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Shill Bidding on E-Bay

I noticed a comment about this in another thread. How much shill bidding is really going on? Stories anybody? Is there a solution? How can you definitely tell when you are up against it? I need some education here.
DSW

Comments

  • ScarsdaleCoinScarsdaleCoin Posts: 5,184 ✭✭✭✭✭
    quite a lot.....not much you can do about it...
    Jon Lerner - Scarsdale Coin - www.CoinHelp.com
  • quite a lot.....not much you can do about it...

    YUP!
    What is money, in reality, but dirty pieces of paper and metal upon which privilege is stamped?
  • 291fifth291fifth Posts: 23,932 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Difficult to detect. Even more difficult to prove. Change your bidding practices regularly. Don't become predictable.
    All glory is fleeting.
  • Shilling is rampant but ebay doesnt do much. Govt needs to step in or a major law suit then that may change their position........
  • JBKJBK Posts: 14,717 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Great story, but why resurrect a nineteen year old thread instead of starting a new one? :D

  • johnny010johnny010 Posts: 1,074 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @JBK said:
    Great story, but why resurrect a nineteen year old thread instead of starting a new one? :D

    Because Heaven forbid you don’t research here for 20 hours and somehow become a pro before asking a question that has “been discussed before, please do a search”.

  • johnny010johnny010 Posts: 1,074 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Yes shilling has become out of control again….Also new sellers posting items that are fictional and garnering bids. The work of computers becoming stronger and bad guys trying to make a few dollars.

  • jmlanzafjmlanzaf Posts: 31,826 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited January 1, 2023 5:17AM

    I personally don't see shill bidding as that common.

    I also don't generally worry about it because I bid my max and just leave it at that.

    I would be surprised if the case mentioned by the ressurector of the thread is actually shill bidding. The point of shill bidding is to increase the sale price. You would never shill bid to 3x catalog because you would be unlikely to have the legitimate bidder go that high.

  • davewesendavewesen Posts: 5,832 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @LandrysFedora said:
    An issue I have known of but just recently experienced is encountering a shill bidder. I was bidding in an ebay auction recently and realized every bid I made for an item was within seconds countered by a bidder with only 1 feedback. I didn't think much of it at first but became a bit suspicious as this kept happening bid after bid with this same "bidder". So I played the game for awhile and let the bid amount get crazy high (3x this items value) while letting the shill bidder ending up on top. The seller relisted the item soon after the auction ended, but then cancelled it almost immediately saying the item is no longer available in an attempt to cover tracks I would guess? Upon further investigation this "bidder" had 100% of their bid history with this particular sellers items. So for giggles I checked into another item this seller currently has up for auction and surprise, there's yet another "bidder" bidding on that particular item with only 1 feed back and coincidentally all 100% of this bidders bid history with this sellers items also. I just reported this to ebay. Be careful guys. Scams everywhere. Happy New Year!

    were you actually ever high bidder for those brief periods of time? how many days before auction ending did you do this?

  • jmlanzafjmlanzaf Posts: 31,826 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @davewesen said:

    @LandrysFedora said:
    An issue I have known of but just recently experienced is encountering a shill bidder. I was bidding in an ebay auction recently and realized every bid I made for an item was within seconds countered by a bidder with only 1 feedback. I didn't think much of it at first but became a bit suspicious as this kept happening bid after bid with this same "bidder". So I played the game for awhile and let the bid amount get crazy high (3x this items value) while letting the shill bidder ending up on top. The seller relisted the item soon after the auction ended, but then cancelled it almost immediately saying the item is no longer available in an attempt to cover tracks I would guess? Upon further investigation this "bidder" had 100% of their bid history with this particular sellers items. So for giggles I checked into another item this seller currently has up for auction and surprise, there's yet another "bidder" bidding on that particular item with only 1 feed back and coincidentally all 100% of this bidders bid history with this sellers items also. I just reported this to ebay. Be careful guys. Scams everywhere. Happy New Year!

    were you actually ever high bidder for those brief periods of time? how many days before auction ending did you do this?

    It's probably the proxy bidder doing the bidding. What are the odds that the other bidder is sitting there at the same time?

    I will also add that if you have 1 feedback, 100% of you bid history with a seller could be a grand total of 1 bid.

    I don't know if "3x" is accurate, but no shill would actually go that high.

  • Shill bidding has been around since the Earth cooled. I used to fight it vociferously. I caught many crooked bidders over 22 years. But after getting nowhere with Ebay, I gave up. Now I like to mess around with the bidding just to make it harder for the seller. I used to contact these "shady" sellers and let them know I was on to them. They all denied it and blocked me. It's hard to fight it, so don't.

  • JBKJBK Posts: 14,717 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Shill bidding was essentially allowed in the early days of eBay. Sellers were allowed to bid a certain number of times on their own auctions.

    It's really just a form of setting a reserve price without actually doing that. I don't particularly Iike the practice, but if you only bid what you're willing to pay then you can't get cheated.

  • davewesendavewesen Posts: 5,832 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @jmlanzaf said:

    @davewesen said:

    were you actually ever high bidder for those brief periods of time? how many days before auction ending did you do this?

    It's probably the proxy bidder doing the bidding. What are the odds that the other bidder is sitting there at the same time?

    I will also add that if you have 1 feedback, 100% of you bid history with a seller could be a grand total of 1 bid.

    I don't know if "3x" is accurate, but no shill would actually go that high.

    Feedback are left after a win, so 1 feedback bidder could have current bids on a few hundred items.

    If LandrysFedora was actually high bidder for a second or two, it tells me a computer bot is placing the bids and then it could be exploited to expose the shiller.

  • LandrysFedoraLandrysFedora Posts: 1,778 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @davewesen said:

    @LandrysFedora said:
    An issue I have known of but just recently experienced is encountering a shill bidder. I was bidding in an ebay auction recently and realized every bid I made for an item was within seconds countered by a bidder with only 1 feedback. I didn't think much of it at first but became a bit suspicious as this kept happening bid after bid with this same "bidder". So I played the game for awhile and let the bid amount get crazy high (3x this items value) while letting the shill bidder ending up on top. The seller relisted the item soon after the auction ended, but then cancelled it almost immediately saying the item is no longer available in an attempt to cover tracks I would guess? Upon further investigation this "bidder" had 100% of their bid history with this particular sellers items. So for giggles I checked into another item this seller currently has up for auction and surprise, there's yet another "bidder" bidding on that particular item with only 1 feed back and coincidentally all 100% of this bidders bid history with this sellers items also. I just reported this to ebay. Be careful guys. Scams everywhere. Happy New Year!

    were you actually ever high bidder for those brief periods of time? how many days before auction ending did you do this?

    So there were 2 actual real bidders before this started. I was the lead bidder and there was less than 24 hours left on the item. The bidding amount at that time was very very low for the item when the shill bidder entered the process.

  • LandrysFedoraLandrysFedora Posts: 1,778 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @PerryHall said:
    This is why many bidders snipe bid in the last seconds of an auction with their highest bid. If a shill outbids you, just move on to another coin.

    Most definitely. And that's what I ended up doing in the end of it.

  • LandrysFedoraLandrysFedora Posts: 1,778 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Lostintranslation said:
    Shill bidding has been around since the Earth cooled. I used to fight it vociferously. I caught many crooked bidders over 22 years. But after getting nowhere with Ebay, I gave up. Now I like to mess around with the bidding just to make it harder for the seller. I used to contact these "shady" sellers and let them know I was on to them. They all denied it and blocked me. It's hard to fight it, so don't.

    I agree. When I read ebay's shill bidding policy it stated there was no need to report it because they have precautions in place to detect this activity. I guess this seller who's been a seller for 2 years just slipped through the cracks?

  • LandrysFedoraLandrysFedora Posts: 1,778 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @davewesen said:

    @jmlanzaf said:

    @davewesen said:

    were you actually ever high bidder for those brief periods of time? how many days before auction ending did you do this?

    It's probably the proxy bidder doing the bidding. What are the odds that the other bidder is sitting there at the same time?

    I will also add that if you have 1 feedback, 100% of you bid history with a seller could be a grand total of 1 bid.

    I don't know if "3x" is accurate, but no shill would actually go that high.

    Feedback are left after a win, so 1 feedback bidder could have current bids on a few hundred items.

    If LandrysFedora was actually high bidder for a second or two, it tells me a computer bot is placing the bids and then it could be exploited to expose the shiller.

    I was the high bidder up until a tad less than 24 hours left in the auction.

  • LandrysFedoraLandrysFedora Posts: 1,778 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @LandrysFedora said:

    @davewesen said:

    @jmlanzaf said:

    @davewesen said:

    were you actually ever high bidder for those brief periods of time? how many days before auction ending did you do this?

    It's probably the proxy bidder doing the bidding. What are the odds that the other bidder is sitting there at the same time?

    I will also add that if you have 1 feedback, 100% of you bid history with a seller could be a grand total of 1 bid.

    I don't know if "3x" is accurate, but no shill would actually go that high.

    Feedback are left after a win, so 1 feedback bidder could have current bids on a few hundred items.

    If LandrysFedora was actually high bidder for a second or two, it tells me a computer bot is placing the bids and then it could be exploited to expose the shiller.

    I was the high bidder up until a tad less than 24 hours left in the auction.

    Update: Item now re posted with one real bidder and 3 of the shill bids on it. I hope ebay catches this. This seller currently has another item being bid on with this happening on that one as well.

  • MFeldMFeld Posts: 12,006 ✭✭✭✭✭

    May I see a link to the listing,, please?

    Mark Feld* of Heritage Auctions*Unless otherwise noted, my posts here represent my personal opinions.

  • LandrysFedoraLandrysFedora Posts: 1,778 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @johnny010 said:

    @JBK said:
    Great story, but why resurrect a nineteen year old thread instead of starting a new one? :D

    Because Heaven forbid you don’t research here for 20 hours and somehow become a pro before asking a question that has “been discussed before, please do a search”.

    I did a search and read up on it. I just wanted opinions on a particular auction I was involved in, in the case I may have been wrong in what I was suspecting.

  • ColonelKlinckColonelKlinck Posts: 371 ✭✭✭

    @ClausUrch said:
    << Govt needs to step in >>

    Great.....Let's get the government to do what we can do for ourselves. The E-Bay community can and should be quite capable of policing itself. Why must we always count on the Government to save us from some contrived catastrophe????

    Heh....Hehhh....
    Time flies!

  • LandrysFedoraLandrysFedora Posts: 1,778 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @jmlanzaf said:
    I personally don't see shill bidding as that common.

    I also don't generally worry about it because I bid my max and just leave it at that.

    I would be surprised if the case mentioned by the ressurector of the thread is actually shill bidding. The point of shill bidding is to increase the sale price. You would never shill bid to 3x catalog because you would be unlikely to have the legitimate bidder go that high.

    Maybe this seller isn't very smart. I kept bidding to see how high the shill bidder would go. Like I said I jacked the total up to inflate the price and let him win, yet magically the very same item gets reposted up for auction by this seller after auction won by shill bidder ended. He's doing the same thing with a couple of other items he currently has up for auction.

  • ctf_error_coinsctf_error_coins Posts: 15,433 ✭✭✭✭✭

    You set the price, not the shill.

    So much wasted time on this tired subject.

  • LandrysFedoraLandrysFedora Posts: 1,778 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @jmlanzaf said:

    @davewesen said:

    @LandrysFedora said:
    An issue I have known of but just recently experienced is encountering a shill bidder. I was bidding in an ebay auction recently and realized every bid I made for an item was within seconds countered by a bidder with only 1 feedback. I didn't think much of it at first but became a bit suspicious as this kept happening bid after bid with this same "bidder". So I played the game for awhile and let the bid amount get crazy high (3x this items value) while letting the shill bidder ending up on top. The seller relisted the item soon after the auction ended, but then cancelled it almost immediately saying the item is no longer available in an attempt to cover tracks I would guess? Upon further investigation this "bidder" had 100% of their bid history with this particular sellers items. So for giggles I checked into another item this seller currently has up for auction and surprise, there's yet another "bidder" bidding on that particular item with only 1 feed back and coincidentally all 100% of this bidders bid history with this sellers items also. I just reported this to ebay. Be careful guys. Scams everywhere. Happy New Year!

    were you actually ever high bidder for those brief periods of time? how many days before auction ending did you do this?

    It's probably the proxy bidder doing the bidding. What are the odds that the other bidder is sitting there at the same time?

    I will also add that if you have 1 feedback, 100% of you bid history with a seller could be a grand total of 1 bid.

    I don't know if "3x" is accurate, but no shill would actually go that high.

    This shill went that high (3x). So just a greedy seller I suppose. So in regards to bid history with the shill bidders in this case , the 2 shill bidders I suspect this seller of using have 100% bid history with this seller and there are dozens of recorded bids on various items.

  • jmlanzafjmlanzaf Posts: 31,826 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @davewesen said:

    @jmlanzaf said:

    @davewesen said:

    were you actually ever high bidder for those brief periods of time? how many days before auction ending did you do this?

    It's probably the proxy bidder doing the bidding. What are the odds that the other bidder is sitting there at the same time?

    I will also add that if you have 1 feedback, 100% of you bid history with a seller could be a grand total of 1 bid.

    I don't know if "3x" is accurate, but no shill would actually go that high.

    Feedback are left after a win, so 1 feedback bidder could have current bids on a few hundred items.

    If LandrysFedora was actually high bidder for a second or two, it tells me a computer bot is placing the bids and then it could be exploited to expose the shiller.

    Or one...

    Does the bidding activity update before the auction ends?

  • davewesendavewesen Posts: 5,832 ✭✭✭✭✭

    not sure what you are asking - you can tell quite a bit at auction

    hit bids ->takes you to Bid History... number of bids, retractions

    hit the blue bidder-> takes you to Bid History: Bidder Details ... you how many bids, what categories, Bid activity % with this seller

    if there is a very low feedback bidder with a very high percentage with this seller, I am suspicious.

    as others have said, it does not matter if you place your max and don't care if outbid.

  • LandrysFedoraLandrysFedora Posts: 1,778 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @davewesen said:
    not sure what you are asking - you can tell quite a bit at auction

    hit bids ->takes you to Bid History... number of bids, retractions

    hit the blue bidder-> takes you to Bid History: Bidder Details ... you how many bids, what categories, Bid activity % with this seller

    if there is a very low feedback bidder with a very high percentage with this seller, I am suspicious.

    as others have said, it does not matter if you place your max and don't care if outbid.

    As was the case in my scenario.

  • LandrysFedoraLandrysFedora Posts: 1,778 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @JBK said:
    Great story, but why resurrect a nineteen year old thread instead of starting a new one? :D

    You are correct, I should have just begun a new thread. Lazy on my part. lol

  • JBKJBK Posts: 14,717 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @LandrysFedora said:

    @JBK said:
    Great story, but why resurrect a nineteen year old thread instead of starting a new one? :D

    You are correct, I should have just begun a new thread. Lazy on my part. lol

    No big deal, but your experience has already generated far more activity than the original part of the thread. :p

  • jesbrokenjesbroken Posts: 9,244 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Yes, I feel it is no question and goes on with several ebay sellers quite often, which is why I stay away from them. I do not think there is anything that can be done to prevent it. The only thing ebay MIGHT do would be to ban the shill bidder which would not rectify the problem. It's hard to out the seller as the proof is near impossible to provide, so it will probably remain an issue.
    While this is not shill bidding, I've had more cases this year of winning a fair bid and being told 3 days later item refunded because the seller couldn't find the coin. More in 2022 than all the years I've been buying on ebay. Yes, all would have been a profitable purchase for me. I've never cancelled a sale for lack of locating the coin. It can happen, but not this much in the last year. Now I know that it could happen with a coin show and an online sale, but that is poor management for any seller.
    Again, with ebay's current processes, it appears not to be a black mark for a seller to cancel a sale, as it appears the same for a buyer cancelling a purchase. I cancelled purchases before due to not receiving what was auctioned. Never cancelled one because I paid too much, found a better buy, nor just didn't like it.
    Still yet, with the tremendously large buyer population ebay provides, it is still hard to beat. I wish our BST here had more to offer, as it used to have.
    Jim


    When a man who is honestly mistaken hears the truth, he will either quit being mistaken or cease to be honest....Abraham Lincoln

    Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it.....Mark Twain
  • Cougar1978Cougar1978 Posts: 7,610 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I know of one popular, major seller it’s almost impossible for me win anything from them. I suspect shill bidding there.

    So I diversify my bidding different sellers give my process chance buy it right.

    So Cali Area - Coins & Currency
  • BillJonesBillJones Posts: 33,471 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited January 2, 2023 8:25AM

    Back when I was a dealer, another dealer asked to bid on some lots he had up on eBay. "You wouldn't have to pay for it if you win," he told me. I passed.

    Retired dealer and avid collector of U.S. type coins, 19th century presidential campaign medalets and selected medals. In recent years I have been working on a set of British coins - at least one coin from each king or queen who issued pieces that are collectible. I am also collecting at least one coin for each Roman emperor from Julius Caesar to ... ?
  • PerryHallPerryHall Posts: 45,380 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I look at a dealer shill bidding his coin as being similar to the dealer having a hidden reserve on a coin. The dealer has a price at which he will let his coin go to a new owner.

    Worry is the interest you pay on a debt you may not owe.

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