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Watch your bids on GW auctions, shills are bidding

Watch your bids on GW auctions, shills are bidding

Old 11-26-2013, 06:43 AM
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Default Watch your bids on GW auctions, shills are bidding

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
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Old 11-26-2013, 07:03 AM
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I over heard a supervisor from Goodwill this past week talk about the auctions. From what I gathered the "shill bidders" are employees who try to get the bid risen. You were right not to go higher. In that same store was a sewing machine that had been there a few months back. I had taken a photo basically to see how long it would be on the shelf. They increased the price from $50-$75. This machine had nothing but a lot of rust and was once in a cabinet. No attachments. I just walked. I looked at the photo I took of it and the numbers match so I'm sure it was the same machine.
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Old 11-26-2013, 07:19 AM
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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
I used to bid on eBay and from what I've heard, many people use automatic bidding programs, which take only a fraction of a second, to outbid someone.
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Old 11-26-2013, 07:41 AM
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I use those services all the time for Ebay, GW however has it's own auction service so they can allow shill bidding.
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Old 11-26-2013, 08:04 AM
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enough Screen captures of listing that "sold" then showed up again like that can be used to show criminal intent.
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Old 11-26-2013, 08:14 AM
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I suppose shill bidding on Goodwill is for a good cause whereas ebay would be plain greed. Proving that these bids occur would be difficult due to the amount of dead beat bidders and those that don't read the terms (pick up only for instance) carefully.

Jon
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Old 11-26-2013, 08:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Neesie View Post
I used to bid on eBay and from what I've heard, many people use automatic bidding programs, which take only a fraction of a second, to outbid someone.
I regularly use Bidnapper for eBay auctions. It assures my bid is placed in the last second - it allows me to change or cancel my bid right up till a few minutes before the end of the auction. Bidding early only serves to run it up.
That said there are a lot of things that aren't highly competitive where I do just toss a bid on it as close to closing as I can.

You can use Bidnapper for GW auctions as well but it's not as reliable. I recently had one on which my bid was never placed.
As for shill bids...yeah...no surprise. Since you place your highest bid - say $25 on a 9.99 opening bid item - if they bid $15 you'll automatically raise them. I'll bet it goes poorly for them a lot of the time.

Originally Posted by SteveH View Post
enough Screen captures of listing that "sold" then showed up again like that can be used to show criminal intent.

Yeah - but it'a hard to imagine a hard charging young assistant D.A. looking to make a name for herself choosing to put the hammer of justice down on Goodwill.

Last edited by Lew Schiller; 11-26-2013 at 08:28 AM.
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Old 11-26-2013, 08:41 AM
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This is interesting, Joe. I'd think about writing out a carefully worded letter with a few screen shots (if possible) of the "sold" items and them being relisted and send it off to HQ or at least the person in charge at your local facility?
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Old 11-26-2013, 08:55 AM
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Funny timing, my oldest DD just passed the bar!!!! (literally found out last Friday) She will be here this Saturday, I will see what she thinks of the issue....
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Old 11-26-2013, 08:58 AM
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Originally Posted by SteveH View Post
Funny timing, my oldest DD just passed the bar!!!! (literally found out last Friday) She will be here this Saturday, I will see what she thinks of the issue....
It always comes down to what the damages have been and who was harmed.
I'll be watching to see what you come back with but my bet is that unless they're also doing it on high dollar items it wouldn't be worth pursuing over a $12 SM. If anything this is one of those Channel 9 Expose kind of things.

BTW - Congratulations to her! It's my understanding that there's always good money to be made running a bankruptcy mill :-)

Last edited by Lew Schiller; 11-26-2013 at 09:02 AM.
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