Sol Computer

From: Sam Ismail <>
Date: Fri Sep 19 12:07:58 1997

On Fri, 19 Sep 1997, David Williams wrote:

> On 19 Sep 97 at 9:11, Marvin wrote:
> > It was listed on the ebay auction at item
> >
> > I just checked and the listing is still there along with the person
> > who bought it.
> That's what I get for staying away from ebay for a while. Looks like
> they changed their look again. Guess he didn't have a problem
> meeting his $24.95 reserve price. :-)

AuctionWeb is ridiculous. While there are some great finds there, I've
realized that whatever I bid on I will end up finding a week or two later
locally for a tenth or less of what I bid. The prices for stuff on there
are horribly inflated.

Here's a trick that I know most everyone has figured out already and is a
big reason why online bidding is a sham:

Don't bid on the item. That is, not until the last 5-10 minutes of the
auction. This serves two purposes that ultimately benefit you. 1) If you
bid early, it gives someone a chance to come in and outbid you early, then
you will counter-bid, then he will, then you will, etc. You get into a
bidding war. 2) If you bid just before the auction is over, you avoid 1).
You'll get in with a low-ball bid and hopefully nobody else will get a
chance to outbid you in the last remaining minutes, although I've had some
close calls. I once bid on an item (forgot what) at the last minute and
some character tried to do the same but his bid was late. In the same
token, I've had that happen to me where I was just too late. The problem
is, if you try to bid just before the auction ends (like within 1-2
minutes of closing) there are about 14 other dweebs like you trying to put
in last minute bids. The record in the database for that item becomes so
locked up that nobody can make a bid, and your effort is futile.

This is the problem with online auctions like AuctionWeb. Its too easy
to abuse. The seller usually comes out on the short end of the stick.
Bidders wait until the last possible second and put in a bid that's not
necessarily fair market value.

In real life, the bidding keeps going until one person concedes or passes
out. These onlines auctions need to instate some similar format. My
idea for improvement would be that anyone who bids in the last few
minutes, or perhaps the last 3 bidders, go into a second phase of bidding
where they are then pitted against each other and the bidding will go on
as long as those participants are willing to keep raising their bids. I
was thinking about mandating this on a few items I put up for bid on
AuctionWeb, but once I saw that my items (some old common computers and
video game systems) were going for far more than I had anticipated, I
didn't bother, not caring what bidder ended up with whatever high bid.

I just realized this message is horribly off-topic but I just had to
complain about something today.

Sam Alternate e-mail:
Computer Historian, Programmer, Musician, Philosopher, Athlete, Writer, Jackass

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Received on Fri Sep 19 1997 - 12:07:58 BST

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