EcommerceBytes-Update, Number 151 - September 18, 2005 - ISSN 1528-6703     1 of 8

From the Editor

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I'm very happy to announce some big news here at AuctionBytes: the launch of AuctionBytes TV!

We will be kicking off the network with a twice-monthly video newscast called AuctionBytes News in Review, where I will report the top developments in the online auction and ecommerce industry. You can read more in today's issue (first article) about this program and how to view the first newscast, along with our plans for additional programming.

If you paid any attention to the news this week, you'd know that eBay announced it was acquiring Skype for $2.6 billion, plus performance-based consideration that gives the deal a total value of up to $4.1 billion

To put that in perspective, eBay paid $1.5 billion for PayPal in 2002. (I can hear a lot of you saying, so that's where the increase in fees this year went.)

So what in the world is "Skype" anyway? Andy Geldman explains in today's Auction Software FAQ column. Also in today's issue, Greg Holden explains how he learned to use his cell phone to monitor his closing auctions from the road, and Mark O'Neill tells us how he uses Yahoo Widgets to monitor his eBay feedback. Michele Alice fills us in on airlines memorabilia in Collector's Corner.

There are at least two online-auction companies I know of presenting at DEMOFall05 this week ( where 70 companies demonstrate their technology to venture capitalists, analysts and journalists. (LiveDeal pitched at the February DEMO conference.) Look in Monday's AuctionBytes Newsflash for announcements.

Incredibly, PayPal users are still reporting problems with their debit-card accounts, which first began on September 2. This article ran on Thursday (, but users were still seeing improper transactions on Friday, they told us. We'll keep you posted if we learn more.

I've received several letters asking about eBay charity auctions (See "AuctionBytes Soundoff: Letters from Readers.") Here's a story Barbara Shaughnessy wrote in July about eBay's Giving Works program:

eBay held a workshop on how to use its Giving Works program to list items for charity.

And eBay changed its policy on September 9th so the fees that sellers pay on charity auctions will be passed along to the charity for auctions in which sellers donate at least 90 percent of the proceeds to the charity (it had been set at 100 percent).

Several people have also written about an eBay PowerSeller from Carriere, Mississippi, Terri Thomas (easybuywholesale). PowerSellers have been sending needed supplies to Terri for her family and others in her community. You can learn more through this link on Craigslist:

Thanks for reading.

About the author:

Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to

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