I would like to answer this question from a buyers perspective. This question may well represent ignorance on the part of the seller on how on how garments are measured. I can not speak on personal experience on the part of buying pants on ebay, since I do not but pants. But I can say when it comes to buying jackets there is no industry standard on how jackets are measured. For instance, total length of jacket. Some measure from the top of the collar, others from the bottom. Shoulder to shoulder: some measure from the front of the jacket, others from the back. This can make a difference of close to one inch in actual jacket measurement. For a size 38, the standard shoulder length across the back is 18 inches. If they provide a measurement of 18" across the front, that is 19" across the back the jacket will start to resemble the power suits of the 80s. You will also be surprised on how many ebayers also ignored by request for clarification.