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Comment Re:Why is this news? (Score 1) 62

Meanwhile, as postage rates and eBay/PayPal fees keep going up, it will cease to be profitable to sell anything on eBay

I tried selling stuff in the early 2000's and the fees were too high to make a profit, I've looked at it again recently and they seem much more reasonable than they were then. I guess it's a matter of perspective.

Why is this news?

Slashdot changed their motto to "news for prosumers, stuff that never mattered" a long time ago.

eBay's final value fees for non-store accounts have been a flat 10% throughout most of this century, and store FvFs range from 4% to 9% depending on the category. Of course, they also charge the same rate on the shipping that you charge the buyer as well. At least if an otem goes outside the U.S. though, they only charge based on the lowest domestic rate shown in your listing. So if you were to ship a 10 pound parcel off to Australia, and your listing showed domestic "free" shipping, then you would not be charged anything at all on the postage the buyer paid.

And then PayPal fees on top of that are either 2.9% plus 10 cents or 5% plus 5 cents (if you have a micro payments account to use with items under $12). The standard rate seems to be on par with Etsy's Direct Checkout and the former Google Checkout (though initially GC was actually lower than PayPal...which would explain back then eBay's lies about GC not being an approved online payment due to "safety" concerns.

Comment Re:Why is this news? (Score 1) 62

You're a bit full of it. I was easily able to get Top Seller by getting rid of junk from local auctions. I was surprised at how easy it was to get it.

TRS requirements for eBay sellers...

Top Rated Seller requirements

To become a Top Rated Seller your eBay account must have been active for at least 90 days. You must also meet sales and tracking requirements and performance standards.

Sales requirements:

        You have at least 100 transactions with US buyers over the most recent 12-month period.

        You have at least $1,000 in sales with US buyers over the most recent 12-month period.

Tracking requirements:

You've uploaded valid shipment tracking to My eBay within your promised handling time for at least 90% of transactions with US buyers in the last 3 months.

And there is a 2% or lower transaction "defect" rate during your most recent evaluation period.

So yeah, it is pretty easy to get TRS if you sell regularly. I have several different selling accounts for various purposes and types of products, and most of them (except for the two non-store accounts) have received and lost TRS status several times over the years. The reason mine ever lose it is due to eBay suddenly "not showing" my listings for whatever reason even in searches where they should definitely be shown, causing me to miss the sales count requirement.

Comment Re:Hopefully better than amazon. (Score 1) 62

ebay fast and free is always faster for me than amazon prime 2 days. yet on ebay its not 99USD/year... and the products are usually cheaper on ebay.
The things i miss on ebay are ease of search and decent quality user reviews, and last but definitely not least, good customer support.

If a vendor messes stuff up on ebay changes are that you're going to have to call your bank. Amazon is the sharp opposite.

eBay's "Fast and Free" is not any sort of program that can be compared to Amazon Prime, and is really something eBay has no control over. That is just a little icon that gets put on listings that meet the requirements for Fast and Free. And if I remember right, that requirement is one day or same day handling and "free" shipping (which is simply the sellers rolling worst case scenario domestic shipping into their asking price, and calling it "free" shipping.) It is still up to the seller to get the item in the mail within their handling time, and they are still at the mercy of the carriers, whether it is USPS, UPS, FedEx, or any other.

Comment Re:Better be fast (Score 1) 62

People think that the cost of shipping something is in some way based on the cost of the item, rather than the weight and the distance. They also assume that the shipping cost per pound will be less for small packages than for big ones. Some people say, "Why can't you ship around the world for free?" People are funny.

An even bigger problem with shipping cost complaints is due to the way the USPS, eBay, and the Chinese government worked out the e-packet deal, so that shipping from China to the U.S. can be done for far far less than shipping a small package across town domestically. They think that since the Chinese can ship for "free" (not realizing that they roll their government subsidized shipping cost into their price), then domestic sellers must be ripping them off.

Comment Re:About time! (Score 1) 265

I'm a big guy and I agree with you. I think it's only fair to let the market decide. I don't fly unless I have to, if it's less than 2 days travel by car I go by car. The last flight I made was to Hawaii a 10 hour flight from Atlanta. I took some pills before the flight and slept in misery most of the flight. I spent 4 months in Hawaii, took my pills and endured the cattle car flight back. If I had to do it every day it would be a problem but I can endure a little misery occasionally. People need to toughen up a little.

I think my last flight was back around 2008 or 2009. Can't recall exactly. However, it was also to Hawaii, on board a KC-135 out of what was once McChord AFB, WA. That was probably the least comfortable flight I was ever on, or perhaps the second least comfortable. Least would have been the C-130 flight from Bagram, Afghanistan to Al Udeid, Qatar. Not only are those "cargo strap" bench seats uncomfortable, but that was one freakin' long flight for a 130 (still one of my top favorite aircraft though). At least the first leg of that trip was a little more comfortable, C-17 from Kandahar to Bagram.

Comment Re: About time! (Score 1) 265

Lol, a train through Alaska and Russia to get to western Europe...

Sure, if you want a scenic journey that takes a week.

That would be pretty freakin' awesome, actually. Of course, I would have to resist the urge to sing a certain Rush song the entire trip...

Our first stop is in Bogotà
To check Columbian fields
The natives smile and pass along
A sample of their yield

Sweet Jamaican pipe dreams
Golden Acapulco nights
Then Morocco, and the East
Fly by morning light

We're on the train to Bangkok
Aboard the Thailand Express
We'll hit the stops along the way
We only stop for the best

Wreathed in smoke in Lebanon
We burn the midnight oil
The fragrance of Afghanistan
Rewards a long day's toil

Pulling into Kathmandu
Smoke rings fill the air
Perfumed by a Nepal night
The Express gets you there

We're on the train to Bangkok
Aboard the Thailand Express
We'll hit the stops along the way
We only stop for the best

Comment Re:Why not right away? (Score 1) 168

"We're committed to providing a better ads experience for users online. As part of that, we've decided to stop supporting 30-second unskippable ads as of 2018 and focus instead on formats that work well for both users and advertisers,"

I'd like to know why they do not implement this right away. It cannot be because they do not know what works well well for both users and advertisers now.

Likely contract reasons for this. If that is the case, then they have to wait until those contracts with the affected advertisers and advertising agents are up for renegotiation and renewal. That seems like the simplest explanation.

Comment Re:Timing! (Score 1) 168

We're gonna wait 11 months just to make sure everybody is really sure this is what they want....

I suspect that nearly 1 year wait before implementing this is likely due to contract reasons with with the ad agencies. They are probably required to continue having unskippable ads on some videos until the contracts with the entities that show those types are up for renegotiation/renewal.

Comment Re:Copyright term rollback? Plead the Fifth (Score 1) 157

Under the legal theory that a term rollback is a taking, each year of the term of a subsisting exclusive right that the Congress has granted is a thing of value. Then by cutting back the "limited Times" for which the Congress has granted an exclusive right in a particular work or invention, the Congress takes "private property for public use". This would obligate the Congress to provide "just compensation", which courts have interpreted as the fair market value of the property, for each year of the remaining term.

Just give back what the MAFIAA gave to the public in exchange for the privilege of having their copyrights extended to infinity minus a day.

If they gave the public nothing of value for that privilege, then if copyrights get miraculously rolled back to something sane, they can have a huge heaping helping of nothing back in return, the exact thing they gave the public.

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