From San Francisco Chronicle
And he has Google to thank: A planned free e-mail service from the popular search engine has people so eager to get an account before all the catchy e- mail account names are swept up that they’re willing to pay for one of the relatively few test accounts available now. Pierce’s biggest sale so far was $102.50 for an account.
Pierce is merely the middleman. When a friend bragged to him about having a Gmail account a few weeks ago, Pierce hadn’t heard of Google’s e-mail service. Then he checked EBay and discovered a booming business.