At 05:34 PM 6/11/2003 -0700, David Honig wrote:
When I buy $20 of gas with non-bearer credentials (ie, credit card),
the vendor does a real-time check on me.  Seems fair/useful to be able
to do same on them.  I suppose eBay's feedback suffices... if their
last N "feedbacks" are negative, I might go elsewhere.

we sort of tried that ... however the financial justification sort of fell apart. the big thing about BBB is being able to trust some merchant that you have absolutely no knowledge about. However, the actual buying patterns are extremely skewed ... with well over 80 percent of the transactions either repeat or with some organization that there is other avenues of trust propagation .... and involving a very small number of very large merchants. The BBB model tends to work with higher value, infrequent transaction. The remaining online, merchant market segment not covered via other trust processes, tended to represent a small percentage of total transactions, spread over a very large population of very small merchants, and frequently low value.

eBay is an attempt to provide an alternative delivery for such market segment .... and the issue is how does eBay operations break even financially on a BBB like offering. The first filter is to quickly catch major scamming operations ... and differentiate between the one-off transactions.
Anne & Lynn Wheeler
Internet trivia 20th anv

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