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The fun of eBay

Sometimes I love eBay... and sometimes I hate it royally.

Here's the example... was bidding on a chip last night, one from an old (closed) casino called the Last Frontier. Nice casino, nice chip, just a little $5. I knew what the value was, and bid accordingly, figuring that if anyone was going to outbid me, I'd see it and could adjust. Nope... my bid was high until 2 SECONDS before the end of the auction, when some sniper program kicked in and outbid me by 1 CENT. I thought that sort of thing wasn't allowed by eBay (they always say like 50 cents or a dollar more if you're going to bid again) but apparently the programs have a way around it. So I lost the chip... and was not a happy camper.

Sniping I think eBay should make illegal. It doesn't make it a fair, level playing field for those of us who prefer to monitor the auction and bet accordingly, but they say it's legal. So the only way to spike a sniper is wait until the last 20 seconds and put your max bid in then... post something earlier, make them think that's your max when in reality you're willing to go double (with casino chips, it's probably a sound practice.) I'll see how that works out in June, when I start buying again.

Yes, I went over my budget for this month. So no more chips... for now.


( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
May. 15th, 2007 06:15 pm (UTC)
The pricing thing is a quirk of eBay's priorities: that the highest bid get the item is more important than that the minimum raise be respected every time. That's a reasonable choice to make (though there's definitely room to argue over it).

As for sniping in general, I'd recommend taking a look at JBidWatcher, a nice little free program that puts some control back in your hands. It won't eliminate the problem of sniping, but there is always that tactic of putting in a higher max bid.
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )


Tal Greywolf

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