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TAGnotes Fri 8 Mar 2002 Vol 4 Number 17 Issue 399

The Auction Guild Notes Fri 8 Mar 2002
Quality new, gently used & vintage men & women's clothing - Low
shipping! Visit ddeva.com today at http://www.ddeva.com !
     * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Quality, variety & great deals, shop the experienced EMPORIUM
auction sellers http://www.lynnet.com/~jmm/emporium.html
     * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
SoVelvetGoldmine vintage Levis, designer jeans& Trendy current Fashions
     * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
$Buck98 Event Starts 12Mar02 Bidding starts at $1.98 with No Reserve!!!
     * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
www.DoggieinWindow.com 100+DogBreeds on Unique Creative Clothing &
Accessories. Also USA, Cat, Wildlife & Horse designs
     * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Help launch nomoreebay.com Work to form a group to unite
against Ebay chargebacks and join in a possible class action.
Keep the email coming! bing-@sympatico.ca
Come build nomoreebay.com with us.
     * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
This issue brought to you by the preceding subscriber ads,
supporting TAG through their advertising dollars. Please support
them, by clicking on their links and buying their products.
Subscribers ads $5.00 - Commercial rates available via email.
4600 subscribers.
TAG does not endorse the companies or products advertised
Please remember we are moving TAGnotes from Topica to Yahoo Groups. We
apologize for the inconvenience. We hope to finish the move by the end
of March.
The TAGnotes archive is available in a searchable format at     
More info about TAG is on our website at http://www.auctionguild.com
You can find contact info for several sites and services there, along
with editorials, and image hosting directory and other info.
TAG RESEARCH PROJECT. We have received 325 responses, 75 to go! We are
seeking at least 400 responses, so are still collecting information.
Please send the number of User ID's you have on ebaY, active or inactive
to ta-@theauctionguild.com. If any of them are no longer registered
(NARU) please let us know that also. Anyone who knows of a deceased
person who had an ebaY ID, please send us that User ID also. Thank you!
Read Yahoo Auction Section Below for Details
ebaY - * Warning * Another scam using ebaY as a cover was recently sent
to Air Force personnel. The email account holder receives an email
stating that the recipient has an ebaY account established in their
name. In the email the scammers state that if you no longer want the
account or did not create the account, you will need to go to a website
(link provided) and cancel. The scammers then provide a hyper link to a
web site that
looks like a legitimate ebaY page. To cancel the account you have to
enter all kinds of personal identification information (i.e. credit
card, name social security number, etc.).

Since ebaY is being used as cover for so many scams, whenever you get an
email from ebaY, check the headers to make sure it is coming from ebaY.
If there are any but ebaY addresses in the 'from' information in the
headers, you can be pretty confident that it is NOT from ebaY and do NOT
follow the directions. If you still think it might be legitimate but
have doubts, send it to safeh-@ebay.com with the headers showing,
and ask them if it is legitimate BEFORE you follow any of the
instructions in the email.

Despite the fact that TAG informed ebaY of the incorrect numbering on
the new ebaY user agreement, and that ebaY has acknowledged that they
realize the error exists, they still have not corrected the problems.
TAG still holds that ebaY needs to make the changes and will have to
restart the clock on the contracted 30 day notice for the agreement to
go into effect, since the correction will be a "change". This is a
small issue, but represents a breach of contract, unless ebaY handles
this correctly. ebaY has corrected the email address link on the
privacy agreement, so it now goes to a real email address at ebaY. for
a line by line comparison of the old user agreement and the new, go to -

Users have reported that starting in their Feb bill, ebaY is charging
for the ebaY program, Seller's Assistant Pro Subscription Fee at $15.99
a month, even though the seller does not use and has not signed up for
the program. Sellers, check your statements carefully to insure you are
not being charged for unwanted services.

On 2 Mar users reported at 00:10:13 PT that featured in category were
not all showing properly, despite ebaY's announcement that the
retractions were made 1 Mar. At 06:20:59 PT users posted that ebaY had
restored many of the missed features such as the placing of featured
items and the new item logo, but ebaY posted on the SAB that, "The
"New", "Hot" and "Gallery" icons will return to the listings results
pages. These icons will not appear in the search results pages, and we
will consider returning these icons to search at a later date." Since
ebaY recently stated that users find items two to one using search
results, TAG finds it insane that a priority was not placed on restoring
these needed features to search. Can it be that ebaY is so blinded by
income at any cost, that they will sabotage their own paying customers -
the sellers - by removing features that make searching easier for
buyers? Since search is the preferred way for buyers to locate items,
the only reason for ebaY to do this is to attempt to force sellers to
list in double categories, as ebaY attempts to channel buyers into using
the inefficient category browsing

At 14:40:23 PT ebaY posted that they had fixed the problem causing the
double listings in the Buy It Now tab. At 20:27 PT search was down,
returning error messages. This lasted until approx 21:15 PT. At
20:26:49 PT some of the chat boards had an outage lasting until 20:29:26

On 3 Mar at 10:03:09 PT users reported receiving messages from bidders
that they could not place bids, get in to bid and other users posted
that images were disappearing from listings.   ebaY had a 40 second
outage at 10:21:25 PT and users reported widespread short lived and
erratic problems all over the site. The problem would appear and
disappear on refresh. At 15:38:09 PT ebaY announced they had to cancel a
vintage Disney toy and animation live auction due to technical
difficulties with their live auction system. At 15:55:36 PT users
reported that pages were not loading with Netscape but were working with
Internet Explorer. At 16:50:00 PT users reported that on the shipping
cost portion of the listing form, even if you don't select the option to
provide the shipping information, the form acts as if you did, but shows
all amounts as zero. If you try to go back and make a correction, then
you lose all your information. At 18:20:55 PT users reported the site
very slow.

On 4 Mar at 05:47:22 PT users reported search problems, with different
results on every search. At 13:39:16 PT users reported My ebaY
problems, with sections of My ebaY not responding properly and
downloading very slowly. At 22:15:56 PT users reported the feedback
forum was down.

On 05 Mar at 09:02:05 PT the sell your item form version 2.0 was not
giving the seller the ability to set a fixed amount for shipping but
only the option of buyer or seller pays shipping.   At 18:13:02 PT ebaY
posted that users were having problems with using Netscape to do an
advanced search. At 18:50:36 PT ebaY said they fixed the Netscape
search problem.

On 6 Mar at 19:32:58 PT users reported that the feedback forum was not

On 7 Mar at 07:56:16 PT Search by item number was down and users
reported receiving "HTTP Error 404 404 Not Found The Web server cannot
find the file or script you asked for. Please check the URL to ensure
that the path is correct. Please contact the server's administrator if
this problem persists." messages. At 08:16:20 PT users reported search
very slow, and problems accessing the chats. At 09:41:24 PT ebaY
reported search by Item Number was working again, after a nearly two
hour outage. At 18:17:16 PT users reported that all closed auctions
were missing from the ebaY database. My ebaY was limited to the last 4
days results and the seller's lists were also down. At 18:23:55 PT
users reported ebaY picture services were slow and some images were not
loading. At 18:24:14 PT users reported the problems reported at 18:17
were now intermittently available. At 18:27:46 PT users reported the
sell your item form was once again defaulting to accept Billpoint
automatically. Sellers need to once again check their preference
settings. All functions were working again at 18:30:34 PT. At
18:40:11 PT users reported problems again, and were receiving network
error connection reset by peer. At 18:41:16 PT users reported the site
down, though this affected some users and not others. These outages
lasted until 18:42:11 PT. ebaY took the site down for maintenance from
01:00 PT until 03:00 PT on Fri 8 Mar. ebaY Billpoint payment system was
also down during this time frame.

Throughout this time frame, users posted on all the ebaY boards that the
missing search features, particularly the new item icon, were raising
problems with searching effectively. Complaints continue to abound
about the problem with search, where clicking back on a item takes you
to the top of the search result page rather than back to your point of
departure. ebaY claims this only happens with Netscape, but users
reported problems with IE in certain computer configurations also.
Along with the chronic ongoing problems, and the 10 day completed
search, along with confusion caused by moving the gallery only button,
buyers were frequent and vociferous in their complaints.

For anyone who had featured auctions affected by the ebaY featured items
changes prior to 2 March, ebaY has acknowledged on the boards that they
WILL refund all featured fees to sellers affected by the unannounced
changes. To receive your refund fill out the form with all info such as
item number, user ID, and that you want a full refund, at-

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

ebaY Pink Quote of the Day - Brian Swette, now Senior Advisor and former
ebaY COO (until Dec 01) in the book "Zoom - How 12 Exceptional Companies
are Navigating the Road to the Next Economy" J.M.Citrin Currency Book
2002 on pgs 85-98 (partial) said, "All the changes that we make on the
eBay site come from our customers." "Everything that goes up on the
site, all the features, navigation, everything actually comes from the
customer." "We have 1,000 key Power Sellers in the Gold Club and
another 10,000 to 20,000 in the Silver. These are the people who do the
most business with them and we make sure we run everything by them. They
get to vote on all the things that happen on the site. We are really as
customer-centric as possible." TAG sees these quotes as pure fantasy.
This is the image ebaY would like the public to believe is the true ebaY
image, but it does not even approach reality. The Auction of America
fiasco, the Checkout fiasco, the most recent featured item fiasco and
the upcoming new listing page fiasco are all proof, amongst several
other projects and changes, of just how much consulting ebaY did and
does. As with so much of what ebaY does, the public face is a tissue of
lies, easily seen through by those who actually use the ebaY site. But
then, the author says in the introduction, "In the end we selected 12 to
profile, including eBay, Sun Microsystems, Wal-Mart, Enron..." and TAG's
readers know where TAG stands on ebaY Enron comparisons.   We see ebaY
and Enron standing shoulder to shoulder in holding to the same standards
in ethics and truthfulness, so none of the lies perpetrated in these
quotes are what TAG would consider a surprise. It is ebaY business as

On 1 Mar at 23:49:41 PT ebaY announced that they were returning the
Listings results pages and Featured Items to the previous format,
effective immediately. ebaY will again display Featured Items in the
previous format, and will provide buyers the ability to sort by "New
Today", "Going, Going, Gone" and "Ending Today". The new "Buy it Now"
tab remains, and items remain in the tab even after the item receives a
bid, which disappears the BIN option. ebaY returned the "New", "Hot"
and "Gallery" icons to the listings results pages, but announced that
these icons will not appear in the search results pages. If users want
those icons returned they need to email ebaY about them and let ebaY
know, and it would also not hurt to post dissatisfaction about the
search changes on the petition to change search back to a useable format
at -

To expand yet further on the caution about the ebaY Trading Assistant
program. The database is at -

In addition to the problem of providing the state and federal tax
agencies the ability to identify and locate commercial sellers on ebaY,
sellers are also revealing their commercial status to their insurance
companies, to local zoning agencies and to other agencies. In some
areas, businesses are prohibited from residential addresses. If you
lease or rent your home, you might be subject to eviction due to
violation of the lease. If you own the home, you could be subject to
fines. If you have a homeowner's policy and are found to be selling
commercially from your home, your entire policy can be negated in case
if a claim. Add to that the information that resale of used goods in
some places requires a police inspection and a permit, or regular
inspections under "fencing codes". If these permits are not obtained
you could have your home raided by the police under this code and
charged with fencing goods.

TAG wants to get across that there are pitfalls in publicly announcing
you are selling commercially online for others. As long as you have
thoroughly investigated these pitfalls and make sure you are conducting
business in accordance with all the laws governing your area, along with
state and federal law, you can list your information in the ebaY TA
database without worry, barring the greater possibility of audits by
agencies that now have a convenient list to check. TAG strongly
recommends seller who register for TA, investigate all the legal issues
involved with selling for others.

Here is a State by State contact guide to Auction Boards
ebaY continues to work on the new Sell Your Item 2.0 form, and has made
some changes to it. Changes made so far -
*The category selection pages are designed to be easier to read. ebaY
says it is making it easier to add and edit your second category.
*ebaY reordered some sections of the Pictures & Details page so that the
required fields will be closer to the top and the Pictures and Gallery
sections will be closer together.
*The system will automatically remember your Sell Your Item 2.0 settings
to avoid confusion and simplify the Review & Submit page.

Once the SYI 2.0 becomes the default. Uses will be able to use the old
form for a period of time. ebaY claims that supporting two forms
requires additional engineering and support resources, so will
eventually remove the original form. ebaY says they will notify users
prior to making any additional changes to either Sell Your Item form.
To use Sell Your Item 2.0 go to -
For more info go to -
To provide input on the new form, email syi2fe-@ebay.com
TAG cautions that when ebaY converts to this new listing form, it might
make Mister Lister obsolete. Since Mister Lister is the best of ebaY's
products, it would be a real shame if it is no longer available. Mister
Lister users need to email ebaY in force if they want to retain the
ability to use Mister Lister, once the new listing form is in place.

ebaY has posted their new Real Estate pricing structure.
The new pricing is as follows:
*Timeshares and Land
3,5,7,& 10-day Auction Current: $50 New: $50
30-day Auction Current: $100 New: $75
30-day Ad Current: $100 New: $100
90-day Ad Current: $200 New: $200
*Residential, Commercial, Foreclosures and Other
3,5,7,& 10-day Auction Current: $50 New: $100
30-day Auction Current: $100 New: $150
30-day Ad Current: $100 New: $150
90-day Ad Current: $200 New: $300
For more information on the new pricing structure for Real Estate, go to

And on the lighter side - this one had us ROFLOL at TAG-

Insider Sales continue at a great rate - Article -

Butterfields auction of Malcolm X papers might be in trouble s his
surviving family members seek a court injunction to stop the sale.
Article -

TAG recommends that you read carefully through the new ebaY privacy
agreement and send your objections, concerns etc to priv-@ebay.com
The ebaY Privacy Agreement
FAQ - http://pages.ebay.com/help/basics/pprevision1-faq.html
Privacy Central - http://pages.ebay.com/help/privacycentral1.html
Ongoing Issues and Information
Break the ebaY monopoly!   Provide ebaY the incentive it
obviously needs to provide better service to its users, and to its
customers, the sellers. Sellers need to develop other
marketplaces so they can insure they have an online
marketplace for their goods into the future. TAG has an editorial
on the website titled 'ebaY- a solution NOW'.

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, and the feature and site reliability continues to be

ebaY Billpoint payments problems, some solutions, and why you
should not have a Billpoint account can be found on the TAG
website at http://www.auctionguild.com/generic.html?pid=63

ebaY old search page by going to

Is ebaY an Enron waiting to happen? Editorial on the TAG
website at http://www.auctionguild.com/generic81.html
ebaY is not a profitable company and here is why - they are in the
same circumstance as the other companies mentioned in this
article -
Do you have information you feel the Securities and Exchange Commission
should investigate? File a report at

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
FBI's Internet Fraud Complaint Center at: http://www.ifccfbi.gov/

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.
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)
* * * * *
Yahoo Auction/Warehouse/Classifieds (YA)
Is having a Free Listing Day on Tues 12 Mar for all items submitted
between 00:01PT and 23:59 PT. Yahoo! is running a major promotion
across their network 13 Mar to 15 Mar. Yahoo! Auctions will launch a $1
showcase featuring items with a $1 start price and no reserve. This
showcase will only be promoted 13 Mar to 15 Mar.   During the Mar. 13th
-- Mar. 15 promotion, Yahoo! PayDirect (http://paydirect.yahoo.com),
will waive all fees. All money that is sent and accepted through Yahoo!
PayDirect within this date range will be transaction fee free. Also,
beginning on 13 Mar and running for 100 days, Yahoo! Auctions will
launch a "Winners Win Twice" sweepstakes program. YA will pay back 10
winning bidders everyday, plus YA will enter every winning bidder into
the grand prize drawing at the end of the 100 day sweepstakes.    

On 5 Mar YA announced a revision to their charity auctions guidelines.
Valid 501c3 or equivalent charities that abide by these revised
guidelines may list their auctions throughout Yahoo! Auctions and may
promote their auctions as charity auctions in their title or
description, but may not indicate that Yahoo! is involved in the
collection or disbursement of funds. Check the Yahoo! Auctions
Guidelines for more information.

On 6 Mar users reported the YA boards were not working properly, and the
problems appear to have been manifesting as of 3 Mar. The YA website
also appears to have been exhibiting intermittent problems with items on
sellers lists appearing and disappearing. Items were also not appearing
in search intermittently. Yahoo made no mention of these problems on
their announcement board.
Ongoing Issues -
In contrast to ebaY's 10 day or less limit on completed search,
completed search on Yahoo Auctions is available at the bottom
of the search result page and goes back approx 3 months.
Yahoo Auctions completed search only shows sold items.

Yahoo Auctions has added a Wanted Board at -

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

Yahoo contact Information

As of 23Jan02 Yahoo Auctions had 313,102 listings on their site
As of 25Jan02 Yahoo Auctions had 620,132 listings on their site
As of 8Feb02 Yahoo Auctions had 333,846 listings on their site
As of 21Feb02 Yahoo Auctions had 329,387 listings on their site
* * * * *
Amazon Auctions, zShops and Marketplace
Amazon.com Chief Financial Officer Warren Jenson resigned Tuesday. This
is being accepted as a desire on Jenson's part to move on to new
Article - http://news.com.com/2100-1017-852218.html
Amazon has also settled with Barnes and Noble about the 1 Click patent
infringement lawsuit, though all details are being kept secret.

Ongoing Issues -
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
* * * * *
Bidville.Com sellers are holding a March Maddness sale through 24 March.
Buyers can find March Maddness sale items by clicking the March
Maddness logo on the front page at Bidville. http://www.bidville.com
* * * * *
Hammer Tap auction management software has added a software tool called
the Auction Informant that sends email to ebaY sellers when bids are
placed on their auctions.
For a free trial download go to

Hammer Tap has a wide range of tools designed for Windows based machines
for use on ebaY. http://www.hammertap.com
* * * * *
USPS has a free resource page for sellers. The Shipping Assistant
program is claimed to provides access to shipping information - package
track/confirm, rates, and shipping labels.   
* * * * *
AltaVista's free emails are going away 31 March 02. If you have an
AltaVista email address for TAGnotes, please send us a new email addy so
we can change your subscription
* * * * *
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
TAG Subscribers often contribute information reported on in
TAGnotes. Visit their auctions or websites.
TAGassist Contributors

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