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TOPIC: Sniping - Why is it such a big issue?

Sniping - Why is it such a big issue? 3 years 9 months ago #1

As a person who follows almost all the auctions on here and on eBay for tokens and a fair amount of other stuff, I am curious why there seems to be such a concern on these forums with auction sniping.

It has been around as long as auctions have existed, and honestly it adds some of the excitement to an auction.

Do I like to be sniped? No, who does, but I'm never mad at the person, just at myself.
Do I want to get a great deal on an auction? Sure, that's why I am throwing the opening 1 cent bid out there on the RoSP
Do I like losing an auction because I wasn't around for the end? No, but if it was that important to me, I would have made arrangements, or bid higher to protect myself

I say, set your auctions if you want. Call out an end time and be done. We as bidders can then decide how valuable or important it is too us.

If you are worried someone's feelings might get hurt, well don't be if you are fair and consistent, or open a store. If you do too much to limit urgency and excitement, you won't ever get those magical auctions that go way over what they are worth.

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Last edit: by Marlon Hestetune. Reason: typo

Sniping - Why is it such a big issue? 3 years 9 months ago #2

Marlon Hestetune wrote: I say, set your auctions if you want. Call out an end time and be done. We as bidders can then decide how valuable or important it is too us.

Hear hear!
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Sniping - Why is it such a big issue? 3 years 9 months ago #3

Who cares that people care?

Who cares that people care that people care?

Who cares that people care that people care that people care?

....

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Sniping - Why is it such a big issue? 3 years 9 months ago #4

Well, for one thing, we have players all over the world. I don't feel it's fair to folks in Japan and Australia to be tied to our North American clock.

And it more closely mimics an "in person" auction. The guy with the gavel doesn't say "the hammer falls in 30 seconds no matter what." S/he takes bids until people are out of steam and then stops with fair warning. That's the traditional auction that has been around for thousands of years.

So I dispute your contention that sniping has been around as long as auctions, in general. Maybe as long as eBay auctions, a couple of decades at most.

eBay has their rules, and for millions of potential bidders, they work. These forums have a few dozen bidders, and most of us are friends. So yeah, I care about hurting people's feelings. Except for the few jerks who deserve it. To quote Wilde, " a gentleman never hurts someone else's feelings by accident." :)

So I do auctions the way I want to. Everyone else is free to do them how they want. 'Merica.
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"Ceci n'est pas une pipe" - Magritte

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Sniping - Why is it such a big issue? 3 years 9 months ago #5

Marlon Hestetune wrote: As a person who follows almost all the auctions on here and on eBay for tokens and a fair amount of other stuff, I am curious why there seems to be such a concern on these forums with auction sniping.

It has been around as long as auctions have existed, and honestly it adds some of the excitement to an auction.

Do I like to be sniped? No, who does, but I'm never mad at the person, just at myself.
Do I want to get a great deal on an auction? Sure, that's why I am throwing the opening 1 cent bid out there on the RoSP
Do I like losing an auction because I wasn't around for the end? Mo, but if it was that important to me, I would have made arrangements, or bid higher to protect myself

I say, set your auctions if you want. Call out an end time and be done. We as bidders can then decide how valuable or important it is too us.

If you are worried someone's feelings might get hurt, well don't be if you are fair and consistent, or open a store. If you do too much to limit urgency and excitement, you won't ever get those magical auctions that go way over what they are worth.


I broadly agree, but a few things:

1. For auctions where the seller is extending things a day or so if late bits come in, the sellers aren't putting in automatic auction extenders to protect buyers feeling - they are doing it to get the highest price.

I don't particularly like those sorts of auctions, because I want to know when the auction ends.

2. There is an enormous difference between auctions where the price is determined by the second highest bid, and the highest bid.

For the first kind of auctions where the price is determined by the next highest bid sniping is somewhat harmless and silly (it offers some slight advantages, mostly psychological).

For some reason there has been a rash of the second sort of auction recently where:
* The price is determined by the high bid
* The amount of the high bid is publicized
* The end conditions and update frequency are nebulous

Here sniping is the only rational strategy - otherwise you either pay to much, or you ensure that you'll get outbid by the minimum increment - neither outcome is appealing.

For myself I've resolved to no longer take part in forum auctions of the second sort - as it feels more like me providing an offer to buy and then the seller shopping that offer around to see if they can get a better price before getting back to me than an "auction."


PSA to auctioneers, here are reasonable auction types:

1. Live auction, where you announce an escalating price and people signify their interest (not practical on a forum).

2. Price determined by the second highest bid, current price announced, fixed or moving end date based on bids being topped.

3. Price determined by the highest bid, bids are sealed / private. A few variations here, like each party gets only one bid, or the auctioneer announces _who_ has the winning bid, but not the bid amount.

Here is not a reasonable auction type:

1. Price determined by maximum bid, maximum bid amount announced, end criteria murky or unrealistic (for example a promise to end at a certain time but then being unable to keep the auction price updated due to a flurry of late bids).

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Sniping - Why is it such a big issue? 3 years 9 months ago #6

If you don't like getting sniped, enter a higher max bid.

Having said that, any auction I run and have run is determined by the highest bid AND the second highest bid. For example, if the high bid is $500 and the second highest is $300, the winner will pay $305, NOT $500.

So, therein having a higher max bid is useful, makes sense, doesn't automatically screw the highest bidder or second highest bidder out of more $, AND it helps prevent sniping.

EDIT: I would add that I have had times where several bidders all bid the same amount based on recent Ebay or TD Forum sales, all within the last hour or so of an auction. In that case, tie goes to the first bid. If you don't want to risk getting sniped by a bid amount tie going to the first bid, then enter a higher max bid. Again this assumes, the auction format is reasonably supporting appropriate bidding structures.

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Last edit: by CrowOfPyke.

Sniping - Why is it such a big issue? 3 years 9 months ago #7

We've bought quite a few things from a place called FastTrackAuction dot com. They support proxy bids, and auctions end 10 minutes after the last bid received. Just sayin, ebay's model isn't the only one.
barkley.neo.rr.com -->see my trade thread HERE , my eBay store HERE or my web store HERE
"Ceci n'est pas une pipe" - Magritte

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Sniping - Why is it such a big issue? 3 years 9 months ago #8

henwy wrote: Who cares that people care?

Who cares that people care that people care?

Who cares that people care that people care that people care?

....


Well, I guess I thought it was worth a conversation, and so far 5 other people have felt it worthy of jumping into.

I think I will need to see how it all plays out to answer your third question.

Good luck to you though and this whole "forum troll" persona you feel is necessary or wanted, obviously you think its working out.

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Sniping - Why is it such a big issue? 3 years 9 months ago #9

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Marlon Hestetune wrote:

henwy wrote: Who cares that people care?

Who cares that people care that people care?

Who cares that people care that people care that people care?

....


Well, I guess I thought it was worth a conversation, and so far 5 other people have felt it worthy of jumping into.

I think I will need to see how it all plays out to answer your third question.

Good luck to you though and this whole "forum troll" persona you feel is necessary or wanted, obviously you think its working out.


Thats henwy. If he didn't act that way we would be worried about his welfare. LOL!!

As to sniping? No biggie to me. When I bid I pretty much put my max bid in first. That way I don't get caught up in bid fever and keep going well over what I wanted to pay originally.
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Sniping - Why is it such a big issue? 3 years 9 months ago #10

CrowOfPyke wrote: If you don't like getting sniped, enter a higher max bid.

Having said that, any auction I run and have run is determined by the highest bid AND the second highest bid. For example, if the high bid is $500 and the second highest is $300, the winner will pay $305, NOT $500.

So, therein having a higher max bid is useful, makes sense, doesn't automatically screw the highest bidder or second highest bidder out of more $, AND it helps prevent sniping.

EDIT: I would add that I have had times where several bidders all bid the same amount based on recent Ebay or TD Forum sales, all within the last hour or so of an auction. In that case, tie goes to the first bid. If you don't want to risk getting sniped by a bid amount tie going to the first bid, then enter a higher max bid. Again this assumes, the auction format is reasonably supporting appropriate bidding structures.


That is the model I prefer. And I have no problem with someone sniping, or auctions ending at a set time. And nobody has any reason to have their feelings hurt if the auction rules were followed and someone else won the auction.

As has been mentioned several times, if you don't want to try to bid at the last second, just bid your highest amount sometime before the auction ends, and the only way a sniper can outbid you is if they are willing to pay more than you are.

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Sniping - Why is it such a big issue? 3 years 9 months ago #11

Here's a reason I don't like sniper-friendly auctions: I've bid in some, then got a message after bidding was over saying I lost, but would I bid higher? So that went on for awhile until I got too ticked off, and I don't know if I ever bid on another of that person's auctions again.

So no-sniper eliminates that game, and eliminates the crush of bids in the last five minutes that stalls the announcement of winners.

But if everyone does as you suggest, and places their max bids a day in advance knowing sniping isn't a strategy, then the auction ends on time and winners can be announced even sooner than the sniper-friendly auction. The threat of a deadline reset means that rational bidders won't trigger one, and I can send out the winners five minutes after its done.

That's the way I look at it anyway. I realize I'm probably in the minority.
barkley.neo.rr.com -->see my trade thread HERE , my eBay store HERE or my web store HERE
"Ceci n'est pas une pipe" - Magritte

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Sniping - Why is it such a big issue? 3 years 9 months ago #12

Brad Mortensen wrote: Here's a reason I don't like sniper-friendly auctions: I've bid in some, then got a message after bidding was over saying I lost, but would I bid higher? So that went on for awhile until I got too ticked off, and I don't know if I ever bid on another of that person's auctions again.


That sucks - I see that as an issue of integrity with the auction runner (unless the structure of the auction was clear to begin with - even then it's unappealing).

At some point I'd begin to question whether there were even other bidders or they were just trying to run me up and then come back with "whoops - the other guy backed out, you can have it at [last accepted bid amount]" once they hit my limit.

I'd probably announce on the auction thread that I'd been outbid at $X, and so I've withdrawn by bid - so whoever the person paying $X+1 knows that there is no offer at $X on the table any longer (at least from me).

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