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TAGnotes Tue 13 Nov 2001 Vol 3 Number 112 Issue 373

The Auction Guild Notes for Tue 13 Nov 2001
Detailed disaster contact information, disaster relief information and
links for contributions to the United Way, Salvation Army etc. on the
TAG website at
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
$Buck98 Event going on NOW $1.98 No Reserve Auctions, Don't
miss the great deals!!!   http://members.ebay.com/aboutme/$buck98/
       * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Velour shirts are in! Silver or Copper - holiday perfect!
Visit my auctions at http://auctions.yahoo.com/booth/ddeva_48045
       * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
For quality, variety & great deals, shop the experienced auction
sellers of the EMPORIUM http://www.lynnet.com/~jmm/emporium.html
       * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Support the people who support TAGnotes. Click on their links, bid on
their auctions and buy their products. You too can participate in a Win
Win solution. Support TAG and promote your website or auctions. Seller
group ads also available. Subscribers Ads $5.00 - Commercial rates
available, email ta-@theauctionguild.com for details.
       * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
The TAG email system is FIXED. We lost any email sent to our
ta-@theauctionguild.com addy through midday on Monday, so if you sent
anything to that address since 7 Nov PLEASE resend it. Thanks for your
patience and understanding.
BigStep our site host is going to be taking our website down for
maintenance Wed 14 Nov at 2200 PT, until 0500 PT Thu 15 Nov. You will
not be able to access the TAG site during that time.
The TAGnotes archive is available in a searchable format at     
Interested in more information about TAG? Go to our website at
http://www.auctionguild.com You can find contact info for several sites
and services there, along with editorials and other information.
On 12 Nov problems continued with Checkout, sign in/cookies, list relist
and revise auctions. At 20:00:42 PT some intermittent problems with
feedback system emerged causing feedback numbers to decrease.

On 13 Nov ebaY reported at 14:45:59 PT that Billpoint was down from
14:29 PT to 14:40 PT. Problems with Checkout, sign in/cookies, list
relist and revise continued. Some users experienced problems with
Mister Lister. WebTV users continue to report being more and more
limited in their ability to use ebaY. Sellers continue to report that
they are receiving notices that their bill is past due, though other
sellers have started to receive apology emails from ebaY saying there
was an error in the system.

TO REQUEST REFUNDS from ebaY go to
Don’t take no for an answer; keep requesting until you get them.

ebaY has partially capitulated on the Checkout Feature. In two to three
weeks, sellers will be able to opt out of Checkout. Opting out will
prevent the Checkout button from appearing on the ended auction,
preventing the buyer from using Checkout when the seller does not want
to use it. The Checkout information block will still appear on the
seller's auctions, and when the auction ends the checkout information
will still move to the top of the ended auction page. End of Auction
emails sent to buyers of opt out auctions will not have the Checkout
information or the Billpoint option information. Sellers who use
Checkout will have their buyers receive information offering the buyer
Billpoint, even if the seller does not take Billpoint payments. Though
this is an improvement, it is not a full solution, and the delay in
implementation is very troubling during what is traditionally the
busiest selling period of the year. A simple and very elegant solution
that would be very helpful NOW, is to add the following code to the end
of an auction description (TAG did not write this code) START -
<Script Language="JavaScript"><!--
function zig() {
var oObj = document.all.tags("input");
for (i = 0; i < oObj.length; i++){
    if (oObj[i].type == "submit" && oObj[i].value == "Checkout"){
      oObj[i].disabled = "true";
      oObj[i].value = "wait for invoice from seller";
END - This code disables the Checkout button and makes it read "name of
buyer" is the winner and may wait for invoice from seller.
Unfortunately, ebaY will not allow you to use this code because they
feel it interferes with their auction page. If ebaY was sincere about
helping the seller, they would make an exception and allow this code to
run. It does not show up until after the auction ends, and interferes
with nothing. If you decide to use this code in spite of ebaY, make
sure you record the email address of the buyer immediately after the
auction ends, and print or save the auction for your records, because if
ebaY finds the auction they will remove it from the database. This is
something VERY simple ebaY could do to help their sellers now, while the
sellers wait for ebaY to complete the coding to fix this. TAG feels
that ebaY's action on this issue is more to quell the furor on their
site so sellers do not move to Yahoo during this high selling season,
and cause stockholder fears. ebaY could easily prove their sincerity by
acceding to sellers needs by giving permission to sellers to use this
code now.

Pink Quote of the Day, in an email sent to millions of users on 9 Nov
ebaY said, "List For Free Till The New Year! It's an early gift from
eBay Stores - listing fees for stores listings waived until 12/31/01!"
Though sellers made many posts about this on the various ebaY boards
from 9 Nov on, no ebaY support person said anything about it being an
error. In fact Jerry@ebaY posted on 11 Nov that , " I believe this is
coming soon, but it's not completely ready yet." But on 12 Nov at
11:00:22 PT ebaY posted on the SAB and MAB that, "A recent edition of
the Seller's Newsflash newsletter erroneously stated that listing fees
would be waived for eBay Stores until the end of the year. This was an
error. The $9.95 subscription fee will be waived, but the $.05 listing
fee per item will be charged, as we announced in September. We
apologize for the confusion. Regards, eBay" TAG sees this as no
coincidence that ebaY became cognizant to the error they had made, not
because of the posts on their boards, and not because they realized
they had sent out false information in error, but because they read it
in TAGnotes on the morning of the 12th, making all the various
departments of ebaY aware of just what had been sent out. So even ebaY
finds TAGnotes essential to communications within their company, and as
we say, someone needs to let them know what is going on. Sellers who
added listings to their store in expectation of receiving refunds should
request those refunds from ebaY. There is a truth in advertising issue
here. In an exchange of emails with ebaY, TAG also recommended that
ebaY send an email to every seller they sent the original to, informing
them of the error, since only a tiny percentage of those sellers know
about or read the announcement boards, if they can find where ebaY
buried them.

ebaY is adding more changes to their stores. Beginning this week, users
will be able to search for a specific store within the ebaY Stores
Directory, add a Favorite Store to My eBay, and have the option to list
items in your store for extended durations. These changes are available
on the US site this week and should be available to International Stores
sites by the end of the year. Extended duration fees are 10 cents per
listing for 60 days, 15 cents per listing for 90 days and 20 cents per
listing for 120 days. The default selection will remain 30 days with
the standard $.05 listing fee.

On 13 Nov ebaY announced they had new versions of Mister Lister and
Seller Assistant Basic and SAPro available for download. These are
fully compatible with Checkout and can be found at
Mr Lister http://pages.ebay.com/services/buyandsell/composer-info.html
SAB and SAP http://pages.ebay.com/sellers_assistant/download.html

Editorial -"ebaY Limits Email BAD News", on the TAG website for the
background detail of what we found and when we found it, that led to us
reporting what we did.    
ebaY threads on subject -

Need more reasons NOT to use ebaY's Billpoint? Not happy with Half.Com?
You are not alone - read the Better Business Bureau UNSATISFACTORY
reports on both services. Go to http://www.bbbsilicon.org/index.htm
click on 'company reports', and type in Billpoint or Half.Com and click
on 'report' ebaY does not show up at all, but you can file a complaint
against ebaY from this link also.

Banned on ebaY - Intimidation and Censorship keeps increasing Many users
posting critically on the ebaY boards about Checkout and other issues
have their auctions singled out by ebaY for careful scrutiny for any
infractions. ebaY ends the auctions of Sellers with even the most minor
violations, and have suspended or threatened sellers. TAG has had no
response from ebaY about its suspension from posting on the ebaY boards.

Since ebaY is delaying the implementation of making Checkout optional,
you still might want to use some of these logos to make your buyers
aware you don't use checkout.
Go to Gifs you can use on the TAG site at

Also continue to add you voice to that of thousands of other ebaY
sellers -   http://forums.ebay.com/dws?14@228.mbN5cF6Tl6M^-@.eed7f8f/0

In addition, you can use HTML in the location box and post in bold red
letter that you do not use checkout. Using the location box makes your
non-acceptance of Checkout visible to the buyer at the end of the
auction on a page otherwise dominated by ebaY's mandatory Checkout

Is Checkout interfering with your online business? This is a service
you pay for, so file a complaint against ebaY with the Better Business
Bureau, and or The Consumer Trouble Shooter.
BBB Online - http://www.bbbsilicon.org
These links could also be used to complain about the false advertising
about the free store listings until the end of the year if ebaY refuses

Articles on checkout -
The Street - http://www.thestreet.com/stocks/timarango/10003236.html
CNET - http://news.cnet.com/news/0-1007-200-7744121.html
CNET - http://news.cnet.com/news/0-1007-200-7763531.html?tag=cd_mh
Bloomburg -

The Street - http://www.thestreet.com/stocks/timarango/10003405.html
MSNBC - http://www.msnbc.com/news/653177.asp?cp1=1
CBS Marketwatch
9:00am 11/08/01     Changes at Yahoo Auctions could challenge EBay.
CNET 12 Nov http://news.cnet.com/news/0-1007-200-7853770.html

Though this appears to be a user who owns the domains, the redirect is
to ebaY's pages - pretty sleazy -

Netscape 4.78 is a version of Netscape that is said to work well with
ebaY and to provide a successful platform on which to relist and revise
auctions on ebaY.

ebaY news board - http://pages.ebay.com/community/news/index.html

ebaY categories with the category number
An off ebaY category number locator page

ebaY contact information including analog mail and email addresses and
phone numbers, regular and toll free, refund info and insider trading
info etc can be found at

Want to PERMANENTLY close an account on ebaY? go to
To close a Billpoint account go to -
Fill out the form, saying that you want to cancel your account.
Billpoint will send an email asking for your ebaY ID, your Billpoint ID,
and your Billpoint security key. They will also ask why you are
canceling your account. After you reply to the email, it will take 7 to
10 days for the account to be canceled.

ebaY announcement board http://www2.ebay.com/aw/announce.shtml
* * * * *
Amazon Auctions, zShops and Marketplace

Amazon had Network interruptions that may have caused periods of slow or
non-response from Marketplace, Auctions, and zShops between
approximately 13:40 PT and 14:15 PT Tue 13 November. Operation has
returned to normal. Load files and/or report requests were accepted
during this period and are currently being processed. No action is
required on the part of sellers. Auction listings will be extended per
the standard outage policy. Announcement Board

Amazon live telephone customer service 16 hours a day
Toll-free in U.S. and Canada: (800)201-7575
Auction Pro phone number 1-877-251-0696
* * * * *
Yahoo has user to user help boards at
and community chat boards at
TAG has found this format almost impossible to use.

As of 6 Nov Yahoo Auctions had 227,126 listings on the site.
* * * * *
SellYouItem.Com TAG reported on this site when it first opened, and has
not seen much change, but recently SYI has had an increase in listings,
primarily due to the problems at ebaY. We asked site users for input
and some of the comments here are extracted from those users. We found
the site easy to navigate from some links, though we could not get the
"listings" pages to work at all. The pages in general were quick to
download, even on a dial-up. The feedback from the top 20 sellers on
the site ranges from 78 to 515, with feedback being transaction only but
one feedback per transaction counts, so for example the seller with the
feedback of 515, received that from 55 unique buyers.

Users really like the atmosphere at SYI. They enjoy selling there, find
the customer service excellent, with straight forward responses, no
obfuscation. There are currently no fees, so items can be warehoused
there. You can import auctions from other sites for warehousing. They
have randomly selected Featured items so everyone gets a chance at
having a featured item. Some disadvantages are the photo hosting
requires an FTP utility or you need external image hosting, there are
few categories, and most importantly, very little selling activity.   
Currently has 15,311 auctions and a quick search of the items ending in
the next approx 5 hours, showed no bids.
* * * * *
Online Auction Users Association
Election results posted on 8 Nov 01 at
PLEASE NOTE: Many long links we post in TAGnotes must be
copy/pasted into your browsers URL/Address box in pieces, with no extra
spaces, to get them to work due to HTML limitations
If you would like an Auction House or Service Provider added to
this list, please email us at ta-@theauctionguild.com
Have any information for us? email us at ta-@theauctionguild.com
TAG Subscribers have often contributed to information reported on in
TAGnotes. Visit their auctions or websites.
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