Ok, last one of the picture posts. Thanks to all of you who have been following this series and sharing the posts on Twitter and elsewhere.
The purpose of these six sets of images has been to start some wider debate on the potential for eBay to be be public archaeology by jumping over the hurdle of illicit antiquities and metal-detecting finds at the outset. While these are very real, important concerns with this particular forum and I will address them in a future post, for PA2015 I am more specifically concerned with the material networks operating around the site and the people who engage with it. So, I wanted to start at a very personal level, giving an anonymous tour of sellers’ houses. It’s also the reason I chose not to collect data on how much items sold for or even whether they sold or not. There are plenty of other people looking at this side of eBay. As this month goes on, and we move away from the networks of the controversial eBay to the networks of the far less controversial recycling, I hope the benefits of taking this start position will become clear. Before we move on though, here is the final part of the Homes of eBay mini-project. Let’s meet the spindle whorl sellers.
My data collection returned 127 listings for Spindle Whorl. At the end of November 2014, there were 4583 spindle whorls recorded by the Portable Antiquities Scheme. So, eBay sells in one month material equivalent to 2.8% of the PAS and would take about 3 years to sell the same amount of material.
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