by Mike Masnick

eBay TV Finally Moves Towards Reality

from the the-sooner-it-goes-on-the-air,-the-sooner-it-can-be-canceled dept

Apparently, "internet time" doesn't apply when it comes to taking a popular website and turning it into a TV show. eBay, which announced plans for a TV show two years ago has finally gone into production. The show isn't going to involve any actual auctions, but rather focus on stories behind certain items being auctioned. Of course, since auctions only last a week or so, I wonder how timely could this be? I also think they need to spice it up a bit more if they're going to get viewers. Supposedly, the two years were spent brainstorming different ideas for the show, and the best they could come up with was a slightly tweaked version of "Antiques Roadshow"? In this day of reality television, any such show needs a hook - and this doesn't seem to have one other than the eBay brand. My guess is that, like the brand new The Smoking Gun TV show (also based on a popular website and also staring someone from The Daily Show), this idea isn't likely to last very long on the air. It seems the path from dot com to TV isn't that easy.

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  • identicon
    Munich, 20 Aug 2003 @ 3:35pm

    Reality TV or Fiction?

    "Reality TV" on real items could be boring and is a bit overdone (like you said, sorta a Antiques Roadshow). They could instead do a fantasy version tracking fictional or even mythical items that end up on Ebay - sort of a recurring TV version of the "Red Violin", or an item-focused version of Fantasy Island ("the bid, the bid")

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 20 Aug 2003 @ 4:13pm

      Re: Reality TV or Fiction?

      How about a redo on old Twilight Zone episodes with Ebay as the plot driver? Okay, these are all overdone and trite, but today's young adults haven't seen them and could be used with Ebay specific issues:

      Plot: Down-on-his-luck guy puts soul on sale on Ebay. Devil and Angel make bids. Devil gets higher bid, but guy decides not to take it.

      Comments: Could be done as a light comedy rather than serious.

      Ebay Play: what is Ebay's cut on a soul? What is the policy if you refuse the highest bid?

      Plot: Guy finds auction for "your personal replica". Buys it and sure enough, guy shows up who looks just like him. Sends replica to work while he golfs, sends home to wife while he womanizes. Replica does better at both jobs. Guy realizes what a good life he has, big stuggle with the replica. Close of show shows guy happy at work, but you don't know which one.

      Comments: Yes, been done 1000 times, but the point here is that it is for a new generation and Ebay the plot driver.

      Ebay Issue: What is the Ebay policy if you want to make a return?

      Plot: Guy buys love potion on Ebay. Gives to girl, decides it is too much. Starts searching frantically for out-of-love potion.

      Comment: Overdone, but different series keep using this plot device, why not Ebay.

      Ebay Issue: Could be a plug for "other listed items by seller"

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 21 Aug 2003 @ 7:20am

    No Subject Given

    actually this could work if done right. Who would have thought QVC would work ? and work and work .

    If they highlighted certain area/goods the same way QVC does, they could attract and audience. Particularly for higher price items if they could get the sellers to synchronize showing the products on TV with putting them up for auction ? Just an area / time slot for people selling their houses would attract a number of people looking to move from their current location or invest in realstate ... would have lots of realstate agents sweating bullets.

    Yeah, this would work if they could find the right products to highlight for the right time slots.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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