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Old 06-13-2018, 11:31 AM   #1
Grid
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Default Who Remembers eBay back in the day?

Ahh, the good old days! I just saw my feedback passed 8,500 and I'm on year 15 of using their site. Who Remembers eBay back in the day?

You had to have really really wanting something to use ebay back then. No paypal! Some sellers used Western Union! Not everyone had checks to write, and not every seller accepted checks.

For those that would take a check, they would hold them for 7-10 days before shipping.

You win, you write/mail a check and the seller gets it in 3-7 days. They hold it 7-10 and ship and you are lucky if you got your stuff in a month!

Or walk down to the Post Office and use a money order. Remember when that was a thing?

I could type the words "Walter Payton" and see about 500 total listings. Now there are almost 15,000.

And not every auction even had a picture. You would buy cards or autos blind based on description if you really wanted something.
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Old 06-13-2018, 11:37 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Grid View Post
Ahh, the good old days! I just saw my feedback passed 8,500 and I'm on year 15 of using their site. Who Remembers eBay back in the day?

You had to have really really wanting something to use ebay back then. No paypal! Some sellers used Western Union! Not everyone had checks to write, and not every seller accepted checks.

For those that would take a check, they would hold them for 7-10 days before shipping.

You win, you write/mail a check and the seller gets it in 3-7 days. They hold it 7-10 and ship and you are lucky if you got your stuff in a month!

Or walk down to the Post Office and use a money order. Remember when that was a thing?

I could type the words "Walter Payton" and see about 500 total listings. Now there are almost 15,000.

And not every auction even had a picture. You would buy cards or autos blind based on description if you really wanted something.
i started using ebay quite a bit in grad school, probably 2008..... postal money orders were all i knew...... then i went over to the sports card forum and agreed on a deal, asked what address to send money order; he said paypal only. i was like, wtf is paypal? hahaha

around that same time a 98 peyton manning essential credentials /54 had been listed at 350 bin for like 6 months

looking back is a funny thing sometimes
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Old 06-13-2018, 11:40 AM   #3
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Yup Ebay and the old AOL message boards.

I once had a guy send me $100 cash from Germany. Shipped the card the next day and he had it in less than a week
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Old 06-13-2018, 11:44 AM   #4
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i started using ebay quite a bit in grad school, probably 2008..... postal money orders were all i knew...... then i went over to the sports card forum and agreed on a deal, asked what address to send money order; he said paypal only. i was like, wtf is paypal? hahaha

around that same time a 98 peyton manning essential credentials /54 had been listed at 350 bin for like 6 months

looking back is a funny thing sometimes
I held out on paypal as well! I didnt trust it. Give my bank and credit card info over to some faceless machine? As if!
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Old 06-13-2018, 11:46 AM   #5
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I joined in 2000 I think - personal checks, money orders, rarely pics in the listing. I even had to find a kid's parents and call his mom in CO when he didn't send a card I bought using a MO. Oddly enough I got a MO back in the mail within a week
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Old 06-13-2018, 11:46 AM   #6
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Don't forget about cash and Yahoo auctions. Most listings accepted "well hidden cash" which was how I paid most of the time as I was in high school. I sent cash through the mail and when selling I would get cash in the mail along with checks/mo's. I don't recall ever not receiving an item I bought. Also, cards were normally sent in a PWE and I remember buying a 1998 Topps Finest NBA set to get the Vince Carter RC. Paid $20 for it and received it in the Topps Finest box with my address written on the outside. This was from 1998 - mid 2000's, Fun times.
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Old 06-13-2018, 11:46 AM   #7
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Yup Ebay and the old AOL message boards.

I once had a guy send me $100 cash from Germany. Shipped the card the next day and he had it in less than a week
I've done it myself! Auctions would say "Concealed cash at your own risk"

I remember taping quarters and dimes inside paper and mailing those off to pay for something. Now it seems crazy that sellers would actually ship stuff out like that back then.

These days they would be like "Nope, never got the cash. Send some more and try again" as they keep pocketing free money in the mail
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Old 06-13-2018, 11:48 AM   #8
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I remember those days! I signed up for eBay in October of 1999, and I remember what PITA it was to use for a REALLY long time! I also remember getting ripped off buying a monitor from someone, them giving me the runaround for 30 days, then not responding since at the time, you couldn't leave feedback after 30 days after the transaction, and you had no recourse after that time frame. Of course, most people didn't know that, but that seller sure did! Of course, it was only my second or third transaction, so of course I didn't know about that and bought the "I'll get it shipped soon" line every time. Only time THAT'S ever happened to me and I wasn't able to get my money back, that's for sure!

Funny thing is, most of the things I was buying off eBay then were Packers cards, and lo and behold, that's what most of my purchases are now LOL
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Old 06-13-2018, 11:51 AM   #9
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Don't forget about cash and Yahoo auctions. Most listings accepted "well hidden cash" which was how I paid most of the time as I was in high school. I sent cash through the mail and when selling I would get cash in the mail along with checks/mo's. I don't recall ever not receiving an item I bought. Also, cards were normally sent in a PWE and I remember buying a 1998 Topps Finest NBA set to get the Vince Carter RC. Paid $20 for it and received it in the Topps Finest box with my address written on the outside. This was from 1998 - mid 2000's, Fun times.
Way too many scammers and fake accounts these days to get away with this stuff now.

But just like you, I cant recall ever not getting something or a buyer not paying. Check MO or cash. Always smooth!

I loved Yahoo auctions since no one actually shopped there. I was nailing steals left and right, but the pickens were slim. I remember buying a lot of $2.00 bills, uncut sheets of 4. I got 4 sheets of bills, 16 $2.00 notes with a face value of $32 for like $20 shipped before!

I cut them up and spent them, but I think I have a solid sheet somewhere still 20 years later
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Old 06-13-2018, 12:01 PM   #10
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In 2004 I bought my first 1/1 from eBay for $200. I had to get a cashiers check for the purchase and pay extra to have it courier service to have it delivered to them.

They mailed the card in PWE with numerous stamps and no tracking. All said and done, the whole transaction took well over a month to complete.
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Old 06-13-2018, 12:08 PM   #11
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Back when Paypal would give you $5 for signing up, and give you $5 for every person you signed up.
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Old 06-13-2018, 12:14 PM   #12
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I remember you could get some steals if the item didn't have a picture. I remember getting a Vince Carter Fleer Tradition Traditional Threads for like $25 when it was easily a $50+ card back then. I'd be surprised if it'd fetch $5 now.
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Old 06-13-2018, 12:23 PM   #13
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Late 90's and early 2000's is when I got my first taste of ebay. Some of the things I remember:

5% fvf under $50, 3.5% over $50

Shipping in a bubble mailer was around 60 cents.

Feedback actually mattered and most users utilized it.

Sellers could leave negative feedback to protect other sellers from scammers.

Users could see bidders names and give a heads up to them about fakes, shilling, scamming etc.

A normal transaction would take 1-3 weeks. Buyers weren't messaging you after 3 days, butt hurt that they don't have their card yet.

Back then you could spell half a name and put an * at the end to find misspellings. Got many steals that way.

Ebay's completed listings option gave you a few years worth for free.

No such thing as returning a card if the player under performed, or got injured.
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Old 06-13-2018, 12:34 PM   #14
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I started as a kid in 98, I was really into WWF and wanted to buy autographs. The ol Post Office after school was a near daily trip

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Old 06-13-2018, 12:42 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dolphinsdude View Post
Late 90's and early 2000's is when I got my first taste of ebay. Some of the things I remember:

5% fvf under $50, 3.5% over $50

Shipping in a bubble mailer was around 60 cents.

Feedback actually mattered and most users utilized it.

Sellers could leave negative feedback to protect other sellers from scammers.

Users could see bidders names and give a heads up to them about fakes, shilling, scamming etc.

A normal transaction would take 1-3 weeks. Buyers weren't messaging you after 3 days, butt hurt that they don't have their card yet.

Back then you could spell half a name and put an * at the end to find misspellings. Got many steals that way.

Ebay's completed listings option gave you a few years worth for free.

No such thing as returning a card if the player under performed, or got injured.
Preach On!

As for this:

"Users could see bidders names and give a heads up to them about fakes, shilling, scamming etc"

I'd often have other buyers message me weeks or month after I bought a card asking to buy it from me. They stumble upon it in completed sales and send a note like "Hey, I missed out on this card. I know you paid $15 for it, would you sell it to me for $30?"

The flips would actually come to you!
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Old 06-13-2018, 12:58 PM   #16
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I became a member in 1998 and was using Yahoo Auctions almost as much as eBay. Lots of money orders were used back then. I still have vivid memories of seeing very rare Peyton Manning cards on eBay for a fraction of what they sell for today. Imagine what you could get Brady Contenders, or any Brady rookies for that matter, during his rookie year? He was a scrub for a whole season with no real opportunity in sight.
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Old 06-13-2018, 01:00 PM   #17
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I became a member in 1998 and was using Yahoo Auctions almost as much as eBay. Lots of money orders were used back then. I still have vivid memories of seeing very rare Peyton Manning cards on eBay for a fraction of what they sell for today. Imagine what you could get Brady Contenders, or any Brady rookies for that matter, during his rookie year? He was a scrub for a whole season with no real opportunity in sight.
Yahoo auctions!! Holy crap, forgot about that

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Old 06-13-2018, 01:01 PM   #18
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I started selling on eBay in late 1998, so almost 20 years now.

I think I was one of the first "breakers".....buying boxes/cases of cards and selling singles to make money. No tracking back then, just sent stuff out and held my breath for 30 days. Out of every 100 cards shipped I think the average was about 3 non-receipt claims. Since I started using tracking I don't think even one package has been "lost"......one took 13 months to get where it was going, but even that one did arrive.

Fun times.....actually made a living for 8 years just breaking and selling on eBay. I know I have sold to many of you over the years.
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Old 06-13-2018, 01:03 PM   #19
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Quote:
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Preach On!

As for this:

"Users could see bidders names and give a heads up to them about fakes, shilling, scamming etc"

I'd often have other buyers message me weeks or month after I bought a card asking to buy it from me. They stumble upon it in completed sales and send a note like "Hey, I missed out on this card. I know you paid $15 for it, would you sell it to me for $30?"

The flips would actually come to you!
I did that a handful of times as well. Really miss the old ebay. Everything was out in the open. I also miss the old ebay message boards.
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Old 06-13-2018, 01:07 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by jlzinck View Post
Yup Ebay and the old AOL message boards.

I once had a guy send me $100 cash from Germany. Shipped the card the next day and he had it in less than a week
Haha, this is great
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Old 06-13-2018, 01:16 PM   #21
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One of the cool things then was sellers that took a SASE. You could get a cool 90s insert for a buck or two and a SASE.

Not sure when I joined eBay. I was interviewed by Tuff Stuff in 1999 (Manning cover issue) on eBay, and noted in the magazine as an "internet dealer." Back in those days eBay use to have a counter on the home page showing how many items where listed on the site. They use to also run free listing specials all the time, which was great since in order to list things, I had to mail eBay a check and wait for my account to get credited. One special in 1999 the eBay item count jumped really high. I noted in Tuff Stuff that basically during the specials the item count jumped greater then their market at the time could handle and a bunch of stuff would sell for nothing. The following month after the article came out, eBay removed the counter. Not sure if I was the reason.
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Old 06-13-2018, 01:21 PM   #22
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I still have a couple hundred money order tear off stubs that I wrote down what I bought on each one and it has the price printed on them. So many deals back then. Remember looking through thousands of 2000 SPX redemptions as the rookies were almost all redemptions. Got 6-7 spectrums /25 by looking at the pics as the sellers listed them as regular /2000 for steal prices. Apparently I should have just been buying Brady's. Would sit and refresh newly listed as there were always great BIN deals to be had.
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Old 06-13-2018, 01:24 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffG1954 View Post
I started selling on eBay in late 1998, so almost 20 years now.

I think I was one of the first "breakers".....buying boxes/cases of cards and selling singles to make money. No tracking back then, just sent stuff out and held my breath for 30 days. Out of every 100 cards shipped I think the average was about 3 non-receipt claims. Since I started using tracking I don't think even one package has been "lost"......one took 13 months to get where it was going, but even that one did arrive.

Fun times.....actually made a living for 8 years just breaking and selling on eBay. I know I have sold to many of you over the years.
Jeff is THE MAN. Met him on the Old AOL boards before TLR came out!!!
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Old 06-13-2018, 01:26 PM   #24
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If you are one of the Ebay old timers and wish you could go back to 2000 and buy all the Tom Brady's you could for pennies on the dollar raise your hand now.
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Old 06-13-2018, 01:32 PM   #25
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If you are one of the Ebay old timers and wish you could go back to 2000 and buy all the Tom Brady's you could for pennies on the dollar raise your hand now.


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