Doomed by eBay

By Claudia O\'Keefe

Published November 1, 2000 8:28AM (EST)

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What did you expect? You got in on the ground floor of a new phenomenon, you made tremendous profits for doing something that requires little real skill (every grandmother in the world knows how to shop at garage sales) and you expect others to not join in?

Perhaps the market on eBay is glutted right now. It fits in with beginner's microeconomic theory about demand and supply lag. Perhaps over the next few months, if enough idiots who thought they could get rich quick (sorry, "enjoy a comfortable level of income") drop out of the eBay game, the amount of "collectibles" put up for sale will fall to sustainable levels. But until then, you should go around to used book stores and antique shops and ask the owners about their lavish lifestyles. If you want to make the big bucks, do something else.

-- Wes Dopkins

I truly feel sorry for Claudia O'Keefe and her problems. I, too, was a successful seller on eBay for about a year. But unlike the author, I kept my day job and gave myself a vacation from my second source of income for about a year. I knew the success was too good to last -- if it was so easy for me, why wouldn't others become successful sellers as well? Pyramid schemes, Avon, investment clubs -- maybe a good way to earn some extra money, but stake the farm on continued success? No thanks.

-- Name withheld at writer's request

I have a very simple solution to this woman's extremely accurate account concerning the death of eBay to us "little people." Since eBay has grown to such enormity, why not branch out into two different eBays? Cut eBay in half: one for the "little people" and the other for all the businesses that are squashing us out. Let the buyer choose which to buy from, which site to go to, the "big business site" or the "people's site."

-- Terry Coleman

By Letters to the Editor

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