Don’t shill bid. Just don’t.

thou shalt not shill
Image by duncan via Flickr

If you’re an auctioneer and you’re bidding on behalf of yourself or your seller, there’s nothing illegal about it provided it’s disclosed properly and that it’s not an absolute auction. However, if you’re going to do it, don’t be sneaky about it. Don’t create a fictitious name or bidding account. Don’t try to sneak the disclosure in the small print in the auction terms. Tell your customers what you’re doing and that it’s legal. Tell your customers who you’ve appointed to bid on behalf of the seller. Don’t let your bid-caller bid, and make it clear what’s going on.

True, creating a situation where bidders are competing against a seller or reserve may disappoint or even upset some of them, but they’ll be nothing short of furious if they find out you’re trying to be sneaky in an attempt to keep them from finding out.

Regardless of the legalities of the methods, sneaking around and trying to accept bids that don’t come from legitimate bidders is an easy way to turn your bidders against you.

parts of this post have been removed due to inaccuracies in the original source material

Posted in theory | Tagged |

2009 Kansas Auctioneers Association bid calling championship recap


Back stage before the contest

The top five places for the 2009 – 2010 Kansas Auctioneers Association bid call contest are as follows.

  1. Charly Cummings, Yates Center, KS
  2. Megan McCurdy, Wichita, KS
  3. Justin Schultis, Fairbury, NE
  4. Lance Fullerton, El Dorado, KS
  5. Aaron Traffas, Sharon, KS

The other participants are listed below in appearance order.

Setting up before the contest

Setting up before the contest

  • Eric Blomquist, Assaria, KS
  • Lance Kinderknecht, Almena, KS
  • Thomas Lindsay, Jr, Shawnee, KS
  • Kevin Ediger, Windom, KS
  • Todd Borgmeyer, Norfolk, NE
  • Brady James, Council Grove, KS
  • Jeffery Temme, Petersburg, NE
  • Mike Boesker, Halstead, KS
  • John Kisner, Hays, KS
  • Russell Puchalla, Rosa, NE
  • Ty Mitchell, Oxford, KS
  • Douglas Kasselman, Spearville, KS

Waiting to draw for position

Waiting to draw for position

Posted in announcements, bid calling | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Live blogging the Kansas Auctioneers Association bid-call contest

Last year’s live blog from the Kansas State Fair worked, but we tried to go completely live using last August for the regional competition. We weren’t impressed, mainly because it required Flash. This year, we’re going to try for both live and simplicity by using our favorite real-time device, FriendFeed. You’ll get the status updates as they happen through FriendFeed, as well as the pictures from Flickr. Because it’s a FriendFeed group, anyone can login to FriendFeed and comment, so feel free to jump in and ask questions or leave comments.

Flickr pictures

FriendFeed room

Roster in contest order:

1. Eric Blomquist, Assaria, KS
2. Lance Kinderknecht, Almena, KS
3. Thomas Lindsay, Jr, Shawnee, KS
4. Justin Schultis, Fairbury, NE
5. Kevin Ediger, Windom, KS
6. Lance Fullerton, ElDorado, KS
7. Todd Borgmeyer, Norfolk, NE
8. Brady James, Council Grove, KS
9. Jeffery Temme, Petersburg, NE
10. Megan McCurdy, Wichita, KS
11. Mike Boesker, Halstead, KS
12. Charly Cummings, Yates Center, KS
13. John Kisner, Hays, KS
14. Russell Puchalla, Rosa, NE
15. Aaron Traffas, sharon, KS
16. Ty Mitchell, Oxford, KS
17. Douglas Kasselman, Spearville, KS

Tonight we’ll aggregate the activity and update this post to include all the comments and pictures in the actual post and remove the FriendFeed widget.

Posted in community

Redbeacon wins TechCrunch50

Held every year in San Fransisco, the TechCrunch50 Conference showcases the best and brightest startups. We wrote about the 2007 winner, Mint, which this week announced that it has been acquired by Intuit for $170 million.

The experts panel this year included tech and investor rockstars including Kevin Rose, Robert Scoble, Marissa Mayer, Yossi Vardi and Tim O’Reilly – to name a few.

This year’s winner was Redbeacon. Here’s the company’s description from the TechCrunch50 website.

Redbeacon allows consumers who need a service performed to find and interact with local businesses and professionals.

Redbeacon goes beyond returning business listings with ratings and reviews by helping consumers determine the right service provider for their specific needs and allowing them to compare price quotes and book appointments online.

Watch their presentation.

The runners-up.
Threadsy – runner-up
Citysourced -second runner-up
AnyClip – third runner-up
Trollim – Best international
iMo – Best presentation

The blogs will be lit up tomorrow with gossip about founder Michael Arrington’s fit-throwing and stage-leaving episode immediately before the finalists were announced. We’ll be reading with popcorn.

It’s always good to stay abreast of what new and exciting companies may change the way we live. Did you have other favorites from TechCrunch50? Let us know in the comments.

Posted in services, software | Tagged , , , , |

Opera 10 module 9 error solved

Image via Wikipedia

We love us some Opera. We’ve been advocating the Opera 10 web browser since the first alpha version was released last December. We even wrote about it in March. We’ve been faithfully using it through the beta releases and release candidates. The final version was recently released and it’s stellar.

Today, we were routing out a fairly pernicious installation of – what else – Adobe Flash on one of our Windows 7 test machines and decided to reinstall Opera 10. After removing and reinstalling, we were presented with the following error message.

Error initializing Opera: module 9

We tried several times to clean out whatever remnants of previous installations might be causing problems, as well as a fair amount of Googling to find resolutions to the problem but our efforts were to no avail. We finally found a post on the My Opera community forums where user markcs pointed us in the right direction.

The solution lies in the operaprefs_default.ini file that can be found in your installation directory. Ours is located at

c:Program Files (x86)Operaoperaprefs_default.ini

After our fresh installation, the file contained the following lines.

[User Prefs]
Language File=C:Program Files (x86)Operalocale\.lng

The language file needs to be specified. Adding ‘en’ in two places in the line fixes the problem like so.

[User Prefs]
Language File=C:Program Files (x86)Operalocaleenen.lng

Hopefully this patch works for you if you experience the Opera 10 module 9 error on Windows 7. Remember, this is apparently a rare issue with the Windows version of an otherwise trouble-free, lightning-fast, feature-complete browser that you should take for a spin if you haven’t already.

Posted in software | Tagged , |