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TAGnotes Thu 16 Feb 2001 Vol 3 Number 23 Issue 284

The Auction Guild Notes for Fri 16 Feb 2001
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ebaY conducted scheduled maintenance on Fri 16 Feb from 01:00 PT
to 03:00 PT. The site then developed intermittent problems that lasted
all day. Users reported Billpoint down on 16 Feb at 10:56:33 PT. At
12:08:15 PT users reported a short outage that lasted until 12:10:34 PT.
Problems with search, seller search and completed auctions continued
until approx 12:31:17 PT. At 18:40:04 PT ebaY reported their site down.
At 19:14:44 PT ebaY reported that the site went down at 18:29 PT due to
a hardware failure on their primary database. They reported the site
back up at 18:56 PT, but at 19:42:55 PT added that My ebaY was not
working and that seller search results and bid history information from
the individual auction pages was not working. Users reported the site
back up at 20:38:56 PT and seller search and My ebaY back up at 21:19.
ebaY posted at 22:42:07 PT, that they had to take the site down for
emergency maintenance from 23:00 PT to 23:30 PT. They brought the site
back up at 23:15:16.

There are several long term ongoing ebaY problems, that ebaY
has failed to fix.
1. My ebaY only shows the first 600 items on a sellers list instead
of all items.
2. Completed search, when it works at all, only shows 20 days (ebaY
promised return to 30 days nearly two years ago).
3. Item indexing is slow on title search 2 to 4+ hours, and very slow on
description search between 8 and 36 hours. Remember that title search
and title and description search are two completely different databases.
4. Revised items never get indexed to title and description search.
There is anecdotal information that revision to a title will show up
in title search only.
5. Search results show up in various garbled forms, particularly on the
second and subsequent pages of search results.
6. Bids are not updated on search results, often for the life of the
auction, so items in search results might appear to have no bids,
despite the fact that they have several bids. Bids appear to update on
title search, but not on title and description search. There
have been anecdotal reports that if you use the gallery feature, your
bids will update, but we have not been able to verify this.
7. When relisting, payment information disappears on relist, requiring a
revision to the listing
8. Auctions missing from sellers lists and seller search requiring a
reset of the sellers list by ebaY support.
9. Sellers have frequent problems relisting items. This is true of
relists on ebaY, but tools such as Vrane.Com's relist tool appears to be
an effective workaround for the problem.
10. Auctions missing from sellers lists and seller search requiring a
reset of the sellers list by ebaY support.
11. Billpoint shows up in auctions as an option even if the seller
did NOT opt for Billpoint.

In TAG's opinion numbers 3, 6, and 10 could be cause to request
refunds on a case by case basis, depending on the circumstances, and
the ultimate effect they had on a particular auction.

ebaY has changed the name of iEscrow to Tradenable.
In TAG's view, as the changing of the name from Great Collections
to ebaY Premiere has made no difference in the fact that it is a
failure, so we believe that the iEscrow's name change will not make a
difference either. For more info about escrow go to

ebaY customer software service provider Satmetrix Systems has
created what they are calling a customer satisfaction award and
awarded it to ebaY. ebaY is claiming that they received the award
for good customer service, though both they and Satmetrix failed
to reveal in their press releases and posts that ebaY pays fees to
Satmetrix. TAG sees this award as completely absurd. Satmetrix
is giving ebaY an award for using its software and paying them.

ebaY continues to change categories. There is a threaded board on
the subject at http://cgi3.ebay.com/aw-cgi/eBayISAPI.dll?MfcIS
There will be changes in books including: antiquarian becoming
antiquarian, rare; and the addition of pop-up books.
in collectibles, there are additions in the advertising, animals,
art and political: world categories and new furniture categories
including: bedroom; kitchen, dining room; living room.
sundials are in home & garden. There are changes in jewelry,
gemstones: beads and beaded in the handcrafted, artisan jewelry
as well as settings in the jewelry supplies and loose rhinestones.
in toys & hobbies, hot wheels and powerpuff girls in television
toys; Beswick in pottery and stone carvings in everything else:
To change a category go to

Title search is currently running approx 2.5 hours behind, title and
description search is running approx 8 hours behind. To see
a pattern of lag times, demonstrating the time it takes from listing,
to the item showing up in search, go to

ebaY Contact Information, analog mail and email addresses and
phone numbers, regular and toll free.

Approx 5.21 mil auctions inflated by approx 6% due to double
category listings yielding 4.9 mil auctions
Totals are from ebaYs Browse page
* * * * *
Yahoo Auction still has not responded to questions about their
refund policy. http://user.auctions.yahoo.com/html/guidelines.html

Yahoo Store owners can not use the auction site for free. Though
they will not be charged the $29.95 a month to use the Merchant
Auctions Order Manager and to participate as an Auctions Merchant,
they do have to pay all listing fees.

Story on Yahoo Auctions decline- Washington Post's Newsbytes
And a related article on internet company spin
CBS MarketWatch

Yahoo announcement board

Yahoo site map.

Yahoo Contact Information

Current Auctions approx 432,247 calculated formula total, a drop of
2.40 mil auctions since the high of 2.83 mil on 9 Jan, an 85% loss.
Last free relisting for 14 day auctions ends 22 Feb.
This total is based on all auctions accessible from Yahoo search.
Auctions ending within 24 hours show a 6% bid rate.
* * * * *
Amazon Auctions, zShops and Marketplace
Amazon.com has extended the implementation of changes to Auctions,
zShops and Marketplace to late February.

Amazon Seller Announcements board

Amazon has restored live telephone customer service to 16 hours
a day Toll-free in U.S. and Canada: (800)201-7575
* * * * *
ePier users have reported problems with uploading images to the
ePier website. There have also been some user complaints about
emails about specific problem rarely getting answered. There is
also no follow up, after a user responds to an initial answer from
ePier. The tech support board also appears to be devoid of ePier
staff. Under the icon for ePier tech support, in small letters, it
says , "Currently Backlogged".
Approx 49817 listings 1% with bids http://www.epier.com/
* * * * *
Online Auction Users Association Feb Issue of their monthly
newsletter is out. http://www.auctionusers.org/newsletter/

OAUA has added a new way to add their logo to your auctions called
AutoLogo. AutoLogo will add the member logo to ebaY auction
listings. Any member will be able to use it. No knowledge of HTML
is needed to use this feature.

OAUA live chat http://www.auctionusers.org/chat.shtml

Interested in volunteering and serving the Online Auction Community?
Check out http://www.auctionusers.org/volunteerop.shtml
* * * * *
Online Auction & Trading Site Co-op
Interested in an OAT Site Co-op?
Interested in getting involved?
Start here with the wheel already well invented
More Information on co-ops -
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