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The Stamp Collecting Report, I'm Lloyd de Vries.

eBay, the e-commerce site that dominates stamp sales online, has decided to spin off
its PayPal payment service into a separate company. The split will happen sometime
next year.

The irony is.... PayPal WAS a separate company, until eBay acquired it.

Back in the late 90’s, when eBay mostly sold collectibles like stamps, it had its own
payment service, called Billpoint. But PayPal was better, and pretty soon almost all
the sales on eBay were being paid for with PayPal. So eBay dumped Billpoint and
acquired the competition.

Today, PayPal is pretty much the coin of the realm for Internet transactions between
collectors, or collectors and small-time dealers – on eBay or off.

Once, many stamp collectors had separate checking accounts for their hobby purchases —
either to help with bookkeeping, as they claimed, or to hide how much they were spending
from their spouses. Now, they use PayPal.

It’s pretty hard to buy or sell stamps – or anything else – on eBay now without using
PayPal. eBay makes it hard to employ anything else. Maybe when they’re separate
companies, that’ll change... and we’ll see more choices and competition.

I'm Lloyd de Vries of The Virtual Stamp Club. For more on stamps and stamp collecting,
visit virtual-stamp-club-dot-com.

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