David Ortiz Authentic 2013 Championship Beard Ball_70_bids_eBay_21112013This article about the David Ortiz Authentic 2013 Championship Beard Ball charity listing caught our attention.



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At the moment, bidding looks brisk, showing 70, the high bid standing at $1181.00

However, when attempting to search for the item…David Ortiz Authentic 2013 Championship Beard Ball_Title_only_search_21112013  by exact title, zero results were found.



David Ortiz 2013 Championship Beard Ball_title+description_zero_results_21112013 Searching for the exact title in quotes, using Advanced Search, (in description too) produced zero results.




Also tried with the same [0] results were various other exact partial quotes from the description using advanced title and description search:

“Up for auction is this one-of-a-kind, 100% authentic, David Ortiz 2013 Championship Beard Ball. Not only is this real championship beard hair, it is real championship MVP beard hair. David Ortiz’s beard ball was obtained on November 4th at Gillette’s World Shaving Headquarters in Boston as part of a charity shave-off. Included with the beard ball is the actual Fusion ProGlide Styler used in the shave and a card of authenticity signed by Big Papi himself.

“All proceeds go to Movember, the global charity that gets men to grow, and women to support, the moustache for the 30 days of November while raising funds and awareness for men’s health to combat prostate and testicular cancer. For more information, please visit Movember.com.

“Act now and get a piece of Boston baseball history.”

Had we not the direct link and/or listing number, we would likely have never found the item.

Try it yourselves with clean cache and cookies, and perhaps using different browsers, through a proxy or what have you. (with this, or any given item) Have friends in other areas try. Many such experiments have already been conducted, documented and posted. The results are very often repeatable, or may show other variations of visibility failure.

Ebay’s very own search help forum is loaded with nonstop complaints and numerous examples of the dismal state of ebaY’s Cassini search engine.

Keep in mind your mileage may vary, as that is the way that ebay’s obviously faulty search engine Cassini is or may be  “designed” to work. Ebay has had many a bloviant article published regarding their ability to turn off servers in order to save energy, as well as conducting hundreds of secret tests on users at any given time, without the users’ knowledge, consent, or any way to opt out. That is further compounded by misinformation dispensed by their customer service reps and assorted “forum helpers”.

Apparently those glorious achievements  are at the cost of knowingly, deliberately depriving sellers of the service/exposure advertised, (that means advertised, not buried in fine print in a User Agreement) reasonably expected, and lawfully due?

Search and finding, or item visibility issues on ebaY have gone on for literally years, sparking many discussions about deliberate Rolling Blackouts. We have documented many such such examples, and including bizarre behavior from ebaY staffers when confronted with the issue.

Then, earlier this year, subsequent to a major site outage and ‘glitch’ we discovered and exposed that ebaY was in fact, conducting experiments with “Hidden Listings

We have good reason to believe that ebaY’s Cassini search engine is so faulty, that rather than repair, or abandon their monumental investment into it,  they changed the language in the user agreement to accommodate their glaring failure.  A veritable bombshell of a policy change.



Updates to listing conditions. To further create a marketplace where buyers find what they want and drive positive user experience, we updated the provision regarding listing conditions to recognize that the appearance and placement of listings in search and browse results will depend on a variety of factors. So, in some situations a listing may not appear in some search and browse results regardless of sort order.


ebaY sellers are (and have been) painfully aware of the issues, but here we see that not only are the sellers being cheated, but also the buyers as well, and perhaps the fans, and ultimately the charity in this case.

Please consider these facts when choosing an online auction venue, whether you are some sports icon, fan, charity fundraiser, or just a regular shopper.