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duggarAuctionCode.com started charging $11 for each listing on their site after offering a free listing site for years in order to build their calendar and advertising revenue.

In that transition, the CEO of AutionCode said in response to a question about listings posted before the September 22 deadline:

We are not charging retroactively. If the listing has already been posted, it will not be subject to the fee. It will only be charged for new listings.

We’ve written before about Auctioncode.com. In fact three times:

Regarding the posting of auctions, not surprisingly, auctioneers with periodic auctions (every Friday, for example) got busy and posted several months of auctions prior to the September 22 deadline. However, those same auctioneers received an email shorty thereafter noting that they were not behaving in the “community spirit” of AuctionCode:

We are contacting you because we noticed that within the last couple weeks (between when we made our listing fee announcement and when it was released) your account has posted a very high number of listings. After further review, we feel that your listing behavior contradicts the community that we are working to maintain on AuctionCode. To that end, we will be removing any listings scheduled for January 2016 and beyond. All listings you have posted up until December 31st will remain active. Please contact the customer care team with any questions or concerns

Really? Those auctioneers were told that their listing behavior contradicts the community that we are working to maintain on AuctionCode? Community? What community?

Maybe AuctionCode should have said what they were thinking, rather than what they actually said? Isn’t it actually …

Your listing behavior was not anticipated by our company, and so we are retracting our promise to not charge for listings posted prior to the deadline, in the spirit of enhancing our profits.

Auctioneers had little choice at this moment, so they acquiesced and are now paying for those same listings which were promised to be free. Until some alternative is viable, the auctioneering industry may see even more “saying one thing and doing another.”

Lastly, since this oversight on AuctionCode.com’s part surely amounted to [maybe] $200,000 or more in potential loss, it confirms that every dollar in actual income is far more important than any goodwill pursuit.

* The above account including company names, events, etc. are purely fictional. This scenario has been created solely for educational purposes.

Mike Brandly, Auctioneer, CAI, AARE has been an auctioneer and certified appraiser for over 30 years. His company’s auctions are located at: Mike Brandly, Auctioneer, Keller Williams Auctions and Goodwill Columbus Car Auction. He serves as Adjunct Faculty at Hondros College of Business, Executive Director of The Ohio Auction School and Faculty at the Certified Auctioneers Institute held at Indiana University.