If Wheedle was a horse, they’d shot it by now

The wannabe auction site Wheedle failed before it even started, but that doesn’t stop the people bankrolling it from thinking they can take a slice from the TradeMe pie. ?After all, it worked for Vodafone, and again for 2Degrees. ?Why can’t they just take a few percent of TradeMe’s business and get a toe-hold in the NZ auction market?

Wheedle boss Carl Rees says he is happy with how the online auction website is faring two weeks after its relaunch, even though it appears few bids are being placed.

At 2.30pm today there were 120 items listed for sale with an auction closing time between 2.36pm and 5.19pm, ranging from a bulk lot of 20 size D batteries ($10) to a 2006 Holden Commodore (starting bid $32,000).

But only two had attracted bids and only one, a Swiss Army watch for which bidding had reached $35, had met its reserve.

Wheedle has been bankrolled by Mainfreight co-founder and rich-lister Neil Graham and is being frequently advertised on television.

What is it with rich people that makes them think they can buy themselves success? ?A tits idea is still a tits idea, even with lots of money behind it.

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Wheedle using Labour Party coders?

News is breaking out that the unfortunate and hapless first start at?Wheedle.co.nz?has been followed up on day two with some major security breaches, including

– the ability for bidders to change a sellers reserve (maybe it’s a feature?)
– unencrypted passwords being emailed to users who wish to reset their password

This is a commercial version of the Whaleoil scoop from last year, when I discovered the Labour Party had unencrypted access to their database through a website of theirs. Not only that, credit card information was put at risk, as was their entire email database. They blamed me for hacking, when in fact there was no hacking involved – just utterly inept website coding and a utterly contemptuous approach to security and protecting the information of others. They were more interested in attacking Pansy Wong than doing things properly. (The website with the open front door was an attack website about Pansy and her husband,?which?is how I found the breach in the first place).

It is alleged that Wheedle’s website is insecure because they paid peanuts for Indian coders who were sloppy.

It is far more likely that Wheedle have been using Labour Party coders.

Wheedle and Whinging

I’m a little dubious about this new entrant in NZ online auctions -?Wheedle.co.nz

Quite apart from having a bit of a failure in?the?naming stakes.

I wonder that TradeMe is too well entrenched with too big a community for an alternative online auctions site to prosper.

Yet, I see some very defensive comments from Sam Morgan, founder of TradeMe, that betray a bit more than just business commentary.

Sam should know. ?After all, there was the failure of Pacific Fibre, a company that Sam Morgan was instrumental in funding.?Not only did the business fail rather embarrassingly, the subsequent tantrums blaming a government minister, that followed in the hope of corporate handouts could be best described as lacking in dignity.

It might also be applied to the middling to poor performance of Gareth Morgan Kiwisaver funds, of which Sam Morgan was a director until KiwiBank bought them out.