Commenter Musings: Craigslist vs eBay

DT Editor’s Note: We enjoy featuring Commenter of the Week awards, but sometimes a comment from one of our regular readers is so well put together that it demands is own post. So here is Kaibeezy’s comment to an anonoymous poster who pointed out that the Amazon we featured had already been on craigslist.  Just read it for yourself.

It’s an interesting, almost philosophical question: whyfor CL versus
eBay? certainly there’s overlap, but the venn diagram seems relatively

The “death by stabbing” PV544 vs. a nice ebay listing from Oprah85 for another PV544.


– primarily local audience

– free and easy to post

– clear distinction between owner and dealer sellers

– no shipping issues

– minimal oversight and rules


– national and even international audience

– structured postings, better filter and sort options

– fuzzy distinction between owners and dealer sellers

– shipping

– buyer and seller protection, lots of rules

DT ed: cost is a factor as it can cost several hundred dollars to sell a car on eBay.

No doubt there’s more to it – but the stories should generally fit:

– eBay for rare, newer, unusual and/or higher value cars

– CL for more fungible and/or lower value cars

factors can skew it: laziness, comfort with one site or the other, not
wanting to deal with callers and people dropping by – the size of the
metro area is probably a factor too, with big city CLs covering a
diverse enough market that sellers can reasonably go either way, whereas
in small metros unless it’s a very usual car you might have trouble
ever finding a buyer

This is where flippers come in – when
a car is on CL but really should be on eBay (or on a used car lot for
that matter), and the seller doesn’t want to deal with it, the flipper
spots it and moves it upstream – if they can resist the temptation to
futz with the story and the car, and don’t get too obviously flippy
about it, none of us will probably mind, and even would call it a
service – on the other hand, like with that green peugeot from a few
weeks ago, we get a bit indignant

Anyway, that’s how I see it
from putting a bit of time and effort into this activity – your
perspective may vary, and I’d be interested to hear it.

Original content written by DT regular reader, commenter & tipper Kaibeezy.