eBay fraud is big news. It does happen, of course it does, but it’s nowhere close to the sensational levels that warrant a front page expose in the Sunday Times. You can read the article here.
I certainly don’t think shill bidding is ‘widespread’. In fact, in my experience with eBay, shill bidding is not only taken very seriously as a policy infraction but the company has become much more sophisticated over the years in detecting it. Moreover, it doesn’t pay. If you shill bid and you win (as sometimes you surely will), you still have to pay the fees.
It’s annoying that an article such as this can be published without right of reply by business sellers, who rely on eBay for a living. Whipping up unbalanced fear does affect consumer confidence, it tarnishes the reputation of everyone who trades there.
I’m certainly going to write to complain about this article and strongly suggest that other eBay sellers do too. Quite simply coverage such as this is bad for my selling and shouldn’t be allowed to stand.
Oh, and another thing. To the journalists and sub editors of the Sunday Times. The past participle of ‘bid’ is also ‘bid’. It’s not ‘bidded’.