Date:         Wed, 8 Dec 1999 00:28:56 -0500
Sender:       The Internet TourBus - A virtual tour of cyberspace
From:         Bob Rankin 
Subject:      TOURBUS - 7 Dec 99 - Comparison Shopping / ETOYS vs. ETOY
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Greetings Tourbus Riders!  Here in the northeast part of the USA,
we're enjoying very warm temperatures lately.  Sunday afternoon the
thermometer hit 70F and I was wearing shorts and t-shirt while
decorating for the holidays.  Is it global warming, or did my neighbor
leave the gas grill on since August?
Anyway, I've got a handy roundup of online shopping/price comparison
sites for you today, and a few words about a web toy store that's
taking the fun out of the holiday season for some folks.  Who's nasty,
who's nice?  Read on, and be sure to visit out sponsors for today:
Columbia House, Best Quote and  Thanks!
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Doing some shopping online?  README FIRST!  Several online comparison
services are out there to help you find good deals, but which is best?
Here's my review of Excite's Jango, MySimon, and Pricewatch.
Jango is a service of, and is an excellent place to go if
you want to compare prices AND check out product reviews.  I like it
for these reasons:
  - Seems to have the broadest coverage of products
  - Includes health & beauty, computers, electronics, games, flowers,
    wine, sporting goods, luggage, etc.
  - Can search Auction and Classifieds sites in addition to e-stores
  - VERY sortable results.  After the results are displayed, you can
    sort by price, manufacturer, model, store, and product specs.
  - Searches merchant sites in real time.
My search for the HP DeskJet 895Cxi color printer found it at for $249, while other stores priced it at $300.  I bought
this most excellent printer a few weeks ago and I love it.  Try Jango
(also known as the Excite Product Finder) here:  
MySimon is similar to Jango, but sports a much cooler mascot who looks
like a cross between Paul Bunyan and Toy Story's "Woody".  Here are
some of MySimon's notable features:
  - Covers books, clothes, computers, electronics, flowers, food, toys
    and several other major shopping categories
  - Can sort by price, and shows price history charts.  This is nice
    because you'll know if the price is rising or falling.
  - Drawback: Vendors who pay MySimon a fee are listed first in the
    search results.
My search for a Teleflora Holiday Ornament Bouquet found it at
Iflorist for $39.95 plus $6.95 shipping.  But why didn't Simon check
prices at my flower site? has it for $35.90 + $5.95
shipping.  :-)
Try MySimon here:  
PriceWatch, the Street Price Search Engine, is your best bet if you're
shopping for geeky stuff like computer hardware or consumer
electronics. I found a 19 inch computer monitor for $278, and DVD
players starting at $209.  A quick feature roundup for PriceWatch:
  - Excellent coverage of electronics products and manufacturers
  - Site is not pretty but makes up for it with speed
  - Lists the date/time each dealer entered a price into the system
  - Exclusive specials for Price Watch users.
  - Red prices indicate a price has changed in the last 24 hours
Try PriceWatch here:  
Online toy seller is making it a blue Christmas for the
small group of people who until this week ran the domain.
Lawyers for, The $6 Billion Bully, succeeded in convincing a
California court to impose a $10,000 a day fine if ETOY didn't shrivel
up and die.  Now if had been registered after, or
ETOY was trying to sell toys, this might make some sense.
But ETOY was online several YEARS before ETOYS, and they're not in the
toy biz. ETOY is an eclectic group of European artist/hacker/geeks
that's been around since at least 1994.  They're known for pulling
some questionable stunts, and for some rather edgy content, but
they've never tried to compete with ETOYS or harm them in any way.
Nonetheless, ETOYS threw a bunch of money and lawyers at ETOY and
forced them to close up shop.  Experts in this sort of thing believe
that ETOY will eventually prevail (if they have the money to fight
it), but the judge has cleverly postponed further discussion until
December 27th.
You'd think ETOYS would know better than to try something stupid like
this. It seems a lot like a rich guy having his poorer neighbor's
house condemned because it might affect his property value.  And
deservedly so, there is an ETOYS Boycott underway.  To find out more,
check here:
   Minneapolis - St. Paul City Pages Article  
   SlashDot Article   Feedback Page 
After I wrote a few weeks ago about my experience with the
AllAdvantage Viewbar, a bunch of people wrote to me asking how I could
possibly earn over $1000 a month, when AllAdvantage pays $.50/hour.
"Do you actually surf 2000 hours a month???"
Just to clarify this point, no.  There are only 720 hours in the
average month, and I try to get at least six hours of sleep a day.
The real power of the AllAdvantage program comes from the fact that
you get paid not only for the time YOU spend online, but also for the
time that YOUR FRIENDS surf... and for the time your friends' friends
are online, etc. etc.
By referring others to AllAdvantage and encouraging them to do
likewise, you build a matrix of people who are helping you earn money.
It's all explained at the AllAdvantage website, which you can find via
this link:  
That's all for now - see you next time!   --Bob Rankin
The Internet Tourbus - U.S. Library of Congress ISSN #1094-2239
Copyright © Bob Rankin and Patrick Crispen - All rights reserved
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   The Internet Tourbus - U.S. Library of Congress ISSN #1094-2238
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