Ebay back in the day

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VideoGameCritic
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Ebay back in the day

Postby VideoGameCritic » July 19th, 2020, 6:40 pm

So today I tend to complain that Ebay is very expensive, and in fact they really don't have much competitive in the auction market. That said however, the modern Ebay experience has MUCH improved from when I started using it in the late 90s.

For one thing, there was no Paypal so you would have to go to the bank and get a money order everything you wanted to buy something. You'd send this to the seller via snail-mail and wait for your item to be send. Money orders cost money; I think they were $.75 each. Add in the price of the stamp and there was a lot of overhead. Not to mention the trouble of going to the bank and then mailing something. And then you might be waiting weeks for your item.

Also, people didn't have 99.5% positive feedback like they do now. 80% was considered good back then! Few items had photos, so you have to count on descriptions and there were a lot of scammers. Some of the stuff I got, like an Atari 2600 system, was filthy. And I would go through dozens of q-tips cleaning the cartridges. Nowadays just about everything I get from ebay is pristine. I clean everything but really don't even need to.

I remember one time I bought a front-loaded Sega CD because there was a picture of it in the auction. It was around $120 bucks I think. The guy sent me a side-loader. I opened a complaint with Ebay and of course it was an open-and-shut case because the product did not match the picture. But that guy was a real jerk "it said Sega CD and that's what I sent him". I'm pretty sure his account was deleted but I got a lot of abusive emails.

If you didn't leave positive feedback right away the seller would continually badger you via email. I don't know how ebay addressed that problem but they did thank goodness.

So while it may cost you an arm and a leg to shop on Ebay now, at least it's convenient you have the piece of mind knowing you're not likely to get ripped off.

Anybody else have any stories they'd like to share?

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DrLitch
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Re: Ebay back in the day

Postby DrLitch » July 19th, 2020, 6:53 pm

I started using it around 2000/01 and I remember when Paypal made it quite easy to pay for transactions. The old feedback system was a hoot. I could not keep a perfect seller profile - I leave neg feedback for no payment and then receive revenge feedback from the buyer. A seller sold trash to me, I leave negative, he responds with negative. The good old days. Back then though you could get a bargain. With everyone hawking around in a resellers market (coupled with proxy accounts making bids count) it is hard to pick up a bargain nowadays. eBay now strongly favor buyers in disputes and there are pros and cons - pros, no revenge feedback from sellers miffed that a buyer disliked the transaction, cons, buyers can easily con sellers. File a SNAD and return the broken item getting a refund and keeping the perfectly good item the seller sent.

I notice now Goodwill have an auction site. I do not know what to make of it. Find something of interest but with 10 bids and a price not inconsistent with eBay. I love thrifting but prefer the hit or miss of doing it for real (and without a massive markup).


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