Download Everyday eBay: Culture, Collecting, And Desire by Ken Hillis PDF

By Ken Hillis

Daily eBay is the 1st scholarly research of the web market that has develop into an international social, cultural and fiscal phenomenon. The eighteen new and vintage essays collected right here study eBay from a large choice of views as a bellwether of flavor and fabric tradition; as a wealthy website of cultural, racial, and sexual discourse and perform; as an emergent media shape; and as a facilitator of world consumerism. From outdated toys steeped in nostalgia to 'rare' restricted variation footwear, the members display that worth on eBay isn't easily approximately 'price'. On any given day, greater than million goods are indexed on the market on eBay, from daily gadgets to kitsch and collectibles to the actually extraordinary. because its debut ten years in the past, eBay has fast develop into a imperative vacation spot for hundreds of thousands of internet browsers. based on eBay itself, as much as 165,000 americans now make their residing via promoting during the site, and different enterprise analysts venture that millions of people all over the world now make their dwelling via eBay.

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This suggests that the exchange of objects can also involve the seller in self-constructions formed in relation to social networks. indb 35 35 3/13/06 12:24:54 PM Mary Desjardins persona through a conflation of that self with his or her eBay listings. 14 The seller desires to be more accessible to buyers and to engage them in further viewing experiences or commodity transactions. In the process the seller also exposes how the “community” experience on eBay is, like some experiences among fans and collectors in embodied situations, part longing for communication with and attention from others, part commodity exchange that confers status on seller and buyer alike, and part eroticization of the display and exchange of objects that relate to self-identity.

Lisa Long, “All Buy Ourselves at Household Auctions,” in Acts of Possession: Collecting in America, ed. Leah Dilworth (New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 2002), 250. Sharon Zukin has a similar take on cyberauctions, although Zukin embeds her discussion of eBay in a history of shopping in its many forms (not just auctions). Both Long and Zukin are disturbed by cyberauctions’ participation in the suggestion that everything is up for sale in contemporary culture, which is a valid criticism (especially from scholars who admit to the pleasures of buying).

Would I have gotten into it at all? Probably not. In Istanbul, one chill misty morning in 1970, I stood in Kapali Carsi, the grand bazaar, under a Sony sign bristling with alien futurity, and stared deep into a cube of plate glass filled with tiny, ancient, fascinating things. Hanging in that ancient venue, a place whose on-site café, I was told, had been open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, literally for centuries, the Sony sign—very large, very proto-Blade Runner, illuminated in some way I hadn’t seen before—made a deep impression.

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