The Conversation: What do TikTok, Bunnings, eBay and Netflix have in common? They’re all hyper-collectors

The Conversation: What do TikTok, Bunnings, eBay and Netflix have in common? They’re all hyper-collectors . “Consumer data is big business. In 2019, a report from digital marketers WebFX showed that data from around 1,400 loyalty programs was routinely being traded across the globe as part of an industry worth around US$200 billion. That same year, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s review of loyalty schemes revealed how many of these loyalty schemes lacked data transparency and even discriminated against vulnerable customers. But the digital environment is making data collection even easier.”

CNBC: Stolen goods sold on Amazon, eBay and Facebook are causing havoc for major retailers

CNBC: Stolen goods sold on Amazon, eBay and Facebook are causing havoc for major retailers. “For the U.S. Government’s Homeland Security Investigations unit, organized retail crime probes are on the rise. Arrests and indictments increased last year from 2020, along with the value of stolen goods that was seized. While data is imprecise about the perpetrators, there’s growing consensus that an entirely different group should be held accountable: e-commerce sites.”

CNET: No, Ukrainians Aren’t Selling Captured Russian Tanks on eBay

CNET: No, Ukrainians Aren’t Selling Captured Russian Tanks on eBay. “Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has prompted countless news stories, memes and videos. But not every report is true. One image circulating on social media showed what was supposedly an eBay listing selling a Russian tank captured in Ukraine, priced at $400,000 (roughly £299,740, AU$546,000). Now urban-legends site Snopes has dug into the story behind the listing and revealed that the tank photo has been on the web for more than a decade, and isn’t from any current eBay listing.”

PC Magazine: ‘Silent AirTags’ With Speakers Removed Pop Up on Etsy, eBay

PC Magazine: ‘Silent AirTags’ With Speakers Removed Pop Up on Etsy, eBay. “As a safety precaution, Apple AirTags will beep if they’re separated from their owners for a set period of time—if they’re slipped into someone’s pocket, bag, or car to stalk them, for example. But a merchant on Etsy tried to undermine this safeguard by selling modified AirTags that had their internal speakers removed.”

Lifehacker: How to Tell If eBay, Amazon, and Facebook Marketplace Items Are Stolen

Lifehacker: How to Tell If eBay, Amazon, and Facebook Marketplace Items Are Stolen. “These spaces operate more like virtual flea markets—except without the option of inspecting the items (in person) yourself. For this, and other reasons, it’s not uncommon for stolen goods to end up for sale on these sites. In fact, according to the National Retail Federation, what it refers to as ‘organized retail crime’ (ORC) currently costs retailers an average of $700,000 per $1 billion in sales, and roughly 75% of retailers surveyed in 2020 saw an increase in ORC that year alone. So how do you tell what’s legitimately (and legally) being sold or resold, and what’s hot? Here are a few red flags to look out for when shopping at online marketplaces.”

New Yorker: The Queer Past Gets Deleted on eBay

New Yorker: The Queer Past Gets Deleted on eBay. “In researching his book ‘Bound Together: Leather, Sex, Archives, and Contemporary Art,’ Andy Campbell, an associate professor of critical studies at the Roski School of Art and Design, used both eBay and the Johnson/Carter Library, in addition to other archives around the country. ‘Bound Together’ argues that queer archives are particularly precarious, as they often lack institutional support structures and their content is at odds with community guidelines.”

Vice: How Mexico’s Most Powerful Cartel Used EBay to Arm Themselves With Military Gear

Vice: How Mexico’s Most Powerful Cartel Used EBay to Arm Themselves With Military Gear. “It started with his mom’s credit card, claimed Ismael Almada in March 2020, as he voluntarily spilled his guts to U.S. law enforcement officers during an interview in the Mexican city of Guadalajara. He’d originally used his mom’s card to order weapons accessories and tactical gear off eBay for his security business that focused on anti-spyware and surveillance technology, before eventually moving to PayPal to make the trail of U.S. goods to Mexico a bit more clandestine. He needed to. Most of the illegal imports went to the infamous Jalisco New Generation Cartel, known as the CJNG for its Spanish acronym.”

Boing Boing: People are selling Moderna COVID-19 vaccine bottles on eBay. They’re empty though.

Boing Boing: People are selling Moderna COVID-19 vaccine bottles on eBay. They’re empty though.. “People are selling empty Moderna vaccine bottles on eBay. Current “Buy it Now” prices range from $22 to $75. One bottle sold there for $282 at auction but that was back in January. I suppose it’s an interesting historical souvenir but as my son points out, there will likely be hundreds of millions of these manufactured so they aren’t likely to become a ‘rare collectible.’”

Inside eBay’s Cockroach Cult: The Ghastly Story of a Stalking Scandal (New York Times)

New York Times: Inside eBay’s Cockroach Cult: The Ghastly Story of a Stalking Scandal. “This account is based on court documents and dozens of interviews with people who followed the stalking scandal closely, including six who worked in Global Security and Resilience. The scheme they describe was both completely malevolent and remarkably inept — full of daft assumptions on the part of eBay about a plot that did not exist. It stands as a warning about how easily tech companies can feel aggrieved, and the mayhem that can ensue when they do. And it vividly shows how the internet makes people crazy, often without them ever realizing it.”

CNET: Put a stop to coronavirus price gouging, state AGs tell Amazon, Facebook and others

CNET: Put a stop to coronavirus price gouging, state AGs tell Amazon, Facebook and others. “Thirty-four state attorneys general are calling on companies like Amazon, Craigslist, Facebook, eBay and Walmart to take a harder stance of price gouging in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic. The letters to each company cite specific examples, like a Craigslist ad for a 2-liter bottle of Purell Advanced hand sanitizer with a $250 price tag. While the attorneys general acknowledge that these companies have taken steps toward curtailing price gouging, the latter calls for further action.”

Ubergizmo: Facebook’s Libra In Trouble As More Companies Withdraw Their Support

Ubergizmo: Facebook’s Libra In Trouble As More Companies Withdraw Their Support. “Last week, it was reported that Facebook’s Libra cryptocurrency lost one of the companies that initially supported it. This came in the form of PayPal who decided to back out of the cryptocurrency. However, it seems that Libra could be in serious trouble because it looks like more founding companies are withdrawing their support as well.”

Hackaday: Bots That Snag The Hottest Fashion While Breaking Social Trust In Commerce

Hackaday: Bots That Snag The Hottest Fashion While Breaking Social Trust In Commerce. “At DEF CON 27 [FinalPhoenix] took the stage to share her adventures in writing bots and uncovering a world that buys and sells purchasing automation, forming groups much like cryptocurrency mining pools to generate leads on when the latest fashion is about to drop. This is no small market either. If your bots are leet enough, you can make a ton of cash. Let’s take a look at what it takes to write a bot, and at the bots-for-sale economy that has grown up around these concepts.”

TechCrunch: Facebook still full of groups trading fake reviews, says consumer group

TechCrunch: Facebook still full of groups trading fake reviews, says consumer group. “Which? says it found more than 55,000 new posts across just nine Facebook groups trading fake reviews in July, which it said were generating hundreds ‘or even thousands’ of posts per day. It points out the true figure is likely to be higher because Facebook caps the number of posts it quantifies at 10,000 (and three of the ten groups had hit that ceiling).”

Neowin: UK calls out Facebook and eBay on fake reviews through their platforms

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.”