Penny Auction

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Penny Auction

Post by c۞g » Sun Jul 10, 2011 3:36 pm

This topic was inspired by the recent TV advertisements for an online penny auction site: QuiBids. I moved some of my comment from a previous post which was centered on one domain name: [url= t=_self]Another penny auction site[/url]

Penny Auctions are scams that promise items "at a fraction of their retail price."
Some slogans used are:
Unique shopping experience
Fun shopping experience
Competitive shopping
Reverse auction

"Bid Packs" are required to place bids on item. Different sites offer various quantity of "bids" per pack for different amounts. but they share one thing, these "bidpacks" are like lottery tickets.
  • [url= t=_self]Unique bid auction[/url]
  • [url= t=_self]Bidding fee auction[/url]
A business model is therefore a lottery if participants are required to:-
  • (a) pay a non-refundable fee of money or money in kind,
    purchase "bid packs"
  • (b) in a scheme of lot or chance,
    use those "bid packs" to bid on an item with no definite time limit
  • (c) to receive a reward of some kind,
    to eventually "win" the item bid upon
Unique bid [aka: "penny"] auctions satisfy the above criteria, without which the business model becomes unprofitable.

Penny auctions are lotteries; lottery is a form of gambling

It's been known that habitual gamblers seek out "penny auctions" because they are set up as gambling, as opposed to the conventional form of auction such as eBay or Y! Auctions, though penny auction sites are not [yet] "classified" as online gambling.
  • [url= t=_self]Penny Auctions: Legalities and Realities[/url]
  • [url= t=_self]Don't fall for penny auctions[/url]
  • Interesting Wired article: [url= t=_self]Penny Auctions Bet on Chump Change (Part I of II)[/url]
  • Another article at StaySafeOnline: [url= t=_self]The New Frontier of Shady Online Gambling: The Penny Auction[/url]
  • [url= t=_self]Don't gamble on penny auction sites[/url]
  • [url= t=_self]Penny auction sites: too good to be true[/url]
  • TheHuffingtonPost: [url= t=_self]The Seduction of the Penny Auction[/url]
  • Sandiego BBB: [url= t=_self]What’s the Deal with Online Penny Auctions?[/url]
  • [url= t=_self]The Wall Street Journal[/url]
    Fans of penny auctions say they mix the competitive charge of Internet auction sites like eBay with the suspense and gratification of flash sales and online gambling.
  • [url= t=_self]Penny auction site busted using software designed to cheat[/url]
    • built with software called PHPPennyAuction, from an Essex, U.K.-based company called Scriptmatix that is not shy about advertising its built-in rip-off components:
      <citte>"Testing & automated bidding bots. phpPennyAuction takes away the need for a constant supply of visitors - a lifeline when you're just starting out. Create bots to bid up to the price YOU want (can be disabled)."[/cite]
  • [url= t=_self]BBB Names Top Ten Scams of 2011[/url]
    Top Sales Scam
    Sales scams are as old as humanity, but the Internet has introduced a whole new way to rip people off. Penny auctions ...
And finally, this article: Black Friday 2010 Bringing Illegal Online Gambling To Penny Auction Sites? at:

Many of these sites entice payment via [url= t=_self]PayPal Verification[/url]

PayPal's Verification system does not constitute an endorsement of a member or a guarantee of a member's business practices. You should always consider additional information when evaluating sellers, such as how long they've been members of PayPal, or what other customers are saying about them

People who use these auctions become educated from experience and voice their trust on the site's scorecards, here's a few examples: - [url= t=_self]scorecard[/url] [] - [url= t=_self]scorecard[/url]
Legal Notice: MadBid will only accept bids from jurisdictions where legal. Registering or placing bids from the United States is not permitted. [] [] - [url= t=_self]scorecard[/url] | [url= t=_self]complaints[/url] [] - [url= t=_self]scorecard[/url] | [url= t=_self]consumer complaints[/url]
QuiBids [] - [url= t=_self]scorecard[/url] | [url= t=_self]ComplaintsBoard[/url] | [url= t=_self]Pissed Consumer[/url] | [url= t=_self]Class action lawsuit[/url]

Marketing techniques try to change the meaning of words or phrases to suit their [for profit] requirements.
Let's review some basics:
raffle: [url= t=_self]definition[/url]
A lottery in which a number of persons buy chances to win a prize
auction: [url= t=_self]definition[/url]
A public sale in which goods or property are sold to the highest bidder
bid: [url= t=_self]definition[/url]
An offer of a price, esp. at an auction
increment: [url= t=_self]definition[/url]
An increase or addition, esp. one of a series on a fixed scale
price fixing: [url= t=_self]definition[/url]
illegal collusion by tendering suppliers to avoid competition in prices. Also referred to as Bid-rigging.
bid-rigging: [url= t=_self]definition[/url]
an illegal pricing practice in which firms that are tendering for the supply of an item collude in order to maintain high prices for their products
With the meanings clearly defined, understand that penny auctions are NOT auctions.

In an auction you are not required to purchase the right to bid (bid packs), nor are your bids fixed to a certain quantity (increment of one cent), requiring an x-amount of increments to be made (price-fixing) until sufficient profit has been reached for the supplier (bid-rigging) as is the case with the penny auction business model.

Penny auctions are raffles that determine a "winner" who is given the right to purchase an item at a set price.
If the penny auction software incorporates the use of bots, a [url= t=_self]bot[/url] could be the "winner" - all other "players" who purchased "bids" have lost their money, and a new "auction" goes up for the same [sometimes even fictitious] item.

List of domains/hosts
Added to Wiki forum discussion catalog: [url= t=_self]Scams: Auction / gambling[/url]

[url= t=_self]FTC Cautions Consumers on the Pitfalls of Penny Auctions[/url]
posted: 25 August, 2011
FTC Consumer Alert
[url= t=_self]Online Penny Auctions: Nothing for Something?[/url]
posted: August, 2011
Online Penny Auctions: Nothing for Something?
Who doesn't love to get a good deal? Some people shop sales circulars, others clip coupons. Still others find online penny auctions to be a fun way to try to get big ticket items like electronics, jewelry, gift cards, appliances, and sports equipment at reduced prices. But in many ways, penny auctions are more like lotteries than traditional online auction sites. In a penny auction, you have to pay to bid.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the nation's consumer protection agency, wants you to know how online penny auctions work and how to recognize some of their pitfalls before you get caught in a bidding frenzy. Penny auctions move fast. Before you know it, you could spend far more than you intended, with no guarantee that you'll get anything in return.

How does a penny auction work?
In a penny auction, items are posted by the site owner and you pay to bid for them. Unlike a traditional auction, where only the winning bidder pays anything, penny auctions require you to pay before – and as – you play, win or lose.
For openers, you may have to pay a fee just to register for the site. Sometimes, the fee is substantial. Then, you have to buy a "bid package." For example, you may "buy" 100 bids for $50. Additional bids cost more money, often between 50 cents and a dollar per bid.
The price of auction items usually starts at zero, and each bid bumps the price of the item up a penny. Each bid also adds time – from 10 seconds to 2 minutes – to a countdown clock. The goal is to be the high bidder when the clock runs out. But because the clock resets with each bid, the auction process can be unpredictable and take time to complete.

Bogus Bidders: Bots and Shills
Some unscrupulous auction sites use bid bots, which are computer programs that automatically bid on behalf of the website. And some fraudulent sites achieve the same effect using human shills. You may be seconds away from winning an auction when another user places a bid. That keeps the clock ticking, and forces you into a bidding war to stay in first place. Though the bidder appears to be another user, it may be a shill, or a bot programmed by the website to extend the auction and keep people bidding (and spending money) as they chase the "win."
What does "winning" mean?
Winning the auction doesn't mean you've won the auction item: It means you've won the right to buy the item at the final price. For example, say you win an auction for a laptop that has a $500 retail price tag. You placed 200 bids that cost $1 each. The final price on the laptop is $50. The laptop will actually cost you $250, plus shipping and handling, and possibly a transaction fee.
If you lose an auction, chances are you've lost your money. If you placed 199 bids on the laptop, for example, you'd be out $199. Some penny auction sites have a "Buy-It-Now" feature that lets players buy the item and apply the amount of the bids placed as a discount on the retail price of the product. So if you applied your $199 in bids to the $500 retail price of the laptop, you wouldn't lose your investment in the bids you purchased, but you wouldn't save any money off the retail price, either.

Penny Auction Pitfalls
Penny auctions may offer deals, but they also can present problems. For example:
  • Time lags. How soon do you need to receive the item you're bidding on? Can you tolerate it being delivered late, or not being delivered at all? Many complaints about penny auctions involve late shipments, no shipments, or shipments of products that aren't the same quality as advertised.
  • Misleading terms. Terms like "bonus bids" might suggest that bids are free. In a penny auction, you pay for every bid.
  • Hidden costs. Read each penny auction site's Terms of Use before you sign in or register. Sites may charge fees (for membership, ongoing subscriptions, or shipping), follow different rules, or have a variety of refund policies or other terms and conditions. The terms and conditions may not be well-disclosed elsewhere on the website.
  • Insecure payment options. Consider how you'll pay. Do you have any recourse if something goes wrong? Don't send cash or use a money wiring service. Instead, consider using a credit card. That way, if something goes awry, like you don't get your merchandise or it's not what you expected, you can dispute the charge with your credit card issuer.
  • Phishing trips. If you get a message that looks like it comes from an auction website or payment service and it asks for your password or financial information, hit delete. They're "phishing" for your information so they could use it to commit fraud.
  • Reputation rules. Avoid doing business with sellers you can't identify. Check out any penny auction site by entering its name in a search engine online. Read about other people's experiences.
  • Hello? Anyone there? Look for a phone number and call it to confirm that you can contact the seller in case you have questions or problems.

You're about to spend some money. Know exactly what you're bidding on. Print a copy of the seller's description of the product and read it closely, especially the fine print. Save copies of all emails you send and receive from the auction site, too.

Report Problems with Online Auctions
If you have problems during an online auction transaction, try to work them out directly with the website operator. If that doesn't work, file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission at [url= t=_self][/url] and your state Attorney General, using contact information at [url= t=_self][/url]

The FTC works to prevent fraudulent, deceptive and unfair business practices in the marketplace and to provide information to help consumers spot, stop and avoid them. To file a [url= t=_self]complaint[/url] or get [url= t=_self]free information on consumer issues,[/url] visit [url= t=_self][/url] or call toll-free, 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357); TTY: 1-866-653-4261. Watch a video, [url= t=_self]How to File a Complaint,[/url] at [url= t=_self][/url] to learn more. The FTC enters consumer complaints into the [url= t=_self]Consumer Sentinel Network,[/url] a secure online database and investigative tool used by hundreds of civil and criminal law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad.
[edit: 17 Aug 2012]
[url= t=_self]SEC Shuts Down $600 Million Online Pyramid and Ponzi Scheme[/url]

Washington, D.C., Aug. 17, 2012 – The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced fraud charges and an emergency asset freeze to halt a $600 million Ponzi scheme on the verge of collapse. The emergency action assures that victims can recoup more of their money and potentially avoid devastating losses.

The SEC alleges that online marketer Paul Burks of Lexington, N.C. and his company Rex Venture Group have raised money from more than one million Internet customers nationwide and overseas through the website, which they began in January 2011.

source: [url= t=_self][/url]
4. Unbeknownst to its investors, ZeekRewards is, in reality, a massive Ponzi and pyramid scheme.
5. Approximately 98% of ZeekRewards’ total revenues, and
correspondingly the purported share of “net profits” paid to current investors, are comprised of funds received from new investors.

05 March 2013
[url= t=_blank]Bidbots sometimes used to rig Internet penny auction sites[/url]

edit: 06 October 2013
no longer involved as a PA site.

screwtape iii
Posts: 59
Joined: Wed Apr 15, 2009 1:05 am

RE: Penny Auction

Post by screwtape iii » Thu Jul 14, 2011 12:54 pm

Thanks for the information!

Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Jul 23, 2011 6:24 pm

RE: Penny Auction

Post by JaykeBird » Sat Jul 23, 2011 6:24 pm

Tnanks for writing this! Now my grandmother knows whether to trust this or not...

Add to the list.


RE: Penny Auction

Post by Guest » Mon Jul 25, 2011 2:18 pm

Posts: 21225
Joined: Mon Jan 05, 2009 4:02 am

RE: Penny Auction

Post by c۞g » Wed Jul 27, 2011 12:19 am

List of domains/hosts

Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Jul 31, 2011 8:33 pm

RE: Penny Auction

Post by HavnFunHere » Sun Jul 31, 2011 8:33 pm

<quote user="g7w">

List of domains/hosts

GREAT List, Thanks for this post! :)


RE: Penny Auction

Post by Guest » Sun Jul 31, 2011 8:57 pm

<quote user="havnfunhere">
GREAT List, Thanks for this post! :)

@ HavnFunHere,
Maybe my post looks rude, but your post obviously contains no useful information, I would recommend to post on the forum only if you have something to say which might be helpful, but not for nothing.

@ Any moderators here,
Just hide HavnFunHere's post and mine too.

This reply was just for public informing only, do not be offended, please.

Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2011 4:35 am

RE: Penny Auction

Post by cubezero » Tue Aug 02, 2011 4:35 am

I don't get what all this means. this forum just talks about a lot of things that doesn't make any sense.. What the hell are all those hosts and domains and numbers and bid names and stuff supposed to mean? How does this make the site a fake? All this writting about whatever it is your writting about is like foreign language. codes. none of it makes any sense to me.

Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Aug 04, 2011 3:20 pm

RE: Penny Auction

Post by Itsmadhur » Thu Aug 04, 2011 3:20 pm - authorities don't think its a scam!

Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Aug 20, 2011 8:14 pm

RE: Penny Auction

Post by Kevelme » Sat Aug 20, 2011 8:14 pm

Thanks for all input, really, I depend on WOT and this community of users for all Wot blocks and it is very seldom I will defy the original block and move on to the page.

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