TVs were a virtual bargain

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INTERNET shoppers know a bargain, and the 21-inch colour TV on sale at the website for the mail-order shopping operation, Argos, looked the part.

At pounds 3, it was clearly a loss leader to attract business to the site, launched a month ago - either that, or someone had messed up in putting the price on the pounds 299.99 set.

Argos yesterday insisted on the latter explanation, after being deluged with orders worth pounds 1m. The company also decided to gamble with a public relations disaster, saying it would not honour one order for the pounds 3 sets.

The retailer believes the law is on its side in this case, but its stance could rouse the ire of Net shoppers. The hundreds of would-be buyers placed orders between 5.38pm on Monday and 11.38am on Tuesday.