Feeds

eBayer slaps $714 price tag on $630 in cash

Will Microsoft pay the difference?

The essential guide to IT transformation

In an attempt to game Microsoft's new Live Search Cashback program, an eBayer has put a $714 price tag on $630 in cash.

Here's the listing in all its glory:

eBay Live Search game

Pay cash for cash

That's right, $630 in cash can be yours for $714. But if you access the page through a Live Search ad link that returns 35 per cent of the purchase price, you can make up the difference. And then some. So you make a profit, and so does the seller. At the expense of Microsoft and eBay.

That's the theory, anyway. It's unclear whether this actually works, and neither Microsoft nor eBay has responded to requests for comment.

Last month, in a desperate effort to shrink the Google gap, Microsoft began bribing people to use its third rate search engine. If you use Live Search ads to find and purchase certain items, Microsoft will return a portion of the purchase price. In some cases, this amounts to a 35 per cent savings.

The payments come straight from Microsoft's product-selling advertisers. So, if a partner like eBay posts an advertisement, the ad fee provides that cash back refund.

Well, in recent days, message board mavens at FatWallet.com have noticed a potential loophole in this setup. If an eBay listing offers cash, they say, both the seller and the buyer can make some extra dough. But it must be a "Buy Now" purchase - and payment must be made through PayPal.

At the very least, there's a cap on that extra dough. Microsoft limits cash back rewards to $250. That's why our swashbuckling eBay choose $714 as a purchase price. But some posters are claiming a 35 per cent return is no longer available on eBay listings. The norm now seems to be 10 per cent on eBay buys.

If this does work - the eBayer hasn't responded to us either - we're sure it won't work for long. The bigger question is how long Ballmer can afford cash back refunds on all those other sales. ®

Bootnote

A tip of the hat to Joe Lazarus and Techdirt.

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
No, thank you. I will not code for the Caliphate
Some assignments, even the Bongster decline must
Kaspersky backpedals on 'done nothing wrong, nothing to fear' blather
Founder (and internet passport fan) now says privacy is precious
TROLL SLAYER Google grabs $1.3 MEEELLION in patent counter-suit
Chocolate Factory hits back at firm for suing customers
Mozilla's 'Tiles' ads debut in new Firefox nightlies
You can try turning them off and on again
Facebook, Google and Instagram 'worse than drugs' says Miley Cyrus
Italian boffins agree with popette's theory that haters are the real wrecking balls
Sit tight, fanbois. Apple's '$400' wearable release slips into early 2015
Sources: time to put in plenty of clock-watching for' iWatch
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.