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From today's TAG notes comes this:

ebaY does not allow links in auctions to sniper sites. There has recently been an increase in links to the Auction Sniper site in listings from sellers who use Auctiva tools. Users are responsible for the content of their listings and links to the Auction Sniper site are not permitted. ebaY has requested Auctiva to stop facilitating these links. At this time, ebaY says they will only be issuing warnings, but repeated violations will cause ebaY to end listings.
You can edit your Auctiva link box turn it off or modify it at -
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I always felt the Siper link was a contradiction to Auctiva products intended to help sellers. When we subscribe to Auctiva we are paying for sellig tools, not buyer tools. A sniper program harms a seller since such programs encourage bidding in the final seconds. Actually, I've always felt eBay should come up with a means to end last second bidding or sniping. Those that would bid higher on an item are often defeated by last second sniping. That I should have to support an advertisement that promotes such software is like robbing Peter to pay Paul.


I've always wished that eBay would allow an optional variable extention to the auction rather than a fixed end, which promotes sniping. I rememeber about 3 years ago on eBay there were constant pleas from users to add this. eBay of course ignored them, like they do everything else.

I think an auto extention to the auction would work very well. Sooner or later one party or the other is going to give up, having reached their limit, and the auction will end. Who cares if it goes on a few more minutes, or an hour. This would END sniping since it gives the other party a couple of minutes to decide if they want to counterbid.
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That is an excellent idea to put an end to sniping. Of course, eBay has the worst support I've ever seen. They have their own motives for what they do and care little for what their users want. They allow fraud and other abuses because they are more interested in the fees than in running an honest auction site. They seem so concerned with sniping but they do nothing to stop it.

What do we do when the Box shows up in our auctions even though it's disabled?

I've already been warned about Service Box; do you think eBay would pay attention if I wrote them and told them I don't have any control over it?

I really HAS upset me to the point where I'm afraid to put up any auctions. I'm not a control freak, but I've spent my life with things happening to me that I didn't expect or tried to avoid, and the Service Box has really hurt.


Jan Confused
eBay doesn't care what Auctiva does but you can rest assured they will cancel any auction with a snike link. It's the eBay seller that is ultimately going to pay the price. The best thing is to put pressure on Auctiva to remove the link. I hate free advertising anyway.

I'd be willing to bet that at least 30-40% of the auctions on eBay in one way or another break their rules. Either via paypal,linking to their site, email address size, etc, etc. And it's been like this forever.

Links to their business site, links to their web page, links to their family's sites (yeah, I did it, but it only lasted for like four auctions til I got busted!) Everything I got warned about is on zillions of auctions, probably a lot more than 30-40%.

I don't mind sniping somebody out of something; I don't mind somebody sniping my auctions either. I want whoever is willing to pay the most to buy it.

The idea that everybody who sells on eBay reads every rule is ludicrous and they know that. The number of people who know ALL eBay's TOS has got to be maybe in the hundreds. If I stay off the announcement boards and chat boards, I'm a whole lot better off. That way I don't KNOW that I'm breaking a rule, so I don't have to worry about it. Which I truly didn't until they started enforcing the "no links off the auction page" when I linked my web page to my auctions and when I put in links to friends who had auctions (and I STILL don't understand why that's illegal; it SELLS more stuff which makes more MONEY for eBAY!) But I took my web page link off my auctions and put it on About Me. So nobody EVER sees it, which is probably okay. I don't have time to work on it anymore.

But.....that service box has appended to the first auction I've put up in two weeks. I think it's linked to updating the showcase.

When it comes to eBay Tom, it doesn't matter what YOU think or what *I* think. The only thing that matters is what the 800 pound Gorilla wants. They have a VERY BIG sledgehammer over your heads, and you named it. It's called BLOCK THEIR IP ADDRESS. Not only will this kill you, it will kill us. So weather or not we think it's bullS, we have to do it. The stuff I got called to the mat on was pure crap. Simple violations of their "linking policy". I had a paypal logo (linked) and I had "" as a text link in my description. Gee, really? get a life! They go after anything to promote that BillCrap service of theirs.

That company is forever guilty of breaking their own rules, stretching them for "preferred" sellers, and making up new rules as they go.
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What we all have to realize here is eBay doesn't want Auctiva, Timber Creek, Kinem, FooDog or any of the many others AM systems around at all. Lets face it they are in direct competition with eBAy's sellers assistant so do you think they are going to give us any breaks? I think not! I don't envy you guys at Auctive or any other system because you not only have to contend with us you also have to appease the auction God.

If you guys want to link off the auction site just put it in text format like this;
'to visit my web site just cut "mysitename" and past into your address bar then add .com'
A bit sneaky but it works.

On the subject of sniping I also list auctions on Yesterday's Tractor auction site and there all auctions end at a given time or 10 minuets after the last bid. That way if someone snipes an auction in the last few seconds it still don't end for another 10 minuets giving anyone else a chance to bid back in.
I'll add another freightening item to the mix. I know Auctiva is aware of this. They, and all the others, are walking on thin ice because eBay could demand that they license and use their API for interfacing to the servers. As it is, they tax the ebay system without "paying" eBay for the priviledge. It isn't just Auctiva that's in jepardy, it's all of them. eBay could just turn around, make a rule that says this sort of software isn't allowed unless it goes through their API, which is over $10K/month and upward depending on 'hits'. You better watch what you wish for, or eBays software may be the only game in town. They already did it with the sniping software..
A question from the obviously uninformed???

WHAT is API? Is this something I know and don't realize or is it something I may end up knowing about and won't be happy that I do? It sounds like the latter. As it is, I'm selling most things for far less than I paid, and am trying ONLY to make my seller's fees back plus what I paid, so selling at all is pretty much an exercise in futility.

I wonder if eBay will EVER realize that they're shooting themselves in the foot. Oh, they're not gonna go under; the big business sellers will keep them going forever. It's only the REAL people who will end up institutionalized because of eBay's terrorism.

I know this isn't feasible; it probably isn't anything Auctiva would even want to do, but I still wish Auctiva would start their own auction site. I realize that competing with eBay is a gigantic undertaking and that Auctiva is probably not large enough to and probably doesn't have the resources to HAVE its own auction site, but just think how comforting that would be. Everything all in one place.

After all, there are lots of people who use the Showcase who barely know Auctiva exists otherwise, and who WOULDN'T welcome the idea of an auction site that's relatively the SAME as eBay but without the gestapo tactics?

And of COURSE there ARE other auction sites OUT there. I realize not that many people use them compared to eBay, but I think that's also because nobody wants to learn a new system. I've never tried Yahoo or Amazon.....I've looked around, but when there are only 39 items in the entire Pottery category, for example, I realize that I can't take the risk that nobody will see my things, PLUS, *I* don't want to have to learn a new way of doing things. Mostly though, it's the idea that there just aren't enough bidders there.

Anything with a few less rules and something that's not constantly clawing at your pocketbook while warning you that despite the fact that they want everything IN your pocketbook they're gonna rip it out of your hands........well, just think about it.

The problem of course, will ALWAYS be that everybody in the world with a computer KNOWS that eBay exists, and getting the word out that somebody ELSE does would be the hardest part.

I, for one, would rather pay ALL my money to Auctiva to have an auction site that didn't give me nightmares worrying everytime I put up an auction, rather than being afraid to open my mail and see yet another warning or price increase or new regulation from eBay.

Well, I can dream, can't I? I know, if wishes were horses............. Confused Roll Eyes

API stands for "Application Program Interface". It is a commonly used method to allow an application program to interface and communicate with another program, computer, sub-process, task, etc, through a standardized and fully documented interface. As it stands now, when eBud or ePoster do a refresh, data collection, post, etc, they are manually requesting pages just like your browser does, in "human readable" form. Then, the "mine" or "farm" the data from those pages because they know the EXACT line and POSITION of each piece of data they want. This is why when eBay makes a page change, eBud stops working until they can realign the lines & positions to the new page.

Using an API, only raw data is passed back and forth. Portions of the API already existing rarely, if ever, change. new fields or changes typically get added to the end of an API in areas "reserved for future use." And API also allows communication to occur quicker since only the raw data is exchanged, not the entire human readable pages (with all the graphics, etc). The API cuts down on bandwidth requirements and server loading since less data is passed.

The problem is eBay designed the API and licenses it to 3rd parties. And, as Tom said, it AIN'T cheap. There are "per month" fixed charges based on the average number of "hits" through the API, plus a "per use" charge for each hit.

Other auction sites such as Yahoo were also developing an API, and I think they were going to license it for free. But Yahoo isn't the 800 pound Gorilla that can charge whatever it likes and get away with it. Yahoo does it to get people to come to the site and cause 3rd party developers to take them seriously.

So, basically this is not something you should worry about for now. I don't think eBay would be foolish enough to demand that all 3rd party "data mining" software use their API, and there is no way they really know you are using eBud anyway. To the server, it looks like you just requested your seller list and auction pages. As I said, it would affect everyone from vendors or management software to counter providers.

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