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AuctionBytes Blog
Covering auctions, collectibles and marketplace selling.

AuctionBytes Blog The AuctionBytes Blog has been giving a voice to online merchants since its launch in 2005. Named one of the world's top 30 blogs in 2008 by "Blogging Heroes." Weigh in with your thoughts on the joys and pitfalls of selling online.
Tue Jan 29 2008 07:57:17

Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay

By: David Steiner
Sponsored Link

Feedback on eBay certainly has taken a few left turns since Pierre's initial concept that allowed trading partners to rate each other. In probably the most dramatic deviation, Sellers will no longer be allowed to leave Negative or Neutral feedback for Buyers. There are some other changes, which can be found here: http://pages.ebay.com/services/forum/new.html but this is the most interesting paragraph:

What changes are being made to the eBay Feedback system?

There are five key elements to the new Feedback system being introduced in the first half of 2008:

   1. Beginning in February, buyers and sellers will be able to earn up to one Feedback per week from the same trading partner. Today, members may only affect each other's Feedback scores one time, regardless of the number of transactions between the parties. This change will both encourage repeat transactions and reward good service.
   2. Sellers will no longer be able to leave negative or neutral Feedback for buyers. This change will occur in May, 2008.
   3. Removal of negative and neutral Feedback left by members who are suspended or who fail to respond to the Unpaid Item Process (UPI).
   4. Positive Feedback percentage will be based on the past 12 months of Feedback, rather than lifetime, since it is most indicative of the seller's recent performance.
   5. Restrictions on when Feedback can be left:
          * Buyers must wait three days before leaving negative or neutral Feedback
          * Instead of 90 days, members will be able to leave Feedback for 60 days

----

We'll be speaking with John Donohoe later today, so if you have any specific questions, post them here before noon, and we'll try to incorporate the best ones in our interview.

Call 1-877-222-0856 and leave a 60 second message about what you think of these changes.

 

 


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Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
by: LapisLee
       
Tue Jan 29 20:24:14 2008
Feedback in Seller Terms and Conditions

Sellers are not permitted to include in their listings or terms of sale any conditions that limit or restrict the buyer from leaving feedback.

Violations of this policy may result in a range of actions, including:

Listing cancellation

Limits on account privileges

Account suspension

Forfeit of eBay fees on cancelled listings

Loss of PowerSeller status
Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
This user has validated their user name. by: Bob
       
Tue Jan 29 20:28:40 2008
Well it looks like I am done. This is crazy! Got negative because buyer said they did not get invoice with item (they meant packing slip, I was one of 9 she did this too. Got negative because buyer never paid & we reported it for credit. Great idea e-bay. Bottom line was summed up in the story, BUYERS BUY LESS when they get negative feedback. Well buy 5 items pay for 2 and you get negative feedback. e-Bay wins again but not with us, there are now 2 other great sites that we are setting up in the next few days.
Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
by: Auntie
       
Tue Jan 29 20:32:40 2008

re: The problem is anonymous DSRs

Some people see DSRs as a potential problem, yes.

However, I see most of this discussion as reflective of an "us-against-them" mentality between sellers here complaining about some perceived vast array of ephemeral buyers just champing at the bit to defraud them, ruin their reputation, prevent their kids from getting into the right college, etc.

One has to ask, how often does this dreaded neg FB really happen to these sellers?

Of course, sooner or later, in any business, either online or conventional brick-n-mortar, you're going to get an occasional nutcase customer. Most of the time, good customer service skills and people politics can defuse the situation. On the other hand, there's always that one that can't be pleased no matter what you do.

You do the best you can, make your response to the neg FB (that feature hasn't been taken away), and move on with doing business.

People here seem to believe that there's going to be an onslaught of flaky buyers coming after them, personally.

Unless their items are very valuable (in which case they shouldn't be offering them on eBay), that's seems to be way more self-importance than is warranted.

That's the risk you take when dealing with the public.
Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
by: Alex
       
Tue Jan 29 20:34:17 2008
Re Aunties:

All a buyer has to do is respond to the unpaid item with "I am not going to pay" and then leave a big fat NEG with no consequences. And eBay will not remove it because they responded to the unpiad item!!

I am thoroughly convinced that none of the executives who came up with this idiotic idea of FB has ever sold or ever known anyone that has sold on eBay!

They are all living in ivory towers getting rich off of us sellers.
Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
by: John Goddeau
       
Tue Jan 29 20:42:29 2008
I see eBay has lost their mind.  What I will do is not leave a feedback at all.  There is no point anymore.  If they leave me a negative feedback,  (I have had only 1 in the last year) I would leave them a postive feedback and write in the statement (depending on what they did wrong) like BEWARE!!! CROOKED!!!  THREATING!!! VULGAR on the phone.  I think they will get the point.  On my reply I would just write...buyer tried to threaten me with a neg for money.  This is what eBay has turned us into.  I know most buyers are pretty good and I am not worried about them..it the idiots that I am worried about who can ruin your feedback so quickly.
Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
by: Auntie
       
Tue Jan 29 20:45:16 2008

re: They are all living in ivory towers getting rich off of us sellers.

Yes, I'm sure that they got to be the head of one of the giants in the ecommerce industry by being stupid.

Do you really, really think that the eBay suits-and-ties weren't aware of what kind of response they would get?

Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
by: mavrrik
       
Tue Jan 29 20:50:14 2008
Message to 'Dumpebaynow' ~~ VERY, VERY, VERY WELL SAID, AND VERY, VERY, VERY TRUE!  I've been trying to tell eBay for years now that we sellers RENT SPACE from them; we do NOT WORK FOR THEM! Happy sellers = happy buyers!
Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
by: Alex
       
Tue Jan 29 20:51:26 2008
To Auntie:

We sell about 400 items a month and get about 5 complaints regarding our items. they are usually issues because the customer did not fully read and/or comprehend what they were buying. "I thought it was a cd not a dvd and it wont work in my cd player" or "The disk wont play on my home dvd-player" when it is a software program. We run into these issues with customers even though we have double the info in our listings in order to minimize these problems. We state exactly what the item is, what it will play on, what computer system or player is necessary, etc. the reason we do not get negatives for these is the threat that we would retaliate in kind.

If a customer has a valid complaint we take care of it. If not, why should we bend over backwards and lose money because they cant read.

The systems are in place for buyer protections through the use of paypal or credit cards. If an item is not as described they can go through paypal and make a claim.

As Ebay and Paypal are together then it whould be a simple matter of calculating the final claim resolutions for both of them and only a claim that resulted in the seller refunding the customer should actually be counted as a NEGATIVE. All others would be considered null and void. If the item is as described and you received what was stated it should be a done deal and a positive. case closed.

Seller sells what was described. Buyer buys. Buyer receives what was described. Done. Positive. Nothing more, nothing less.

I have talked with many other long-time sellers and they pretty much agree that you sell 100 items you will get at least 1 fruitcake buyer per 100 sales. It happens in normal brick and mortar stores and there is no reason to believe it would be any different on ebay.

The only difference now is that the fruitcakes can now leave negatives with impunity. The simple act that eBay will allow buyers to do so and damge the reputation to the sellers IS a violation of fair trade principles.

The system was somewhat balanced before. Although by not letting us rate buyers was not balanced. This new FB system is absurd.

By the way Auntie, are you an eBay troll or what?
Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
by: Alex
       
Tue Jan 29 20:59:32 2008
Auntie says "Yes, I'm sure that they got to be the head of one of the giants in the ecommerce industry by being stupid.

Do you really, really think that the eBay suits-and-ties weren't aware of what kind of response they would get?"

How about maybe they grew up rich or inherited money and that is why the sit on this board?

Rich and smart do not always go together dummy!

Out of touch with the people who make them money is a total slap in the face and smacks of Marie Antoinettes famous remark of "let them eat cake".

If you want to sit there and defend them  then we have to assume you are one of them as to any normal commmon sense way of thinking this does not make sense. Even Buyers are emailing me tellling me it makes no sense.

Get a clue and quit defending this absurdity.
Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
by: Auntie
       
Tue Jan 29 21:00:36 2008
re: By the way Auntie, are you an eBay troll or what?

No,l I'm a regular person who has been in business for myself, both online and in a B&M for over 30 years, and am not really impressed by all the damn whining, watching presumably otherwise intelligent people thinking and jabbering like garage-salers rather than thinking like business thinks and developing counter-strategies.

Any more childish attempts at insult you want to try?

Or, is anyone who disagrees with you automatically an eBay troll?

eBay is responding to various investor concerns, primarily dreg and dead-beat sellers listing a profusion of crap, charging outrageous shipping fees.

Raising fees (while claiming a reduction) and FB changes is an attempt to get rid of these sellers. It *MAY* hurt smaller sellers as well (smaller sellers are always complaining about something eBay does), but the bulk of eBay's auction revenues come from large sellers, not small sellers.
Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
by: kevin
       
Tue Jan 29 21:02:10 2008
The last time eBay raised fees everybody said ''Im Leaving''.
Did you?
Now I hear the same only this time there is more to the changing structure than just fees.

Fees are always risiing. This is normal through the world. Like one poster said earlier ''Own a Brick and morter business and then you will know what real fees can be''.
However I have to agree with the majority of these posts that the feedback system, as it currently is, is working for both seller & Buyer.

Consider an abstract quote from one of Murphys laws ''you cant fix something if it isn't broken but if you try you will surely break it''.

I do not support the changes that are being considered.

I wish that the  sellers that have found other online venues would list them so we can all continue running our business without being held hostage at every turn.
IM LOOKING...
Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
by: Lynne
       
Tue Jan 29 21:04:45 2008
I will do one of two things:
1.stop leaving any kind of feedback for anyone at all.
2. if I want to give a negative to a buyer all I have to do is text the truth. I don't need a red dot next to it!
3. Ebay employee CEO's are not ebay sellers.(they NEED to be before they are even hired!) They should be required to sell 200 items before they get a raise or a promotion. And they will need to have a 100% feedback and a 5.0 star rating. If they can prove they have done this, each and every one of them, then I will not complain ever again.
Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
by: Auntie
       
Tue Jan 29 21:05:49 2008
re: Get a clue and quit defending this absurdity.

Disagreeing with you *IS NOT* automatically defending eBay.

Learn to read what actually was said, rather than reading a bunch of your bullshit into it.


Mark this "My last waste of time with you."

Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
by: Lissa
       
Tue Jan 29 21:12:58 2008
I am disheartened about eBay's decision to disallow sellers to leave neutral and negative feedback for buyers. This is a slight to us.

eBay's sellers are vital to the company but it looks a though, with every new phase of changes, eBay is not balancing the seller/buyer experience, but instead
stacking it against the seller in favor of the buyer.

While I agree that buyers need protection because they take a risk in sending money to strangers, sellers are owed just as much protection in trading on eBay as buyers.  

Neutral and negative feedback left for buyers was sellers' way of communicating to others that a particular buyer may not be a good trading partner. We rely on that crucial information.

I cope with increased fees, I understand changes to the search function, I'm fine with changes to PayPal's Seller Protection Policy... but prohibiting a selective group of eBay members (sellers) from leaving any feedback they choose is just plain unethical.

As a member of the eBay community I deserve just as much right to the features as buyers.
Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
by: Alex
       
Tue Jan 29 21:14:29 2008
"IT" will no longer be found on ebay. Tell your sellers your moving your stuff to another auction site and with lower prices. Tell them to email ebay and tell them that there new FB system is going to limit there choices and raise prices for them due to supply and demand. Customers will leave ebay, sellers will leave ebay. No more ebay!

To Auntie: I will state again. Anyone who thinks this is a good idea is either an eBay troll or just plain stupid. Which is it? so we can all ignore you either way?
Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
by: the ultimate hack
       
Tue Jan 29 21:15:08 2008
Since ebay has made this all a game, I propose the ultimate hack for this game. Since ebay is like anything else online, as soon as you find the hack, you use it to death till it gets nerfed. Step 1) Bet on wall street that ebay stock declines after may 1st. Step 2) Use your friends account to bid on that seller you've always been jealous of/hated/didn't like the way they looked. Step 3) Pay for the item with paypal. Step 4) After item arrives, file an item not as described with paypal, return the item/send it to paypal/enjoy it for infinity, it all depends how the dice lands at paypal, odds are split evenly among all three which is chosen, either way it ends up, you get your money back every time since paypal always back the buyer. Step 5) Flame that special, special seller, don't hold back, get creative with that thesaurus, it's your time to shine, since the seller has their reproductive glands in a vice that just doesn't seem to let go, no matter how creative that seller gets. Step 6) Repeat steps as necessary, it would be absolutely hilarious if people would post how many Item Not As Described claims they were able to file with paypal until they had to find another friend to start the cycle all over again, my guess is you could get away with 10 till paypal notices you, repeat steps till your favorite special seller (or sellers) has magically stopped listing items on ebay. Step 7) Let Wall Street pay you for a change. This is an open source hack, feel free to distribute freely.
Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
by: Donald
       
Tue Jan 29 21:15:28 2008
Well I'm a little surprise by the seller comments here. They seem myopic at best. Yes this change is a big risk. It could create imbalance. It could create the loss of EBAY's original community feel.

However, take a big picture approach. New buyers are not coming to EBAY they are going to amazon. Why? they have bad experiences with sellers. Leaving a negative feedback for a seller and then getting a retaliatory negative DESTROYS THE BUYER EXPERIENCE. It's an experience that is abscent from amazon.

Bottom line, it's a risk but it could actually attract mor buyers. Not admiting that it could work is silly. It might.
Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
by: margaret
       
Tue Jan 29 21:25:18 2008
My stomach just got the biggest knot ever! I cannot believe eBay is going to stick it to the sellers AGAIN. Are not the sellers the basis for eBay? You can't have buyers without sellers. Who thought of this asinine plan?? You get all sorts of buyers, some, who after a bad day, dump on any poor seller who happens to be in their path that day! We are left with no way to fight unfair negatives! The unpaid item/dispute route is a joke if a deadbeat finally pays. And to block buyers, you have to have a problem with them first- so that is not solution!! I'm for boycotting. Other venues need to advertise on tv, also!
Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
by: Lynne
       
Tue Jan 29 21:30:55 2008
As a long time investor, long time antique dealer, and a professional health care worker, I wouldn't invest one dime into ebay stock. I have all my assets invested in stocks that have growth potential. Ebay has morphed into a distorted entity from what they originally were. It's just a matter of time before they crumble. The other auction sites are getting very busy with all of the ex ebay sellers signing up this week! Check out ebid's numbers!
Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay   Upcoming Changes to Feedback on eBay
by: Alex
       
Tue Jan 29 21:39:20 2008
To Ultimate hack: You can even play it better. Tired of that competition? Just set up a bunch of new fake ebay accounts. Use a laptop at wifi spots and different email accounts etc. Buy 5 items a week apart from all your favorite competitors and then dont even bother to pay. Respond to each of the unpaid item disputes with "the check is in the mail, etc" then NEG them to death. There ratings will go down, down until they are gone. Poof no more competition! This is such a great game, I can hardly wait to play!

If eBay thinks this wont happen they are  crazy. Business is the same as love and war "All is Fair"

About this being more in line with Amazon may be true. Amazon just has a rating 1 thru 5 with a 5 being best. The biggest difference I see though is that with amazon you have to pay in order to leave feedback and the feedback does not link back to a product. I dont think that customers are as worried about feedback and what the sellers rating is on Amazon as they are with ebay.
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