Everyday eBay is the first scholarly analysis of the internet marketplace that has become a global social, cultural and economic phenomenon. The eighteen new and classic essays gathered here examine eBay from a wide variety of perspectives as a bellwether of taste and material culture; as a rich site of cultural, racial, and sexual discourse and practice; as an emergent media form; and as a facilitator of global consumerism. From old toys steeped in nostalgia to 'rare' limited edition shoes, the contributors demonstrate that value on eBay is never simply about 'price'.
On any given day, more than two million items are listed for sale on eBay, from everyday objects to kitsch and collectibles to the truly bizarre. Since its debut ten years ago, eBay has quickly become a central destination for millions of web browsers. According to eBay itself, up to 165,000 Americans now make their living by selling through the website, and other business analysts project that hundreds of thousands of individuals worldwide now make their living through eBay.
"This book is a first, sorely needed attempt to learn from eBay, to understand it, and to situate it in the broader field of contemporary culture." -- Jonathan Sterne, McGill University
"This is an excellent idea for a book; eBay is a fascinating and timely subject, allowing authors to touch on a large number of interesting issues that are densely interwoven in the practices that constellate around eBay: cyberculture and cybercommunity, consumption, material culture, cultural economy, collecting…" -- David Bell, author of An Introduction to Cyberculture and co-editor of The Cybercultures Reader