why not? It's still cheaper than a 1 carat harvested diamond.

But let's pretend that the only issue affecting my diamond-purchasing decision has to do with human rights. I'm not naive enough to think that "rebel management" is a good explanation for the chaos that is modern-day Africa. But we do have to make decisions everyday, in purchasing goods that may have been obtained using methods that we find highly objectionable, or whose manufacturing or sale has a net negative effect on the world. Like oil. Like coffee.

The question is: can we live without oil? Some people can't. Some people arrange their lives so that they can. Some people give up coffee or make a point of trying to buy mostly fair trade items.

Something like a diamond ring requires so much less effort. It's a one time purchase (or two times), and is extremely expensive, and has no actual value. Oil (gas) powers our trasnportation. Coffee powers our minds. A ring has no practical application, only emotional attachment. Thus, it's very easy to understand why some of us can easily reject them. Or ask for one that is cheaper, obtained without murder or loss of limbs, and just as pretty.

Guest's picture
~summer~

Great post, good collection of factoids. I didn't know about the Indian child labor component of the diamond market.

If only 4% of diamonds are blood diamonds, that's still 4 in 100 - a lotta blood. Whenever a girlfriend gets engaged, there's always the obligatory "ooooo ahhhhh" at the celebratory brunch. I don't chime in, just purse my lips, stay quiet don't want to tarnish someone else's bling with my social moralism speech. But personally, if I had one of those things on my finger I'd only see weapons and burned villages. I don't even want something that pretends to be a diamond.

FYI - your post is the first link returned when you google "i don't want a diamond"

Guest's picture
wdlaurie

We recently had our 20th anniversary and my husband completely surprised me. I do the bill paying, so he had been saving pocket money secretly for several years towards my 20th anniversary present. He then worked with his brother (who found the stone - an opal - in the Arizona desert) and a local jeweler to design a really lovely, unique necklace.

Because he'd put so much thought into this, it's something I will always cherish. I've always said I didn't want any expensive jewelry, because I tend to be clumsy and I work with my hands a lot, and therefore lose/break jewelry. Maybe that's the secret to a 20 year marriage! :-)

Guest's picture

My husband recycled a ring for me, had it remade from previously-used materials. I told him I didn't need a diamond because of concerns about how they're made, etc. So as a part of his proposal, right after the will you marry me, he got in "And the diamond and gold are recycled, so people didn't have to work for them, well they did but since they'd already done it and it wasn't being used anymore it makes sense to make it into a new ring..." before I could say anything like "Yes." I like him.

Guest's picture

Come on! Isn't spending big money on a foolish piece of metal and stone crazy? I mean, come on! The whole engagement ring thing goes back to the whole "dowry" principle. It is still in practice today, but in backwards countries where families have to put up their best goats to sell their daughters off for marriage. The engagement ring goes back to an old school form of an insurance policy for women who might be left abandoned or scorned by a less than stellar husband. If he is willing to put a huge some of money down for a "Giant Diamond Engagement Ring" that "All her friends will be jealous of!" then he is WAY Over-Paying for the cow, when there are many places to get the milk for free!!! (or, at least, far more cheaply...)

Really, women out there who want these 1+ carat rings, stop being so damn high maintenance and start being more self supporting and confident. You make the rest of us sensible chicks look silly! I would rather have a 7 1/4 inch diamond tile blade for my tile saw than a stupid ring that cost more than I put down for my house! And that goes for any wedding that costs more than $1000 too! Go to the court house and get your marriage certificate! Then buy a bunch of discount liquor and some burgers and brats and throw a party to celebrate your new life commitment with all of your best family and friends! After all, it isn't about "The Wedding Day", it really is about the rest of your life!

And for all you girls that think I am some type of bull dyke construction b*tch, I am not! When I was married, I paid more for the hubby's ring than my engagement ring and my wedding band combined, because I didn't think suck frivolous things were important...And, notice, when I said I "was married".

Women always complain that there are no good men out there, but if we stopped demanding things like tiny pieces of expensive worthless crap, then maybe they would step up to the plate and start being "Your Dream Man" who would rather stay home and do things with you than escape once a week with a drunken night out with the guys... If you want a "tiny" gift from your man, get a Swiss Army Knife. At least they are more useful!

Thanks!!!
~hcb

Guest's picture
atanu

If one has to reset the moral compass upon watching a movie, that does not bode well.
Its easy to villify de beers since it buys some cheap "feel goodness" that you're doing something for africa, but this article presents alermist assertions without much solid facts. Africa is raped not just for diamonds, but copper, tin and a whole slew of other minerals. for example, you can buy chinese stuff for cheap because these days they get their raw materials from africa. And most of that are from war torn regions such as DR Congo, sold by middlemen. the miners get squat.

the author mentioned how indian childred are being "bonded into slavery". Er..all the mines in india are nationalized and have been for more than 50 years (unlike africa) with pretty stringent rules. They certainly don't employ children, neither do diamond dealers who employ cutters, among whom the trade is passed on through families. its a pretty closed bunch. I checked the other article she cited as being the source, there was zero figures to back any of it, other than conjectures. at one point the author says, surat, a major diamond cutting city, is polluted...and children are being made to work there. Maybe she'd like all children to be taken out of the city?

my point is, its easy to be an armchair activist and censure people. Rids you of the responsibility to actually do anything. but presenting and checking some facts would be nice for once. And however cruel it sounds, in a strife or poverty stricken region, the people don't really care if its a child or grandma from the family who has to work; because it may take five of a family working from morning till night just to scrounge up enough for that day's food. I'm against child labor, but i'm also against imposing your own morality on another when that "morality" might very well starve him to death.

Lynn Truong's picture

thank you for taking the time to comment. now let me see if i can respond to your concerns, as it seems that you've taken two small points in my article and taken it completely out of context. maybe i can return the favor.

first, i didn't watch the movie and decide diamonds are evil, not that there's anything wrong with that, because if a movie provides information and reveals something you didn't know before, that's not a bad reason to make a new life decision. if it takes Leonardo DiCaprio to explain what blood diamonds are, so be it. but i've never understood the appeal of a huge diamond engagement ring, and have told my bf from day one that i'll never want one...long before the movie came out.

second, your statement that imposing my morality might starve some kids in africa is exactly the kind of white superiority thinking that allows a multi-billion dollar company like DeBeers allow children working mines be paid so little that working all day, every day in those conditions will merely FEED them. DeBeers doesn't officially sanction blood diamonds, but they could step in at anytime and change the situation. DeBeers can AFFORD to pay the PARENTS a real, fair wage, so the children can go to school and hope to get out of the cycle of poverty that jobs like that force upon the people there. you are right that it is totally wrong to create those kinds of working conditions for people so that Americans can get goods for cheaper, but it's even worse when that happens so Americans can overpay for a worthless piece of shiny rock for a tradition completely fabricated by an advertising agency.

Guest's picture
Jessica

Yes, diamonds are overpriced and have...issues. But they're gorgeous. I've owned many pieces of jewelry in my life with loads of different gemstones, and not one of them can measure up to the beauty of the diamond I have now. And when you're talking engagement rings, this is a piece you're going to wear forever--wear and tear is important, and this is as hard as you're going to get. This is something your daughter or grandchild could end up wearing. Some things are worth the money.

Guest's picture

People value diamonds more than anything else. But hardly few knows the painful efforts being involved in the filtering and excavation to find them Personal Trainer

Guest's picture

Diamonds often plays an integral role whenever a man proposes a girl. This is because diamonds are often referred to as "Girls best friend". There must be some technical reason as well for this. Diamonds being the hardest of carbon form discovered is meant to last long...Unbreakable. So that implies, a relationship started with diamond as a mediating element, can last longer than much perishable gold. Let the relationships last long. So does our love for diamonds
Knights and Walker

Guest's picture
Guest

I prefer Titanium if you want durability or good old fashioned 24 karat gold. Sure, it's soft as all heck but at least it is a truly rare metal that has real value no matter where you are in the world. We all know the gold standard as a monetary basis in the world economy, when did you ever use the diamond standard?

I hate diamonds. I hate the fake economy around it. I hate the fake setimentality attached to it. I hate the blatant nouveau riche attitude foisted by those that finally have one and need to show off how it reflects upon their status. I hate that it has no intrinsic value other than what has been forced upon us by the DeBeers syndicate. I don't even like the way it looks, really. I much prefer a nice, rich Sapphire or Ruby for the color.

I hate that men are financing a few month's worth of salaries to prove their love and that women are going around showing off a ring which costs more than some cars as a symbol of love.

How about I just buy a car or give you the cash equivalent and let it grow in an index fund?Romantic? Perhaps not, but it'll sure be infinitely more useful than a rock on your finger which actually limits your mobility a bit because you don't want to bump it against things.

Guest's picture
Guest

Diamonds do, on occasion, break, crack and chip.

Moissanite is second hardest to only a diamond, and it 1/4 of the cost.

Guest's picture
Cindy M

huh? And how much better we'd probably all be without it, ha-ha. So few would know or care minus all the hype. I'm glad I don't envy the chi-chi crowd and don't ever have to worry about running with them, my 15 minutes of fame are long gone. I'm female and have owned a few and they truly never meant much to me. I even bought one of them myself. In fact, I gave them to my nieces. A woman's hands give her age away quickly anyway, and I've always thought it looked witchy to see all the old gals with the red fingernail polish and the big rocks. Sad class of women, that bunch; ever have a meaningful conversation with one of them? Or a Liz Taylor, yuck.

Guest's picture

Conflict diamonds - or “blood diamonds” - is the term given to diamonds which have been mined in conflict zones, such as Sierra Leone, Angola and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Typically, also, the funds generated from the mining of diamonds in these areas have been used to fund illegal activities against legitimate governments and authorities, resulting in a massive level of human suffering.

The “Kimberly Process”, founded in 2003, is the diamond industry’s attempt to eradicate the world supply chain from such diamonds which are smuggled into the market. Reports state than anywhere from 1% - 5% of diamonds in the supply chain are conflict diamonds.

In December 2006, a Hollywood blockbuster movie starring Leonardo DiCaprio called “Blood Diamond” is being released by Warner Brothers. This will hit UK cinemas in January, and will bring this important issue to the public arena.

When buying diamonds, always make sure it is a “conflict-free” diamond - after all, a diamond is given as a token of love…..which should not, and must not, be tarished by a dark history. (from www.diamondarticles.com)

Personal Training

Guest's picture
Dawn

have anyone ever heard of diamond nexus labs. I'm was plannin to get one from them, but a bit scare if i might not like it? I hav been thinking about mined vs lab diamond for like the past 6 weeks now and it is driving me nuts. Can someone out there help me solve this thanks.

Guest's picture
Guest

This is for all the ignorant people that think that diamonds are actually rare. And to the EXTREMELY ignorant person who said that the conditions for CREATING diamonds hasn't existed since the big bang (That guy is a moron).

The DEEPEST mine in the world does not even begin to scratch the surface of the earth. The deeper into the earth you go, the bigger, and more flawless diamonds you will discover, due to the increasing heat, and increasing pressure, down to the very center of the earth.

If diamonds were so very rare, why would every dumb sh** have one on their finger, without any sign of them running out? If they were rare, there wouldn't be MULTIPLE diamond stores in EVERY single freaking mall in this country.

On top of that, white dwarf stars leave giant diamonds as they burn out and die.

"The biggest ever diamond has been found floating in space. The gem, estimated at close to 10 billion trillion trillion carats, is at the core of a dead star (BPM 37093) - a crystallized white dwarf.

The newly-discovered diamond in the sky is a whopping great chunk of crystallised carbon 50 light-years from the Earth in the constellation Centaurus. It is 2,500 miles across (the moon is approximately 2,200 miles across) and weighs 5 million trillion trillion pounds. It has been dubbed "Lucy" in reference to the Beatles' song, "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds". Diamond specialists told the research team that if nothing else, the diamond was much too big to wear*.

Theorists have long speculated that the cores of extinct white dwarves would crystallise, but until now have had no way to prove it. However, the white dwarf is not only radiant but also harmonious. It rings like a gigantic gong, undergoing constant pulsations.

"By measuring those pulsations, we were able to study the hidden interior of the white dwarf, just like seismograph measurements of earthquakes allow geologists to study the interior of the Earth. We figured out that the carbon interior of this white dwarf has solidified to form the galaxy's largest diamond," explained Travis Metcalfe, head of the team at Harvard Smithsonian Centre for Astrophysics.

Our own Sun will become a white dwarf when it dies 5 billion years from now, having first expanded to engulf almost everything in the solar system. Two billion years after that, the core will crystallize, leaving a giant diamond in its place."

Guest's picture

...you're going to have to forego most of the things you already have ingrained into your lifestyle.

The fact is that most everything has suffering and brutality built-in.

Most goods are made in other nations using workers who are underpaid or underage. Pharmacuetical and cosmetic products are tested on living animals who suffer and end up diseased or dead as a result. If you eat meat, you are literally paying for the slaughter of another living creature. If you drive a car or have carpet in your house or have a keyboard attached to your computer, your gasoline, carpet fibers, and plastic keys are made from oil, which can be linked to environmental destruction, economic oppression, and wars.

Everything is covered in blood, my friend.

Guest's picture
Guest

I recenyly purchased a ring from Diamond Nexus Labs. It is very attractive. I would recommend this simulant to anyone. It is so realistic and very cost conscious.

I also enjoyed the reply about the white dwarf stars. How fascinating!

Guest's picture
fortuzero

Great piece - nice to see there's still a smattering of intelligent people left out there despite the mass medias best efforts so lower us all to the same dumbass level, not capable of critical thinking. It a piece of transparent material people, it doesn't do ANYTHING. FFS...

Guest's picture
darius

Take a look at easystockalerts.com. It allows you to get the news before it even appears on the web. It's like having a Bloomberg terminal at your desk, but only better! No spam, just very useful, actionable investment ideas.

Guest's picture
Dawn

I decided to go with diamond lab nexus. It was the best choice that I made. My finance told me to pick a setting that I liked and got a loose stone from lab nexus It is absolute beautiful.

Guest's picture
M Johnson

As a diamond jewellery retailer, selling engagement rings, I have been asked many times recently if our diamonds ethically produced. The answer is yes. These days, it is expected for each member of the supply chain to adhere to a strict code of responsibility when supplying the diamonds, with written guarantees in place.

As one of the final recipients in this chain, it is so important for the retailer to ensure he does as much as possible to ensure the diamonds are from legitimate sources not involved in funding conflict.

Guest's picture
martinmarshall91

If you interested in stock market news and information here is a site called easystockalerts.com . You can also get e-mail and RSS alerts when a stock you are tracking has news, an SEC filing, or a press release. So start money making now and sign up for easystockalerts.com

Guest's picture
Guest

Humans always want the best in everything.
In gemstones, the diamond is the best.
Rubies might be rarer, but you only get red rubies.
Whereas a red diamond would be far more valuable then any ruby.

People talk about the superficiality of diamonds, but then want to buy a fake diamond, Is that not being hypocritical? Anyway an expert can tell the difference.

De Beers is the biggest diamond mining company in the world, so naturally they have the most diamonds, nobody knows exactly how much diamonds they have, and anyway there share in the market has decreased as companies such as Petra, Alrosa and Rio Tinto are coming up.

Becuase diamonds are so expensive, they will inevitably attract terrible things, such as war. But the industry really tries to stop soch things cause the know how damaging it can be to the diamonds image.

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Guest

Though I don't want to say that people should go out and buy bunches of diamonds, 1) this argument can be said for any item that is highly desired and rare (gold, oil, etc) that it creates conflict and people fight and die over it. Perhaps that is a flaw with humans and not the particular material object we are discussing. 2)Everything has blood attached. Do you eat meat, or soybeans from the former Amazon basin, wear leather, burn gasoline (hmm which comes from a country hmm we are at war at? live in a house that required wood and other materials? I could go on but you get the point.
3) the movie Blood Diamonds itself has a disclaimer that the events portrayed are fictionalized and not currently occurring. Sorry I can't turn back time for you. It is terrible what has happened. The Kimberly process is not perfect but it does work, and is in fact a felony to sell "blood" diamonds in the US; there is a heavy disincentive for anyone in the US to risk doing so.
Symbolically speaking diamonds do have alot of things going for it; they are millions of years old, have one of the highest refractive indexes of a natural colorless stone (which creates dispersion and color play) have the highest reflectiveness (adamantine luster), and are the hardest (scratch resistant) natural substance, 20 times harder than the next hardest (corundum). They are resistant to extreme heat and acid, transparant to pretty much the whole of the spectrum (used for sensor windows in outer space). I think even if diamonds were cheap people would still want them (just more, and larger ones).
But it is just a thing. You don't need it to survive.
There is no rule that a woman needs a diamond for an engagement ring, (in Europe usually people get engaged with colored stones) or really, an engagement ring at all. I think people should based their decisions on their ethics, but don't base it on one, highly emotionally charged, not strictly relevant piece of entertainment.