b) There is wisdom in waiting until the buyer recieves the merchandise to leave a positive. Buyers have terms to live up to, just like sellers, and sometimes they are not reasonable. And unfortunately for all you honest and straightforward gentlemen, I have no way of knowing you are honest and straightforward until after the fact.
I'm not, and will likely never be, an Ebay seller. I thought at first that sellers should leave positive feedback as soon as payment had been made, but on reflection, I think I was wrong about that. There may not be an incentive for buyers to be unreasonable, but there isn't really an incentive for people to be unreasonable, and they still manage it (alas, myself included, occasionally), on a regrettably frequent basis. Also, there may not be an incentive for buyers to leave negative feedback, but there is a strong disincentive to leave positive feedback for a good transaction- laziness. A seller might well make their living on Ebay, a buyer likely doesn't. The seller has no way of compelling a buyer to leave feedback after a good transaction, but the threat of not leaving feedback on their end might be enough to move a buyer to leave feedback. That said, I do think that sellers have a bit of responsibility that buyers don't- after a successful transaction the seller should leave positive feedback as soon as they are sure that the buyer will not be unreasonable, even if the buyer did not leave feedback. If nothing else, this is good PR, and good customer service. But I'm not sure when that would be. Is there a limit to the amount of time a buyer has to leave negative feedback?