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      03-24-2008, 09:40 PM   #903
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SvB4EvA View Post
Again, I thought this myself when this new system started and I was totally flipping out when I saw it. Upon further reading about it on eBay I found that the letters and numbers have nothing to do with the true users-ID at all. It is TOTALLY anonymous.

Now the one thing I am thinking about is this quote."These anonymous names are used consistently across all auctions that exceed a certain level."


What exactly does "all auctions that exceed a certain level" mean? eBay doesn't specify.
I believe a user is assigned a random XandY but the user has the same XY when they bid. Anyway the feedback level is exactly the same in all of these account.
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      03-24-2008, 09:41 PM   #904
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Originally Posted by Laszlo View Post
Amazing that eBay hasn't investigated this shilling coincidence. They're probably not even aware this viral story is going on... that's how blind that company is. Zero credibility as far as I'm concerned and it only emphasizes why they're losing so much market share.
Well, all the facts are right there, and no one can stop ANY registered ebay member fromreporting his suspicion on that dealer to their system. No ONE has us sign a non-disclosure agreement. The info is out. What is the legal position on it in the USA? Can Husker / VT request / sue the site operators to take down the thread once the issue has been resolved?
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      03-24-2008, 09:42 PM   #905
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SvB4EvA View Post
I understand how that seems logical and I would agree if I didn't look into it more myself.

Here is a quote from eBay:

"Bid safely: eBay limits how your bid history information is displayed by using anonymous names. Your complete user ID is shown to the seller of this item only. Bidders are assigned anonymous names, such as x***y. These anonymous names are used consistently across all auctions that exceed a certain level.

Note: Anonymous names may appear more than once in the bid history and may represent different bidders from different auctions"


My understanding on that it even tho the same "5***i" is used. That does not mean it is the same user-ID or account.
Interesting info - thank you for posting that. The last sentence pretty much says it I think. Unfortunately there's no way to detect shill bids using bid history anymore it seems. And furthermore, there's no proof Husker was using shills.
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      03-24-2008, 09:43 PM   #906
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 0.02eurocents View Post
This link has been posted in this thread before, but I'll repost:
http://abcnews.go.com/Health/story?id=4511813&page=1
A reporter goes undercover as a car salesman and uncovers some of the dirty tactics
Worst mis-link ever...
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      03-24-2008, 09:43 PM   #907
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron21 View Post
I believe a user is assigned a random XandY but the user has the same XY when they bid. Anyway the feedback level is exactly the same in all of these account.
ahhhh... Yes. If the feedback is the exact same and the random "anon" name then something is fishy.
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      03-24-2008, 09:44 PM   #908
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I read of your plight on www.*************.com (formerly www.knightsoftheroundel.com ) and also heard the dealer may finally have seen the light. But, if not, here is the answer as the same thing happened to me, but I have been a practicing lawyer for 36 years. (This is posted on the bimmerdriver site, too, under the 3 series section.)

Quote:
Assuming the auction was truly a "no reserve" auction, the situation is governed by the Commercial Code of either California (where eBay is located) or Nebraska. In each case the applicable provision is essentially identical. (It is called the "Uniform Commercial Code" in most states – but not California – and has been adopted everywhere but Louisiana.) Here is the California version in section 2328:

Quote:
(1) In a sale by auction if goods are put up in lots each lot is the subject of a separate sale.
(2) A sale by auction is complete when the auctioneer so announces by the fall of the hammer or in other customary manner. Where a bid is made while the hammer is falling in acceptance of a prior bid the auctioneer may in his discretion reopen the bidding or declare the goods sold under the bid on which the hammer was falling.
(3) Such a sale is with reserve unless the goods are in explicit terms put up without reserve. In an auction with reserve the auctioneer may withdraw the goods at any time until he announces completion of the sale. In an auction without reserve, after the auctioneer calls for bids on an article or lot, that article or lot cannot be withdrawn unless no bid is made within a reasonable time. In either case a bidder may retract his bid until the auctioneer's announcement of completion of the sale, but a bidder's retraction does not revive any previous bid.
(4) If the auctioneer knowingly receives a bid on the seller's behalf or the seller makes or procures such a bid, and notice has not been given that liberty for such bidding is reserved, the buyer may at his option avoid the sale or take the goods at the price of the last good faith bid prior to the completion of the sale. This subdivision shall not apply to any bid at a forced sale.

Nebraska’s identically worded statue is section 328.

Note subsection (4). The last "good faith" bidder may force the sale. This means he may bring a suit and force the dealership to sell him the car. However, unless the Nebraska statute provides for attorney’s fees to the bidder, he’s going to have to pay them, too. (The California statute doesn’t provide for attorney’s fees. Under the "American Rule," such fees are generally not available absent a specific statute or a contract to the contrary.)

So, the bidder will have to sue to enforce his rights, and pay attorney’s fees. The dealership is probably counting on this, as attorney's fees can be a real barrier to litigation.

I had a case against a mid-west dealer about 4 years ago that was similar, but I had much better facts. The dealer was an authorized Mercedes-Benz and Chevrolet dealership (!). It was selling a brand new SL600 on eBay and advertising the sale as "no reserve." I bid around $108,000. Another bidder went up to around $110,000. But during the bidding a third bidder entered the process starting at $100,000 and pushed us both up, and eventually "bought" the car at $112,500. Which was still more than $35,000 below MSRP.

At that time eBay was providing full info on bidders. (No longer. It has become a sellers’ fraud paradise, partially because of what happened next.) I checked out the bidder. He had bought another car from the same dealer in another "no reserve" auction a few weeks before. Funny thing. That car was still in the dealership’s inventory. Although the eBay feedback was positive in both directions. And a little more digging caused me to find 4 other spurious transactions in the previous 3 months, involving other shill bidders and cars that were later sold to others. All the feedback on eBay was posirive and obviously phony. I complained to eBay, which of course never did a damn thing. But I wasn't finished.

Armed with this information I contacted the other unsuccessful, real bidder. I asked him if he would be willing to buy the car for $103,500 if I could get the dealer to sell it. (He was in San Diego and he also wanted an installed phone for that price and free transport. I told him I’d get that thrown in.) He agreed to buy if I could get him the car. I then wrote the dealer, and the letter was quickly turned over to the dealer’s very large lawfirm in a very large mid-western city. I laid out my case. The dealership was defrauding buyers and was liable under the federal "RICO" statutes. (Racketeer Influenced Corrupt Organization laws. In this case the dealership had committed the predicate offense of wire fraud. Numerous times. Three are the minimum to show a "pattern of racketeering activity.") The RICO statute provides for attorney’s fees and I had the dealer dead to rights. (Indeed, before I wrote the dealer I called the dealership and learned the car was still in stock, after the sale and the positive feedback. And I had a confirming email from the Internet manager for the dealership.)

Faced with this evidence of its client’s liability, the attorneys must have dealership it had no choice but to sell me the car, which I turned around and directed the dealership to sell to the guy in San Diego. And I pocketed $3500 for a few hours work.

I complained to eBay. What did it do? It started to conceal the identity of its bidders to protect its sellers.

Back to your question, Neal -- the bidder has a great case but will probably need a lawyer to file a lawsuit for him. I'd try to bring the case in California, too, since eBay's computers are in Northern California.
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      03-24-2008, 09:44 PM   #909
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkoesel View Post
Interesting info - thank you for posting that. The last sentence pretty much says it I think. Unfortunately there's no way to detect shill bids using bid history anymore it seems. And furthermore, there's no proof Husker was using shills.
"Bidders are assigned anonymous names, such as x***y. These anonymous names are used consistently across all auctions that exceed a certain level."

Meaning if I'm assigned R*****1 then every time i bid my id is R****1, so you can still see if it is the same bidder. At least thats the way I understand it.

Also what is the chance that someone with the exact same feedback level gets assigned the exact same XY combination and bids on this dealers auction...
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      03-24-2008, 09:48 PM   #910
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SvB4EvA View Post
ahhhh... Yes. If the feedback is the exact same and the random "anon" name then something is fishy.
Wow, you are right - can't believe I did not see that either. So then, apparently the hidden name does stay the same for each user once it is assigned? Ebay should clarify this better, its not very clear.

Also, if this is true, then the system is lame as far as protecting identity since once someone knows your code-name (such as the seller of an item you bid on), they can still identify you. Poor engineering IMHO.
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      03-24-2008, 09:48 PM   #911
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkoesel View Post
Interesting info - thank you for posting that. The last sentence pretty much says it I think. Unfortunately there's no way to detect shill bids using bid history anymore it seems. And furthermore, there's no proof Husker was using shills.
Agree...i just spent five minutes in my ebay account looking at past sales...only the winning bidder real name is listed...all of the others are in the X****Y format...

I have overstated the case for shill bidding and criminal activity...this is one topic best left for ebay...
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      03-24-2008, 09:49 PM   #912
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron21 View Post
"Bidders are assigned anonymous names, such as x***y. These anonymous names are used consistently across all auctions that exceed a certain level."

Meaning if I'm assigned R*****1 then every time i bid my id is R****1, so you can still see if it is the same bidder. At least thats the way I understand it.

Also what is the chance that someone with the exact same feedback level gets assigned the exact same XY combination and bids on this dealers auction...
Correct, but only that one auction. If you goto another auction your anon name may change to l***3 and then that name will be the same for that auction.

Point being, if you see a "2***h" name bidding on a pair of socks and then see a "2***h" bidding on a diamond ring, it does NOT mean that it is the same person.
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      03-24-2008, 09:50 PM   #913
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OMG BMW of Lincoln r so pwned and all for 6k may they rot in hell!
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      03-24-2008, 09:51 PM   #914
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkoesel View Post
Wow, you are right - can't believe I did not see that either. So then, apparently the hidden name does stay the same for each user once it is assigned? Ebay should clarify this better, its not very clear.

Also, if this is true, then the system is lame as far as protecting identity since once someone knows your code-name (such as the seller of an item you bid on), they can still identify you. Poor engineering IMHO.
Read my above post ^^

Note: Anonymous names may appear more than once in the bid history and may represent different bidders from different auctions.
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      03-24-2008, 09:53 PM   #915
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Originally Posted by JerseyBeemer View Post
Worst mis-link ever...
+1
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      03-24-2008, 09:55 PM   #916
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SvB4EvA View Post
Correct, but only that one auction. If you goto another auction your anon name may change to l***3 and then that name will be the same for that auction.

Point being, if you see a "2***h" name bidding on a pair of socks and then see a "2***h" bidding on a diamond ring, it does NOT mean that it is the same person.
But if that is true - then it still does not explain the fact that the feedback counts match. What's the chances of two different people getting assigned the same codename, and those people also have the same feedback count? The only way it makes sense if if Ebay also obscures the feedback count - i.e. its just a random number, and that same feedback count always goes with that same randomly assigned codename.
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      03-24-2008, 09:56 PM   #917
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SvB4EvA View Post
Correct, but only that one auction. If you goto another auction your anon name may change to l***3 and then that name will be the same for that auction.

Point being, if you see a "2***h" name bidding on a pair of socks and then see a "2***h" bidding on a diamond ring, it does NOT mean that it is the same person.
Yea but then if you click on the user name it will tell you if the bidder is bidding on multiple auctions of the same seller.

http://offer.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.d...chOogy5Zook%3D

Seller 1 appears 3 times in the past 30 days, meaning this bidder bid on 3 different auction of this one seller in the past 30 days.

Maybe that person is buying multiple cars? Unlikely in my opinion but who knows..
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      03-24-2008, 09:56 PM   #918
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The only way to ascertain shill bidding these days on eBay, which changed its procedures as I indicated in my lengthy post, above, is to see if the car that was "sold" and lead to positive feedback returns to the dealer's inventory.

eBay has made it almost impossible for buyers to get a fair shake, but this buyer, if he has all his screenshots, should soon be the owner of an M3 at $60K or less, since the Nebraska Commercial Code provisions on no reserve auctions as applied to his case give him a right to the car at the last (and only) "good faith bid" -- his. And if he can demonstrate this dealer is a repeat offender, he's got a RICO case, too.

But this is something that requires a sophisticated approach and a really good lawyer to pursue. On the other hand, the bad publicity appears to have been very helpful, too.

In my case, posted above, I got the car for $10K less than my last bid, since the last "good faith bid" would have been closer to $100K had the shill not distorted the bidding process, and the dealer was a repeat fraudster.

Good luck Dooma.
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      03-24-2008, 09:58 PM   #919
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JerseyBeemer View Post
Worst mis-link ever...
Fixed in the original post, sorry.

Again, here is the correct link:

http://www.edmunds.com/advice/buying...ge001.html?new
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      03-24-2008, 09:59 PM   #920
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SvB4EvA View Post
Read my above post ^^

Note: Anonymous names may appear more than once in the bid history and may represent different bidders from different auctions.
Right that's the statement that I mentioned a few posts back that seemed to kill any chance of detecting shills.

But then the topic of feedback count came up and muddied the waters again.

Its all a bit confusing and ambiguous.
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      03-24-2008, 10:03 PM   #921
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkoesel View Post
Right that's the statement that I mentioned a few posts back that seemed to kill any chance of detecting shills.

But then the topic of feedback count came up and muddied the waters again.

Its all a bit confusing and ambiguous.
They (ebay) really did make it difficult for ordinary ebayers to detect fraud..
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      03-24-2008, 10:03 PM   #922
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkoesel View Post
But if that is true - then it still does not explain the fact that the feedback counts match. What's the chances of two different people getting assigned the same codename, and those people also have the same feedback count? The only way it makes sense if if Ebay also obscures the feedback count - i.e. its just a random number, and that same feedback count always goes with that same randomly assigned codename.
Yea, I agree with the feedback count. There is nothing I have found on eBay that states that it is masked or changed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron21 View Post
Yea but then if you click on the user name it will tell you if the bidder is bidding on multiple auctions of the same seller.

http://offer.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.d...chOogy5Zook%3D

Seller 1 appears 3 times in the past 30 days, meaning this bidder bid on 3 different auction of this one seller in the past 30 days.

Maybe that person is buying multiple cars? Unlikely in my opinion but who knows..
Yea, who knows is right. Buying multiple cars, unlikely, but not totally out of the question.

I do not know the inner workings of eBay and I am no expert. I simply just am trying to figure it out with you guys. I just hope that eBay has some type of system that can track and keep an eye on possible criminals on their site. Because shill bidders, IMO, are just that, CRIMINALS!
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      03-24-2008, 10:04 PM   #923
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Originally Posted by mkoesel View Post
Wow, you are right - can't believe I did not see that either. So then, apparently the hidden name does stay the same for each user once it is assigned? Ebay should clarify this better, its not very clear.

Also, if this is true, then the system is lame as far as protecting identity since once someone knows your code-name (such as the seller of an item you bid on), they can still identify you. Poor engineering IMHO.
Here is an more in-depth explanation on the system:

http://groups.google.com.au/group/al...dc33d?lnk=raot

Also, a very informative post on how to spot shill bidding by other means:
http://www.ukauctionhelp.co.uk/shill.php
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      03-24-2008, 10:06 PM   #924
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron21 View Post
Yea but then if you click on the user name it will tell you if the bidder is bidding on multiple auctions of the same seller.

http://offer.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.d...chOogy5Zook%3D

Seller 1 appears 3 times in the past 30 days, meaning this bidder bid on 3 different auction of this one seller in the past 30 days.

Maybe that person is buying multiple cars? Unlikely in my opinion but who knows..
Sh*t, your're right. What's more, you can just click on the same seller name "r***c" for each of the auctions in the list and see that its clearly the same person based on 30 day bid history. So it seems like a lock to me - "r***c" is verifiably the same person, bidding on three seperate husker auctions. Shill? Not guaranteed, but it seems quite probable.
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