January 19, 2001, 12:00 AM

Auction Portal Reveals Post-Spidering Strategy

Auction portal Bidderâs Edge has unveiled a way the company can legally search eBay. The change results from a preliminary injunction issued late last month barring Bidder's Edge from searching the eBay site. The court said that doing so had the potential to overtax eBay's servers. The new function allows consumers to search eBay separately from other auction sites and opens a new browser window displaying the eBay results.

Had Bidderâs Edge signed a licensing agreement offered by eBay earlier this year, this is what the auction aggregator would have had to do. Previously, Bidderâs Edge retrieved auction data from eBay, then stored the information on its own database. "This is the best we can do and this is what we can do and still meet the letter of the law," says James Carney, president and CEO of Bidder's Edge.

EBay says it is reviewing the new search feature. "It is a real-time access search, which is what we demanded from the beginning," says a spokesman. "This is essentially what the court forced."

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