|Wed Aug 12 2015 22:02:25|
eBay Practice Is Hurting Seller Auction Prices
By: Ina Steiner
An eBay buyer wrote to say that while they were on vacation last week, eBay blocked all their snipe bids because it requested account verification. "The message boards are filled with similar complaints," said the reader.
Anyone using auctions on eBay should be aware that they may not be getting the full selling price someone is willing to pay thanks to the practice - it's unclear whether it's an intentional security policy or an algorithm gone awry.
We published a letter from a reader
in June about this issue where a reader said they had been using AuctionSniper for over 10 years and never had the "eBay requires account verification" pop up - "Now it is popping up once a week, she wrote.
And there are complaints from buyers about the problem on the eBay discussion boards, such as this one
started on July 28th, in which a buyer wrote, "Unfortunately, I don't think most sellers are aware of this interference by eBay with the free market aspect of their auctions - or of the tremendous loss of money they are unaware of losing since the disallowed bids are not visible to them..."
In this thread
, a seller tried to figure out if the problem stems from bidders logging in using different devices, and asked people to respond with their experiences to see if a pattern would emerge.
One user responded, "EBay is just being skittish about security. Know it's a good thing to be proactive in this area."
Similar problems have occurred in the past - last October we wrote about sniping programs encountering CAPTCHA security obstacles
that prevented last-minute bids from going through in time.