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Google vs. eBay/PayPal

Zonk posted more than 8 years ago | from the ready-fight dept.

197

That's Unpossible! writes "Google has today made a small announcement on their blog which could shake up the landscape of buying things online : they are going to start allowing certain parties to sell items through Google Base, which people can buy using credit cards linked to their Google Account. According to another blog post, Google already accepts payments in this fashion for Google Video, Google Earth, Google Store, etc. How long until Google Base is directly competing with eBay? The framework is now in place."

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This is nice but... (4, Insightful)

Acid-Duck (228035) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799812)

Don't forget that eBay already has a HUGE customer-base established, in addition to having some odd categories which I never thought would get any attention but looking at the listings there's quite a few items already :P Not to mention that thanks to goldenpalace's advertisement stunts (ie: buying odd objects off eBay for exorbitent prices) eBay already got a pretty good spotlight on TV. Two things to keep in mind here:

- When buying the shop that has lots of selection will hold lower prices
- As a seller, I'm looking to get maximum exposure when I sell something.

Those two factors, I believe, will give google a pretty good run.

Erik

Re:This is nice but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14799821)

At the very least it will make ebay a better place! ;)

Re:This is nice but... (5, Interesting)

bigman2003 (671309) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799833)

A few years ago, there were many announcements about Microsoft getting into different businesses:

Microsoft getting into the business financial software space
Microsoft getting into XXXX space

And the world thought the sky was falling, and Microsoft was going to take over everything and nobody else had a chance.

Ended up not being true. Away from their core businesses, Microsoft ended up being 'just another competitor'.

Will Google get away from their core, and have they same thing happen? Can the magic last?

eBay is very well entrenched...

Re:This is nice but... (1)

repruhsent (672799) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799902)

Microsoft getting into XXXX space

Wow! Microsoft sells PORN now? No wonder I'm sticking with Windows.

Re:This is nice but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14800000)

Sticking?? :X

Re:This is nice but... (2, Interesting)

Paradise Pete (33184) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800018)

Sure, but ebay is pretty crappy. One big weakness (among many) is its search capabilities. I'm guessing Google could do that part a bit better.

Re:This is nice but... (3, Interesting)

stevesliva (648202) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800355)

Google's trying to become the next Microsoft by opening up their APIs to web developers for free, and more importantly, ASAP. They want to be the web platform the same way that MS became the desktop platform by providing a number of bundled applications and cheap SDKs. The larger the base of established sites using Google services, the better for them. Google's differentiator seems to be providing the content along with the services. Its competitors offer the content and services ala carte.

In five years will google APIs be as ingrained in your average website as windows is ingrained in your average desktop application? Google will continue to provide the framework for that to happen, ASAP. Think of it as Windows 3.0, with 3.1 coming soon. Unless wikipedia suddenly morphs into free maps and free storefronts and free classifieds and free file hosting and free email and free search, I don't see an open alternative to Google's free--as in beer-- content. You can mock the betas the same way people mocked early versions of Windows, but have no doubt that now as then, developers will use what is cheap and easy and available. It doesn't matter if it's coming out of Mountain View or Redmond as long as it pays the rent. Moral qualms are for Stallman.

Re:This is nice but... (2, Interesting)

Alex P Keaton in da (882660) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799856)

Yes, but keep in mind that the reason people use Ebay isn't because it is the best as far as service/experience, but because it is the biggest. You can try and sell your stuff on one of the other auction sites, but no one will see it.
I would welcome a service where I could sell my stuff that was better than ebay. Keep in mind that there are a ton of services (be it a kitchen remodeling company or a restaurant in your town) that are ripe to be smashed by someone who comes in with a new business and provides better service...

Re:This is nice but... (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799960)

Until reality kicks in.

Many Ebay Newbies looking for high dollar items get scammed. Almost all of the products that are very popular and expensive are at an amazing scammer to legit ratio. Simply look at items like the Canon XL1/XL2 most of those with really good prices are scammers (I know I spend months going through auctions I won tryin to get a camera... Most claim thay are out of the states and I need to send them CASH or wire funds to a friend in germany and refuse to use an escrow service.)

Ebay needs to clean up the place. Lots of hacked accounts, lots of scammers making sellers with a rating of 50 really suspect, it's a mess.

If Google offer's something that has real accountability behind it they can steal Ebay's steam very quickly.
 

customers, yes, but they aren't happy. (1)

jasonhamilton (673330) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800037)

Ebay has a huge userbase, but they have a lot of unhappy customers. When combined with the number of people who have been screwed over due to paypal issues, rising ebay fees, I don't think it's too far off base to discount google.

Consider that only a few years ago no one thought much of google and altavista was king.

Many dislike ebay, but have no alternative that has nearly as many users. google not only has the name brand, but the search engine - one that even ebay uses to draw in users.

Re:This is nice but... (1)

mytrip (940886) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800046)

Dont forget that ebay charges seller fees and there is a lot of stuff on ebay that goes unsold. I think google is going to do well here. Never underestimate the power of free listings.

Re:This is nice but... (1)

payback451 (867372) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800508)

Oh contraire; everything IS in place. And Google doesn't already have a HUGE customer base? I'm willing to bet its damn bigger than ebays. Granted, they arent paying customers, but the consumers are there and waiting. As far as advertisement stunts, that's laughable to. How many articles do we see posted about Google every day? I see FAR more articles about Google then I see about ebay and paypal combined, in a year.

I assume (4, Insightful)

Michalson (638911) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799820)

That the service is going to be a Beta?

Re:I assume (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14799831)

Yes - you'll be able to pay in full but until we add more capacity only a subset of users will be able to download.

Re:I assume (1)

chillmost (648301) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799932)

Yes! Beta is the new 1.0

Re:I assume (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14800211)

Why wouldn't they? It's the perfect scapegoat:

Q-Customer: I was charged too much! A 'hacker' broke into my account! I never received my money!
A-Google: It's in beta so chill. Also, we're not evil so your missing money is going to a good cause.

Allocation (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14799822)

UNDERWEAR!

whats the framework? (2, Insightful)

cycledance (812080) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799824)

the internet? the google name? id love a big competitor to ebay...but its not THAT easy...

why is ebay singled out? (3, Interesting)

DarkClown (7673) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799829)

Failing to see how ebay is specifically singled out here.
It does give folks another avenue that the ebay 'buy-it-now' provides, but there isn't anything within the google framework that does the auction thing.
I mean, amazon provides the flea market thing as well...

Re:why is ebay singled out? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14799889)

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Re:why is ebay singled out? (4, Informative)

Acid-Duck (228035) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799896)

If you've looked at eBay, there is more then just the buy-it-now auction type. There are multiple auction types [ebay.com] depending on what type of items you're selling. As far as eBay being singled out, I admit there are other auction sites which are probably doing as good, but none of them are as well known to common luser as eBay. Now think about searchh engines... Doesn't Google feel that same type of way? even ppl who don't own computers know what google is. That's called visibility. Google going in the business of running an auction site, it has alot of visibility compared to other auction sites competing with eBay, not because it's better established (it's not even open yet, no customer-base) but because they're already getting lots of visits at their page b/c of their search engine services.

The conclusion is that you can offer the best product in the world but if you have no visibility to your target audience, you won't sell.

Erik

Risky move (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14799832)


eBay combined with Paypal currently is a fraudsters dream, its the worlds number 1 place to buy stolen (from burglary,robberys) merchandise and fake/counterfit goods, eBay try to keep a handle on it but with the shere size of the userbase and cashflow the incentive to crack down isnt really there and is probably impossible to stop,

iam suprised that the Police/FBI havent shut them down a long time ago for aiding and abetting, i guess that lobby money talks again

Re:Risky move (2, Insightful)

bubkus_jones (561139) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800246)

Shut ebay down because of illegitimate auctions? What's next, shutting down the internet because it helps terrorists build weapons?

No, they can not and will not do that. There is too much of a legitimate userbase for ebay, and too many people around the world (because, as you should know, ebay is available in many countries as a subsite tailored to that specific country, featuring auctions by people in those countries) who use it daily.

Besides, if they did shut it down, another would pop up to take it's place, much like the P2P programs/networks.

Re:Bullshit FUD (2, Insightful)

jasonditz (597385) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800371)

there's no more legal basis for shutting eBay down because of that than there is shutting down a public school because some of the kids sell drugs in the hallways, or shutting down a Walgreens because the guy in the Santa Claus suit out front isn't really from the Salvation Army.

I, for one (seriously) (2, Informative)

coaxeus (911103) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799834)

I, for one, welcome our new google overlords. Really. I was perfectly happy with paypal (aside from obsurd fees) until I had to dispute anything or required their customer service for anything. Paypal/Ebay is a nightmare to deal with, and will screw you over if anything anywhere in their pages and pages of small legal print says they can (it probably does in almost every situation). I'm right onboard with http://www.paypalsucks.com/ [paypalsucks.com] now.

Re:I, for one (seriously) (4, Interesting)

bigman2003 (671309) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799860)

I got screwed over by PayPal.

I sold something on eBay, and opted to print out a UPS label, and pay for the shipping directly through their PayPal system. Started the process and everything was fine, I paid for it, and only needed to print the label out.

Crap! I didn't have the right kind of paper (I wanted to use label material) so I had to go find some in my wife's office.

By the time I got back, my session had timed out. I went back to my original eBay item, and followed the same process. Thinking that it would register as the same shipping/payment. Wrong, it charged me again.

Okay...fine, I'll just cancel the first one.

Can't cancel a shipping payment until UPS receives the electronic statement from PayPal. Okay, I'll check back the next day.

Whoops- can't cancel a shipping payment after 24 hours have passed.

eBay customer service did ONE thing for me when I contacted them about this. They confirmed that I was screwed.

$46 down the drain because their sessions time out too quickly. Fuck them...

Re:I, for one (seriously) (1)

wfberg (24378) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799884)

Can't you bill them for the amount? Plus consultancy fees for time lost calling their reps? And if they don't pay, send a collection agency? (This is a serious question, any legal buffs?)

Re:I, for one (seriously) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14800031)

Can't you bill them for the amount? Plus consultancy fees for time lost calling their reps?

Of course. Triple damages. The only mistake made was not buying the same thing a few more times. Think of how much he could have made! Nine times! twenty-seven! The sky's the limit!

Re:I, for one (seriously) (1)

coaxeus (911103) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799900)

I'd been using paypal for years without issue aside from big fees, but recently I think fraud and scammers has really picked up on Ebay - and combined with paypal's policies is a really efficient system for screwing people out of money. Myself and several others I know personally have ran into cases of buying things on Ebay, paying with paypal right away as usual.. and just over a month later when the thing hasn't shown up yet, attempted to file the item not received within Ebay, or attempted to dipute the paypal payment and have it refunded - only to find they both have a policy of doing absolutely nothing after 40 days. I'm in Canada, and a lot of items ship from the states - taking 2 months to get through customs is not abnormal, so waiting 40 days isn't an unusual thing to do, especially when the seller is repeatedly assuring you the item is on it's way. I guess we just have to be less trusting of people and cancel right away if a waybill tracking number isn't provided. People I know are part of a large community of people who buy and sell custom jewelry, they always pay each other up front with paypal before the jewelry is crafted, which takes some time. Because of paypal's 40 day policy (which was unknown to any of them) a few scam artists have ripped them off hundreds of dollars. I think the policy to not do anything about fraud (seriously, they just say "too bad") if just over a month has passed since payment is silly, and scammers are starting to be more and more aware of this policy and are using it to rip people off.

Re:I, for one (seriously) (1)

Comatose51 (687974) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800139)

"eBay customer service did ONE thing for me when I contacted them about this. They confirmed that I was screwed."

That kind of response is actually very common when a company has no real competition or perceives of having no competition. Maybe this little shake-up will give them motivations to be more helpful.

Re:I, for one (seriously) (1)

krunk4ever (856261) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800170)

For me, I never keep any money in my paypal account. If I need to send a non-cc payment, it comes from my bank account. Anything else gets paid by credit card.

I'm curious though, did you try calling UPS again to cancel the shipment. Since no package was ever shipped, they should be able to cancel and refund the shipping to Paypal. Do remember to get their name and a reference number to the transaction. Paypal will be getting money back and you should be able to call paypal and say now that UPS has refunded the shipping charge, you should be getting your money back, or else that'd be theft since Paypal is now holding money that you never gave them.

Another tip you may find useful is a PDF Printer. I always print my receipts and shipping labels onto PDF first. Now i have a digital copy I can print as many times as I want onto whatever paper.

Re:I, for one (seriously) (2, Informative)

TheLink (130905) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800453)

There are very good reasons for sessions to time out. How long did you take?

The transaction was probably deemed to have completed the moment the "label" was displayed on your screen.

So you should have just printed it out anyway. Print to a file or print to an actual A4. You can then either print to the real label later, or photocopy to the real label depending on whether you do the former or latter.

Or save the page to print it out later (which is why javascript or flash tends to suck for this sort of thing - you may not be able to print the stuff properly).

Re:I, for one (seriously) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14800193)

I love that site, especially when they "quote" from the PayPal UA, you then actually look in the UA and can't find anything which they have quoted.

Hereby I welcome.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14799838)

The Google overlords....

Not really, competition for Paypal is okay, but why do it have to be Google again. I even prefer Microsoft handling my financial transactions over Google. They are less scary, you know exactly what there plans are.

They will do it (1)

RedHatLinux (453603) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799839)

when they can make more money from it, than they currently make from Ebay's ads.

Oh Noes! (1)

cubicledrone (681598) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799859)

It's competition! Time to announce layoffs!

Focus... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14799861)

It seems that Google is doing a Microsoft in trying to get a foot into all lines of businesses. How about focusing on just a limited set of product lines and do them good?

I'm sure some Google fan will defend Google and say that they're not the same as Microsoft... Well, sorry for saying... the similiarities are there, not only in focus, but in ethics.

g-pay? (1)

musonica (949257) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799864)

It makes a lot of sense that google move more into online payment payment services, theres a huge amount of money to be made in trustworthy and simple e-cash transactions. It will also be interesting to see how this plays out in regards to people sellling software and services... I would expect this to do tremendously well and competition will make this much better for consumers!

Google is not evil (1, Interesting)

it0 (567968) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799866)

But too big = evil! first rockefeller then at&t, ibm, microsoft, etc.
So is google too big, yes but what does that mean?
Apparently they are so big, that when they do something in a certain market, all the other players are instantly obliterated. No this does not always happen, although this is what people think and expect I guess, basicly everyone is waiting for google to become evil, which is wierd.

In the end competition is good as long as there will remain competition.

Re:Google is not evil (1)

dfgchgfxrjtdhgh.jjhv (951946) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800148)

the primary aim of any company is to maximise profits. the best way to maximise profits in the medium to long term is to gain a monopoloy.

all other aims are secondary.

Test it thuroughly! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14799868)

otherwise "All your base are belong to us!"

Competition is a Good Thing (4, Insightful)

tezza (539307) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799877)

The old arguments for Competition in the Marketplace can come out.

* Drive to innovate
* Prices closer to the actual cost of the service
* External Innovators can become suppliers as the companies get creative to win market share.

This is a good thing (3, Insightful)

Sima (148367) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799881)

Considering how unresponsive Paypal is and how much of a maze Ebay tries to be, when you try to contact their customer support, this can only be a good thing.

Maybe this move will force them to stop acting so arrogantly towards us, their customers. And try to provide some actual customer support.

Re:This is a good thing (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799997)

Competition is a good thing, when the competitors are on even ground. If you have 2 roughly equal companies competing for customers, the customer wins.

It changes completely when a company pushes into the market of another company while having a more or less monopoly in their original market area.

Take Microsoft as an example. They do have a (more or less) monopoly in the commercial OS market. So when they decide to push into another market, they can afford to undercut their competitor, even going under their cost of service. They can subsidy their new leg with the revenue from the OS income (where they can virtually charge whatever they want, people WILL buy it).

It's an old strategy. Many corporations do that. And Google is about to reach this state. Whether Google is "evil" will be decided on the grounds they decide to "fight" their competitors. Are they going to offer "free EBay/Paypal" and subsidy the takeover with the revenue from other branches, or are they going to compete fairly?

Anyone who knows how the market works also knows the answer.

All your base is overly broad (2, Interesting)

CGP314 (672613) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799886)

I don't quite get what google base is. From reading the FAQ this is part of google's plan to organize all the worlds information -- but sometime we need a bit more structure than that. I sell my photos on ebay [ebay.co.uk] and would love to be able to use a different service as payments to ebay are death by 1,000 cuts. But, are people really going to look for photos of London in the same place they'd try and find recipes and free web hosting?

Re:All your base is overly broad (1)

Urza9814 (883915) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800043)

"are people really going to look for photos of London in the same place they'd try and find recipes and free web hosting?"

Um...that's what google is. That's what ALL of google is. One place to find anything you're looking for. So yes, yes they will. Where else would they look?

Re:All your base is overly broad (2, Insightful)

generic-man (33649) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800465)

If I want to buy something, Google web search is useless ("Find prices and read reviews for WHATEVER YOU SEARCHED FOR" 1,000 times over, each page exactly the same as the last) and Froogle is sometimes helpful. Google claims not to make any money off Froogle though. If Google started handling payments they'd have a piece of the action. Yahoo! has had storefronts for years, eBay has a huge customer base already, and PayPal (since acquired by eBay) handles money for any sort of person-to-person purchase -- auction or otherwise.

Attract sellers (3, Insightful)

HangingChad (677530) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799890)

How long until Google Base is directly competing with eBay? The framework is now in place.

If Google treats sellers well, they'll be jumping ship from eBay in packs. I'm guessing eBay will lighten up on their sellers and the new equilibrium will be sellers using both services.

Competition is a good thing. More outlets for sellers is more business, also a good thing. I'd use Google before Amazon.

PayPal have dug their own grave... (3, Interesting)

Manip (656104) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799891)

PayPal has lost so much goodwill, and annoying so many people that frankly I think people would move to a replacement if it was half-decent. Google need to look at what PayPal did right (simplicity, flexible, secure) and what PayPal did wrong (bad policy, account locking, 'random' charge-backs, poor complaints system, in escrow service).

I must admit, however, that having my personal information (name, CC, address) linked to my search queries seems like a profoundly bad idea... Even if that is still technically possible with my ISP I don't think they care enough, or it is in their best interests to do so. Google on the other hand...

Re:PayPal have dug their own grave... (1)

dfgchgfxrjtdhgh.jjhv (951946) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800163)

im glad im not the only person that doesnt want to hand over credit card details & personal information (other than ip) to google

It's about time.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14799898)

.. someone like Google came along and invented buying and selling online. With their new Pages service they even let people create their own pages and display them on the web!! How would the web move forward without such innovators when all the others are just copying?

not just the user base (1)

Bizzeh (851225) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799913)

its not just the user base that ebay has, its also the reputation, and the name "ebay" which everyone knows, even if you dont have a computer, you know ebay. in general, only people who know computers know google.

Re:not just the user base (1)

nx (194271) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800069)

Wha? I don't believe this at all. Do you have anything to back that claim up?

If anything, Google is probably more recognizable to people in general. They are, at least, to ad execs. [zdnet.com]

Re:not just the user base (1)

BluhDeBluh (805090) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800327)

When your key, and only, audience is computer-literate people, I sincerely doubt that the eBay brand is much stronger than the Google brand, and as soon as Google announce something it automatically get hundreds of thousands. Whatsmore, competition is a good thing. eBay has a virtual monopoly on auctions and electronic payments at the moment, and as such has happily added extremely (almost unreasonably high) fees. If Google becomes legitimate competition, eBay are going to have to do something about it.

Froogle! (1)

Why Login (923394) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799920)

If Google Base is tied with Froogle then here is your buyers' attraction. Looking for a great deal on Froogle? Here you go - check out our low prices at Gooble Base!

ebay's success (1)

danimrich (584138) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799929)

ebay's success did not really come because it is well designed, but rather because so many people are using it. Whether Google manages to attract a sufficiently large number of buyers and sellers remains to be seen. It might be a good tactical thing that Google allows people to post their ebay offers in Google base.

Expanding to fast (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14799942)

Google is expanding into too many markets too fast. At this rate they will put themselves out of business. It's like walking into a pack a wolves with a steak tied around your neck. Just plain not smart.

Waiting for Google Store (1)

JSDopefish (742020) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799943)

If Google ever does a storefront like Yahoo has with their Yahoo shopping, I'm there in a heartbeat. My company has had some major issues with Yahoo store over the years, and while it mostly is fine, there's some irritating things it does that they have no intention on fixing (which is obvious after a few years of complaining).

Google seems to be headed towards this path, they just can't get there fast enough for me.

well that'd be a good start (2, Insightful)

Danzigism (881294) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799948)

somebody needs to smash ebay thats for sure.. its a wonderful thing, but they've been screwing their customers for far too long.. prices have increased, making it nearly impossible to make a profit.. I sell historical documents, and business has been gradually decreasing over the past 4 years.. Autographs in particular, you could buy a autographed photos from hollywood actors at real auctions for anywhere between $100-$5,000... The same photo you bought for $100, could be found on ebay for $10... and why is that?? Because the seller's need to drop their prices that low, because they think nobody's buying their stuff.. When in actuality, Ebay is very very very inconsistent when it comes to sales.. If you get a nice Marlon Brando signed photo, and you post it up for auction on Ebay, how do you expect every die-hard Marlon Brando fan to be on Ebay at that particular point in time?? They won't be.. And thats the problem..

in my personal opinion, Ebay has ruined the excitement from real live auctions.. but Google on the other hand.. I have a feeling that one day, Google will be one of the first things all people do in the morning.. like checking your email or the news.. a daily process.. And what if they started doing auctions?? Well just imagine having Google Alerts for auctions.. You could have a message in your Inbox saying, "Hey, some guy just put up a Marlon Brando signed photograph.. Click here to BID now".. and my problem would be solved...

Re:well that'd be a good start (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14800036)

Yahoo!'s auctions already support email alerts based on keywords, so that would not be anything new...

An alternative to PayPal would be very welcome (2, Informative)

Elad Alon (835764) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799949)

Does anyone have any idea why Paypal wouldn't let me reset my account by e-mailing them scans of certain documents, requiring me to fax it to them instead? This is one reason why I may be switching to GooglePay - I'm not opening a new e-mail account so I can have a new PayPal account. I didn't forget my PayPal password, I just couldn't remember which of my many passwords it was, and I got locked out before I could guess the right one. Another e-mail account, another PayPal account - this will just get worse. So I'm kissing PayPal goodbye. Hey, I was a good customer for a long time, why wouldn't they just let me open a second account with the same e-mail? Only two accounts, clean history on the first - what's the problem? Also, their call center... Having to say out loud "yes/no" to a machine that somehow fails to get it, instead of the good tried-and-true method of pressing a button - what's the big idea? Couldn't you at least provide both options? Man, that thing hung up on me about five times, and they were all international calls. Also, I don't mind them outsourcing their call center to India, not being an American myself, but only when they can find people with clear enough accents, as far as their average customer is concerned. International call to the USA, then through not-broad-enough-band VoIP to India, then an unfamiliar accent... uncomfortable. (I actually love the Indian accent, but it's hard for me to understand what's being said.)

Re:An alternative to PayPal would be very welcome (1)

Elad Alon (835764) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799951)

Crap. OK, here it is with the br-s:

Does anyone have any idea why Paypal wouldn't let me reset my account by e-mailing them scans of certain documents, requiring me to fax it to them instead? This is one reason why I may be switching to GooglePay - I'm not opening a new e-mail account so I can have a new PayPal account. I didn't forget my PayPal password, I just couldn't remember which of my many passwords it was, and I got locked out before I could guess the right one. Another e-mail account, another PayPal account - this will just get worse.

So I'm kissing PayPal goodbye. Hey, I was a good customer for a long time, why wouldn't they just let me open a second account with the same e-mail? Only two accounts, clean history on the first - what's the problem?

Also, their call center... Having to say out loud "yes/no" to a machine that somehow fails to get it, instead of the good tried-and-true method of pressing a button - what's the big idea? Couldn't you at least provide both options? Man, that thing hung up on me about five times, and they were all international calls. Also, I don't mind them outsourcing their call center to India, not being an American myself, but only when they can find people with clear enough accents, as far as their average customer is concerned. International call to the USA, then through not-broad-enough-band VoIP to India, then an unfamiliar accent... uncomfortable.

(I actually love the Indian accent, but it's hard for me to understand what's being said.)

Re:An alternative to PayPal would be very welcome (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14800222)

Why can't you have another account with the same email address? Um the answer is obvious, because they identify you by your EMAIL ADDRESS. It's the same reasion why you can't have another credit card account using the same CC NUMBER.

Re:An alternative to PayPal would be very welcome (1)

Elad Alon (835764) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800277)

Easily solvable, but yes, that's probably it. I'm a bit embarrassed about not having thought of it myself. Thanks, though there was no need for shouting. And I still don't see how faxing them the information is better than just e-mailing or snail-mailing it to them.

sounds great (1)

Gnaythan1 (214245) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799974)

but will they do micropayments?

countdown to the Googopoly: (4, Funny)

Hosiah (849792) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799982)

Omens that have yet to pass:

Google Dollars: trade one-to-one with US currency a la Disney Dollars
Google History: send actual wireless webcams back in time and space to search history
Google Genes: pick your baby's DNA from Google's wide base of genetic data. Google Cyber-Implants: when you're *really* assimilated! Have the power of Google searches on tap in your own brain. Win every trivia game show. Ace every test. View porn just by thinking about it.

Re:countdown to the Googopoly: (1)

Pac727 (957172) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800082)

Actually the last item ("View porn just by thinking about it") is already possible... using special software called "Mind's Eye"... Using Mind's Eye you can view any image you can think of! Of course it doesn't have to be porn... you can view anything you can think up... it is *really* amazing! :-)

Poppycock (4, Interesting)

altheusthethief (918055) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799985)

eBay is of the main advertisers on Google, they bought over 600,000 keywords last year alone. eBay doesnt have enough static pages for Google to index it properly so this is a nesscessary evil. Without eBay's support of Google, you're taking a loss of about 10M+. That's a pretty big hand to bite.

eBay has traditionally always had competition, and if anything this only helped it grow even larger. Look at Yahoo and Amazon, they couldn't even take it. The fact is that eBay is a differenet company now, than before. It's shifted it's focus from being an "auction" site, to being a marketplace.

Google is a great speculator, and it really has to be with the way it's stock is. A tighter integration of eBay and Google would be an intelligent move, eBay is a proven company, with rising stock for the last 10 years, and continuing to post profits well above expectations. PayPal, like it or not, is still the most reliable and easiest way to pay for things, and I'm sorry, but I've used it for well over 100 transactions and unlike my credit card and bank account, I dont pay an annual fees as a customer, and as a seller, it's a lot cheaper than the cost of getting a merchant account.

The point is this, eBay stands to lose ground in the market it's saturated. Google will have to figure out how to deal with fraud, customer/seller debate and at the same time promote it's product in a non-competitive manner such that it doesn't lose it's main advertiser.

Short of that, if Google decides to lock horns with eBay, I'm pretty sure you'll see eBay take a cut in it's stock to retain and regrow it's own markets. Competition is healthy, but I really doubt that this is anything more than posturing.

On an aside, pick a popular product, Froogle it, most of the vendors I've dealt with have had huge problems, lie or deliberately mislead me on price. Now add 10 million amateurs, wannabes, and fraudsters, and tell me that I can reasonably expect a better experience than eBay.

Re:Poppycock (3, Interesting)

Excelsior (164338) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800169)

eBay is of the main advertisers on Google, they bought over 600,000 keywords last year alone. eBay doesnt have enough static pages for Google to index it properly so this is a nesscessary evil. Without eBay's support of Google, you're taking a loss of about 10M+. That's a pretty big hand to bite.

There are two problems with your logic:

1) There's a reason eBay can spend 10M+ on Google Adwords. It makes far, far more. In 2004 [forbes.com] , eBay had 3.3 billion in sales, and 780M in profits! Google needs less than 2% of the market to make up for the loss of advertising. Google has the brand awareness to easily grab 2% of that market.

2) It would assume eBay can afford to stop advertising with Google to get revenge upon Google. They can't. They would be shooting themselves in the foot, and giving Google Base more marketshare and more profits (see 1).

I think its more likely you'll see Google Base pages with Adword advertisements for eBay in the margin.

Re:Poppycock (1)

bismark.a (882874) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800201)

Google Inc. reported revenues of $1.919 billion for the quarter ended Dec. 31 and $6.139 billion for the whole year according to Information Week [informationweek.com]

How much does 10M+ affect that one way or the other, I wonder?

Well, mostly good... (5, Interesting)

ursabear (818651) | more than 8 years ago | (#14799989)

PayPal and eBay are both very successful venues and means. They've become (at least, in the US) universally known and serve as the Kleenex tissue of online payments and the Styrofoam foam of online buy/sell/auction, respectively.

I do believe that it would be nice to get some real competition going for these companies - and perhaps Google has the chutzpah [wikipedia.org] to pull it off (not to mention the cash). I, for one, would love to see some new ideas in the auction/sell/pay space. It could also keep the costs of these services relatively in check, as well.

It costs a very large percentage of a sale to sell something on eBay (that is, unless you are a super-seller who can get away with selling an item for .99 with $19.99 shipping {nudge, nudge}) and accept payment through PayPal at this point. It would be nice to see an alternative.

Re:Well, mostly good... (1)

fossa (212602) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800051)

For me, the only reason eBay is successful is that it's successful... It's the biggest; you can find most things there; yada yada. But the interface is god-awful. Give me some clean HTML, make an attempt to reduce "SUPER COOL PRODUCT!!! NO RESERVE!!! L@@K!!", clean up the actual product pages to be somewhat consistent, and it would be no contest. Except that everyone still uses eBay. Chicken and egg.

I haven't personally experienced the pain of selling items, but I've heard several people complain about the interface and high fees as well.

Re:Well, mostly good... (1)

hackstraw (262471) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800405)

PayPal and eBay are both very successful venues and means. They've become (at least, in the US) universally known and serve as the Kleenex tissue of online payments and the Styrofoam foam of online buy/sell/auction, respectively.

Not quite. Google has become _the_ brand name for searches. It would not surprise me if "Googling" outlives Google.

Kleenex has become the brand name for tissues, as Jello for gelatin, and Fridigidaire for "fridges".

PayPal does not have that feeling, and never will.

eBay is pretty much a fad. The name is not compelling enough to be stuck with the service.

I just learned that styrofoam was a Dow product. I thought it was generic.

Compared to what? (1)

Striver (612368) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800433)

It costs a very large percentage of a sale to sell something on eBay

You know...I keep hearing this nonsense all over the place. Compared to what in particular are e-bay's selling fees high? Have you ever run a brick and mortar retail business? I have and I will take e-bay's charges any day. Have you ever sold anything through a real world local auction? Have you ever tried to sell something through a consignment shop? Ebay is virtually free in comparison. Have you checked the prices on classified ads in the local paper? You can't even run a garage sale for free and if you do you end up with pennies on the dollar of what you get for the same stuff on ebay. Why do you think so many real world businesses are flocking to ebay. Even major national retailers are selling overstock and return items through ebay and they don't bother to cheat on the price/shipping. They know this is a bargain.

I hear the same criticism of paypal's fees. Have you ever tried to set up any kind of credit processing for a retail outlet? I have and paypal is a pretty good deal for small time operators. The problem here is that everyone seems to think that, if it isn't free it costs too much. As Heinlein was fond of saying TANSTAAFL. Get over it. Sure, I welcome competition, but don't expect too much from it unless Microsoft sticks its big nose in and starts offering the service for "free". And we all know that story. We will all end up paying for it with higher prices for Windows.

And steadily, inch-by-inch... (0, Troll)

iBod (534920) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800003)

Google becomes the new behemoth, bestriding the world like a colossus, and abusive monopolist.

Don't tell me about that "Do No Evil" thing - it's just a neat marketing slogan.

googlebay (1)

ultrafastneal (894807) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800006)

Here's some food for thought
  1. Regardless of all the selling fees and paypal issues, eBay has done so well with their branding that they will probably get (if they don't already have it) a dictionary entry like google has. Even Weird Al did a song about eBay.
  2. 50% of the items I find for sale on eBay come from google searches.
  3. eBay is slow! Fees aside, eBay's biggest challenge is how time consuming it is to sell stuff on there. I am sure Google will find a way to speed up the whole buying and selling process. They seem to have sped up most everything else.

An interesting move would be if google just bought eBay, although the feds would probably block the deal. Google could make the site faster, cheaper and easier to use.

Hopefully the move will result in a better eBay and another place to sell/buy our useless crap.

Just make Google Auctions and be done with it. (1)

Celestial Avenger (826964) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800008)

Just announce it and I am gone from eBay. I am sure at least a few others have this same mindset.

Hmmm... Is that GBuy? (1)

cciRRus (889392) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800019)

Is that called "GBuy"?

Buyers Beware (1)

WeH8Scumware (851580) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800030)

Google may try and go head-to-head with Ebay/Paypal however the smart buyer and seller may think twice. Ebay/paypal has some nice policies in place to protect both parties from nonpayment and other unpleasantries; does Google offer such services?

I'd like to see an alternative to PayPal, but... (1)

Skynyrd (25155) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800034)

I'd like to see a non "screw the customer" PayPal type service. Before I think that Google can do it, I'd like to see what percentage of PayPal comes from eBay.

Obviously, without a court order, eBay won't let GPay (or whatever it's called) be used on the auction site. I use PayPal once every two or three months, and mostly for eBay.

Re:I'd like to see an alternative to PayPal, but.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14800097)

Well, that really doesn't matter, seeing as how Ebay owns Paypal. Seriously, they are a subsidiary...

No Ebay=No Paypal

Apples and Oranges (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14800188)

I don't see that this as being in competition with paypal. Google is limited to those who have credit cards. Paypal is limited to those who have bank accounts. I could be wrong, but it appears to me that there are more people who have bank accounts than people who have credit cards.

Re:I'd like to see an alternative to PayPal, but.. (1)

AlterTick (665659) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800378)

Obviously, without a court order, eBay won't let GPay (or whatever it's called) be used on the auction site.

You may not have noticed, but it's not up to eBay how buyers pay the sellers. You could demand payment in nickels, or mcdonalds coupons. Clearly they push PayPal, and offer the incentive of tight integration to get people to use it, but they can neither force you to use paypal, nor be forced to tightly integrate a thrid-party payment scheme.

Google's long term business plan (1)

Lordofthestorm (675024) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800049)

Has anyone else noticed how much Google's long term business plan seems to mirror that of Neal Stephenson's 'snowcrash' novel?

Not that this is a bad thing mind you, I thought the concept quite cool, but rather its interesting to see a straight sci-fi concept taken and built in reality (okay, with a few minor differences since google's primary engine still searches other sites instead of holding all data, but the main concept is still the same).

Re:Google's long term business plan (1)

lbalbalba (526209) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800302)

with a few minor differences since google's primary engine still searches other sites instead of holding all data


Well... Google appears to be working quite hard on actually storing all the data if you ask me...

Let's see :

1.) We have the Google Desktop feature which allows you to search your own documents 'from all computers' and let's Google actually store the entire documents up on their servers (for up to 30 days).

2.) Google Mail and 'Chat logging', which stores your communications.

3.) Google 'digitizing' everything from books to the national archives.

... and God knows what else ...

Mottos (3, Funny)

Centurix (249778) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800052)

Google has "Do no evil"

pfft, PayPal has nothing, except your money.

eBay is going to get KILLED by Google (1)

thejackhmr (643947) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800077)

eBay squandered its potential, and I expect they will fade away as Google auctions take over. I think many like me have, either intentionally or not, are dissatisfied with eBay because of:


  • terrible customer service
  • out of control keyword spam and brand name misuse
  • clunky interface which has never been improved but just gotten clunkier and clunkier over the years
  • skyrocketing fees
  • MEGASELLERS who have taken over
  • banner ads
  • ridiculously unregulated auction 'descriptions' senselessly crammed with 350KB of junk HTML
  • and finally... "retaliatory feedback'. The roundhouse to the kneecaps that will topple ebay to the ground.

great (1)

asv108 (141455) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800092)

We really need more alternatives to ebay. Every few months I get another e-mail informing me of fee increases on eBay. The eBay management has done a good job of not appearing as a dominating monopoly, but the fees and acquisitions just keep coming.

fees. (1)

djdavetrouble (442175) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800322)

The real ripoff action is the double whammy. You get charged seller fees on ebay (which is a double whammy in itself, listing fee plus percentage of complete auction) and then paypal takes a cut also.

Google will be lackluster (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14800137)

You can do one thing very well, or many things mediocre. Google has chosen to be mediocre. eBay has nothing to worry about because Google is a many headed serpent that gets its heads tangled as often as it bites.

Gotta copyright this now! (1)

Legodude522 (847797) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800168)

Google Cash. :-)

Searching eBay? (1)

PGillingwater (72739) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800260)

I seem to be missing a feature I expect -- I want to tell eBay that I should be notified via email whenever a new auction starts that matches some search criteria I specify. How can they not offer this capability, or do I have to use a third party scraper to do it?

Re:Searching eBay? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14800326)

You can. Create a saved search and select the option to have the results emailed daily.

Ebay's success (1)

panxerox (575545) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800263)

Is due to one and only one fact, that is that buyers can get good deals, if a new auction site had the money to subsidize auction sellers for a few months while buyers got really good deals ebay would have a real problem, remember buyers are only one click away.

Ebay is a monopoly. (2, Interesting)

queazocotal (915608) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800309)

At the moment, ebay have essentially no competition.

This does not make for a healthy marketplace.

There is of course competition between sellers, but if ebay raises prices, makes it impossible to find items by completely eliminating categories, or decides that it'd rather heavily weight the market towards those who pay for featured ads, the users have no comeback, other than to not use ebay.

They can't just go to the 2nd highest auction site in many cases, as there effectively isn't one.

Competition would greatly help users.

Google has a larger user base than E-bay/Paypal (1)

TheGreatHegemon (956058) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800413)

Yes, they do. Is it for buy/selling at this point? Not really. However, people love it when their lives are dumbed down and made simpler. They want ONE thing to be able to do everything. Suddenly, Google adds yet another service to their line, making it even handier! That's a large userbase that might just find Google easier than e-bay.

Re:Google has a larger user base than E-bay/Paypal (1)

generic-man (33649) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800484)

Yahoo! Auctions [yahoo.com] and MSN Auctions popped up during the sudden rise of eBay. They don't seem to have made any dents; MSN Auctions now redirects to "MSN Shopping" instead and Yahoo! Auctions is a tiny shadow of eBay. Aside from the initial euphoria ("Google lets you set up an auction in JavaScript! Wheeee!") I don't see any reason to go with Google for selling things.

FDIC (1)

blackomegax (807080) | more than 8 years ago | (#14800424)

Maybe this will lead paypal to get FDIC insured and stop fucking people over.

Re:FDIC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14800490)

It wouldn't surprise me if they got FDIC insured. Because that wouldn't stop them from fucking people over. After all, the high-fee exploitative banks out there, such as BoA, are all FDIC insured.

But stop fucking people over ? Never.

Google Video redirects to www.google.com? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14800481)

This is somewhat unrelated (I think), but has anyone else noticed that going to http://video.google.com/ [google.com] redirects you to http://www.google.com [google.com] ? I seem to also periodically get a security alert saying there is a domain name mismatch. Something going on with Google Video, or is it just me?
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