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An eBay case: I throw myself at the mercy of the SF jury

post #1 of 110
Thread Starter 
I've seen a couple of these type posts. I'll take a turn.

My wife thinks I'm being unreasonable about this.

If you agree, I'll apologize to him. But I wonder what you guys think. The item was a garden-variety Burberry's used suit, probably 10 or so years old, in nice shape.


Act I:
(upon receiving a used suit bought on eBay)

Me: Hi, I was going to ding you a couple points on the description part of the feedback but I see you're pretty sensitive to that with the notes you put in the pkg and in other communications. The pants were described as 32W 30L, which is my exact size. They are 32-32. I am keeping the suit, it's nice, but I have to pay my tailor $20 to alter because the item isn't as described. I probably wouldn't have bid on it if it had been described accurately. Thoughts?

Seller: I do apologize for the error in your listing. We do try very hard to ensure that our measurements are correct; as no on likes buying something, only to discover that it is not what they had thought it was. I buy on eBay too, and though I know that mistakes happen from time to time, it does take some of the fun out of it. For that I apologize. If you would like to return the item, I would understand, and will leave the return address at the bottom of the email. Thanks again for contacting us, and again, I am sorry for the oversight.

Me: Too late to return, it's at the tailor's.

Act II:
(upon leaving positive feedback, except of course "inaccurate description")

Seller: Seems you couldn't resist 'dinging' our account after all. I sincerely hope, that the next time you make an honest mistake on your job (and offer both a sincere apology, as well as an opportunity to rectify the situation) that someone doesn't feel the need to make you pay, both financially and publicly, for months to come. As if things are difficult enough running a small business these days.

Me: I, too, sell a bunch of stuff online, mostly $30 or $50 pieces, 20-30 units a month. When someone complains, I give them a full refund and tell them to keep the item. Or send them another like it (I have the luxury of duplicating the things I sell, you obviously don't). And I don't operate on eBay -- I sell off a private site where there's no feedback mechanism.

Until eBay redid its feedback a few years ago, I had this one negative feedback. It was this guy who moved but didn't change his mail address on PAyPal or eBay, and I sent it to his old address. He hit me with a negative before we could sort the mess out, calling me a deadbeat. It was a $3 baseball card. Note -- my feedback to you was positive.

Most description problems are "eye of the beholder" things (near mint vs mint, etc) that affect fair market value a little but it can be argued what exactly fair market value actually is. Your problem with this description literally cost me $20, which I spelled out in that many words in my original communication. I gave you a shot to make the situation right. I should have spelled it out a little more clearly what I was asking for (partial refund? Go halfsies with me on the tailor tab?) but as you are an eBay veteran for almost as long as I've been, I thought that was all implied.

You said I could return it. You either didn't read my email or you were offering to remediate the inaccurate description with something you knew I wouldn't do (because paying USPS $10 plus $20 to the tailor = my winning bid, what could I possibly get out of returning it?).

I'm not saying all this to justify whatever feedback I left (it's anonymous, in fact you have no idea what I put in -- so for all you know, someone else might have a beef with you and didn't even have the courtesy of contacting you first -- right?) or to respond to your venting.

Just...you were probably wondering what was on my mind. Now you know.

Best of luck, and I mean that without sarcasm or irony.

Seller: One of the unfortunate by-products of eBay doing the 'one sided feedback system' is that people who have no problem scamming others on line can do so without any form of retribution. I am not saying that this is the case here; though $20 to have pants altered is over three times what we pay. It didn't take long after the policy went into effect to start getting multiple requests for partial refunds every week; something that rarely, if ever, happened when feedback was balanced and fair.

The problem is, we have no way of knowing if a flaw is actual; we can no longer measure the pants, to see if the original measurement is accurate or not. When we complained to eBay about the growing number of partial refund requests, their response was two-fold. First, they recommend that we look at it the same way a store would view shoplifters; which was shocking, seeing as how they were the ones facilitating the shoplifting.

In essence, being ripped off by faulty partial refund requests was part of doing business on this site. The other, was to offer returns on all our items, without question. Now, dealing with used clothing is a dicey business at best. There are bound to be minor issues from time to time. For most, when you provide great service, fast shipping and courteous communication; the minor issues can be worked out or are simply overlooked. Most also factor in the overall savings of the item itself; a $30 suit that costs $1250 in the store is a bargain; even if minor alterations are necessary. This is true for 99.9% of buyers on eBay. It is that .01% of buyers, to whome there is simply no satisfying, that feel the need to punish others for honest mistakes; you fall into that category.

Every three months, we are allowed 2 'one or two' ratings in each category on the DSRs. When you are talking about selling well over 500 items during that period, you are bound to run into problems; which is why there are so few 'top rated sellers' that sell used clothing in volume. We have manintained that status for seven months running; kind of gives you an idea of just how many people feel the strong need and desire to really punish someone... Even the people who leave us negative and neutral feedback recognize that the DSRs are the real cost on eBay, and rarely 'ding' us, as you put it.

I do hope that your 'ding' made you feel better, and actually served a purpose in your life.

Act III:

Me: I don't want to dwell on this much longer, but you bring up several points that I think reflect other bidders, not me.

>One of the unfortunate by-products of eBay doing the 'one sided feedback
>system' is that people who have no problem scamming others on line can
>do so without any form of retribution.

I am not scamming. This is not a problem for me or you in this transaction.

>though $20 to have pants altered is over three times what we
>pay.

My tailor is good. I have been going to him for longer than I have been on eBay -- and I have been on eBay since 1997. He earns every penny. He tailored my wedding suit. He tailored my best clothing when I lost 57 pounds. He is not the problem in this transaction.

>It didn't take long after the policy went into effect to start
>getting multiple requests for partial refunds every week; something that
>rarely, if ever, happened when feedback was balanced and fair.

I am not scamming. This is not a problem for me or you in this transaction.

>The
>problem is, we have no way of knowing if a flaw is actual; we can no
>longer measure the pants, to see if the original measurement is accurate
>or not. When we complained to eBay about the growing number of partial
>refund requests, their response was two-fold. First, they recommend that
>we look at it the same way a store would view shoplifters; which was
>shocking, seeing as how they were the ones facilitating the shoplifting.

I am not scamming. This is not a problem for me or you in this transaction.

>In essence, being ripped off by faulty partial refund requests was part
>of doing business on this site. The other, was to offer returns on all
>our items, without question. Now, dealing with used clothing is a dicey
>business at best. There are bound to be minor issues from time to time.

All I wanted was the pants to be as described. Period. 30" inseam, like the listing said.

>For most, when you provide great service, fast shipping and courteous
>communication; the minor issues can be worked out or are simply
>overlooked. Most also factor in the overall savings of the item itself;
>a $30 suit that costs $1250 in the store is a bargain; even if minor
>alterations are necessary. This is true for 99.9% of buyers on eBay. It
>is that .01% of buyers, to whome there is simply no satisfying, that
>feel the need to punish others for honest mistakes; you fall into that
>category.

I have no need to punish anyone. You however, seem to want me to eat the $20 your mistake -- honest, yes, you are not scamming anyone, either -- but whether it was a bargain or not...your mistake cost me $20. Why do you want to punish my wallet for your mistake?

>I do hope that your 'ding' made you feel better, and actually served a
>purpose in your life.
\t\t
This is not about feelings or punishment or anything like that. It's what the situation is. Fair market value for that suit was what you got; the eBay bidding pool showed that. I am neither a scammer nor retributive -- these are arbitrary traits you assigned to me. Notice I have not said anything about you, I just talk about the transaction. I'm only looking at the transaction.

If I had an opinion to offer it might be along the lines of man, if I took this stuff so personally I wouldn't be in the line of business of selling used clothes on eBay, considering all the risks you've enumerated in detail above. It just seems like more stress than one person should have to bear. But that's me. I don't even know you, so I wouldn't want to attach that to you.

You look at me as either a scammer or retributive. I am neither. Just an honest eBayer, always have been, always will. If you have issues with the feedback system or the way eBay sets its rates, please take it out on eBay, not me.

I still maintain that you have no idea what feedback I left. For all you know, I gave you 5's across the board. Right?

Epilogue
To you all, I admit that I let this go on way too long and I should have let it drop after his first response to the feedback. I'm not disputing that, either. But it's the principle of the thing...
post #2 of 110
You're behaving like a twat. He offered a return, you decided to keep the pants anyway. You're what is described as "passive-aggressive" and your wife is going to leave you in the near future.

Enjoy your pants, jerk.
post #3 of 110
Methinks the OP and the seller have spent enough time together to qualify as common-law spouses in some states.
post #4 of 110
tl;dr the end but is the time you spent trying to win a pissing contest about eBay politics worth the $20 for alterations? Thats the main question. Well, that and the time spent writing it here and then refreshing it for updates. For an item that was a couple hundred or a few thou, sure - but not worth the time here.
post #5 of 110
You should have returned the suit/contacted him before
sending it to the tailor. Once you do that you are "satisfied".
The seller offered a refund...what else do you want from him.
His issues with partial refunds are valid.
post #6 of 110
Well, to be honest, you don't come out well of that.
post #7 of 110
Eh, why did you alter the pants BEFORE asking him for a refund? Makes no sense. You set yourself, and him, up for failure. You fail as an eBayer. I would suggest dealing on Craigslist.
post #8 of 110
OP, you are obviously savvy enough with eBay to understand the ramifications of leaving negative feedback for a seller. That you chose to do this over a reasonably trivial matter, even after the seller tried to make it right for you = dick move.
post #9 of 110
You wanted an honest opinion so here it is. Douchebag move on your part.
post #10 of 110
Thread Starter 
The jury is in, and it is in no way hung. Heh. I'll apologize.
post #11 of 110
Please don't buy my NWT purple silk yohji yamamoto shirt in size 2.

You should apologize to the seller and maybe ask ebay to revoke the feedback if it's at all possible. And who buys clothing items off ebay without assuming you would have to tailor them, anyway?
post #12 of 110
For some reason I was reading the roles reversed, until I realized you were the one being the cunt. Stop whining. You can't alter a product that is in dispute. You had the option to return it, but you didn't, you just wanted to complain and get $20 for free, you are a cunt What the fuck is up with the "... Thoughts?" message? You didn't even ask for anything clear, ebay is not a Novelists Workshop, you don't get points for being vague and suggestive. How the hell is he supposed to know what you want? I deal with talkative cunts like you every now and then, asking "is this authentic? by the way, I love it, I am keeping it, but perhaps you would like to pay me $10 to go away" fuck you please post your ID so I can add you to the blocked buyer list
post #13 of 110
Quote:
Originally Posted by harvey_birdman View Post
You're behaving like a twat. He offered a return, you decided to keep the pants anyway. You're what is described as "passive-aggressive" and your wife is going to leave you in the near future.

Enjoy your pants, jerk.


+1. It's actions like this which make me hate selling on eBay.
post #14 of 110
Quote:
Originally Posted by LooknGr8 View Post

I probably wouldn't have bid on it if it had been described accurately. Thoughts?


I stopped after reading this sentence.

You gotta be fucking kidding me man...
post #15 of 110
Thread Starter 
Act IV Me: I put this whole matter to some impartial, experienced eBayers and they all agreed with you. Not even one sliver of sympathy for me. So I apologize for my conduct in this matter and will be more lenient toward sellers like you in the future.
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