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TAGnotes Sun 23 Dec 2001 Vol 3 Number 119 Issue 380

The Auction Guild Notes for Sun 23 Dec 2001
The Sellers of the EMPORIUM would like to wish a Joyous Holiday Season
and Happy and Healthy New Year to all our customers.
     * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
The $Buck98 group wishes Happy Holidays to all our customers
     * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
"New, used, vintage clothing, 100+ auctions. Now on Ebay too!
Visit http://www.ddeva.com for quality items and super-low shipping!"
     * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Autographed 'Producers' Playbill FREE Fedex Shipping
     * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
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.
TAG has reached 4,000+ subscribers. THANK YOU! Our subscribers are our
best advertisement, so please pass the word if you find TAGnotes useful.
If you were able to take advantage of free listing day because of our
predictions and email, let your associates know how they can get notice
of free listing days in the future. We are currently using both Topica
(3500+) and Yahoo Groups (500+) to host TAGnotes. We are placing all
new subscriptions on Yahoo Groups due to the changes at Topica that
prohibit us from adding subscriptions automatically. We hope to
eventually host our own list server when we get our server back from the
NY City company we let use it due to their 11 Sep infrastructure loses.
HAPPY HOLIDAYS!!!!! The TAGnotes archive is available in a searchable
format at     http://www.escribe.com/business/TAGnotes/
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.
TAG has received reports from users since 13 Dec, that checkout is
telling buyers that the shipping and handling fee is ZERO dollars. ebaY
is putting the shipping and handling of $0.00 on the End Of Auction
(EOA) emails, and is not putting it on the EOA emails when it IS
specified. This has been reported to ebaY, but they appear not to have
the will or ability to fix it, as it continues unabated. At first this
appeared to happen on relist when a seller used checkout to specify
shipping details. Now it appears that this happens if you opt for
checkout or not. These problems keep appearing intermittently, showing
up under different circumstances, in addition to previously reported
ones. Since there is no way to completely opt out of checkout, sellers
might want to consider listing on another auction site until ebaY has
fixed this. Sellers risk receiving negative feedback, because ebaY is
telling the buyers they do not need to pay shipping, despite what the
seller tells the buyer. End of auction notices are also telling the
buyer that shipping/handling is $0,00. What a "venue" is doing telling
buyers what shipping/handling fees are, remains a mystery to TAG. As
TAG sees it, ebaY should attend to their glitchy site and leave the
completion of transactions to the sellers and buyers. Some threads on
the subject -
http://forums.ebay.com/dws?50@197.MuC1aHYDER6^-@.ef1883a ...

TAG has received reports form sellers that Personal Offer (PO) is not
working properly. When trying to make a PO, the second highest bidder
is not on the list, so the seller cannot offer the item to them. The
third bidder, who had bid the lowest amount, was the only one listed.
If you are having problems with PO, please let us know the details.

In another inexplicable coding disaster, ebaY has now limited their
sellers' ability to view their auctions to a total of 5,000 items. For
sellers who list that many items a day, or even thousands of auction per
month, the seller can no longer view their own auctions, and also cannot
view their closed auctions to service their buyers. This limit severely
impacts gold powersellers and corporate sellers. Why ebaY would wish to
limit the number of listings these large sellers can do, appears to be
in exact contrast with ebaY's move towards growth through partnerships
with large corporate sellers. ebaY makes it very difficult for their
small sellers to use their site, and are now also limiting that ability
for their medium to large sellers. That limit is for 5000 items, and not
30 days. If a seller wants to see 30 days worth of auctions on their
Seller List, and they have listed more than 5000 items in the last 30
days, then they are only shown the newest of those items, with the older
items being pushed off the list from the top. A thread explaining this
problem is at http://forums.ebay.com/dws?14@tvaxaZx4D7H@.ef195a2
As TAG sees this, it raises questions on how ebaY plans on meeting its
profitability goals if it limits how much sellers can list, and should
deeply trouble the minds of their stockholders.

On 18 and 19 Dec the site continued to be stable, though the serious
ongoing problems with sign in/cookies, listing, relisting and revision,
incompatibility with MSIE, Netscape, AOL, and at times all browsers,
difficulties with search, both for lack of ease of use and the limit of
10 days on completed auctions all continued. Some sellers were finding
that where they had opted out of Checkout, Checkout was not showing up
on the ended auctions. Other sellers reported that though they had
changed the setting on My ebaY to opt OUT of Checkout, their options
mysteriously changed back. Other sellers reported zeros showing up on
their auctions in the shipping info blocks on relist, even though
shipping info was included in the auction. Both buyers and sellers
reported that when they used Checkout to send messages to complete an
auction, neither party received the communications.

On 20 Dec ebaY reported that the listing confirmation message sent to
sellers had an error and did not show the credited free for free listing
day. ebaY claimed they would update sellers' accounts to show the
proper credit. At 11:12:38 PT ebaY reported that ebaY pic services
were down. As per usual, ebaY once again reminded users that ebaY pic
services are not provided by ebaY, but by iPix. When iPix is working,
ebaY does not mention it is a separate company, but when it breaks, ebaY
immediately attempts to establish distance, so they do not have to honor
their outage policy for a critical feature outage refunds.
Unfortunately, since ebaY is an owner of iPix, they are not fooling
anyone with their language obfuscation efforts. With pic services down,
sellers who do bulk uploads with Mister Lister or SAPro, could not
upload their auctions unless they eliminated the images from their
auctions. At 11:18:46 PT ebaY reported that there was a processing
error in Direct Pay processing, delaying it by one day for users who pay
their ebaY accounts with Direct Pay. ebaY will deduct funds for the
billing cycle ending 30 Nov from users' checking accounts on Fri 21 Dec,
instead of the committed date of 20 Dec. At 11:27:43 PT ebaY posted
another message about the continuing outage of ebaY pic services. ebaY
posted another update about pic services at 14:15:41 PT, saying it was
still down and they were working on it. At 15:28:24 PT users reported
problems with categories missing on the sell your item page. The
categories were back at 15:34:24 PT. At 15:42:50 PT users reported
intermittent access problems. At 16:25:55 PT users received error
messages, "This function is currently unavailable...", whilst trying to
access the site.   At 16:26:23 PT the error messages continued, "We
apologize that you are not able to access this feature at the present
time. Our Technical Support Team has been notified and we are working on
resolving this difficulty as quickly as possible...." At 16:26:28 PT
user reported My ebaY down. At 16:26:48 PT users reported My ebaY,
Seller Search, and Mister Lister all unavailable. At 16:30:37
gwyneth@ebaY posted that, "Yeah, we had to mark something down for a
couple of minutes to save something else. Happens. Should be back up
now." At 16:31:16 PT ebaY posted that pic services were still down, and
sellers doing bulk uploads would have to remove images in order to
upload auctions. Users continued to report access problems through
16:31:45 PT. ebaY announced at 17:41:36 PT that pic services were down
from 11:06 PT to 17:25 PT. Sellers could not upload new images using
ebaY pic services. ebaY said, "We know that photos are an integral part
of the success of an auction, and we realize that this has been a
terrible inconvenience to you on Free Listing Day. We sincerely
apologize for this situation.", but offered no relief for this integral
problem, such as an extension of FLD. At 18:25:42 PT pic services went
down again and continued down until ebaY posted at 22:22:05 PT that pic
services was down until 22:00 PT. None of the outages affected the
ability to view images already on the site, it only prevented uploading
new images.

On 21, 22 and 23 Dec users reported various problems from free listing
day, including things such as an occasional feature fees showing up on
sellers accounts, where some corruption in a Mister Lister upload opted
the seller in for some never used features. As usual, sellers should
check their accounts. ebaY has still not credited some relist from the
relist problems last week. Sellers will need to follow up in order to
get their refunds. The site was stable through the day, all previous
ongoing problems remain unresolved. On 22 Dec at 08:15:49 PT, ebaY
posted that title and description search was indexing more slowly than

TO REQUEST REFUNDS from ebaY go to
Don't take NO for an answer; keep requesting until you get them.
If you don't get your refunds complain to the BBB Online at
And also file a complaint with the FTC

Pink Quote of the Day I - The question - Is listing in a second
category also free on free listing day? The definitive ebaY answer -
"Hello, Happy Holidays, I appreciate you taking time to write eBay again
regarding this important matter. It is my pleasure to assist you! Kindly
note if you choose a second category for your listing, you will be
charged accordingly, as the second category is not covered under free
listing day. We are committed to your online trading success. Regards,
Nikki@ebay Timesensitive"; "Hello, Thank you for writing eBay. I
appreciate the opportunity to help you. The insertion fee for the second
category option is free as well. However, optional fees such as the 10
day extension, highlight, bold, featured, gallery, etc. will still be
charged to your account. I hope that you and your family have a
wonderful holiday season. This year, as always, we're Thankful for your
business, and wishing you the all the best in your endeavors. Regards,
Carija I. eBay PowerSeller Support"; ebaY FLD instruction page, "List
your item in 2 categories and increase your exposure! The cost is double
insertion and optional feature fees (except Home Page Featured). During
Free Listing Day -- you get one insertion fee free for each item you
list in 2 categories!" Katy@ebaY 10:33:44, "Hi guys....just a fly-by to
let you know I am having them check into the refunds for double
categories. The listing fee should only be refunding for one. I wanted
to give you a heads-up so you wouldn't depend on it, okay.....Katy";
11:48:44 PT ebaY Announcement board, "However, during today's Free
Listing Day, sellers MAY list their items in two categories, and will
not be charged the insertion fee for either category. Both insertion
fees will be credited to your account. All other optional features will
incur the normal fee." TAG can't quite understand how ebaY can take
something so simple, and mess it up so completely. They have been doing
this auction thing since 1995, but it still takes them 12 hours to
figure out how to run a free listing day.

Pink Quote of the Day II - Jonathan H. K. eBay PowerSeller Support, in
response to a sellers inquiry about not being able to list on FLD due to
ebaY pic services being down said, " I am sorry that you are seeing some
problems today related to the free listing day. In checking the system
status, all eBay systems are functioning and have been functioning well
all day. However, we have seen some issues with many of the third party
listing services, including Ipix. Because these are not eBay sites, we
will not be extending or holding another free listing day at this time.'
TAG finds it amusing that it is ebaY's pic services when it is working
and iPix as soon as it breaks. This also is not a third party service,
ebaY owns a chunk of iPix.

PQOD III - In an email to a certain subset of sellers, "Subj: Glad
Tidings and Free Listings from eBay! Date: 12/23/01 4:08:33 PM Central
Standard Time From: eBay.13425-@reply.ebay.com (eBay) To:
xxx-@aol.com Go to eBay Our Season’s Best: Free Listing Day December
20! At eBay, we want to help you end the year with a clean slate and a
jingle in your pockets. That’s why we’re having a Free Listing Day,
December 20, 2001. So pull all the stops out. Leave no closet, drawer,
nor inventory sheet unturned. List it all for FREE on December 20th,
courtesy of eBay. ~~~~~*~~~~~*~~~~~*~~~~~ When: Thursday, December 20,
2001 between 00:00:01 PST (12:00 AM plus one second on December 20,
2001) and 23:59:59 PST December 20, 2001 (11:59 PM plus 59 seconds)..."
Note the DATE this was sent, well done ebaY!

Auction of America is finally ending. This program has been an
embarrassment for ebaY and an area of great resentment for ebaY users,
as they felt ebaY had exploited them and the tragedy of 11 Sep for
ebaY's own benefit. The last day to list an item for Auction of America
is 25 Dec. Beginning 26 Dec, sellers may list any World Trade Center or
Pentagon items, as long as the listing adheres to the ebaY offensive
item restrictions.
ebaY failed to fulfill its promises to its users by NEVER posting totals
on how much was raised. They exploited users to actually raise the
money, whilst taking the credit for what was raised. ebaY used the
tragedy of 11 Sep to force their Billpoint payment system on the
sellers, and then, when money was not being raised fast enough, allowed
ebaY's part owned partner ReturnBuy, to sell items and NOT accept
Billpoint. ebaY also placed advertising for Auction of America sellers
on their pages, and though they SAID all participating sellers would get
cycled through the ads, the ONLY ones who got ads were the corporate
partners and ebaY employees. ebaY flaunted that they would raise 100
million dollars in 100 days, and TAG feels ebaY should make up the
difference between what was raised and the 100 million that ebaY
received all the press coverage for. There are currently approx 4800
AofA auctions (6800 less 30% for double category listing)

ebaY PowerSeller program - ebaY has their requirements, but does EBAY
meet the requirements to HAVE powersellers? Auction Voice -

ebaY has changed the Professional Services Site. ebaY has added an area
targeted at ebaY sellers, Buy it Now for services, and a direct link to
most used services as claimed by ebaY. Comments? email to

In violation of every promise made by ebaY that they will NEVER place
banner ads or any advertising on the sellers PAID advertising space,
ebaY is now running banner ads for ebaY products on the sellers auction
item pages on ebaY UK. In addition, ebaY also has ads on sellers' pages
on ebaY France, allegedly a holdover from the iBazar days.

Don't like search? Join the Search Protest thread on ebaY to change
search. The thread has over 1300 posts with feedback totals in the
hundreds of hundreds of thousands.

The anti Checkout thread continues currently has 4093 posts
To add your comments go to -
Anti and No Checkout logos are available on the TAG site at -
For those still getting the Checkout logo on their auctions, TAG has a
Checkout disable script you can add to your auction description on the
website at -
Make sure you keep an eye on your Checkout options, as ebaY has a
tendency to change your "opt out" selection to "opt in", despite your

Is Checkout interfering with your online business? Is the new search
slowing down your sales? Tired of the scam Chargebacks form Billpoint?
You pay ebaY for services, so file a complaint against ebaY with the
Better Business Bureau, the FTC and or The Consumer Trouble Shooter.
BBB Online - http://www.bbbsilicon.org
FTC - https://www.ftc.gov/ftc/complaint.htm

Since ebaY is no longer fully compatible with Microsoft IE, TAG
recommends you have IE, Netscape AND the Opera browsers on your
computer, so you can alternate between them as required. Better yet use
another auction site, where the depth of problems you find on ebaY does
not exist. Opera can be found at http://www.opera.com For WebTV users,
some users have had some limited success by unplugging their WebTV unit
after each ebaY session for sufficient time to let the unit.

To move an item to another category go to -
ebaY categories with the category number
An off ebaY category number locator page

ebaY CONTACT for ebaY, Billpoint, Half.Com, information including
analog mail and email addresses, phone numbers, regular and toll free,
refund info, close account info, and insider trading info etc can be
found at

ebaY Community boards
ebaY news board
ebaY status announcement board (SAB)
* * * * *
Amazon Auctions, zShops and Marketplace

Amazon Announcement Board

Amazon chat boards -

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 Auction/ Warehouse
Users have reported that they are not consistently receiving notices of
their Warehouse sales. The first notice is the email from Yahoo that
Yahoo has cancelled a sale due to failure to confirm the sale. Sellers
might want to watch their My Warehouse more closely until Yahoo fixes
this problem. Yahoo also needs to add a vacation button to Warehouse.

PayDirect will require a social security number, because it is now being
run by an FDIC insured bank. All accounts will fall under FDIC rules
and protections, one of which is the required SSN.   PayDirect allows
the seller decide who will pay the transaction fees when PayDirect is
used. Unfortunately the 'Who pays the fees' button is down below the
fold, where buyers don't see it, leading to errors in payment. It also
defaults to receiver pays, and that needs to be modified either to no
default, or to allow the seller to select a preference that stays in

Users can attempt to seek user to user help at -
and community chat boards at
Live chat

Remember Yahoo allows links from auctions, and has a MUCH more liberal
and less paranoid point of view on off Yahoo sales. Yahoo's policy can
be found at -

Yahoo Auctions has user to user help boards at
and community chat boards at
Live chat

As of 24 Nov 01 Yahoo Auctions had 274,047 listings on the site.
As of 5 Dec 01 Yahoo Auctions had 399,258 listings on their site
As of 7 Dec01 Auctions had 504,507 listings on their site
* * * * *
Photopoint.com looks like it is permanently gone. We had a chat with an
"employee" that did not yield much information, but left us with the
impression that he did not expect to see Photopoint up again.    We have
been updating the information on the TAG website about Photopoint, since
there is a huge non-auction public desperately seeking information, and
you can read what little we have found there - Photopoint Gone? Again?

For those needing image hosting, usually the best place to get free
space is to use your own ISP, as most ISPs provide free space for their
users. You can use an upload utility such as Ipswitch Ws_FTP or Cute
FTP - or for the MAC - Fetch. Or use one of these services -
http://www.auctionimage.com    -WebTV friendly 50 cents/image
http://www.auctionimages.net   -WebTV friendly $5./mo/5Meg
http://www.auctionpix.co.uk/free.html - Free
http://www.auctionpix.com/ - WebTV friendly 20 cents/image
http://www.auctiontalk.com/imagehosting.asp - 25 cents/image
http://www.baypal.com/ - WebTV friendly 15 images free
http://www.boomspeed.com   -1 Meg free
http://deadzoom.com/   -10 Meg Free
http://www.freepichosting.com/   -Free
http://www.netfirms.com     -Free Web host
http://PennyThings.com/   -WebTV friendly
http:// www.Picturetrail.com -WebTV friendly Free
http: //www.picturelist.com   - $19.95/year
http://www.prosperpoint.com      -3 images free 25 cents/image
http://www.storagepoint.com   -$12.95/mo/200 Meg
http://www.tupics.com -Free

Please check all the sites rules and fees before you transfer large
amounts of images. We can’t keep up with changes and would appreciate
updates from our subscribers.

Cnet article on this - though with no more info than we have -

We have updated the Photopoint thread on the TAG site at -
* * * * *
Microsoft XP security problems and patch
* * * * *
Online Auction Users Association
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