eBay shows dirty linen in public

By Chris Dawson May 12, 2009 - 11:57 am

ebayhomepageknickers1Amanda from had a bit of a shock when perusing eBay UK’s home page yesterday. In amongst the “tea” and “coffee” recommended searches, it also suggested she might be interested in “stained knickers” and “soiled underwear”. Amanda assures me that these bear no relation to anything she’s been looking for previously on eBay!

Nevertheless, it seems that if you’ve looked at underwear, this may be one of the searches eBay throws up: Amanda *had* looked at some faked designer underwear mentioned in a forum thread. Would that be enough to produce this kind of search result? Only eBay knows; presumably they have some kind of filter to remove illegal and prohibited items from front page search results, but that filter isn’t working properly here. As Amanda says, it’s a lovely first impression for anyone new to the site.

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  • 13 years ago


    Best Match hits the fan?

    eBay on Skid(s) Row?

    eBay needs to come clean on this!

    • 13 years ago

      Paul, I’ve often said that eBay’s advertising is pants.

  • 13 years ago


    May be this is what ebay meant when they said they wouldn’t neglect sellers of one-off collectables?

  • eqixx
    13 years ago

    try looking what ebay pulse shows as the top 10 most searched for terms are in the ladies underwear category:

    1. worn
    2. bikini
    3. lingerie
    4. ann summers
    5. la senza
    6. agent provocateur
    7. underwear
    8. bra
    9. tankini
    10. used

    Our account manager demonstrated ebay pulse for us back when we used to sell underwear, and she was rather shocked when she saw the results…

    back then, ‘soiled’ was in there too…

  • board_surfer
    13 years ago

    If worn is the most searched term, why shouldnt it be top of the list.

    As long as the results are zero its not a problem

    And anyway who are we to presume new users do not come looking for worn underwear?? (coz someone is sure looking for it!!)

    A pervs money is exactly the same as a puritans, I dont care what brings them to the site as long as they buy something from me!!

  • 13 years ago

    As long as the results are zero its not a problem

    That’s very true!

  • 13 years ago

    A pervs money is exactly the same as a puritans
    I couldn’t give a stuff if people want to buy used underwear: my issue is with the hypocrisy. If eBay have banned this stuff, then it shouldn’t be promoted on the front page.

  • board_surfer
    13 years ago

    Ebay are just promoting what people are searching for, hence worn being top of the cat search.

    you and I may be mortified but ebay cant stop folk looking for stuff

    and be honest, are people quite that prudish?.. somehow I doubt it.

    ok so ebay should filter whats on the front page perhaps, but Its hardly a shock, horror, how could they story.

    As for hypocrisy..this is ebay we are talking about, hypocrisy is fairly normal for them.

  • Jane
    13 years ago

    This doesn’t surprise me a bit! As a seller of lingerie, both new and vintage, I have fallen foul (!) of eBay policy on used knickers before. Not that I sell such things, you understand, but I did have a listing for a vintage teddy pulled because it wasn’t ‘new’ old stock but pre-owned, and even thought it was listed as freshly laundered, they decided the listing broke their rules.

    Apparently any item of pants, knickers, etc, must be new and unworn. Vintage underwear is only permitted if it sold as collectible. Any listing that implies the garment has been worn will be disallowed, and the same is true for anything that implies a fetishistic use.

    For the record, I don’t sell anything of that nature, but I did point out to eBay that there are hundreds of listings with such terms as ‘sissy’, ‘adult baby’, etc, etc, in the title, which seem to break the rules, but just got the usual reply.

    Anyway, the point is, people ARE looking for used/worn/soiled undies. (Ewwwwwwwwwww!) I should know – I have lost count of the number of people (men!) who have written to ask if I will wear a piece of lingerie before I send it!!! The fact that the search term appears on the front page like that merely reflects what people are searching for. It’s simply that eBay clearly haven’t thought to filter it from their popular search term results. I expect there are popular searches for ‘ivory artefacts’ and ‘great big sharp pointy knives’ too, even though these items are not allowed…

    I think if I was new buyer though, I would find it very offputting to come across such things, so I hope the matter has been drawn to eBay’s attention.

    Silk Dreams Lingerie.

  • Gerry007
    13 years ago

    Oh good old ebay………………………. Will save me ages looking at all the sub human nicker sites
    (only joking……honestly).

    Funny enough we sell hinges. Try listing ‘Butt’ hinges……sure you can guess why they won’t let us say this in item titles (butt in US means ar*e).

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