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Should GoDaddy Auctions display bidder handles?

Located in Domain Marketplace Reviews started by Arca, Mar 16, 2018.

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Should GoDaddy Auctions show bidder handles?

  1. Yes

  2. No

Results are only viewable after voting.
Total: 108 vote(s)
  1. Joe Styler

    Joe Styler Aftermarket Product Manager GoDaddy Staff Afternic Staff PRO VIP

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    Quickly - Bidder handles no. I have addressed this several times in depth. We prefer to have a domain stand on its own value, not be bid on because of who else is bidding on it. Some agree, some don't that is fine but this is our stance at this time.

    As far as the dispute.com auction they were all legitimate bidders. Here is a post I put on a blog that explains a bit more of what happened.

    There are some incorrect assumptions being tossed around, I want to clear a few things up.

    First, only the winner of the auction is required to pay for an auction. If the top bidder falls out, we contact the subsequent bidders, but they are not required to pay.

    Second, we monitor high-dollar auctions closely. As this auction started to rise in price, we knew each of the bidders were legitimate and could afford the price of the auction.

    Third, since these are expiration auctions, there’s quick turnaround for payment. If we aren’t able to collect the money in time, the domain will continue through the expiration process.

    With that information, let’s work through what happened. This auction ended on a Tuesday. We give buyers a reasonable amount of time to pay for their auction. It became clear the winning bidder was not going to be able to pay on Friday afternoon. We started to reach out to the rest of the bidders.

    While we have no doubts the bidders immediately following him could afford to pay for the domain name, there were logistical issues. Friday after noon PST means most banks won’t wire money until Monday, which is too late. Most credit cards won’t allow that big of a transaction, so that’s not an option. Even if someone had cash, it would have been difficult to get the cash to us in the amount of time needed.

    The best option is an extremely high limit credit card that allows large transactions. The person who was able to capture the name had a card available that was able to do that.

    So in summary – all bidders at the top were legitimate bidders. We were tracking this and knew who they were. Given appropriate time, we are confident the bidders who couldn’t pay on Friday afternoon would have been able to pay. The auction ended on a Tuesday, had they won on Tuesday there was time for them to complete payment in time. The top bidder has had action taken against their bidding account, to prevent things like this from happening in the future.

    I hope this helps answer some questions.
     
    The views expressed on this page by users and staff are their own, not those of NamePros.
  2. Arca

    Arca Top Member VIP

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    If GoDaddy actually wants a domain to "stand on its own value, not be bid on because of who else is bidding on it" then why are you providing real-time access through your API about what we are bidding on to companies like HugeDomains, so that they can auto-bid because of somebody else bidding on it?

    Facilitated by GoDaddy, various companies have set their bots up to bid on a domain because somebody else bids on it, how is that letting a domain stand on its own value? It's thanks to the system that you have set up for them that they are able to systematically bid on certain domains, not because of the value they see in them, but because somebody else is bidding on them. The widespread and systematic scale this takes place on would not be possible without GoDaddy aiding these API user to do so.

    The current status quo with API users contradicts the reason why you are against introducing bidder handles.

    If you are actually committed to let domains stand on their own value, please remove data about all domains that get bid on to API users, so that domains will get bids due to the value somebody sees in them, and not purely be bid on because someone else is bidding on them. Otherwise, I don't see how you can use this to justify why bidder handles can't be introduced.

    How can you have "no doubts" when the bidder you let win wasn't able to pay and defaulted?

    The top five bidders of an auction being unable to pay strikes me as very strange. Just one week ago they bid the domain up to the price they then were offered to buy it for. And suddenly, the top five bidders were unable to pay for the domain at that price? It's not like they wouldn't have the same logistical issues had they been the original winner, in other words, if they couldn't even pay when they got a discount off the auction close price, it's highly likely they would not have paid had they been the original winner one week prior. Don't you see how five people like that bidding up the price tens of thousands above what it eventually sold for to the sixth highest bidder being an issue? Don't you see any reason why we would want more transparency into this process, and make our own judgment about whether or not the bidders we bid against are legit?

    You had full confidence in these top five bidders, but the fact that none of them were able to pay in a real world scenario calls into question GoDadd's ability to judge their actual ability to pay within the terms set out by GD and the banking regulations that affect them. Having $65,000 or being willing to pay does not make you a legit bidder if various reasons prevent you from paying! Having $65K and a method to pay for the domain within the terms required by GoDaddy, within the banking regulations imposed by your country, is what makes you a legit bidder. Because the top five bidders were unable to pay within the real-world scenario of this auction, they were not legitimate bidders in the context of this auction, and they unnaturally drove up the final auction price for a domain that they in reality could not have paid for according to GoDaddy's auction membership agreement and the banking restrictions imposed on them.

    Can you please clarify what "action taken against" mean? Did the person who defaulted on a $65,000 payment get perma-banned from participating in GoDaddy Auctions again or not? Will this person be bidding against us in GoDaddy's auctions again or not?
     
  3. Joe Styler

    Joe Styler Aftermarket Product Manager GoDaddy Staff Afternic Staff PRO VIP

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    I am not sure what you are missing here. Only the top bidder is required to pay. All the other bidders are not they didn't win. There would have been no reason for them to start moving money to us prior to us letting them know the winning bidder could not make the payment in time.

    Had they won the auction, it ended on a Tuesday. They would have had 3 business days to make payment. Instead we contacted them on a Friday afternoon PST which means that in most of the world and the US the banks were closed. So they could not make instant payment. There was not time for a wire to get to us even from a US bank until Monday morning. We don't just have US bidders. So there is even less chance for a wire to get to us from a non US bank on what would have been a Friday late night / early Saturday in other parts of the world. Some countries restrict how much money is sent outside the country in a single day as well. Given three business days there is no problem, given one weekend, it becomes impossible.

    So that leaves only one option, a high limit credit card that allows single high dollar transactions.

    The bidders were legitimate had they won they would have paid as they would have had enough time to get the money to us.
     
  4. tonyk2000

    tonyk2000 Top Member VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Joe - honestly, there were questions on last couple of pages, not directly connected with any particular auction, that deserve to be answered. I understand that you may be unable / not allowed to answer sometimes, if so, please just confirm the said limitation. Thanks!
     
  5. Arca

    Arca Top Member VIP

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    But the winning bidder had three business days and didn't pay... As you said, there was no problem for them, and yet they didn't pay.

    Is there a reason why you're avoiding to state whether or not you banned the buyer who bid up to $65,000 and did not pay? It's a simple yes/no question.

    Will this person continue to bid in GoDaddy Auctions again or not?

    Because you anonymize bidders there is no way for us to know what you're accepting or not on your platform. For all we know, he just a got a slap on the wrist and is still bidding in the auctions, despite defaulting on a $65,000 bid. We've seen time and time again in the past how your big spenders/corporate users play by totally different rules (at Afternic as well), and can break your rules over and over without serious consequences.

    If you had bidder handles, this wouldn't be an issue. We could have more trust in the auction process if there was a degree of transparency. So all we can rely on is for you to clarify. But it seems even that is too much to ask for.
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2018
  6. Joe Styler

    Joe Styler Aftermarket Product Manager GoDaddy Staff Afternic Staff PRO VIP

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    I don't typically go into specifics on other customer's accounts. I will make an exception this time and say they were permanently banned from the auctions.
     
  7. equity78

    equity78 Top Member TLDInvestors.com TheDomains Staff PRO Gold Account VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Whoops
     
  8. maxtra

    maxtra Let's make a deal Gold Account VIP

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  9. maxtra

    maxtra Let's make a deal Gold Account VIP

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    In all fairness, have there been any other GD employees fired in the past for the same thing?
     
  10. wwwweb

    wwwweb Top Member VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    What I am noticing, is 5 minute countdowns, then automatic min $5/$10/$25 bid, so a human bidder has to spend their whole afternoon bidding online, otherwise these other auto bidders are probably going to be called out pretty quickly.
     
  11. domainventure

    domainventure Top Member VIP

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    Move the Auctions to the Blockchain. If Companies are up for it, a lot of issues could be mitigated!
     
  12. Paul Nicks

    Paul Nicks Member GoDaddy Staff PRO VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    This is not a "whoops". GoDaddy is not bidding on auctions, we caught an employee who bid on names and terminated their employment. None of the 50 names they won ended up in any GoDaddy corporate account.

    I'm doing my best to address questions on the DNW and domaininvesting blog posts.

    As far as bidderIDs, I have instructed the product team to scope adding these after the end of an auction, visible to all participants in that auction.
     
  13. Paul Nicks

    Paul Nicks Member GoDaddy Staff PRO VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Yes, but it's been 7+ years
     
  14. behindsun

    behindsun NameClix Gold Account ★★★★★★★★★★

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    bidder id same as username ?
     
  15. equity78

    equity78 Top Member TLDInvestors.com TheDomains Staff PRO Gold Account VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    I did not think corporate bought them Paul, my point with that quick quip was that I started talking about handles years ago and I felt there was a bit of arrogance in Joe's reply and without transparency things can happen. Also many people do consider employees the company until that employee is fired. I would never imply you or Joe would condone anything illegal.

    Glad to hear you are working on looking at bidder id's.
     
  16. wwwweb

    wwwweb Top Member VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    I think everyone should be assigned a serial
    number for being a bidder, exposing existing usernames could be a security concern if they are ones associated with account logins.
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2019
  17. AbdulBasit.com

    AbdulBasit.com DomainsWeb.com AbdulBasit.com PRO VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    This should have been implemented earlier. You guys were never interested in having public bidding handles so it looks like you were waiting for some dirty activity to happen. I'm sure you won't agree but there was and is not a single solid reason for not having public bidding handles right from the beginning. It's like not much interested in having transparency. And here is the result you got and clients got the suffering.

    It's more of sad to hear it but not shocking because with not much transparency at your platform, this was sooner or later going to happen.
     
  18. equity78

    equity78 Top Member TLDInvestors.com TheDomains Staff PRO Gold Account VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Agreed cannot be associated with logins, we don't need one problem creating another.
     
  19. tonyk2000

    tonyk2000 Top Member VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    This opens the following questions. OK, employees are not supposed to bid. It also appears that they are allowed to purchase BIN or closeout domains. But, GoDaddy has a complicated business structure. I can mention lets say "GoDaddy Canada" visible is .ca whois, and there are various other legal entities, such as Afternic LLC.

    So:

    1. Are legal entities officially forming "GoDaddy group" allowed to participate (as domain registrants) in aftermarket activities offered on godaddy.com, and, if so, in what aspects - listing domains, bidding, purchasing BIN domains, purchase closeouts, etc.

    2. The same as (1.) but for legal entities beneficially owned or controlled by one or more employees or staff members of "GoDaddy group". These legal entities MAY exist (anybody can incorporate a company still being GoDaddy employee), but they would not form a part of "GoDaddy group of companies"

    ?
    Cc @Paul Nicks
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2019
  20. Shaun Lun

    Shaun Lun Established Member

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    I think showing bidder's ID (which preferably should be auction member's chosen ID and should not be GD username) would be better. We may be able to identify some in due course of time but a user ID does not reveal whole identity either so should not be a problem.

    But in the end, it's upto them. I keep a watch on those traffic domains and in the very final minutes, I keep being outbid every single time. I would sure love to know if they are always the same person. Just at least for the sake of knowing their ID.
     
  21. wwwweb

    wwwweb Top Member VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Shaun,

    How does your outbids happen, systematic run down of clock, with a new min $5 bid, over, and over like a bad dream?
     
  22. Shaun Lun

    Shaun Lun Established Member

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    Exactly like that. That too it's not 2-3 bidders that outbid me. One single bidder keep outbidding me time and again. By the mere margin of $5. That's a little painful especially when the timings of auction end for GD auctions are really odd hours for Indian residents (They end anywhere between 11:30pm to 3am). I waited till about 1 am in most cases.

    Those domains were not truely great by the name but they do have traffic stats with earning estimates such as $200+ or $300+.

    Imagine they were won $5 above your last bid and at low $xxx. I could wait, but then I might have to sacrifice my sleep for a chance to win, which I would be outbid every other minute by the same bidder for $5 more. Just my experience recently.
     
  23. Paul Nicks

    Paul Nicks Member GoDaddy Staff PRO VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    What we're looking at is unique ids for each bidder that have no reflection on their shopperID or anything else that may potentially expose the bidder to security risks.
     
  24. Paul Nicks

    Paul Nicks Member GoDaddy Staff PRO VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    There is a reason, and we've articulated it in the past. Having bidderIDs during an auction will allow some to copy the strategies of others and potentially promote malicious behavior. Example, if a bidder is known to win a majority of their auctions at $125, then what's to stop someone with an axe to grind from bidding that person up to $120 on every auction they see them in.

    The solution we are looking at now will still mask bidderIDs during the auction but will expose them after the fact so that people will be able to research who was bidding against them if they choose.
     
  25. Paul Nicks

    Paul Nicks Member GoDaddy Staff PRO VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    BIN inventory is available to be purchased by our employees. All GoDaddy entities are held to the same standards as our employees, no bidding in auctions.
     

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