Neowin: UK calls out Facebook and eBay on fake reviews through their platforms. “It’s not at all surprising to learn that fake reviews have long found refuge online, thanks in part to loose monitoring by some of the big internet companies. Today, the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has urged Facebook and eBay, two of the world’s largest online brands, to purge their platforms of fake reviews.”
The Verge: AI translation boosted eBay sales more than 10 percent. “We often hear that artificial intelligence is important for economic growth, and while that claim makes intuitive sense, there isn’t a lot of hard data to back it up. A recent study from economists at MIT and Washington University in St. Louis offers some proof, though, showing how AI tools boost trade by allowing sellers to cross the language barrier.”
Krebs on Security: Dirt-Cheap, Legit, Windows Software: Pick Two. “Last week, KrebsOnSecurity heard from a reader who’d just purchased a copy of Microsoft Office 2016 Professional Plus from a seller on eBay for less than $4. Let’s call this Red Flag #1, as a legitimately purchased license of Microsoft Office 2016 is still going to cost between $70 and $100. Nevertheless, almost 350 other people had made the same purchase from this seller over the past year, according to eBay, and there appear to be many auctioneers just like this one.”
Gizmodo: Entire Source Code For eBay Japan Leaked, Including Database Passwords. “While the source code for any website is available to anyone who can right-click, this only covers client-side stuff. To view the actual server code where the magic happens, you’d need secure access to the website’s hardware. But why make it so hard for hackers and other ne’er-do-wells, when you could just publish this code to your front-facing production site… like eBay Japan did.”
VoxEU: The effect of machine translation on international trade: Evidence from a large digital platform. “Recent years have seen dramatic progress in the predictive power of artificial intelligence in many areas, including speech recognition, but empirical evidence documenting its concrete economic effects is largely lacking. This column analyses the effect of the introduction of eBay Machine Translation on eBay’s international trade. The results show that it increased US exports on eBay to Spanish-speaking Latin American countries by 17.5%. By overriding trade-hindering language barriers, AI is already affecting productivity and trade and has significant potential to increase them further.”
Business Wire: PWCC Announces New Research Tool Available to the Public (PRESS RELEASE). “-PWCC Marketplace, the largest auctioneer of investment-caliber trading cards, just announced the launch of a new research tool that will give investors access to 15 years’ worth of trading cards sales data. Titled Market Price Research, PWCC, in partnership with eBay is leveraging over 250 million data points to showcase dates, prices, and card types, which will provide the basis of the new tool and is part of PWCC’s suite of Investor services, available for free to the general public.” This is exactly what you think it is — baseball cards, Magic the Gathering cards, etc.
New York Times Magazine: Want to Understand What Ails the Modern Internet? Look at eBay. “There was a time when eBay was practically synonymous with buying and selling things online. Now it’s surprisingly easy to forget that it exists, until you need to buy something you can’t find anywhere else or clear some space in the attic. Or until someone like Elon Musk, made fabulously wealthy when PayPal was acquired by eBay in 2002, muscles his way back into your consciousness by, for example, launching rockets into space or burrowing tunnels under major American cities. Where did he come from, exactly? As with a surprising number of tech heavyweights, the answer is complicated, but it runs through eBay.”