Here's some news for you man. Your phone came in contact with liquid and you are too weak to admit to: A) Your own faults B) Your lack of perception C) The fact that your phone is not perfectly within eye sight every second of every day and D) That your anger will get you absolutely nowhere at the genius bar as you try to blame it on someone whom you claim is "Trying to take advantage of you."
You can make claims all you want about people who sell computers, but I guarantee you do not know any more than any genius who has worked there for more than a few months. They take these things apart every day repeatedly. Something your arrogance might try to find a fleeting argument against, but will still fail. Plus, if you are taking your phone apart and tampering with it, why would they replace it for you? If you break a connector yourself, why should Apple pay for that? Hell, you're such a pro at taking it apart, why not fix it yourself? Because you can't do it in a cost effective manner while maintaining factory build quality. Might as well get the genius bar swap for $199.
There are 4 sensors on the phone. One red sensor does not automatically disqualify your device from repair. 2 does. They can open your phone and look inside, if it's still wet or internal sensors are tripped, sorry. Take better care of your stuff. If you get splashed and don't notice 1 sensor, ok. If 2 sensors are set off, your phone was wet and if you didn't notice, then it's your fault and you deserve a $199 price tag. We all know liquid and electronics don't mix. Corrosion grows on parts and breaks them. Your fault. I take long, hot showers with my iPhone on the counter every day and my sensors are white as snow.
So take your phone into an Apple store and be a dick. I hope they are dicks right back to you. Get the police in there too, then you can get arrested, spend the night in jail while your car gets towed from the parking lot and then you'll be out a lot more money than your repair would have cost to begin with and you'll still have a liquid damaged phone.
This talk of "I know it never got wet," is what you get when an arrogant person makes the assumption that their own perception of reality precedes everyone else's ability to discern facts.
I must applaud you friend, very well said. I work in retail and what it comes down to always and every day is attitude. I have gone out of my way and bent the rules many times for customers simply because they were nice and reasonable and polite. Too many people walk around acting like the world owes them something, i dont care if you pay monthly service, i dont care how much you spent on this item, nothing gives you the right to treat another person in a rude, degrading negative manor unless they met you with the same treatment first. I have been on both sides of the customer service counter and i have found that being nice, polite, understanding and patient go a very long way. In the end when someone says to you, im sorry there is nothing i can do for you, it really means "i probably could have helped you, possibly bent a rule here or there to make things happen for you, but youre a rude inconsiderate jerk, have a nice day."
Now more on topic, i have had my fair share of dealings with Liquid damage indicators and to be honest most people dont really understand how they work. when people think about liquid damage they think dunked in water. but there are many types of situations in which your phone can be exposed to liquid without you even being aware. Moisture, rain, humidity, condensation, steam, etc. To put it in a way one could understand, if you took your dvd player out in the rain would you expect it to work? better yet would you expect the manufacturer to cover your replacement? absolutely not.
Now i must say that at times i have found them too sensitive. I have touched one with my finger by accident and the simple oils on my hand triggered the LDI. however a phone is a piece of electronic equipment, and just as we keep our TVs, dvd players, stereos and other devices away from moisture and liquids, the same type of care should be applied to a phone. Just because you didnt witness the exposure to liquid doesnt mean it didnt happen. Sorry but i hope apple wins this one.