Should You Be Intimidated By Penny Auction Usernames?

You don’t have to be a penny auction bidder very long before you notice the sheer number of users with names like IWillBidUntilIWinOrElse – 10000BidsAlwaysBiddingRetail.

But – What’s in a Username?

What matters is what something is, not what it is called.

thug dunny

Penny auction bidders choose “intimidating” usernames in an effort to win items for less than retail, and we’ve told you that these bidders are also really just looking to get the deals that the bid-fee auction site so freely & falsely advertises, but does it really work?

Chances are with a username that says you’re going to win at all costs, you’ll need to, and more than a few times, to show that you mean it.

Whether or not it’s worth it to you to spend $1,000 for a $100 handbag or $500+ for a $50 video game (yep, we’ve seen this) is up to you, we’re not to tell you whether or not it is, but we do know that this money could really be used in a more productive way on things that matter more than the material – suffice it to say, we’re on the subject of usernames and not here to tell you how to spend your money. (PayPal Making It Easier to Help Japan)

From our vast penny auction bidding experience, a study of intimidating usernames and their bid histories has shown that the bidders with the intimidating usernames, those who don’t really bid up to their name, are likely to not win as often as bidders who have intimidating usernames and bid like they mean it. This doesn’t mean that users who will always bid until they win will always win items cheaply, not everyone knows how they bid and everyone that’s winning wants the item. It’s not only yours unless you’re willing to really pay for it.

In the past we’ve told you that penny auction winning is very much psychological, and in many  respects this holds true. However,  you can’t really bluff your way to win. You have to bid like you mean it if you really want to be a “serious” penny auction bidder. To do this you really need to be a bit irrational and have cash on hand. Retired penny auction bidder Tracie_n_ancapman, educated us on this:

“In most irrational escalation events the winning move is the most irrational. So the willingness to pay more than value of x is actually the winning move. There are 2 goals in every auction 1. Win the auction and 2. Save money. Obviously we can’t reach goal 2 without reaching goal 1.”

Can you still win if your name is a name?

We’ve observed bidders with simple, memorable 1-2 syllable usernames that are more names than threatening sentences. More often than not, because of how they bid (at all costs) though they say it in deed and not in word, they still build a “reputation,” and win a large number of items, for less than bidders who happened to just join the site and throw a few bids here.  And perhaps, they win just as much, if not more, than users with intimidating names.

You can’t win if you don’t bid.

This is not to say that users with names like IDon’tCareIfIMakeYouGoBrokeLoseYourHouseTruckKidsDog won’t scare you, but LittleLamb may really be the bidder who really should. Like always, it helps to observe auctions and analyze other bidders’ win & bid histories (by looking at and watching ended items) before you jump in.

Things are often spoke and seldom meant.

To learn more about penny auctions join our forum – it’s a totally free resource!


1st Photo: AttributionNoncommercial Some rights reserved by bump

AttributionNoncommercialNo Derivative Works Some rights reserved by Tom Carmony
Attribution Some rights reserved by kitty27

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6 comments… add one
  • Thayer March 29, 2011, 4:00 pm

    Great article! There are HUNDREDS of bidders with intimidating names. One of the keys for success is to WATCH your competitors and separate the contenders from the pretenders.

  • psmker1 July 28, 2011, 12:34 am

    Good post. I saw one yesterday, “DisabledVeteran” and he was very aggressive. What was I supposed to do, just let him have his way? I ignore user names and observe their strategy, and stick to mine. I have been beat by the clock for a simple act of checking the player list. I feel the most important thing about that list is the number of players and Bidomatics. I try not to let screen names distracts me from what I need to do. My 2cents, Tom H

    • Amanda July 28, 2011, 12:38 am

      Thanks for your input, Tom! 🙂 Yes, that’s happened to me too – you have to watch and not get distracted or look away!

  • Kalle Wellholm August 6, 2011, 9:50 am

    “You can fool one person once but you cant’ fool everybody all the time”
    I had the highest bid 3 times within two weeks at Everytime when the timer had one sec. left, the timer froze for a couple of seconds (only for my bid) and then the connection was broken. Last time the connection came back but now the timer war reset to two minutes and I still had the highest bid. Can’t be any other conclusion that there was someone pulling the strings behind the curtains. In my vokalubary it’s equal to fraud and cheating. When I objected to this behaviour, they excused this with “Technical issues” . Bullshit I say!
    They are not responsible for anything, which is clearly stated in their own homepage. All issues are allways someone others fault. Beware of !!


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