New article on Dogeared: "Ethics & eBay - No, Really!"

Stan Shelley srshelley at
Mon Jan 30 17:36:41 EST 2006

Yes it will be interesting.  Jewelry is one of my specialties on Ebay so I
know from experience that there is a huge amount of fake Tiffany merchandise
around and most Ebay sellers do not have the expertise (or ethics) to
identify it as such.  Thus lots of fakes are on Ebay.  Is this Ebay's fault?
I guess the judge will decide.
Stan Shelley
----- Original Message -----
From: "JOSEPH HILL" <goodbooks at>
To: <modlib at>
Sent: Monday, January 30, 2006 1:13 PM
Subject: Re: New article on Dogeared: "Ethics & eBay - No, Really!"

> A major news story yesterday,Tiffany says,it has had it with ebay and has
brought suit,it will be interesting to see how this all plays out in the
> -----Original Message-----
> From: J B Krygier
> Sent: Mon, 30 Jan 2006 09:33:41 -0800
> To: modlib at
> Subject: Re: New article on Dogeared: "Ethics & eBay - No, Really!"
> On Jan 28, 2006, at 4:49 PM, Scot Kamins wrote:
> > Here's an article I wrote at the request of the editor of an online
> > magazine for bibliophiles.
> Overall excellent, with a couple of comments, devil's advocate, etc.
> I suspect the ebay Seller / eBay Buyer relationship is much like the
> landlord / tenant relationship.  Yes there are confused, evil, or
> incompetent landlords, but so to can tenants be the source of all
> that is idiotic and wrong.  The article tends to focus on sellers
> as the problem.
> With that in mind, I find the examples of "deceptive" seller practices
> a bit weak.  When I see someone claiming a 1st edition, or "rare" or
> whatever, I know in a second if the claim is accurate because I know
> a bit about ML books.  Thus it is worth mentioning that knowing what
> you are buying is a good thing.
> The campaign to educate eBay sellers ("Ignored Expertise") seems a bit
> over the top.  Maybe with big ticket items, or if the seller is selling
> many MLs.  Overall the tone in this part of the article is just, well,
> a bit weird.  The ideal listing tips at the end are great.
> I think one's attitude about what they want to buy is important to
> stress.  If you really want VG/VG or better books stick with the
> handful of ML dealers who know how to describe a book, or stick to
> buying books in real bookstores.
> I have said this before, but I depend on the fact that eBay is full
> of poorly described items sold by sellers who don't have the time to
> accurately describe the books they are listing for a few bucks.
> I have acquired about 300 MLs on eBay, 98% of which were acceptable
> to me (G/G or better), and almost all were priced below, sometimes
> way below, what they should actually sell for.  In a world where a
> well described, well-photographed, nice (yet still common) HC copy
> of Hardy's Tess can sell for over $50 (like last night on eBay) ...
> I can't compete!
> John K.

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