Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Understanding eBay's New No Negatives For Paying Buyer's Policy


I have to admit that when I first heard of eBay changing the feedback where paying buyers could not be left negative feedback - at first I hated it.

But I also have to admit that the feedback system on eBay is/was broken. It used to be the best system PERIOD for finding good / reliable buyers and sellers - but now it's turned into a haven for the picayune critics and a blessing for ill tempered "take no blame" retaliators.

Let me make this a more interesting story by saying that my birthday was February 23. So begin your violins for me.

A few days ago I posted negative feedback and a followup (below) after a situation occurred:

Here is the feedback I received on February 12 2008 (and then it's followup a few days ago):

+Great payment, thanks so much for your purchase!! posted Feb-12-08 19:45

Follow-up by seller (Feb-22-08 05:56):

Reply by me (the buyer) (Feb-27-08 06:22):
WON Jan 31/Seller said mailed Feb 7/not mailed until Paypal complaint on Feb 19

Here is the feedback comment I left when I found out the USPS tracking # was invalid:

- Won & paid Jan 31 / no show by Feb 21 / no response 2 paypal dispute or 3 emails

Seller (followup) Feb-21-08 09:53
Item was mailed on Jan. 7th, I have reciept to verify, USPS problem, not ours.

Follow-up by me (the buyer) (Feb-22-08 06:27):
Obvious lie/How could it B shipped 1 month B4 payment? Package shows Feb 19 ship

Mailed to the seller:

My package says mailed on February 19. I made the PayPal complaint on February 19. The package arrived 3 days AFTER the Paypal complaint. I paid on January 31 ... so in all honestly - even mailing it out on Feb 5, 6, or 7 was late. Your story changed YET AGAIN - before your claim was that my pacjage was mailed out on the 7th, then it was the 6th, now it's the 5th. You also had some cockamamie story (and it could very well be true, but in my eyes another excuse) that your son being hospitalized for a week BEFORE the shipment prevented you from shipping out. Once I made the Paypal complaint, I received my package promptly. I was VERY careful about leaving you feedback and I realize feedback is important - but NONE of the stories you told me were consistent - not even your followup feedback which stated it was shipped on January 7th.

From my seller:

(I fixed a lot of bad grammar and punctuation to make it readable)

I don't appreciate being called a liar, if I had something I was not being truthful about I would certainly admit to it.

As I have continually stated I printed the postage for that on the 5th of February, as the records show when you pull up the information on ebay.

I then dropped it off with many other packages on the 6th of February.

I take my packages to the back door of the post office since I tend to have large ones as well, and I drop them off and they run them through after that.

Now I have just moved, which is causing some issues, with my mail and my PayPal as you so politely pointed out..and PayPal fax dept is on a backlog of 11 to 15 days, so that is taking way to much time.

As far as the post office, I am not certain what the whole issue is, but I have two other boxes dropped off at the same time that are still not delivered and nobody seems to know where they are.

So I have had to refund others and still do not have the item back.

So before you jump to what you THINK you know to be true, you may want to inquire. As stated you can review when I did the label on ebay direct.

And you can also see by my feedback that I have NEVER had any other issues before this

So thats why the comments on feedback, my feedback is very important to me, and had I not left you one already I would have returned the favor of the negative.

Guess that just teaches me to give it a longer waiting period next time

Thanks so much for your understanding with this whole situation!!!

More from my seller (previously):

(posted exactly as typed)

The items were droped in the mail on like the 6th.

You just sent me the emails questioning in the past week, and i had my son at the emergency room twice last week, tues and friday.

So i was a bit tied up with him and paypal has me on probation because i just moved an needed to change all of my account and bank info and as such i had to verify that i am who i am by sending in documents to them and there fax department is 11 days behind schedule so i cant even access the funds to cover shipping cost of other auctions. so again, sorry for your wait


The fact is I am very understanding and I know (as a seller myself) that I can have wild weird crazy weeks. But not a single story this person gave me matched up and therefore at least some of it seemed to be a lie. This person is obviously SO CONFUSED at the moment that she should not have listed on eBay if all this trauma was happening BUT EVEN IF ALL THIS WAS TRULY happening exactly as she said she should have mailed all her buyers and explained. I had emailed her 3 times with no response - I only got these responses AFTER making a Paypal claim.

Any thoughts?


Paul Douglas said...

Very poorly argued case on her part...Cites multiple problems but never all as part of one story. Probably some element of truth in much of it but still a badly managed exchange on her end.

FYT said...

JensonB ...

All I wanted was to know where my items were after 20 days of no communication ( and multiple attempts to contact ) Then once I filed the complaint she shipped - all I wanted then was an apology and no lip / lies.

Anonymous said...

Miscommunication is probably a big part of the negative feedbacks. I had a situation similar, although I didn't get a negative out of it because the seller immediately left me a positive when I paid. Then he didn't ship the item, then provided fake tracking to paypal. What a mess. But I developed a strategy for avoiding negatives a while back.

As a seller I don't leave a feedback until I get one first. If they leave a positive, so do I.

As a buyer I only leave a feedback after receiving the item. Even if it takes months. I'll go through every other channel to resolve the issue before leaving a negative.

The most important part is communicating. I don't email people directly, I do it through the eBay system so that I know it is delivered. If you try to email people from the email on their paypal or otherwise it may end up in their spam and they think you never contacted them.

FYT said...

I usually do the scratch my back feedback method as well

Anonymous said...

I have only used eBay a couple of times but if you can only read positive feedback on sellers that is IMO a bad thing.
It's important that you get both sides of a sellers 'reputation' - just as walking into a bricks and mortar store if the shop owner/staff are rude or poorly trained I'd walk out and go somewhere else.
You can't do that on the internet so feedback of both types is important.

If you take your example you'd have no idea that the seller was less than efficient/truthful if all you can read is "Great service - definitely recommend this seller" type of feedback.

As I said, I hardly use eBay but if I was a regular patron I would be thinking twice about future use if this is the way it will be run...

Anonymous said...

There is something to be said for "star" ratings. Ships right away, 5-stars, took two weeks, 3-stars. This -1, 0 or 1 system... wait now 0 or 1... is not adequate enough. I've given sellers a positive although I really felt they didn't do all they should to earn it. I'd rather have given them 3 or 4 stars out of 5.

FYT said...

I just had a buyer rate me a 3 because it took 4 days instead of 2 like he was expecting. My shipping is free and in my auction I say it takes up to 10 days to receive your merchandise. I also mailed the package out two hours after receiving payment.