logo for ebay sniper eSnipe, Inc.


Tom Campbell
eSnipe, Inc.
12819 SE 38th St. PMB 293
Bellevue, WA 98006
Office: (425) 260-5292
Fax: (623) 321-6087


eSnipe Stumbles Into Late 20th Century, One Gun Almost Blazing

Leading auction sniper firm eSnipe discovers blog technology only a decade or so late

Bellevue, WA - May 15, 2009 - Leading auction services provider eSnipe, Inc. (www.eSnipe.com), a fixture in the eBay auction world since 1999, has finally made a gingerly foray into the social media world using late 20th century technology: a blog, found at  http://www.EasyOnMe.com/blog. It was a long time coming, and eSnipe officials were well aware of it. The pioneering web firm has been paradoxically ahead of the curve internally while remaining about as exciting as a utility company externally.

Surprising complications on high-performance site

eSnipe's staid appearance belies the fact that it is one of the most sophisticated technology sites on the Web, because its sole purpose is to place bids on eBay at the exact second specified by the user. This is directly opposite the behavior of most websites, whose users do not suffer particularly if a page loads 10 seconds longer than it normally might. The web, after all, is designed to be flexible and fault tolerant. On eSnipe, a lag of 2 seconds can mean a failed auction bid.

eSnipe receives tens of millions of page views per month, and with more registered users than live in the city of Cleveland the impact of a blog on system performance could be devastating. eSnipe uses multiple web servers in multiple cities on different Internet backbones, but no one at the firm wanted to jeopardize the company's core business--placing bids on eBay--just to start a blog. So plans were made to launch the blog on a separate site.

New site deployed for blog

Meanwhile another business plan was brewing, and the wide-ranging nature of EasyOnMe, a publishing company, meant that the eSnipe blog could fit conveniently into the new site. EasyOnMe.com/blog was born as the official blog for eSnipe. It is also serves as the blog site for EasyOnMe. The first EasyOnMe release is a how-to product called On the Web in an Hour, meant to show unsophisticated users to create comprehensive, user-maintainable websites quickly.

Meanwhile, the eSnipe blog has been judged a qualified success just a few days after its deployment. User comments have been constructive and surprisingly positive, and the comments have already affected feature development as a result. Campbell looks forward to richer conversations as more users learn about the blog.

Next stop: Twitter?

About eSnipe, Inc.

eSnipe places bids for eBay users during the last few seconds of the auction, a practice called "sniping" in online auction parlance. eSnipe launched in 1999 as one of the early eBay sniper services run on high-speed dedicated servers. eSnipe's multiple servers placed over $350 million worth of bids on eBay in 2008 alone. Rovatron, eSnipe's automated bid-placing engine, places well over 12,000 bids a day on weekdays and more than double that on Sundays. At peak periods Rovatron places more than 300 bids per second.

eSnipe's founder placed the site for sale on eBay in December 2000. The auction was won by an eSnipe user—using eSnipe to place the winning bid. Former Microsoft program manager Tom Campbell made eSnipe one of the first pay sites on the internet and devised one of the first working micropayment systems. Campbell is also CEO of startup EasyOnMe.

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