Feds Decide That Their Own eBay Needs More Publicity

from the do-they-use-escrow? dept

In 2001, we first wrote about the government’s plan to set up their very own online auction site to sell off various things they’ve seized (helicopters, diamonds, etc… you know, the regular stuff). Apparently sick of all that auction attention going to eBay, they’re now trying to boost the profile of their online auction offering, which someone from eBay claims they never even knew about (they should read Techdirt more often…). Of course, they also point out that local governments have just started using eBay itself as a platform for online auctions, making you wonder why the government should spend IT resources on building their own — especially when it’s unlikely to reach anywhere near the same number of potential buyers as eBay? Now, how long until a Silicon Valley politician introduces legislation that would ban the government from doing this while claiming it competes with private businesses?

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Comments on “Feds Decide That Their Own eBay Needs More Publicity”

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William C Bonner (profile) says:

What is the Government Auction Site?

Sort of funny, because I followed the link to your old article, then the link the the LATimes, where it’s article no longer exists.

Then I followed the link to the baltimore sun, but I didn’t feel like creating a log in account with them, so I couldn’t see what they had to say.

I still don’t know what the US Government auction site might be, and haven’t gone searching for the answer in a search engine.

If the government only uses ebay, then they are in effect subsidizing ebay. If no one knows about the auctions then the government might not be getting the value for the goods.

Is there a good real time search engine of auction sites? I just did a quick search and found the government site, but didn’t find a good auction search engine.

FireMonkey says:

Re: What is the Government Auction Site?

The site is GSAAUCTIONS.GOV. I work for a federal government agency, and we unload goods on GSA’s site on a regular basis. It’s worth a look. You can find seized BMWs on one page, then browse through pallet loads of mostly-servicable CRTs on the next.

And don’t think I’m trying to line Uncle Sam’s pockets with a /. plug; we don’t see a dime of any of the money collected from these auctions, or at least not directly.

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