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Thread: Watch your bids on GW auctions, shills are bidding

  1. #26
    Super Member oldtnquiltinglady's Avatar
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    What an interesting read this has been this morning. Thanks for all your comments. I get mad at GW just about every time I go in a couple of our local ones (local meaning it is 30 miles or more from my home). And yes, I have found jeans at GW for $7.99, and gone to a local discount store to find a pair better for $5.99 (on sale of course, but way cheaper than GW). I hate that; and no longer even look at GW's jeans.
    Make every day count for something!

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  2. #27
    Super Member madamekelly's Avatar
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    I quit shopping at Goodwill when they started charging LQS prices for donated fabric, and selling dollar store items for 2.99!
    If you always do, what you have always done, The results never change. Change is the wings you give yourself.

  3. #28
    Super Member Candace's Avatar
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    I try to stick to ebay or local pick up for any Good Will purchase. There is no customer/consumer protection for jacked up shipping via GW, and there have been people very unhappy to receive broken and damaged goods due to poor packaging. At least with ebay you are protected and can file claims and get your money back. And shilling is not allowed and is acted upon! With GW it's cross your fingers and hope for the best. I'd prefer not to do that and really don't see the draw of this auction site. The prices are high, the shipping exorbitant and no coverage if something goes wrong. Seems like a lose, lose to me.

  4. #29
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    Thanks for this info on shill bidders.......it's been a long time since I've bid/won at eBay...never bid at GW....now, I will not even look at either...as far as the GW store....we have 3 within a 25 mile radius from home and when I am in the area of one, I usually stop in......I too have found how erratic the prices are...and who considers buying broken chipped, missing pieces items......am losing my interest for GW...rarely find any treasures there lately.....better off at church sponsored resale shops.......

  5. #30
    Super Member J Miller's Avatar
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    Candace,

    Our local GW, SA and other thrift stores have virtually nothing sewing related. Once in a blue moon you'll find something, but not often.
    I've had decent luck with GW auctions. Only a few machines arrived damaged and we got our money back on those.

    Besides I find eBay far more expensive and difficult to use, and they force you to pay with PayPal whereas GW does give you choices.

    Geri B,

    GW auctions is just like eBay in that "you" have to set your max price, and do not go over that. Like in my original post, I decided that I would not pay over the minimum bid due to the condition of the machine. I was outbid by a shill and the machine later re-listed. I still want that motor and might try again, but I'm not sure.

    As for the shipping costs, again, you can check them before you even bid, then decide if it's too much or OK. I do that all the time. Many machines have been passed by due to that locations outrageous shipping costs.

    And here's something we've been doing recently. When we win a machine, we email them requesting that they make sure it's packed properly and make them reply to our email before we pay for the item. And we tell them we will pay after they respond. So far that's worked pretty good.

    Joe

  6. #31
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    I don't like the Goodwill auction site for all the reasons Candace mentioned. I much prefer ebay AND Paypal...you get buyer protection from both. Actually sellers CAN take payments other than Paypal according to eBay's rules BUT you have to contact the seller to see if they will. But why would a seller want to wait for a MO....or for a check to clear when Paypal is so much better for them too? Years ago, I sold a lot on ebay....& I remember lots of emails from buyers asking me to hold an item yet another week til their next payday before they could pay me. And back then too, MOST people wouldn't even bid if you didn't take Paypal! I don't really understand your problem with it.... But anyway, to be fair, a machine might be relisted due to a non-paying bidder.

  7. #32
    Super Member J Miller's Avatar
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    Pat,

    There are reasons for my dislike of eBay and PayPal that are not appropriate to the QB forum. We do have an eBay account and did buy and sell there for quite a while years ago. But they made too many political changes you and others may not be exposed to.
    That soured me on them.

    I've seen a lot of GW auctions that have been relisted due to non payment. Generally when that happens it's noted in their text and the auction had numerous bids on it. Not always, but generally.

    Joe

  8. #33
    Junior Member Lew Schiller's Avatar
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    Just got to recalling that when I went to the GW center to look at a walking foot machine they had on auction there was an old green 10 hp Johnson outboard - in really nice shape - on the pick-up floor. Worker said it sold for $10 but the buyer never picked it up so it was going to go back and be put through again.
    Perhaps not all the re-runs are shill deals.

  9. #34
    Super Member J Miller's Avatar
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    No, not all the returns are shill deals. But, I've watched and participated in the GW auctions for nearly two years now and have been paying attention to the bidders.

    So the one I described in my original post was enough to make me believe it was a shill bidding just to get me to bid again. I have no way to prove it, but I do believe I'm right.

    Joe

  10. #35
    Super Member Grandma Cindy's Avatar
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    I recently got two machines, that in shipping were absolutely ruined..... Could they not have a person with more sense do the packing?

    Quote Originally Posted by J Miller View Post
    A couple weeks ago I bid on a 15 clone on Good Will auctions. The machine had no light, case, or cord set / controller so I wasn't going to bid high.
    What I wanted was the motor. It's a brand I have found to be very strong and torquey.

    I bid the minimum bid the day before the end of the auction. Then just before the end a shill bidder bid just over my minimum bid. I told my wife this person just bought themselves a machine -- but we'd see it again because that bidder was a shill. I was right, it's back in today.

    I've seen at least a half dozen machines go with only two bids only to show up a week or two later. So the shill bidders are bidding the GW auctions up.

    Do not let yourself get drawn into a bidding war. Set your maximum bid amount and do not go over it.

    I may, or may not go after that machine again. But if I do, I will only bid the minimum bid as close to the end of the auction as my slow dial up will allow.

    Joe
    Last edited by Grandma Cindy; 11-28-2013 at 07:38 PM.

  11. #36
    Super Member J Miller's Avatar
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    Been there, done that. It happens too many times. But what I ask is was the machine destroyed because it wasn't packed properly or because the shippers ran over it with the trucks? I've seen both.

    That's why I email them and ask that they take extra care with the packaging. If they do, after that it depends on the shippers.

    Sorry about your two machines. I hope you got your money back at least.

    Joe

  12. #37
    Super Member J Miller's Avatar
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    This thread sure deviated from the original topic didn't it?

    Joe

  13. #38
    Super Member Grandma Cindy's Avatar
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    The first beautiful FW , they forced the lid down( mind you it had closed ok for 60+ years), broke off the thread holder and put a hole in the great case. I was told they would pay for the repairs or I could ship it back. I was heart broken...
    Quote Originally Posted by J Miller View Post
    Been there, done that. It happens too many times. But what I ask is was the machine destroyed because it wasn't packed properly or because the shippers ran over it with the trucks? I've seen both.

    That's why I email them and ask that they take extra care with the packaging. If they do, after that it depends on the shippers.

    Sorry about your two machines. I hope you got your money back at least.

    Joe

  14. #39
    Super Member Mitch's mom's Avatar
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    Goodwill is a privately held company, they are not a charity and do not claim to be. They produce nothing, all items are donated then resold at extreme mark-ups as they paid nothing for the items. They offer minimum wage jobs while raking in huge profits.

    I do shop at Goodwill occasionally when I'm in the area of the nearest store, but anything I donate goes to a local charity shop. I will not donate goods for them to profit on.

  15. #40
    Senior Member frudemoo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mitch's mom View Post
    Goodwill is a privately held company, they are not a charity and do not claim to be. They produce nothing, all items are donated then resold at extreme mark-ups as they paid nothing for the items. They offer minimum wage jobs while raking in huge profits.
    The equivalent here is a store called Savers. They get all their goods donated by saying they support Diabetes Australia - but only 5% of their profits go to DA (but they don't advertise that part). Their prices are very high (in charity shop terms) - never seen a vintage machine for under $60 - and they get people to donate by tricking them into thinking it's for charity. It's great to know more about shill bidding - thanks Joe! But I think it's good if more people are aware that some "charities" are not all they appear to be. It really sucks that it's something we have to actually investigate now before we purchase or donate :/

  16. #41
    Member Jassinc6's Avatar
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    I started a spreadsheet so I could get a better handle on my suspicions about shill bidding and from what I see as a pattern so far on the GW site, it appears that their practices definitely need to be investigated. I don't know what I'll do with the information I'm compiling but it certainly needs to be shared with a person/agency who will follow through and help to clean up the practices of auction sites that run amock.

  17. #42
    Member Jassinc6's Avatar
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    G-W is indeed a "charity" recognized by the Federal government for tax purposes. G-W's mission statement from their official website says: "Goodwill works to enhance the dignity and quality of life of individuals and families by strengthening communities, eliminating barriers to opportunity, and helping people in need reach their full potential through learning and the power of work. Goodwill Industries International is registered as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization."

  18. #43
    Super Member deedum's Avatar
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    I quit bidding and buying anything on GW a long time ago, as I felt that jacked the price up big time on shipping! I am not going to be ripped off by them. Now after reading this, it just gives me another reason to stay away from there. I just use ebay these days.

  19. #44
    Senior Member leighway's Avatar
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    I won't even shop Goodwill. I had a friend who was in their employ and I got the backstory on how poorly they treat employees. Plus, I think they have shown up on the charity list as one of those who's CEO gets megabucks. Not acceptable.

  20. #45
    Junior Member rozeebythesea's Avatar
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    Thanks Joe

  21. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by carol40965 View Post
    Joe, I felt this happened to me on a purchase. As a result, I no longer donate to GW and take my items to the SA. I feel much better knowing the items will sold in my community rather than being listed on an auction!
    Same here! Things I have noticed too at the 3 GW around here is they will print up an e-bay listing for an item that is in good condition tape it on an item they have in the store that most often is broken and have a price on it for penny less. Now I'm sure they print up the e-bay listing with a high starting price that I'll bet didn't even sell. lol

  22. #47
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    How are the speadsheets coming along?

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