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Mon Sept 7 2015 20:47:19

Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay is celebrating its 20-year anniversary this month, and it's holding a bash on Thursday. The company published a timeline to highlight key events during its two-decade history, and the first entry notes that founder Pierre Omidyar created the site over a Labor Day weekend in 1995.

"After spending Labor Day weekend at home writing code on his personal computer, eBay founder Pierre Omidyar launches AuctionWeb, a site "dedicated to bringing together buyers and sellers in an honest and open marketplace.""

The timeline also links to a 2010 video featuring Omidyar talking about eBay's feedback system that was predicated on the belief that people are basically good. He says the feedback system was a gratifying testament to human nature and the fundamental goodness of human nature. (It's easier to watch directly on YouTube.)

What events do you remember over the course of your history of using eBay, and are there any highlights not included that you'd add to eBay's timeline? Do you have any favorite memories of how eBay impacted you or your business?



Comments (20) | Permalink

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Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

This user has validated their user name. by: Beanie

Mon Sep 7 21:04:56 2015

When I got on the internet and found Ebay in 1999, I thought I had died and gone to heaven. All the cool things I had as a kid or all the things I wanted to collect, but had to spend days, weeks, and gas searching in my limited area, I was able to find at Ebay. It was GREAT in the early years. Buying and selling was easy, fees were good, feedback was fair and you could take any form of payment you wanted. Ebay USED to be a venue. Its not fun anymore and they are NOT "just a venue" no matter how many times they say it.  

Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

by: booklover27 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 7 21:34:36 2015

I won't attend their 20 year anniversary but I will gladly fly out there and pay 95 bucks for their funeral...

Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

by: gizmo This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 7 22:07:30 2015

What is there to celebrate? Why would anyone besides griff & toolguy even show up? What a waste of money , & time.

Im sure theyll all give themselves a pat on the back. Maybe even bonuses for themselves.

Thieving freaks party.

Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

by: JQ This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 7 22:11:52 2015

I opened my Ebay account in 2002. I had been buying and selling on Amazon for a few months before checking out "this great site where you can buy golf clubs really cheap" (according to my friend).

I bought and sold military history books. Back then there was no need for photographs, and people paid each other with mailed checks. I liked it a lot. There used to be these two charts on your homepage, a running total of how much you spent over the last 60 days, and a total of how much you sold. I tried to keep the numbers equal, but my spent total was normally twice a large as my sold total. There was just a lot of great stuff on the site and I loved shopping there.

I took a break for about three years and got back into Ebay around 2008. By that time I realized I needed to buy a good camera and start using Paypal. I adjusted, but  the site no longer held that special excitement. I guess back in the early 2000's if felt like people selling stuff to other people, not like buying from businesses.

Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 7 23:27:28 2015

The "past" is just that - the past.

To quote the lovely Ms Janet Jackson - "what have you done for me lately?"

There have been alot of successful American companies - in the car business alone - theres more then you can cound - from Packard to Auburn - and they are all gone.

In electronics, there have been MANY successful companies - now all gone - Emerson, RCA, Motorola (some still exist in some format but arent what they were in their day).

Now - its eBays turn. 20 years of greatness, has all turned into cr@p.

Will they hang on? YES - they have BOATLOADS of cash - most of it sitting offshore (who said PIRACY was a thing of the past?) They will be around as long as they want to be - until the offer to sell is SO GOOD that they cant resist.

Until then, with its payment monopoly arm FIRMLY in place, with political protections from up on high, and with chicken AG's who only care about their next election - eBay can sail on with no issue.

So they get sued, so someone complains - just pay them off - which is what always happens.

eBay USED to be the anti Amazon. If you were too small for Amazon to care about, if their rules were too hard to deal with - there was eBay. With a little hard work and a few good items - you could make a decent living. Until JD and his monetization plan.

Pierre and the board got greedy - greedy from the plan JD sold them. "Why settle for a slice of the cake, when you can TAKE the whole cake for yourself?"

THAT is what eBay does. They lie, cheat and steal - to enrich themselves at every turn - at the sellers expense (usually).

eBay is hated by buyers, despised by manufacturers, and abhorred by sellers (except Toolguy).

THAT is their 20 yr old legacy.

Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Tue Sep 8 00:01:49 2015

.....and then came John Donahoe. END of story.

Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

This user has validated their user name. by: The End

Tue Sep 8 01:07:39 2015

Ebay is no good anymore.

Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

by: brokentoys19 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 8 03:03:21 2015

Good ol ebay! It began as an "offbeat tribute to the Ebola virus". True story! Seems to have come full circle.


Year in Review: The strange Ebay-Ebola connection

http://bit.ly/1whyZZf  

Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

by: unknown This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 8 04:37:11 2015

ebay was among the 'most ethical' retailers for 4 years in a row.

::scratchin' head:: Would someone please explain that to me?  

Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

by: Volvo351 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 8 08:23:25 2015

eBay sellers don't need to see any self-congratulatory "timeline" to know the history of the Two-Headed Monster [feeBay/PayPig]. It started the turn to carp around the time The Hoe came on board, and since Devil Wingnut is his hand-picked successor, no improvement is imminent.  

Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

This user has validated their user name. by: Al G

Tue Sep 8 09:05:36 2015

I've been on eBay for 19 out of those 20 years, 12 full time.

Observations?

'96-99 much learning & changing going on - all for the good.

The Megger shows up - welcome to big business. No more site down for a few hours/days. TurboLister & 3rd party vendors (Vendio) make life easier to list & followup. User IDs adopted - er, OK, beats being spammed & phished I guess. A good time is had by all.

The Megger leaves to pursue public service in Kali-fore-neigh. A bust for her and eBay.

The ''hoe show'' days: created the bigger is better dinosaur, but at the expense of the small nimble mammals. Still can make a living, but hard on the knees jumping through all those hoops.

Post hoe? Did he dig the company's grave? Wishes aside for those that like to cut off their nose to spite their face, probably just a good shot in the foot. eBay will limp on for quite a while.

I guess I'll just slow my pace to accommodate the prematurely aged road warrior.

Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

by: SleepyTime This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 8 12:10:15 2015

The only date that matters to me on that timeline:  Spring 2008 - I have been NO BUY/NO SELL since Donahoe's reign.  Now that he is gone?  I have no desire to sell there again but I may bid once in a while.    

Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

by: Paul W This user has validated their user name.

Tue Sep 8 12:21:31 2015

I recently upgraded  my collectibles store to anchor and sales have never been better. And no, I'm not TRS because most everything is shipped without tracking--as letter mail.  It works for me.

Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Tue Sep 8 16:18:03 2015

A great article today on Seeking Alpha:

http://seekingalpha.com/article/3495386-ebay-at-20-showi
ng-its-age?auth_param=16gf2q:1auu11k:219ae59f9af36523d7151c5ff1c825bf&uprof=82&dr=1

I
love their comment that the "business model is becoming increasingly irrelevant."  

Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

This user has validated their user name. by: Ming the Merciless

Tue Sep 8 18:14:59 2015

I do not remember Negged Meg Whitman's tenure fondly.

Doesn't anyone remember the program theft from other companies she approved?

Doesn't anyone remember the sky high listing fees?

Doesn't anyone remember the store in core betrayal?

Doesn't anyone remember the lies she told the owners of Craig's List?

Doesn't anyone remember that it was Whitman who introduced the highly deceptive phrase "just a venue?"

Whitman established a corporate culture in which lying and stealing were perfectly acceptable even highly desirable if it protected or enhanced ebafia's revenue.

It was under Whitman when sociopathy became a requirement when hiring new management.

The ONLY difference between her and The Ho is that she at least had the common sense not to call sellers names and smiled at you while tightening the screws.

Be careful what you wish for.

Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

This user has validated their user name. by: laurengrace

Tue Sep 8 20:22:19 2015

@Ming, I definitely remember, Although Meg couldn't hold a candle to Donahoe and didn't totally disregard the business that was eBay,she was definitely disrespectful to sellers but not to the degree Donahoe is. She was the first to refer to sellers as noise. Thats when all the shady dealings began, and she hand picked Donahoe as her successor. I was so relieved when she left. I thought the reign of terror was over. Little did i know it had only just begun. Who do i really blame? Pierre, for turning a blind eye to everything that he stood for in the beginning. He built it and greed has torn it down.  

Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

This user has validated their user name. by: Ric

Wed Sep 9 01:23:45 2015

Meg Whitman was Donahoe lite...


It remains to be seen how Devin Wenig will compare, but out of the gate he is off to a poor start with sellers.

Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Wed Sep 9 07:13:35 2015

Ric says "It remains to be seen how Devin Wenig will compare, but out of the gate he is off to a poor start with sellers."

I see no change whatsoever thus far Ric.  I think that "reconnecting with small sellers" was lip service.  And when the fall updates come out, and if returns are forced on all sellers under any circumstances, I will know it to be true.

Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Wed Sep 9 10:11:23 2015

Whitman, Donahoe, Wenig, etc. etc. etc.

It doesn't matter who's at the helm, it's business as usual on eBay!

Perminate Link for Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History   Timeline Celebrates eBay's 20-Year History

by: Massachusets Howler This user has validated their user name.

Fri Sep 11 02:07:38 2015

We remember Ming,
MH



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