Snipe S/W?

From: Doug Salot <>
Date: Wed Dec 20 21:59:41 2000

On Wed, 20 Dec 2000, William Fulmor wrote:

> I have no idea if eBay selected Vickrey's model, or duplicated it by
> accident, but AFAICT the only difference between theirs and his is that
> with eBay, the winner pays one bid increment above the runner up's bid,
> instead of exactly the lower bid.

Vickrey's is a "sealed bid" auction. eBay's is not. eBay also has a
"reserve" that acts as a trap door if you set your proxy bid above that

AFAIK, eBay originated their particular system. But I think Sellam was
bitching about the "beat the clock" elements of the auction that encourage
sniping. I'm sure eBay didn't invent that aspect, but I don't know who
did (I only know of an earlier online implementation).

Personally, I find sniping inconvenient because to do it well requires
third-party software -- it should be built into the system. But it's just
part of the game. In effect, eBay auctions have a duration of about one
second (and a preview period of a few days).

Received on Wed Dec 20 2000 - 21:59:41 GMT

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