Saturday, June 03, 2006

Hurricanes handbag & cellphone auction goes ballistic on TradeMe

TradeMe auction pic of handbag and cellphoneYou may have read my blog post about the altercation involving a few Hurricanes players and a handbag after the Super 14 final on Saturday night.

As I mentioned in an update to that post, the owner of the bag (in true Kiwi entrepreneurial fashion) put it up for sale on TradeMe yesterday, along with the cellphone that was broken during the ruckus. I've been watching the bidding as it swung wildly up and then down again as TradeMe removed bogus bids. It's been one crazy ride.

At one point last night the bidding was up to $100,004,599.00. No, that's not a typo. A few hours later it was back to a more "sensible" level - $94,000.00. It's currently at $21,769.00 (5.25pm) - obviously more bogus bids were removed during the night - but there are questions about whether the current top bidder is actually going to pay up. We shall see what happens. There's an hour and a half left before the auction closes - I'm expecting they will clear out the last of the bogus bids before then, and we might see a proper bidding war between genuine bidders in the last few minutes. Should be fun!

There are now over 3,000 unanswered questions for this auction - the poor person running it is trying hard to keep up, but for every question s/he anwers, 5 more pop up. It's taken on a life of its own - here are a few quotes from the questions section:

"Hey Dudes, Some stats; Between 0900 and 1300 today uv had 98000 odd hits ranging from around 180 per min, peaking at 620 odd per min. Awesome dudes. Thnx 4 the entertainment."

"FYI your auction page is averaging approx 112 hits per second. Roll on 1,000,000 page hits."

"Hi , sorry to add to your email burdens, however, a friend living in london asked me if this is for real. So now you are a global phenomenon. congrats."

As I write this, there have been 857,540 views of the auction page on TradeMe. Seems like the whole country (and parts of the rest of the world) is watching!

I'll put more updates on here as the auction reaches its conclusion.

UPDATE: 6.48pm - current highest bid is $22,600.00. Now over a million hits on the page counter. It doesn't go that high though, so it's gone back to 10,000 or so (plus a million).

UPDATE: 7.02pm - Winning bid was $22,800.000. TradeMe crashed for a few seconds just before the end of the auction, and then quickly came back online again. Phew! Page views are up to 1,073,000-ish. I think most of the country came to a standstill to watch the final few minutes. There was even a late breaking report on the TV news. Heh. I do love the way we don't take ourselves too seriously...

Check out some of the worldwide coverage this crazy event has received:

Technorati tags: , , , , , , , , , , .