yahoo auctions japan how to

Yahoo Auctions Japan Review & How To

I’ve been using Yahoo Auctions for a while to get hold of the most elusive parts. The PowerBook G4 memory, for example.

Yahoo Auctions is a seller’s world. The seller can remove bids, filter out certain bidders, be slow and lazy without penalty, and so on. Kind of like eBay in reverse; eBay caters for the buyer, Yahoo Auctions caters for the seller. I think it’s the cultural context. Customers in America can go to amazon, or any number of online places to buy stuff. So eBay works hard to convince them they’re safe and cheap. Sellers in America, on the other hand, can’t really go elsewhere to sell their stuff, as far as I know (Feedback in comments please; I’ve only lived in the US for a year and that was a long time ago).
In Japan sellers can just go dump all their stuff at the nearest recycle store. No packaging, no hassle, instant cash. There are nation wide chains such as Hard Off, and lots of independent shops. Space is at a premium, affinity towards shiny new things is at a high, and the recycle stores cater for the excess. So Yahoo entices sellers with the prospect of getting more for the stuff. Self-prolonging auctions squeeze every last penny out of the buyers. Where do buyers go to find stuff? I don’t really know. The recycle stores I guess, but going beyond what’s locally available there are not many choices. eBay Japan croaked years ago; Bidders.com is substantially smaller.

Today I finally received a RAM module I waited over a week for. It’s dead. I sent the guy a refund request. It’s not a big amount. I’m really interested in how he’s going to approach the situation. It’s a learning curve and a cultural experience. 😉

Most annoying thing is not the money, but the time I lost. Now I have to start searching all over again. “Time is money” is a lie; money can be lost and earned again, time, once lost, can not be “earned back”. /me is ~annoyed

Anyway, I’ll keep you posted.

Follow-up 2011.11.21
The dude replied politely, and refused my request, pointing out there’s no warranty on things sent by kuroneko mail-bin. That’s because kuroneko mail-bin is uninsured, and if it’s lost, then I can only claim the postage back, and that’s understood. Making it no-warranty whatsoever is a bit dodgy for me. What do you think? There was no damage to the packaging. RAM modules are not killed that easily (unless you static damage them).

So what can I do to get my money back? Nothing. I could go to the police or sue him, but short of that, zilch. Yahoo Auctions provides nada buyer protection. Seller is king and buyers eat dirt. I can’t even leave him a negative feedback, because I’d get a negative back; looking at our numbers it would hurt me more than him.

So what do I do? Move on.. takes me off the hook and leaves him there. Best thing I can do.

What do you think? Let me know in the comments.

Who Am I?

Hi, Sandor here. Thanks for visiting. Computer trouble in Japan? You've come to the right place!


I am 34 years old, and have been fixing computers since 1994, since before I finished high school. Then I got a degree in Computer Science, had my own PC shop, worked at a top laptop maker in England. Then I came to Japan; it's what I always wanted to do.


I pride myself in providing the best service possible and by being honest about my work. I now service all of Japan by a simple mail-in system. Use the "Contact Me" tab on the top menu to get in touch.


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