EcommerceBytes-NewsFlash, Number 701 - February 16, 2004     5 of 5

eBay Auction Has Your Number

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Looking for a good time? Call 867-5309. Or just type in eBay auction number 3077991790.

While the eBay auction hardly has the same ring to it, it certainly has been ringing up bids - topping $50,000 with more than six days left in the auction. Why is a phone number attracting so much attention?

It might have a little something to do with a 1981 song called "Jenny/867-5309", by a one-hit-wonder band called Tommy Tutone. The song, which hit #4 on the charts in early 1982, was written about a girl that one of the band members was trying to date. The song wreaked havoc with owners of that telephone number, causing many to change their phone number, and some telephone companies to take it out of circulation entirely.

According to the auction, number portability allows the owner of the phone number to sell it and transfer ownership to another person. It's debatable whether having this number is a blessing or a curse, but for the right bid, you can, as the auction description states, "Have 212-867-5309 as your telephone number. Get the greatest number in the greatest city."

Buyer pays any transfer fees to the phone company.

About the author:

David Steiner is President of Steiner Associates LLC, publisher of and the merchant directory. David, a former television producer, handles business development and advertising for EcommerceBytes. You can reach him at

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