July 15, 2008 | By Kathleen Brady Shea INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
For a trio of Chester County car thieves, the unlocked black Mercedes Benz in Charlestown Township was a trove of unexpected bonuses: its keys, a $3,800 Tiffany diamond ring, a $1,000 Acer laptop and a $600 Louis Vuitton briefcase. The group typically grabbed vehicles just for joyriding, ditching them in areas ranging from South Philadelphia to Wilmington, according to the prosecutor. But when they found valuables inside, at least one netted extra cash by selling the items on eBay.
April 27, 2008 | By Tom Infield and Derrick Nunnally INQUIRER STAFF WRITERS
It was just a half-eaten waffle, left Monday on the counter of a diner in Scranton. But it was Barack Obama's half-eaten waffle, and that gave the waitress the idea to smuggle it away as a souvenir. Within a day, it had found its way to eBay, offered to the highest bidder. Up and up it went - $76 . . . $177.50 . . . $10,100. Was this serious? Was it a joke? Who could say? A couple of Web sites picked up on it. The Scranton Times-Tribune did a story. CNN ran a piece. Somehow, it even worked its way to the Kalgoorlie Golden Mail in the desert of western Australia.
February 7, 2008 | By Bob Fernandez INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
A Pennsylvania agency dropped its prosecution of Internet retailer and former-stay-at-home-mom Mary Jo Pletz for selling on eBay without an auctioneer's license, according to a letter mailed to her home. But the state is not retreating from a crackdown on eBay sellers who accept commissions for selling items online for others, state officials said. Those sellers need an auctioneer's license, they say. Department of State spokeswoman Leslie Amoros said the agency that licenses professionals recently learned that Pletz had closed her business a year ago, leading to the decision to cease prosecution.
February 5, 2008 | By Edward Colimore INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
They've sold battered police cruisers, late-model luxury cars, agricultural equipment, office furniture, gold jewelry and Rolex watches, even aircraft and entire buildings. Across Pennsylvania, New Jersey and the rest of the nation, a growing number of municipalities and counties are taking unwanted items and booty confiscated by police and turning them into cash, using Internet auction sites such as eBay and It's like finding change under the couch cushions, say local officials.
January 30, 2008 | By Bob Fernandez INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Mary Jo Pletz was really, really good at eBay. But now the former stay-at-home mother and gonzo Internet retailer fears a maximum $10 million fine for selling 10,000 toys, antiques, videos, sports memorabilia, books, tools and infant clothes on eBay without an auctioneer's license. An official from the Department of State knocked on Pletz's white-brick ranch here north of Allentown in late December 2006 and said her Internet business, D&J Virtual Consignment, was being investigated for violating state laws.
December 8, 2007 | By ED WEINER Daily News wire services and other sources
FORGET ABOUT all those polls - those grassroots straws, those scientific Gallups, those Vegas betting lines, because these days when it comes to celebs, the only true gauge of who's hot and who's not is eBay. Take, for example, Britney Spears. The number of Spears-related items sold at the online auction site so far in 2007 total 34,345, compared with 27,377 items associated with Paris Hilton, eBay said this week. Items associated with Spears ranged from signed CDs to disposable lighters featuring her likeness.
August 20, 2007 | Peter Mucha, Inquirer Staff Writer
Some of us wouldn't pay 50 cents for an eggplant. But right now on eBay the asking price for a single slice is $1,000. Of course, this isn't any ordinary disc of eggplant. It's the one that spelled GOD. A week ago yesterday in Boothwyn, Felicia Teske was in her kitchen, cutting a seemly ordinary pear-shaped purple vegetable, when she noticed that its seeds formed the letters G, O and D. (They also seemed to form an extra little O, but it's sort of floating above the other O, which might be GOOD - or not. Or maybe it's a halo.
August 17, 2007 | By David Iams FOR THE INQUIRER
William H. Bunch Auctions and Appraisals in Chadds Ford will offer a portrait of today's good life in all its high-tech, brand-name luxury. The sale, which begins at noon on Tuesday, will feature the complete contents of a five-bedroom, 6,000-square-foot home in Kennett Square. A catalog session, beginning at 5 p.m. and carried live on eBay, will offer 180 of the top lots, many of which would have been incomprehensible to our grandparents. Most of the items should sell for three-figure prices, according to online presale estimates.
August 2, 2007 | Daily News Staff and Wire Reports
A former training camp for Muhammad Ali in Deer Lake, Pa., sold for $4.3 million yesterday, about a half-million dollars short of an eBay record. Bidding for the 5-acre, 18-building mountainside complex in Schuylkill County ended shortly after 1 p.m. However, unlike other items, real estate sales are not final when the auction ends because legal details need to be wrapped up. The highest price ever paid on eBay is $4.9 million, for a private business jet in 2001. The camp, about 65 miles northwest of Philadelphia, is being sold by George Dillman, a Reading-area karate entrepreneur and former Ali sparring partner who bought the camp from him 10 years ago. In other boxing news: Welterweight champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. will defend his title against Ricky Hatton on Dec. 8 in Las Vegas.
July 29, 2007 | By A.D. Amorosi FOR THE INQUIRER
What Etsy makes, the world takes. Haven't heard of Etsy? That's about to change. Because, founded by three former New York University students, including Chris Maguire of Roxborough, has quickly become the go-to site for all things handmade, and all the communities that surround and support craft work. Since its 2005 start, has become so popular that it has spawned apostles who have formed "street teams" in various cities. Etsyians, they're called. And what they've created online amounts to a virtual international craft fair - without the corn dogs: Concertinapieces in North Bend, Ind., sells intricately woven acrylic yarn toys with names like "Vlad the Blood Orange" for $6. Jacquelineknits of Woodbridge, Ontario, hawks hand-knit, hot-pink apple jackets - to protect your fruit from bruising - for $7. Katrinakaye of Amsterdam coolly combines vintage Scandinavian fabrics and army bags for $35 purses named "Skipper" and "Wedge.
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