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Mon Apr 14 2008 21:00:21

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

By: Ina Steiner

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While not official, we've heard from credible sources that eBay is doing away with its Live Auctions platform. This is the area on eBay where auction houses advertise and run their auctions in "real time." Not only do they get traffic and bidders on eBay, it adds an Internet-bidding component to their real-life auctions (just as some bidders phone in their bids to live auctions).

With enormous changes rolling out at eBay over the past year, particularly with the January 29th announcements, many eBay sellers have been feeling that the company is trying to boot out small sellers and that it favors commodity items rather than collectibles. Killing off Live Auctions may be seen by sellers as one more sign that this is the case.

Just 2 weeks ago, an eBay executive stated that eBay's goal was to deliver a more retail-like experience, and by this time next year eBay.com will be unrecognizable compared to today.

I'm not sure how much revenue Live Auctions provided eBay, but it's clear the impact will be felt by the auction houses. (eBay also allowed companies such as GoAntiques to run auctions composed of their clients' items with no real-life auctions associated with them.)

No other live-auction platform "marketplace" comes to mind. Companies like Able and LiveAuctioneers have the technology and could likely provide auction houses with the ability to accept online bidding. But they don't have the buyer "eyeballs" that eBay has.

 




Comments (21) | Permalink

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eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: Patricia

Mon Apr 14 21:53:25 2008

Just one more nail in the coffin.

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: dimes

Mon Apr 14 22:12:54 2008

Given what seeking alpha is reporting goes on with the live auction platform, I'm not surprised eBay is pulling the plug.  It's a little late, though:  

''eBay now has its hands full with two lawsuits aimed at the eBay Live Auction platform.  One eBay Live Auction seller is suing eBay for affording an unfair competitive advantage to another eBay Live Auction seller who's being sued (along with eBay in an unrelated lawsuit) for allegedly shill bidding on the platform.''

'' Hot Jewelry Auctions, which operates under the eBay user names of Paramount-Auctions, Jewelry-Overstock-Auctions and WJoutlet has been sued for shill bidding on eBay Live Auctions.

In a separate matter, Windsor Auctions, Inc. operating under the eBay user name WindsorAuctions-USA has sued eBay under federal antitrust laws and California's anti-competition laws. Windsor's suit alleges that George Molayem (who operates Hot Jewelry Auctions) had use of a tool, which afforded Mr. Molayem the opportunity to batch upload his products/listings in small groups on an hourly basis, thus, driving his listings through the front of eBay core during an entire twelve-hour auction event. In essence, Mr. Molayem's products flowed through eBay core ahead of ALL other live auction sellers and even those of regular eBay sellers within the jewelry category. ''

http://tinyurl.com/2vxaem

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: Ruth

Mon Apr 14 22:44:02 2008

"eBay's goal was to deliver a more retail-like experience..."

Uh, isn't that what eBay Express was set up to be? Since it is a HUGE bomb, why on earth would the "brains" behind eBay go in that direction? Just to push Paypal even more, I guess. EBay is a sinking ship, I'm afraid.

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: nelson

Tue Apr 15 00:35:34 2008

I think it is clear that ebay is trying to integrate/become shopping.com and throw out auctions/fixed price sales from individual sellers. ebay is going down the road to use it's name to become a comparison shopping engine/ad platform. Wonder what those 1,000s of mystery listings from sellers with sdc_ prefixes were....

A glimpse of the future.

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: jaja

Tue Apr 15 05:10:21 2008

The ebay site in Thailand is now called.....wait for it ........shopping.co.th

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: kel

Tue Apr 15 05:46:53 2008

Well, at least we will see the end of the phony live auctions-everyone knows what I'm talking about here.  The ones with no real auction houses that list the same items over and over week after week year after year, after they've supposedly sold to "floor bidders" even when there is no floor.  Conversely, I've gotten some nice deals from Ebay Live and it's fun to bid.  :(

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: Jake

Tue Apr 15 06:28:30 2008

Ebay is a dying breed and everyone knows it. Companies like Proxibid are way far ahead of Ebay in terms of technology. It baffles me why Ebay would pull the plug on Live Auctions, but then again in the new Ebay bizarro world, nothing makes sense, nobody makes a rational decision, and the name of the game is Mistrust. Its a real shame. I can't wait until other auction sites start doing better than ebay.

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: Jennifer

Tue Apr 15 10:37:28 2008

I'm THRILLED about this move!  As a buyer at local auctions, 3 of the larger houses have been holding all the ''good'' stuff and putting it on eBay Live for years.  This meant that I could no longer compete for the wares as a reseller.  And the auction houses were being charged such huge amounts (which is passed on to the consignors) by eBay that nobody but eBay and the auction houses were really making any money off these auctions.
Also, the way it is done, nobody really knows if there is shill bidding going on or not on the floor at the auction houses.  I've sat through way too many of these auctions locally and see how they ''really'' work.
Also, the consignors are told that they are going to have their wares sold ''live'' on eBay for them, but the regular bidders on the floor are nearly non-existent so in reality the consignors are harmed and not getting fair market value.
This is a great move for me personally and for the unaware consignors.

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: vintage toy & racing

Tue Apr 15 10:58:51 2008

Good riddance!
Ebay Live, much like Proxibid and other Live Auctioneers have been a plague upon small to medium dealers for some time, especially if their business was predominantly Internet based.

What part of ''live bidding'' makes sense, when to win, you have to outbid the exact same audience that you will now have to turn around and attempt to sell to??!!
You REALLY have to be a good salesman to convince someone that an item is worth more, because YOU are selling it now.

Also, as a group of sellers that has been boycotting all auctions with Live Bidding, it makes one feel like it is doing some small amount of good.
Many auctioneers have begun to experience what was discussed in an earlier post, a huge drop off in ''in house'' bidding.
So the ''top'' stuff may sell for a little more, the ''average'' stuff is now getting less money, because it was the stuff generally being bought by ''local'' bidders.

This move by eBay does not upset me in the least. Now, if we can just pull the plug on Proxibid.

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: Jamie

Tue Apr 15 13:25:56 2008

It does look as if eBay is getting ready to throw auctions overboard and I'm pretty sure they'll make big bucks no matter what they do.  

But what happens to the smaller sellers in all this? Fleeing from eBay changes, sellers at OLA.com have launched a Rummage Sale starting May 1st to encourage their customers to follow them. (''Y'all come!'')  

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: Peter Leeflang/CEO of Leeflang Archives Corporatio

Tue Apr 15 15:11:06 2008

Ina, when you say 'No other live-auction platform "marketplace" comes to mind.', I believe you missed Proxibid. They are doing $200 million in sales and are growing fast. In fact, one of my comments on the powersellers board of Ebay analkyzing the Proxibid competition got pulled. I'm sure they did not like the fact that they lost a huge market to Proxibid.

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: Di

Wed Apr 16 01:07:57 2008

While they have 'officially' axed the  live auctions ... they have been slowly bleeding small sellers dry ... the Mom & Pop sellers have been nickle and dimed out of business for months ... the very people that built eBay !!! But you won't hear about it on eBay chat boards ... the PULL every comment that even mentions another auction site or competitor !!!  Ya' think there's a little FEAR in there ???  LOL   Fortunately, many MANY of them have found a new auction place to call home by relocating to www.OLA.com !!! It's where all the sellers have gone ... and where an auction is still a REAL auction !!!  

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: Pat

Wed Apr 16 08:17:33 2008

''MANY of them have found a new auction place to call home by relocating to www.OLA.com !!! It's where all the sellers have gone ... and where an auction is still a REAL auction !!!''

An auction is not an auction without buyers, and there are NO buyers at OLA and others. Why should I keep spending $8 a month on a service which doesn't deliver? Right now the entire auction scene SUCKS. eBay is taking too much money and changing daily, and all the other sites have no traffic. A very depressing situation right now. eBay has done a great job of mucking up EVERYTHING for EVERYBODY. Hopefully in a year it will all settle down and fall out, and there will be an alternate place to go. Right now, there still isn't.

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: aliya

Wed Apr 16 10:40:01 2008

If all of the smaller auction sites would merge and follow the original ebay plan they could make money and draw buyers.

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: Jacquie Tartaglia

Thu Apr 17 07:26:28 2008

I find this great from two points - as a seller of consinged items that eliminates the competition of a seller that offered in house and ebay options at the same time, and puts me at an advantage, I now am selling to a world wide market and the local auction houses are not.  That should help the consignment business.  And as a buyer that will make local merchandise more affordable for resale purposes at an auction.  That is the first good news of the year after the poison darts ebay has been shooting at sellers - I hope it is true!

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: notyou

Thu Apr 17 15:23:07 2008

'' Hot Jewelry Auctions, which operates under the eBay user names of Paramount-Auctions, Jewelry-Overstock-Auctions and WJoutlet has been sued for shill bidding on eBay Live Auctions.

In a separate matter, Windsor Auctions, Inc. operating under the eBay user name WindsorAuctions-USA has sued eBay under federal antitrust laws and California's anti-competition laws.  

Does that mean Windsor is suing for the right to shill bid?

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: Mike

Fri Apr 18 10:36:55 2008

windsor claims the competitor's got an unfair edge by using a tool which put their listing at the front core on a timed basis ahead of all other live auction sellers

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: friendcredit

Tue Apr 22 20:12:19 2008

I'm not sure how much revenue Live Auctions provided eBay

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: Brysea

Thu Apr 24 16:35:56 2008

Its a case of a new CEO trying to stamp his mark. I am afraid the man is a fool he is destroying the very thing that made Ebay such a success. it happens all the time with new brooms. mark my word he will be sacked before long. no doubt with a ridiculous pay off.

eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform   eBay Axing Live Auctions Platform

by: Randy

Sat Nov 22 10:11:32 2008

Its about time they got rid of these low lifes.

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