Anyone else getting weird email from "EbayTruth"?


As most here know, I sell quite a bit of goodies on ebay.

The last two times I've listed items, I've received bizarre email from a John King aka telling me how crazy I am for placing "Buy it Now" prices as I did, then offering his supposed expert advice as to how my descriptions are inaccurate and his thoughts on where the final bid will end up.

As far as I know, my descriptions are perfectly accurate. I disclose anything I know about an item.

I tend to believe that I'm a fairly reputable person in the HP community, since I've been at it longer than many and do have a website around. Hey, I even contributed pictures of HPs to Wlodek's collectors book. You may not like that I sell stuff on ebay, but I've got to support my habit. :-)

First of all, I know that some people have don't have enough to do, so perhaps that is his problem.

Second, he doesn't know what he's talking about, as his predictions bear little resemblance to where the final bids end up. :-)

Third, is it just me that this person is picking on or has anyone else received email?

Don't worry, I am not bothered by's just strange that there is now an apparent ebay-price-police person around.




I also received a mail (I have to check by whom) that courteously explained that I was stupid to offer low prices for a buy it now option sale; as people would bid on the item just to blast this option.

I'm not sure it comes from the same person, I'll check it for you.

Don't worry for selling things on ebay, I also do; it's still one of the best place to sell stuff and when you're looking for something, there is a chance you find it there... What I usually do is to advertise the stuff here and propose unsuccessful items on ebay, so that the museum community gets a first chance to buy what I have for sale...


Yes, I received an email from him late December 2000, chastising me for selling magnetic cards on ebay with the words "Why only $0.41 - NO RESERVE? To make bidding fun and because we all know its worth more! (and you pay $3.50 shipping)." I sell on ebay to support a committed collection of three things that I generally USE:

1. The HP-41C/CV/CX (circa 1979-1986)

2. The Cambridge Z88 computer (circa 1987-1990)

3. A world type set of coins from my birthyear (1959) -- well I don't exactly use them, but ever since I was a teenager the idea of collecting the whole set (400+ coins) and finding a museum to donate them to in excahnge for the museum displaying them has appealed to me.

Anyway, I sell to support this collecting which can be expensive ($300+ for an ADVANCED HEPAX module for the HP-41). But, despite its cost, I use it and the HEPAX with its 16K RAM is plugged into the HP-41CX that I carry back and forth from home to office.

Generally, I sell on ebay to maximize revenue, but specifically I love to trade with other collectors, and go out of my way to help someone who wants an HP-41 item TO USE, not just cross off a list of what they don't have yet.


Perhaps you discovered another "mail spammer"

Br. and don't worry !


I also received an e-mail from a John King a month ago or so, when bidding for an HP item. I don't remember exactly the message, but it say something as I was crazy in putting my bid causing the price to increase. It said that if I retracted my bid! this person could tell me a place out of e-Bay where I could find the item cheaper...following the secure tip posted on e-Bay for this cases I simply ignored the message. No more news from this person since then.


Maybe we should all tell him to get a life?


Lest anyone think i was serious...don't do this...would not be nice! :-)


As quoted in my last message to him, he did not! ;+}


Yes, Gene and others, I have gotten email from this individual and have forwarded/reported same. Messages range from threatening to coaching on price and offerings, including low offers at times. Had to finally block it.


I think this is just a case where you have to take the good with the bad.

Last year I got all sorts of weird emails from one of my top bidders. He was, to say the least, eccentric, but he was giving me a $5100 profit on a $200 item, so I figured, what the heck! We all sell on ebay to seek out these crazies so I think of this as just a cost of doing business.


Back in December, while Chris Catotti was on vacation (so I know it isn't him! ;-) ) I bid in a dutch auction for some magnetic cards for the HP97, from Fred Klinzmann of San Clemente, CA...

I got an email shortly after my bid:

"I see you bid on HP products a lot. But I also see
that you are bidding $17+ for packs of 80 mag cards.

Are you not aware that these can be purchased for
$1.75 for packs of 80?

If you send me a mailing address, I will send you 2
packs FREE.

Trust me, I would not do this if they were worth
anywhere near $20/pack.

Merry Christmas,"

And that is just how it ended. It was sent by a "John King", and the email address was

I took it as a possible dissuasion from my bid-- somebody wanting me to drop my bid to allow him to acquire cards for less. Now, I happen to know that if I sit and wait, I can find cheaper on eBay than I did. But I was wanting them THEN, and that's why I bid the 17. on the cards. I got them.

I searched for on eBay. Not a registered user. I looked for John King. Same result. I looked at my fellow bidders. Nothing that pointed to a yahoo address. So maybe just a "concerned citizen" (yeah right) or else a missive from someone who chose to reveal himself to me through an email account at a site (Yahoo) where ANYONE can be anyone else, just a dummy mail-account.

I did not respond to John King, though I felt like saying, AFTER this auction, if your offer still stands, you can simply tell me where to buy them, thanks. But I decided that, since he did not offer to tell me his info, it was probably a fellow buyer upset that his five-buck bid wasn't going to hold up in the dutch auction.

I am GLAD people will sometimes inform me when I am being stupid. I accept criticism and advice from people who are open and either known to me or willing to make themselves known to me. But anonymous stuff or from pseudonyms, who don't even have the guts to tell me who they are or why they are concerned on my behalf, whom I don't know from here at MoHPC, that just suggests FRAUDULENT behavior.

I would have responded better if he had given me a real contact address and offered to sell cards to me at $16!


I do believe that $1.75 for a pack of 80 cards was (still is?) the EduCalc shutdown / Jim Carter price. I bought many packs from him (and a lot of other stuff) but I don't know if he's still selling them.

I've seen a lot of Jim's stuff resold on eBay for 3-15 times his price. You can search for "Jim Carter" further down in the forum (Jan 11) or go to:

By the way, I believe eBay's user agreement specifically forbids what "Mr. King" did (auction interference) so it might be understandable that he was shy if he was/is an ebay user.


> would have responded better if he [...] offered to sell cards to me at $16!

That reminds me of a funny incident. Many years ago, when I was still a high-schooler in the fine city of Budapest (darn, it WAS many years ago!) a buddy of mine and I saw a rather cute-looking girl selling the evening paper on the street. It was getting quite late, she still had some 30 of her papers unsold, we felt sorry for her (and, well, we were goofy, hormone-crazed teenagers not aging geeks!) so we bought all her papers. We then started to give them away for free to passers-by.

The amazing thing was that most of them were offended. Most refused to take the paper, even those who actually bought one a few minutes later while still within sight. Some WANTED to give us money even when we refused to take it. Others accused us of trying to con them into taking yesterday's paper or something. Almost none accepted the paper with a simple "thanks" :-)



Well, what does interest us iw what happened with the girl ? :-)

(Sorry Katie)



I think I ought to tell you instead about any calculators I might have had in my pocket at the time of the incident, otherwise we'll both be told that this is not the appropriate place for discussing girls :-)




I found out who sent me a mail, it was a certain Mike Davis

"You have ZERO chance of getting a quick sale by "buy it now" when you
start at .41. People cruise eBay looking to bid minimum bids. These
people NEVER buy anything, they just kill the "buy it now" options.

If you use "buy it now" you should start at a more realistic price to
keep these people from bidding. You will NEVER sell using "buy it
now" with a low starting bid. Just a tip.

I thought this mail was quite correct...

On the other hand, I saw a "John King" active on the comp.sys.hp48 newgroup, mainly giving technical advices on the 48...


I was amused to see someone say I could not be "ebaytruth@..." because I was on vacation. I confess that I am hooked on computers enough that I did check e-mail a couple of times while on vacation. But rest assured, I made a concious decission to use my Federal Communications (FCC) Amateur Radio (ham) call sign in my e-mail name. This is so that ANYONE who wants to find me, as long as I am alive can locate me ... my ham call sign is cross-referenced to my name and to my address as part of my license, and is readily available on web-based database, Ham call sign books, etc. I never send anonymous e-mail.


Ya know: I knew it wouldn't be you anyway. :-)

Your auctions are fun and worthwhile. There was, though, an odd "reason" I mentioned you in my above post.

I had wanted some 97-type cards right away, and since I have bought some card-media from you before (for my 75d) I thought of you first. But the auction I ended up using to get my 97's cards was ending within a few days; I was hurrying... etc.

When you wrote here in this thread stating that Mr. "ebaytruth" had jibed you for your way-low starting prices, that was funny to me, since probably a few days or weeks before he emailed you with his selling advice, he was busy telling me not to pay as much as what I was perfectly willing to pay!

I was teasing you, Chris, for your momentary eBay absence around the holidays. But I'm very glad sellers like you are there, Chris, so apologies if I blundered with my offhand remark. As my feedback to you said on eBay, I stand by it:

Prompt, well-packed, great merchandise and seller. Utterly professional. A+++!!!

THAT is the "ebaytruth" that matters, isn't it? That you as a seller and I as a buyer can BOTH win... without aid of a busybody price-meddler...


However, Mike's a good guy and appreciates the finest of HP's (and a few other makes) ;+} He's *not* JK ebaytruth for certain. Sounds like he's been found on the hp48 newsgroup

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