Tuesday, May 23, 2006

ROGER, Jack Wrangler, Joe Dellasandro, eBay, and ME
I know you want the long version of the story, so here goes: last Sunday night, May 14th, I was working on my auctions, as I do every Sunday night, and put the HAND IN HAND Jack Wrangler & ROGER classic video, HOT HOUSE, up for auction at my usual ridiculously low starting price of 99 cents. By mid week, no bids, I thought I might want to use my blog, as I often, often, OFTEN DO, to promote the auction by posting a clip. So, on May 17th, I worked on a clip, and even went so far as to make a better quality, yet briefer clip available, as an experiment to see what folks thought of it (thanks go out to the one and only reader who responded - gosh, no one READS ME anymore! waaaah!). By the next day, I see one bid, but then notice very very few hits - meaning no one is actually looking at the auction on eBay. I do a couple of quick searches in the adult section for key words "jack Wrangler" "joe dellasandro" (and various misspellings of dellansaandros name, like one would do with Paul paressi, Paul Barresi, Paul Baresi, etc....) nothing shows up, and I realize my listing isn't showing up at all in the adult videos, the gallery section, or anywhere except on my MY EBAY page!!! The video is worth a helluva lot more than 99 cents, and with only 8 folks having seen the listing, I ask eBay for help in fixing this.

Egad! I go to "LIVE HELP" wait the estimated 8 minutes, explain the problem, and at first, she blames me for "revising" it too soon after listing. Her suggestion - end the auction, and relist it. I don't really want to do that, as it was scheduled to end in eBay Prime Time, late Sunday night (just like TV, folks, we all know we surf the computer and TV simultaneously these days, right?) So, reluctantly, I do that, ending the auction, and realizing relisting it will have it end at a weird time, like a we3dnesday afternoon. But I do it anyway,check back in about 2 hours later, and NOTHING - it's still not being indexed. So I try LIVE HELP again, and they are even less help, but suggest I email technical support (note to newbie ebayers - LIVE HELP is for folks who can't figure out how to use the SEARCH HELP functions, cuz that's apparently all the LIVE HELP people do - they are not technical people) I know technical support takes 24-72 hours, although you get that "thanks for emailing, we appreciate your business automated response within seconds) BUT I figure I still have about 5-1/2 days left, and can perhaps fix it by then. Another day passes, finally an answer, telling me I need to log in to ADULT, then search. DUH! Clearly, as usual, the tech support people do the simplest, least effort to answer a question, always ASSuming you are an idiot and giving you the least help and information possible. I am angry and send off another email, this time detailing everything, and tell them in big CAPS - IT WONT INDEX, I KNOW HOW TO SEARCH, but 3 items won't show up!! PLEASE PLEASE HELP. So, last night, after a long day at work, I come home, and see a longer email response, one that is clearly NOT one of those boilerplate responses, but someone actually read my email. BUT, as eBay likes to do, it doesn't fix the problem, they merely vaguely suggest how I can do it. AAAAARRRGGGHHHHH!


Thank you for writing to eBay's Billing Support. I'll be happy to assist you with your listings.

I have looked at your item description and can see that it contains one or more questionable words. Our system will not index items for search that have inappropriate language in the listing. The words in your auction prevent this from indexing. Fortunately, this problem usually only comes up with music listings.

To fix this, please remove the word(s) from your item listing or the item won't be searchable. Also, using asterisks or other symbols and characters to disguise the word will not work."

Whatthefuck? I am very careful with my listings, knowing not to use "inappropriate language" and besides, they have their program used in the adult auctions that tells you when you said something too naughty or questionable - like words like TEEN, EXTREME, even any word with the letters PAL (PAYPAL, not allowed for adult listings, and apparently anything that includes the syllable PAL, like apPALachia (I kid you not), porn star RaPALlo, etc. But I figure, this vague hint that it most often comes up in music listings, at least I can re-check my listings and see what sort of language might be inapprorpiate. So I click on my HOT HOUSE listing, start reading, and think, OK, maybe I can't say "URINATE" and change it to "do it" STOOPID, I know, words you can use in a regular listing you can't use in the section where folks have to swear they are not only of age, but also that they promise not to be offended, and even if they are offended, they won't hold eBay accountable.... GRRRRR! So, I keep on reading, and see:

"Meanwhile, the painter, Roger, and Garry Hunt are watching a black-and-white porno movie on Jack's projector, all jacking off in the living room. As we watch bits of the movie, we see two lean and youthful men suck each other's big dick and 69, until they fuck ass."

Jacking off??? SUCK?? BIG DICK!!!??? and FUCK ASS???? jeeeeeee-SUS! SO I quickly clean it all up, laughing at the whole thing at this point, it's all so ridiculous, like, I can't say the magazine has SIXTEEN pages without getting a RED WARNING that underage material, even implying "barely legal" is prohibited, but FUCK ASS somehow gets by???? I check on two other auctions that didn't get indexed. Oh, TITS, bad, bad word - change to PECS; now, what was wrong with that CZECH porno, The BACK ROOM??? Oh, "The two suck and fuck each other with gusto." - let's change GUSTO to, just kidding....They do oral and anal with gusto. Much better.

So, what have we learned? eBay is stoopid. No, we know that already - well, that's really a bit simplistic. The not-too-long lesson is, once again, eBay grew and grew astronomically, and like most internet sites, does fixes in a patchwork style. All the troubles they had with the ADULT LISTINGS were to prevent illegal stuff, unauthorized taping of naked and sexually active people, teens, underage, etc. Not to mention the graphic pics and language that meant they got SHITLOADS of browsers who basically clicked thru the adult auctions at work, whacking off behind their desks, not buying anything while eBay had an inordinate amount of bandwidth taken up by these often non-selling items. So, you can use the words FUCK, and TITS, etc, on the site, both general and "mature audiences" but they have a program that will prevent it from being indexed - although, oddly enough, they accept your listing fees, and don't actually prevent you from putting the auction up for sale. Hmmmpf.

Oh, and you probably want that 12-minute, low-quality clip from HOT HOUSE, dontcha? A handful of Pleases might help......