(This is the Online column, written for The Southland Times)
So, did you get tickets to the U2 concert? Those who did and opted to sell them on to make a few bucks have been subjected to no end of abuse online.
Trade Me has become something of a clearing house for tickets to various big sporting events and concerts and this one is no exception. Tickets to the first U2 concert sold out fast. However, it seems more than a few of those sales were to budding entrepreneurs. General admission tickets initially sold for about $90 have been selling on Trade Me for up to $5000 for a pair.
That’s a damn fine profit in anyone’s language.
The traders selling the tickets have had to deal with everything from bogus bids to physical threats.
Like practically every other person in the country, I’d have liked to have scored a ticket to see Bono strutting his stuff. However, I’m not going to get bent out of shape because a few savvy Kiwis were sharp enough to see an opportunity to make a bit of dosh.
Perhaps it’s a touch of tall poppy syndrome that we don’t like to see individuals make a profit. Is it really any different from a business making a profit by selling products?
Trade Me is attracting more and more businesses, both large and small, and there are many traders who now make a living from selling online. In Australia, an ACNielsen survey has shown that 2500 Aussies are working fulltime trading on the eBay auction site.
With 157 million users worldwide, eBay is a massive operation but hasn’t managed to usurp Trade Me as New Zealand’s favourite auction site.
The survey also says nearly 7000 Aussies had considered quitting their day jobs to sell online fulltime and 12,500 stay-at-home mums sold on eBay to boost their family income.
eBay Australia and New Zealand managing director Simon Smith says he expects the number of Australians earning an income online to mirror trends in the United States and continue to rise.