eBay "Amphicar" Searching: Spam Reduction Trend?


Bill Connelly

Knock wood, but it looks like the initiative recently taken to try to put
the brakes on the annoying practice of "amphicar" keyword spamming on eBay,
those folks who just lob the word "amphicar" along with the names of maybe a
hundred or so other different vehicles into their auction texts for any
vaguely automotive gimcrack they are flogging, may be beginning to show some
real signs of success.

As readers of this List already know, just a few weeks ago a title and
description search of "amphicar" resulted in very nearly three quarters of
the results having about as much to do with Amphicars as I do with Neptunian
Lunar Love Barges, which, sadly, is not nearly enough. This may well just
be a lull, of course, but even our psilly psycho buddy "snipe-like-a-pro",
who in his spare time recently took to wasting good money to post several
mock auctions whose purpose was simply to annoy Amphicar folks is down to
only one remaining Dog Lick epic. I suspect that eBay may have read him the
Riot Act in response to the complaints of various Amphicar owners.

Here's the lowdown on the effectiveness of various types of "amphicar"
searches of eBay as of this evening. All results seem to speak to an
encouraging trend, but folks who are really weary of wading through any
hooey in eBay auctions, wherever the trends may go, should especially see
number 4:

1. A plain search of "amphicar" in the homepage search box at www.ebay.com
gives 8 hits, one of these being our psilly psycho's mock auction (Ratio
8:1) -- 7 valid results, or 87.5%.

2. A Basic Search of "amphicar" including Title & Description gives 16 hits,
4 of which are not Amphicar-related, one being our psilly psycho's mock
auction (Ratio 16:5) -- 11 valid results, 68.75%

3. An Advanced International Search gives 26 hits, 6 of which are not
Amphicar-related, and of course our psilly psycho's mock auction. (Ratio
26:7) -- 19 valid results, or 73.07%

4. The Automated "Bozo Filter" International eBay Search of "amphicar" at
http://www.amphicar.net/amphipoda/ebaydirect.html (also linked to from the
Club's Classified Ads page) returned 21 hits, of which only 1 is not
Amphicar-related, and our psilly psycho's nowhere to be found in the results
(Ratio 21:1) -- 20 valid results, or 95.23%

Rest assured that I will continue to monitor eBay trends and adjust the
"Bozo Filter" as required to give Amphicar owners just the real Amphicar
deal on eBay.