Buy and Sell Vintage Postcards, Postage Stamps, Postal History, Antiques and Collectibles!

FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

I registered but did not receive an activation email.
If you can't find it in your email inbox, look in your spam folder. If you find it there, mark it as "not spam."   Here is an article about how to whitelist an email address. When you are through making these settings, request another activation email. It is important that you set your options to accept Playle emails, or you won't receive automatic emails from our server when you buy an item, are overbid on an auction, when your wants are listed, etc.  If you still need help, contact
I was beat out at the last minute by 50 cents because there wasn't enough time left for me to bid again. What can I do to prevent this?
Maybe we need to explain our bidding system a little better. When you see an item listing, it gives the minimum bid necessary to open the bidding, or the next bidding increment if it already has opened. However, you can bid MORE than the opening bid, or MORE than the next bidding increment. Your bid will still show on the screen as the minimum bid necessary. Your maximum bid won't be used unless needed...our software will buy it for you as cheaply as it can. For example, you see an item that requires an opening bid of $10.00. Yes, you could bid just $10.00. But if you determine the maximum amount you would pay is $15.00...go ahead and bid $15.00 NOW! Your bid will show on the listing as only $10.00. If no one else bids, you'll get it for $10.00. If someone bids $10.50 at the last minute, you'll still win it for $11.00. Your maximum bid of $15.00 will be used ONLY if someone else bids $14.50. If someone bids more than $15.00 at the last minute...well, that is more than it was worth to you. For more information, go to How to Bid.
On a long list of items I am browsing, if I click on a title a new page opens. When I click on the back button, it returns to the place in the list that I left. Is there a another way to browse?
Some browsers including Firefox and IE7 have options to use tabs. If you set this option on your browser, you can middle-click on a link (or hold down Ctrl while clicking with the left mouse button), and the page will open in a new tab. When you want to return to your browse list, click on that tab, and you will return to the place on the list where you were. To set tabs in IE, go to the advanced settings tab. To set tabs in Firefox, go to Tools > Options > Tabs. Select "a new tab" for "New pages should be opened in." If you want to click on several links in your browse page before you view them, you can unselect "When I open a link in a new tab, switch to it immediately" in which case you will remain on your browse page until you click the tab(s).
What happens when I check the box "Stay Logged in?"
If you check this box, you will stay logged in as long as your browser is open. Don't check this box if you are using a public or shared computer! If this box is unchecked, you will stay logged in until there is 30-minute period of inactivity, then you will automatically be logged out.
How can I find out when items I am interested in are posted?
You can receive emails when the items you are interest in are listed! Go to the Search Page and do a search by entering in the keywords you are looking for, then click submit. When the search results are displayed, there will be a link "Save this Search." After saving, click the link "View All My Saved Searches" and you'll see an option to be notified by email when items matching your saved search are listed. To remove your request to be notified by automatic email, follow the instructions in the email, or click "View all my Saved Searches".
I see you have a feature, Postcard Age, to use when browsing or searching. How can I use this?
We received comments from buyers looking for older cards saying they didn't like to browse through listings that included modern cards to find what they were looking for, and vice-versa. In response, we have created a new feature for buyers when browsing or searching. You now have the option to select the postcard age you are looking for: Pre-1920 - includes Private Mailing Cards, undivided backs, and divided backs (usually with no border); 1920s-1940s - includes most white borders and linens; 1950s-1970s - includes most standard size chromes - 3-1/2" x 5-1/2"; 1980s up - includes most continental size chromes (usually 4"x6"), and lastly, Unspecified or mixed. All present listings were put in the latter category. Sellers will have the option to edit their current listings to indicate the postcard age, but this may take awhile. So be advised that for a period of time, the postcard age you are looking for may not be in the proper age group, but instead in "Unspecified or mixed." New listings will have the age included.
How about some examples of advance searches?
To find items containing both Halloween and a black cat, enter Halloween in 'All these words' and black cat in 'This exact phrase'. To find signed Clapsaddle postcards other than Christmas, enter Clapsaddle in 'All terms', sgn signed in 'At least one of these words' and Christmas in 'None of these words'. You can choose to search in: All Categories, Postcards, Cards and Paper Collectibles, Stamps, or Postal History and Covers.
Can I perform advanced searches using the search bar on the left side of any page?
Yes. To search for an exact phrase, enclose the phrase in double-quotes; for example: "railroad depot". To search for items that match at least one of several words, enclose the words in parentheses, for example: (ship boat battleship). To return only results that do not contain a word, put a minus sign before the word, for example: -modern. You may also enter your search by using these rules in the 'All these words' box of the advanced search page.
Why do you only show a Bidder's User ID instead of their name or email?
There are several reasons why a collector would not want to be identified as a bidder. They may not want to be identified as a collector of valuable items for security reasons. They may not want to be identified as collecting certain items. They may not want their email address to be posted on the Internet to avoid being bothered with unsolicited spam. Even large prestigious auctions allow anonymous bidding, and of course, when you are bidding in a mail sale, you don't know who you are bidding against. So, for now, we are going to allow it. But, don't worry, he may be anonymous to you, but he is not anonymous to us. ALL buyers and sellers have to be registered with us and supply their full name, address, and telephone number. Any "bad apples" generating complaints will be barred from using our service, it's as simple as that. We will, of course, supply the buyer and seller with each others email address and full postal address, when the auction is over.
Can a Seller bid on his own item, driving up the price?
No! We don't allow a Seller to bid on his/her own item, period! Not even once. Therefore, we have designed our system software so it is impossible.
Why are you posting the Seller's real name?
In most transactions, the Seller requests pre-payment before the item is shipped. Therefore, we are holding sellers to high standards, and will not hide their identity. In any print publication, the seller's name is listed in the ad. We are no different. If you have had unsatisfactory dealings with persons elsewhere, you wouldn't want to waste your time bidding on their items here.
How does your Rating System work? Do you allow feedback on other users?
We know there are websites with "feedback" systems where you can leave comments on other users, pro and con. Frankly, we think it is somewhat of a nuisance. First of all, we rarely see any negative comments, perhaps because people fear they will get negative comments in return, thereby engaging in a "war of words". Or perhaps, they subscribe to the old saying "If you can't say something nice about someone, don't say anything at all!" Secondly, some people get upset if they praise you, and you don"t praise them in return! The biggest reason we don't like comments...if you buy or sell a lot of items with a lot of different takes a lot of time to leave comments on each transaction!

We use a rating system that doesn't allow comments, or require any action on your part. If you are a Seller...the first time you list something for sale, your item number will be number 1, such as RON1. Your next item will be RON2, etc. If you are a Buyer, each time you are the high bidder and buy an item, a number after your name will be incremented by 1, such as RON(1), RON(2), etc. If a Buyer or Seller abuses our system, or gets complaints that are substantiated, we will bar them from our system! Thus, you will be able to see at a glance how many times someone has been a Buyer or Seller on our website. The higher their number, the longer they have been successfully using our system without getting barred.
Occasionally your site is unreachable. What happens if this occurs during the last few minutes of an auction? It would be too bad if a last minute bidder gets shut out because your site is down.
Unfortunately, it is bound to happen sometime. There really is nothing that can be done for short outages. When you can't access our site, it is difficult, if not impossible, to tell if the problem is in your computer software, your local phone lines, your Internet provider, our Internet Provider, our long distance phone lines, Internet Routers, our website, etc. It would be a nightmare to try to extend individual auctions. Even if we could, the "winning bidder" would complain when he found out that he wasn't the winning bidder after all! That is why we tell bidders to put in their MAXIMUM bid early. By doing this, you will insure not getting shut out at the last minute.