EBay has three outages in three days

Online auction giant eBay has experienced three outages of varying severity since Sunday, a spokesman for the San Jose-based company said.

Yesterday, almost all of the users of the bidding site were shut out of auctions and most other pages for about an hour, eBay spokesman Kevin Pursglove said. This followed a 12-hour outage on Sunday that shut down the site's apparel, watches, jewelry and gems pages.

Then, this morning, eBay users had problems accessing their personal pages, such as My eBay and My Profile, for about an hour, Pursglove said.

Sellers who were affected by the outages have the option of either extending their auctions or receiving a credit from eBay, the spokesman said. The company won't know how many users opted for a credit until the end of the month, but Pursglove said it won't have an effect on the company's bottom line.

"Because of the level of economic activity, it will be a nonmaterial effect, in terms of our quarterly numbers," Pursglove said.

Pursglove said that the company is still investigating the details of the two smaller outages but that the larger outage was caused by a corruption of data files. The corrupted files began to replicate and quickly spread across the system, eventually shutting down the apparel, watches, jewelry and gems pages. No other details were available, he said.

This is the second time the site has been hit with outages in the past month. In mid-March, eBay suffered another outage that blocked some users.

Pursglove said that the two outages aren't linked and that the company doesn't believe that there's a single cause behind the problems.

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