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TAGnotes Wed 16 Jan 2002 Vol 4 Number 4 Issue 386

The Auction Guild Notes for Wed 16 Jan 2002
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19 Jan 2002 between 12:00:01am AEST and 11:59:59pm AEST. You have to
list in Australian dollars and be willing to accept same, and also be
willing to ship to Australia. All categories except Real Estate have
free listing fees, FVF's and special feature fees still apply. Listing
in a second category and dutch auction listings are also free. Don't
forget the LARGE time difference between where you are located and
Australia http://pages.ebay.com.au/freelist.html
On the reports we received from US based subscribers on the free list UK
day, all their customers were US sales paid in US dollars, so this can
be worthwhile for US sellers.

On 13 Jan at 01:18:58 PT users posted about bidding problems, where a
buyer would post a bid, but the final bid confirmation page would not
load. On checking the auction the new bid would show up, but the final
bid page showing whether you are high bidder, or reserve not met, or not
high bidder, did not load. This problems continued intermittently for
several days. At 12:17:26 PT ebaY acknowledged that indexing cycles for
title and description search was running 24-36 hours behind. At
18:02:52 PT users reported that WWII items were being blocked from US
bidders. This problem had been going on intermittently for a couple of
days. One user was denied access to his own auctions. These were not
items in violations of ebaY's rules but generated messages that because
of the person's location they could not access listings of this type.

On 14 Jan at 11:08:21 PT ebaY reported that ebaY picture services iPix
was down. Users could not submit a new image or view a previously
uploaded one, therefore images on auctions would not open. At 12:28:32
PT ebaY said that sellers could once again upload images via ebaY
picture services though some users may have intermittent problems
viewing iPix images. Users continued to report that all iPix images in
auctions were still not opening. At 14:03:26 PT ebaY again admitted
that ebaY picture services were down. Attempts to submit a new image or
to view an image in an auction using ebaY's iPix would fail.   At
17:35:16 PT ebaY posted that all problems with ebaY picture services
iPix was fixed. All sellers using iPix images should at a minimum
request refunds for all auctions ending during this 6 hour 27 minute
outage. ebaY announced at 14:34:49 PT that they were only going to
include items from English language sites in default search results on
ebaY.com. Buyers interested in searching all items available to the US
regardless of language must use the in Advanced Search.   This appears
to be another measure by ebaY to limit the numbers available of the very
unstable ebaY.com US site.
At 23:37:47 PT users reported that auction items were bringing up
messages that the auction was no longer in ebaY's database. In another
glitch reported by users, there was an open auction on the site running
despite the fact that the seller was NARU. the seller search would not
bring up the item, but searching by item number showed the still active
auction. Users also reported additional problems with bidding. On a
new auction after placing the first bid the buyer got the message
"Problem with bid amount You are the current high bidder with bid amount
$25.00. Please go back and bid a higher price. (Please type numbers and
the decimal point (.) only)", but the bid showed up properly on the My
ebaY page. Other buyers reported the same problem on other auctions
where the bidder bid an increment or more over the current bid.

15 Jan at 04:58:15 PT bid history on auctions was not working properly,
and the bids were out of order. The problems with delayed indexing in
Title/Description search continued.   The bidding anomaly problems also
continued. At 19:57:38 PT users again reported ebaY pic services iPix
was down.

On 16 Jan at 08:47:20 PT ebaY announced that the link for "Checkout
Summary" was down. Buyers and sellers were unable to access Checkout
details. ebaY thought the problem was limited to ebaY stores. At
18:37:58 PT ebaY posted that the ability to submit images via ebaY
picture services was down from 18:25 PT to 18:33 PT. ebaY claims that
images already in auctions were still viewable. At 19:46:05 PT the
ability to register a new User ID or a new seller account through
ebaY.com or the International sites was down. ebaY said at 20:23:02 PT
that they had fixed the registration problem. ebaY title/description
search indexing continued to be 24 to 36 hours behind.

Problems with sign in/cookies, incompatibility with MSIE and at times
all browsers, and the inability to relist and revise continue. Sellers
who opt out of Checkout can still be forced into taking Checkout from
the closed auction by the buyer. 10 Day completed auction search is
inadequate. Sellers who use Billpoint report their auctions are being
sabotaged when the price of the auction exceeds their Billpoint
allowable credit and a notice shows on the auction that causes buyers to
back away form the auction, because it makes it look as if the seller is
unreliable. In addition sellers who use ebaY's Billpoint keep reporting
that unjustifiable chargebacks continue. Bidding anomalies continue
causing confusion for buyers. TAG recommends that IF you are going to
list on ebaY, do NOT use Billpoint, ebaY pic services, Checkout, or ANY
ebaY provided service beyond the most basic ones. None of ebaY's
services are reliable.

ebaY will take their system down for maintenance from 01:00 PT until
03:00 PT on Friday 18 Jan. ebaY will also take down their ebaY
Billpoint payment system for the same time frame.

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 1 - on 15 Jan at 14:17:03 PT Meg posted on the MAB
that the fourth quarter earnings had been released and a message that,
"This afternoon, eBay announced the financial results for its fourth
quarter ending December 31, 2001. I'm very pleased to report that we
have had a very strong year in 2001 and an outstanding fourth quarter.
Even in these uncertain economic times, eBay showed record growth across
the board. This clearly demonstrates the vibrancy of our marketplace and
the ongoing loyalty and dedication of our community. eBay's community
members are at the heart of our growth. Every day, you help us build an
ever more successful marketplace. We look forward to working together
for even greater success in the future. Thank you, Meg". This report
contains the information that there are currently 42.4 million
confirmed registered users - an easily provable lie. That according to
Jupiter Media Metrix, eBay was the #1 online holiday shopping
destination, with nearly 5 million unique daily visitors during the peak
December shopping season, a report that conveniently left out AOL
shopping, Yahoo Shopping and MSN Shopping. And that eBay achieved 99.9%
site availability for the second consecutive quarter, another blatant
lie that they have been claiming since the IPO, but still as much of a
lie as it was then. If ebaY lies about such easily provable things,
what else are they lying about? We all know what has happened at Enron,
can investors be confident that ebaY is not practicing the same creative
methods? And as a reward for earning ebaY record profits, ebaY is once
again RAISING fees to sellers. One wonders how Meg defines "community".

Pink Quote of the Day 2 - on 16 Jan at 23:26:49 PT to justify fee
increases, "We recognize that price increases directly impact our
users, so we do not raise fees lightly or without considering the impact
to our community. These increases will help us continue to build a
vibrant marketplace by allowing us to invest heavily in technology,
marketing and customer support, making it possible for millions of
people to discover and use eBay." TAG sees this as another in the
continuing series of ebaY's blatant lies. The needs of their former
community, now commodity, are not considered at all. If there was a
community to be considered that community would SHARE in record breaking
profits, not be required to pay even more and higher fees.   Services to
users, particularly sellers do nothing but decrease. The site continues
to be very unstable and all the fees paid by sellers go to shore up the
obscene profits going into the pockets of the CEO, company officers and
board, and into investments that keep the stock price up for the same
CEO, company officers and board, that sell that stock at every

ebaY is increasing seller's fees. Effective 31 Jan the Final Value Fees
and Reserve Fee price is increasing. ebaY is now going to charge a fee
to use Buy It Now, is increasing ebaY Motors vehicle Insertion and Final
Value Fees, and in late February, increasing the Final Value Fees for
Dutch listings.
*Final Value Fee Increase -
$0.01 - $25.00      Current: 5%     New: 5.25%
$25.01 - $1000.00   Current: 2.5%   New: 2.75%
$1000.01 and up     Current: 1.25% New: 1.50%
*Reserve Price Increase -
$0.01 - $24.99      Current: $0.50 New: $0.50
$25.00 - $199.99    Current: $1.00 New: $1.00
$200.00 and up      Current: $1.00 New: $2.00
*Buy It Now Fee -
A $0.05 Feature Fee will be charged for all auction-style items listed
with the Buy It Now feature. The new fee will not apply to ebaY Stores
Buy It Now items, which are already charged a $9.95 per month fee, a 5
cent listing fee and FVF's.
*Dutch Fee Increase -
The standard Final Value Fee schedule will apply to each item sold, not
to the total dollar amount of all the items sold. Thus, the Final Value
Fee for each item sold will be identical to the standard ebaY Final
Value Fees outlined above.
*ebaY Motors Changes -
ebaY Motors is increasing Insertion and Final Value Fees for Passenger
Vehicles and Other Vehicles from $25.00 to $40.00. In addition, a $0.50
Feature Fee will be charged for all Motorcycle auction items listed with
the Buy It Now feature, and a $1.00 Feature Fee will be charged for all
Passenger Vehicles and Other Vehicles listed with the Buy It Now
feature. ebaY Motors Parts & Accessories fees will increase according to
the ebaY.com fee increases.
* ebaY Stores Final Value Fee Change -
Beginning in late February, all fixed price ebaY stores items that are
sold in multiple quantities to the same buyer will have Final Value Fees
calculated on a per item basis. Final Value Fees for single item sales
are already calculated on a per item basis.
* International Fees -
ebaY is adding fees to New Zealand and Singapore and Australia, Canada,
Ireland, Sweden, and the United Kingdom are getting increased Final
Value Fees and Reserve Fees on 1 Feb local site time. All other
international sites are not affected by these changes. *Canada -
*Australia -
*United Kingdom, Ireland and Sweden -
More info - http://pages.ebay.com/community/news/price_increaseFAQ.html

TAG has heard from a reliable source that ebaY might be closing ebaY
Premier. We have not been able to confirm this, but have feelers out on
it and will report on what we find.

Ongoing Issues and Information

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

There is a partial workaround for the limited 10 day completed search.   
Users can search by category search at -
If you input the category number you want and the day and page, you can
manipulate the database to extend your completed search 30 or more days
back. For example -
By inserting the category number 448 (Franciscan pottery) -
By changing the day12page1 you can change go back to 12 Nov on
completeds. You need to experiment with this to find your favorite
searches. it is very inconvenient, but better than nothing.

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. Some other WebTV links that might be useful -

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

TAG no longer reports ebaY numbers because we don't believe ebaY is
providing accurate numbers in their categories anymore. We believe they
are lying about and inflating their numbers to prevent stockholders from
knowing the true state of listing on ebaY. Even with ebaY's various
means of inflating these numbers, the inclusion of a multitude of
foreign sites and the proliferation of corporate sellers and stores
listings, the listing numbers on ebaY continue to be stagnant for well
over a year. To see the trends on ebaY go to the MedVed site to view
their long term records.

ebaY CONTACT for ebaY, ebaY UK, 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
On 14 Jan at 19:02 PT Amazon posted that due to maintenance, Amazon.com
Payments Seller Account functions may be temporarily down. Amazon
announced the problem was fixed at 19:04 PT.   It appears that Amazon
has not yet resolved the problem with auto relist until sold for pro

Friday sales, where many sellers pick up great bargains for resale -

Find links to all events on the Outlet tab.

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
Is working on several solutions to ongoing problems that plague the
online auction and trading industry, such as deadbeats and fraud. Send
ideas and suggestions to

Ongoing Issues -
Users can attempt to seek user to user help at -
and community chat boards at
Live chat
Yahoo Buyer Protection Plan

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 contact Information

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
* * * * *
Old and Sold has changed their name to the Old and Sold Antiques Auction
and Marketplace. They have a goal of increasing their listings to 5,000
active auctions and have added several collectible categories to attract
a wider range of items. Old and Sold is an alternative niche site. It
is known to be a user friendly site with a true community atmosphere.   
Selling on Old and Sold is currently free, though they will be charging
fees at some time in the future. They also provide free image hosting
and free relists. This is a very nice niche site and the sellers that
read TAGnotes could easily take this site up to the 5,000 auction mark.
Old and Sold is also a good place to promote your online antique and
collectible web site. There are currently 1759 auctions on the site 16
have bids.
* * * * *
ATT bought MediaOne last year and is going to change all MediaOne email
addresses from @mediaone.net to @attbroadband.com in February 2002.
Make sure you update your email address on the auction and trading sites
you use, your service providers and also your subscription to TAGnotes
* * * * *
Online Auction Users Association
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
Have any information for us? email us at ta-@theauctionguild.com
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Visit their auctions or websites.
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