The world’s largest untapped knowledge reservoir

How many people are there on eBay? Must be millions, all around the world. All selling stuff. Together, they are possibly the world’s largest untapped information resource. I’ve noticed that every single one of them is taking part in the ‘Ask seller a question’ scheme. I don’t know why more people don’t take advantage of this. There are so many things I want to learn about, so many difficult decisions I have to make in life, so many moral dilemmas.

I’ve been selling stuff on eBay on and off for years, and the only questions people ever ask me are things like ‘How much will this cost to post to Italy?‘. You can find the answer to that question in 5 seconds by looking at the Post Office website! What a wasted opportunity! No-one’s ever asked me for recommendations on where to eat in Cardiff, or which is the most flavoursome kind of apple.

So I’ve recently started taking advantage of this knowledge pool. The first question, ‘Where do babies come from?‘ was put to a guy based in York who was selling a Wadeheath porcelain figurine of a cow and milkmaid. His answer was detailed and very helpful, and cleared up a number of issues. The second question, ‘How do refrigerators work?‘ was put to bazza1968, selling an autographed photo of the cast of Emmerdale. I felt that his answer was vague, confused, ill-informed, and left me none the wiser. This was a disappointment, and I worried that maybe the eBay Knowledge Pool was not, after all, going to be a credible fountain of information. However, the success of the third question -‘What should I have for dinner tonight?‘ allayed my fears. Seller run_of_the_mill, auctioning off a brand new Wilson golf bag, suggested poached salmon on a bed of rocket, which, as it turned out, was delicious. Buoyed by this result, I’m now awaiting the answer to my fourth question, put to user gkdautosuk (selling a case of 10 bottles of car wax via BUY IT NOW) – ‘Which do you think suits me best, the brown shirt or the blue shirt?‘. I’m hoping they get back to me soon, because I’m meant to be meeting someone in the pub in half an hour.

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