eAuctionTimes Alert
HammerSnipe & AuctionStealer crash,
cancelling thousands of eBay bids

(Updated March 23, 2004) -- The eBay auction sniping service provided by HammerSnipe / AuctionStealer crashed and failed to place bids beginning the afternoon of March 19 and continuing through the weekend into Monday, March 22.

Many HammerSnipe users had no idea there was a problem, though, since neither HammerTap nor AuctionStealer posted warnings on their Web sites, and AuctionStealer continued sending out email confirmations to users indicating that their bids would be sniped.

The result was that thousands of winning bids didn't get placed... Click to continue...


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March 2004 The Independent Journal of the eBay Community FREE EDITION

Data Beam --
Fat Tuesday
And Fatter Friday
Rule eBay Auction Sales

WHAT DAY of the week is best for ending eBay auctions? eBayists have been arguing about this one for years, and it seems that everyone has a answer and an angle. Now HammerTap, which was recently acquired by Bright Builders (click here for more HammerTap news), has thrown fresh fuel on the fire with a screen shot it released in anticipation of the new version of HammerTap DeepAnalysis. This screen shot of an analysis of around 10,000 eBay auctions shows nearly 60% of all eBay sales taking place on Fridays. This isn't too surprising in a way, if you accept the Weekend Principle, but there is one bit of unexpected information glittering in the Data Beam -- the Auction Success Rate was highest by far on Tuesdays! In fact, the Tuesday Auction Success Rate was nearly 70%, or nearly double the Friday rate. Click here for a closer view...


eBay Seller Spotlight --
Thinkfast59 And
The Art Of One Day
Auction Blitzkrieg

IT'S ALWAYS interesting -- and generally instructive -- when you run across someone who breaks the supposed rules and still succeeds. Thinkfast59 (formerly Thinkfast22) is one such iconclastic eBay seller.

As his eBay handle might suggest, Thinkfast59 is a master of the One Day auction. He prefers the auction equivalent of blitzkeig, and will only occassionally extend as long as three days for doggy merchandize.

He's also not always too inclined to answer email inquires from prospective buyers (a big rule breaker), and he frequently shows incorrect pictures with his merchandize (another big no no). And it gets weirder. His auctions frequently have only one bidder. Finally, Thinkfast59 frequently uses Buy It Now prices that are at the extreme upper end of the current price spectrum for the items he's selling.

And so what sort of results does Thinkfast59 get on eBay with his unusual style? Over six weeks in late February and early March 2004, Thinkfast59 was the #1 seller of fast moving Fox Float rear shocks for full suspension mountain bikes, and 8th overall in the larger eBay category. Thinkfast59 rang up nearly $2000 in total sales, or 85% of the total sales of Fox Floats during that period.

Whoah! What's going on here? Well, first of all, the category that contains Fox Float mountain bike shocks -- Mountain Bikes > Parts & Accessories > Other (# 42317) -- is a relatively high sales eBay category. And Fox Floats specifically enjoy a successful sales rate above 70%.

Secondly, Thinkfast59 deals primarily in the Fox Float RL shock model with lockout in the 6.5 inch eye-to-eye size. These are easily the most popular model of Fox mountain bike shock on eBay, and there is always a market for them.

Thirdly, the prices involved here (between $180 and $200) are under the discretionary expenditure limits for most mountain bike gear heads.

If your eBay markets have these qualities too, you might want to take a look closer at at Thinkfast59 and eBay Category # 42317 in the in the eAuctionTimes Data Beam...


News Feed...

Kenneth Fetterman of Placerville, CA, pleaded guilty March 3 to six counts of money laundering in connection with charges he and two other men illegally inflated bids in hundreds of eBay art auctions, including the sale of a phony Richard Diebenkorn painting.

The two other defendents, Kenneth Walton and Scott Beach, already pleaded guilty in the case, which has gotten a fair amount of attention because Walton is also the founder of HammerTap, maker of DeepAnalysis and other eBay auction management and analysis tools.

Walton launched HammerTap after his 2001 plea bargain to abstain from personal involvement in online auctions. Although federal authorities did not view Walton's ownership of HammerTap as a violation of his plea bargain agreement, eBay forced Walton to sell innovative HammerTap to Bright Builders of Utah late last year. See http://www.artdaily.com/index.asp?int_sec=2&int_new=9401 for more info.

* * *

Meanwhile, two Albuquerque, NM, men pleaded guilty to federal charges that they bilked eBay auction bidders with nonexistent items. Eric Jones, 26, and James Kapuscinski, 24, pleaded guilty to wire fraud involving 14 fake auction items (including a Sony home theater system) which sold on eBay for prices ranging from $193.50 to $795. See http://www.abqtrib.com/archives/news04/022704_news
_ebay.shtml
for more info.

* * *

PayPal has agreed to pay the State of New York $150,000 to settle charges that it misled customers who expected refunds when purchases went wrong, The settlement requires PayPal to inform purchasers that they can not expect the same level of chargeback protection that they do with credit card purchases. See http://www.forbes.com/newswire/2004/03/08/
rtr1290433.html
for more info. .

* * *

eBay has banned the sale of electronic coupons sold through its auction Web site, including scanned coupons and those delivered by email. eBay also is limiting the sale of bulk and "free product/no purchase required" coupons, as well as those printed off the Internet from home computers. See http://www.ajc.com/business/content/business
/0304/06bizrep.html
for more info.

The Wonderful &
The Weird on eBay

eAuctionTimes celebrates the amazing melange of stuff that people (try to) buy and sell on eBay...


THE KAOS Surf Board Company could have been purchased -- lock, stock and board -- for $65,000.

Item #: 2595089516
Ended: 2/19/04
Bids: 0
Opening bid: $65,000
Buy It Now Price: $75,000
High bid: NA
Seller: haole_gringo


THIS DAUGUERREOTYPE purporting to picture Abraham and Mary Lincoln on March 4, 1861 was offered for $50 million. What do you think? Is this Abraham Lincoln?

Item #: 3660352999
Ended: 2/16/04
Bids: 0
Opening bid: $50 mil.
High bid: NA
Seller: aml1809


"THE RUG of Tanta," stolen from a museum in Bagdad after the American invasion of Iraq, could have been yours for $2 million. When eAuctionTimes asked the seller how he came to posess the rug, he replied "god gave it to me by a stroke of luck."

Item #: 3704545342
Ended: 2/21/04
Bids: 0
Opening bid: $2 mil.
High bid: NA
Seller: rugratt747


MICHAEL JACKSON'S Swarovski Aurora Borealis crystal-studded glove, which was once described as "the world's most valuable piece of rock star clothing," brought no bids, even though it could have been had for a mere $3 million.

Item #: 3384570465
Ended: 3/6/04
Bids: 0
Opening bid: $3 mil.
Buy It Now Price: $3 mil.
High bid: NA
Seller: goof-off-in-idaho


THIS SOVIET MIG-29 jet fighter must go to new home because current owner has two other MIGs!

Item #: 3082662767
Ended: 3/14/04
Bids: 0
Opening bid: $3.5 mil.
High bid: NA
Seller: mdlanda


"THE 12 APOSTLES and Jesus" in stained glass were salvaged from a turn-of-the-century church in Troy, NY, and offered for a Buy It Now price of $15,000.

Item #: 3708775596
Ended: 3/15/04
Bids: 0
Opening bid: $15,000
Buy It Now Price: $15,000
High bid: NA
Seller: pilolli


TORTILLA FLATS, AZ, meaning the entire historic Old West town (including the bar with the saddles for stools visible in the picture at right), could have been yours for $5.5 million.

Item #: 2371125654
Started: 1/5/04
Bids: 0
Opening bid: $5.5 million
High bid: NA
Seller: realtorsherri7


THIS 1885 WALKER Patent Plow Plane , described by the seller as "one of the Rarest Planes of the 19th Century," was reportedly auctioned for $4950 last year. This year, though, bidding only went as high as $2300, which failed to meet the Reserve.

Item #: 3280001661
Ended: 3/15/04
Bids: 4
Opening bid: $9.95
Buy It Now Price: $3,800
High bid: $2,300 (Reserve Not Met)
Seller: chiselslick


DESCRIBED as "an ideal corporate flagship, charter yacht or long range family cruiser," the three-masted sailing yacht, Butterfly McQueen, was offered for $3.25 million by a party in Aukland.

Item #: 2381544575
Openned: 2/18/04
Bids: 0
Opening bid: $3.25 million
High bid: NA
Seller: bmq0


THIS 2,300 year old Greek silver tetradrachm of Alexander the Great, which was actually minted during Alexander's lifetime, started at $17.11 and went all the way to $100,100.

Item #: 3710164026
Ended: 3/12/04
Bids: 7
Opening bid: $17.11
High bid: $100,100
Seller: jacoba121
Buyer: lcarlson11


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