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TAGnotes Sat 23 Dec 2000 Vol 2 Number 177 Issue 259

The Auction Guild Notes for Sat 23 Dec 2000
TAG is proud to announce that we have reached and exceeded
the 1000th subscription to TAGnotes. Thank you for subscribing
and for the emails of support and encouragement we receive.
They are deeply appreciated. We would like to wish all our subscribers
a happy and healthy holiday season, and the best
of new years as we enter the next millennium.
ebaY conducted regularly scheduled maintenance on Fri 21 Dec.
They started at their normal time, but posted at 04:15 that they had
to extend the outage until 03:50 PT, approx 1 hour later than normal.
On 22 Dec at 23:36:59 PT ebaY had a brief outage that lasted until
23:44:56 PT. On 23 Dec at 05:45 PT users reported problems with the
completed search tab on smart search, but it was working again by 06:13

TAG strongly recommends that anyone who feels their auctions were
negatively impacted by any of these problems apply for credit. Request
listing, special feature and Final Value Fees. Go to the form at
Send -
* The item number(s) of the ended auction(s)
* The specific fee(s) charged for them
* Your seller's email address or User ID
* The phrase, GIVE CREDIT in the Subject line
This can also be accessed from
TAG can't emphasize enough that sellers should not take NO for an
answer. If you get a refund denial, keep requesting and
re-requesting refunds until you get them. Some sellers are also
challenging ebaY charges to their credit card, based on services
not rendered. TAG recommends you use that as a last resort, if at all.

ebaY will be airing its first nationwide television ad campaign in
conjunction with a nationwide newspaper ad campaign from 27 to 31
Dec. Two television ads will be shown during primetime and late
night on shows such as ER, Spin City, Dateline, and Who Wants
to Be a Millionaire; and during the NFL playoffs next weekend.
The ads will show products not typically associated with eBay.
In TAG's opinion, as ebaY changes its corporate model from person to
person, to larger corporations such as Disney, and loses the support of
a once vibrant and now seemingly dead community, it will no longer be
able to rely on it's users to bring in new participants. As ebaY needs
to increase advertising, it will also need to increase revenue, so fee
increases are becoming more likely all the time.

Though ebaY has not changed the user agreement, they have a long
post on the AB dated 21 Dec about what they are calling clarification
of some of their policies related to spam and fee avoidance. TAG's
take on this post is that it is attempting to intimidate it's users,
that it was ill conceived, and not thought out. Several questions to
ebaY Customer Support personnel on the issues presented in the post,
show that they too do not understand the announcement. TAG
recommends that for the most part users should ignore ebaYs post
and continue to act in compliance to the current rules, until such
time as the user agreement is changed.

ebaY defines spam as a company or an individual sending unsolicited
commercial email - even just one email. ebaY says it is concerned
with users receiving spam when trading on eBay and problems with
outside trade selling to underbidders or bidders in a reserve not
met auction. Transactions completed outside of ebaY are not
eligible for entries on the feedback forum nor qualified for insurance.

ebaY says that users are not permitted to -
Circumvent ebaY fees. For example, offering to sell a listed
item outside of ebaY to avoid completing the sale on ebaY; accept
an offer to buy the currently listed item outside of ebaY; offering
to sell an item outside of ebaY to any of your bidders or another
sellers' bidders in a reserve not met listing; selling, outside of ebaY,
duplicate or additional merchandise to your own underbidders or to
another sellers' bidders; contacting a seller and offering to purchase a
listed item outside of ebaY; Offering in a listing the opportunity to
purchase the listed item or other merchandise outside of ebaY; sending
unsolicited offers to bidders for the same or similar
products that they have bid on in the past. To assist in preventing
ebaY interfering between sellers and bidders, TAG recommends that all
sellers include their email address preferably with a live link in all
their auctions. To view these changes, and the related policies in
full, go to -

eBay Motors listings are to have their 20 Dec free listings credited
after the 20 Dec. Real Estate listings will be issued credits at
the same time as eBay Motors. ebaY will post the credits for both eBay
Motors' and the Real Estate listings to user accounts by the end of the
first week in the new year.

There is also a long post by Meg Whitman that in TAG's view is filled
with the same kind of corprospeak of half truths and prevarication that
she uses in her quarterly messages.

ebaY free listing day netted an increase well under 1 million auctions.
Using a sampling procedure TAG found that approx 25% of all auctions
listed on 20 Dec used double categories, therefore the auction shows up
as twice in the category counts.

4.58 Mil auctions listed inflated by a percentage of double category
listings http://www.ebay.com/
* * * * *
Yahoo Auctions newsletter and other info can be found at

US only Pay Direct contest runs through 11 Feb 01.

Yahoo Pay Direct can be used anywhere on the net to send and
receive money in the US. It is currently free, but may charge fees
in the future. There are also plans to make it available
PayDirect Contact info
8AM-6PM PT 7 days a week 408-731-3335
3400 Central Expressway, Santa Clara, CA 95051
Yahoo site map.
Current Auctions approx 2.61 Mil formula indexed count
* * * * *
Amazon http://auctions.amazon.com
* * * * *
Honesty.Com has added some new features that are fee based. These
are Auto Relist for an introductory price of $0.15 per relist, a gallery
called, My Gallery whose introductory offer cost $5.95 per month,
Post-Sale services for an introductory price of $0.15 per successfully
closed listing, and a delayed auction posting feature called Post Later
for an introductory price of $0.15 per listing.
* * * * *
SMOOTHSALE PRESENTS a special offer for TAGnotes
subscribers. Sign up as a SmoothSale Merchant and use this
special TAG link and receive a $10.00 bonus.
For more details http://www.smoothsale.com/incentiveTerms.html
This offer is good now through 31 December.
Charter membership closes 31 December at 23:59 PT.
Lock in 1.5% commission rates.
If you would like an Auction House or Service Provider added to
this list, please email us at tag@theauctionguild.com
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