Wayfair accused of selling 'missing children' after e-furniture store lists cabinets and throw pillows for $12K
Wayfair, an American e-commerce company that sells furniture, began trending on social media on Friday morning, July 10, after thousands of people took to Twitter to indulge in a conspiracy theory, accusing Wayfair of child trafficking. The theory started after people apparently noticed that the company was charging exorbitant prices for items like storage cabinets and throw pillows, and although all of the items appeared identical they allegedly had different names written on the item descriptions.
Some social media users believe that the furniture and home-goods company is selling "missing children" through their high-priced cabinets and throw pillows costing nearly $10,000 to $12,000 and $9,000. Multiple Twitter users posted pictures of the website's high-priced cabinets, which users claim are listed alongside people's names. They claimed that although the cabinets or the "large boxes" looked like the same product, they all had different names, mostly of girls, allegedly, and particularly of missing children. One user wrote: "So all the names pull up missing females. I searched Neriah and she is missing since 2010. YARITZA is also a missing female."
Another user wrote: "People are suspecting that they're selling people in these large boxes/storage cabinets on Wayfair. They all are the same products but have different names, all female names. And they are priced $10k-15k more than the cabinets sold elsewhere. #ChildTrafficking." There were many who claimed that after people talked about the Wayfair listings of the suspicious cabinets, the particular listing disappeared. While others suggested that interested people could still Google search those images from the website.
"People don’t believe me but now it’s not coming up on the website but you can still find it on google," one user, in her long thread of tweets on the issue wrote. "What I’m not understanding is how did the people running Wayfair not question the fact that people are selling cabinets with specific Girls names for over $10k?" another added.
One user on the same Twitter thread suggested that a case had been opened into the claims: "Somebody posted about this on Reddit and their account got reported. Another person talked to Wayfair for an explanation about costs/specs and they could not give an answer. They called the trafficking hotline and they are reportedly opening a case. We'll see how this turns out."
There were others who pointed Wayfair's alleged history of selling furniture to migrant detention facilities — where thousands of immigrant children were housed — and how the company's employees last year had staged a walkout to protest the firm's decision. "So let's get one thing straight before jumping the gun. We don't know everything," one user wrote. "Let me also close off by asking a question. If child trafficking was happening all under #WayFair's nose, how come the former Wayfair workers (turned protestors), did not say anything about it?"
Several users, including Redditors, reported that when they searched the SKU codes of the suspected items on the Russian search engine Yandex, the search results allegedly produced images of little girls. However, if a person uses any combination of numbers preceded by "src usa," the results would be similar.
The claims made by the social media users have yet to be presented with evidence outside screenshots of the company's high-priced items with human names.
Wayfair released a statement explaining why the listings were taken down: "There is, of course, no truth to these claims. The products in question are industrial grade cabinets that are accurately priced. Recognizing that the photos and descriptions provided by the supplier did not adequately explain the high price point, we have temporarily removed the products from site to rename them and to provide a more in-depth description and photos that accurately depict the product to clarify the price point."
MEA WorldWide (MEAWW) couldn't independently confirm the validity of the allegations that social media users made and doesn't share any responsibility for the said statements.