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Sun Nov 12 2017 12:05:23

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

By: Bob

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eBay is cracking down on people it thinks are trying to take transactions off its site, but its bots are often missing the mark with costly consequences. Online seller and AuctionBytes blogger Bob has some advice on how to avoid being falsely accused, demonstrating the absurdity of the lengths eBay has taken to keep sellers in line.

eBay is mercilessly tracking down sellers who it thinks are trying to sell their items off eBay. They are using a new species of bloodthirsty bots that seek out any hint that a seller is sending or receiving messages that suggest that they are selling off eBay. eBay is then, apparently without trial or human oversite (though they claim otherwise), suspending those sellers. 

This is because, as we all know, eBay's problems have nothing to do with poor management, their abusive treatment of its best customers, its minefield of glitches or its far-less-paranoid competitors. Nope. It's all about dishonest sellers who steal nickels and dimes from poor, victimized, eBay.
 
Several of these accused scoundrels have complained that their messages might have had keywords that could suggest an off-site sale, but that wasn't the intent (such as measurements being mistaken by bots as phone numbers). 

Here are some suggestions on how to keep from being falsely accused by these mysterious bots. First, do not use any numbers in your communications. And to be safe, don't use any words that could be mistaken for numbers like; won, to, too, for or ate. And it's best to avoid any words that might contain a word that could be mistaken for a number like; ofTEN, phONE, or asiNINE. 

Also, avoid any word that might refer to an off-eBay sale and any possible play on that word. Do not write buy or bye. Do not write sell or cell. Do not write cent, or scent, or sent. And, definitely, do not try to sell a Johnny CASH cd or a Louisiana PURCHASE history book.

And here's a tip for those unscrupulous sellers who actually do want to sell off eBay. It's now necessary to use a code to communicate with buyers. You might choose Pig Latin. Now, some older folks know Pig Latin but younger pups probably don't. That's good because most programmers are younger pups!

There are actually several forms of Pig Latin. The most famous was devised by the great linguistic team once known as The Three Stooges. Here, you take the first consonants of any word and put them at the end of that word. Then, and here's the tricky part, then add 'ay' to the end of the word. Words that begin with a vowel simply have 'ay' added to their ends. So, Pig Latin would become Igpay Atinlay. eBay would become eBayay (unless eB-ay is already in Pig Latin, in which case, they're onto us!).

I could just see those virtual bots, steam escaping from their virtual ears, getting all e-confused and cracking into each other in cyberspace while trying to figure out this devious code. Added bonus! Watch as your autocorrect goes nutty.

About the Columnist
Bob has been buying and selling online for almost 20 years. Some experts claim that his limited budget was the major cause of the 2001 dot-com crash. He denies the charge.




Comments (48) | Permalink

Readers Comments

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Sun Nov 12 12:22:45 2017

Theres a MUCH easier way to deal with it ....

amazon.com

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

by: Snapped This user has validated their user name.

Sun Nov 12 12:39:51 2017

One might fear you let the atcay out of the agbay, obBay, but we all know there's little evidence of any likelihood that anyone at eBayay who cares to heed oodgay intelay will bother to use it from here.

eBay otgay otbay otray.





eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

This user has validated their user name. by: bitbybit

Sun Nov 12 13:46:14 2017

Love your tiway obBay!

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

by: BargainzBabylon This user has validated their user name.

Sun Nov 12 14:01:53 2017

With Amazon's sneaky new change to the AtoZ? No thanks (and no elpay for erellersbay anyway).  

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

by: aim04744 This user has validated their user name.

Sun Nov 12 14:24:59 2017

Each year I think to myself, EBay really can't go any lower. Then they do! Buyers are complaining about sellers not responding to questions. Sellers are scared of responding to messages. And EBay ends up looking like the most desperate company on the face of the earth. What an unprofessional joke EBay is.  

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

by: Decomidmodern This user has validated their user name.

Sun Nov 12 14:40:31 2017

+1

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

This user has validated their user name. by: Ming the Merciless

Sun Nov 12 15:24:39 2017

Ebafia not only takes aim at their sellers, they fire at them! Many of us have been successfully assassinated, and the criminal activity and abuse started with The Ho.

The nanosecond ebafia does any or all of the following

1. Eliminate what's left of TRS discount
2. Make 60 day free return mandatory for TRS
3. Require Guaranteed Delivery
4. Require participation of Promoted Listings

I will close my store, no longer offer the scam of "free shipping," no longer accept returns, take as long as I want to ship, will continue not to participate in Promoted Listings, and no longer answer any questions from buyers. I will also take the 12 years of email addresses I've harvested from ebafia, let them all know just how dishonest ebafia now is, and how ebay defrauds, cheats, and steals from both buyers and sellers and will do so in graphic, verifiable detail.

Yes, my business will decrease but so will ebafia's. If enough of us pledged to do this, we could be getting close to the final nail.

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

This user has validated their user name. by: Ming the Merciless

Sun Nov 12 15:27:13 2017

crewsay bayeay!

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

This user has validated their user name. by: RKTOYS

Sun Nov 12 16:26:37 2017

That reminds me, time to draft my annual newsletter to my past customers.  Last year it only gathered a hundred watchers but who knows what this year will bring.

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Sun Nov 12 17:09:29 2017

Ming reminds me of how ridiculous it is that eBay is sending messages to sellers asking them to upgrade their stores.  Seriously?  Upgrade?  Why, so one can have little or no sales with an even bigger store while simultaneously giving eBay even more money for absolutely nothing in return?

What are they smoking up in eBay's ivory tower?

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

by: TomH This user has validated their user name.

Sun Nov 12 19:42:03 2017

What are they smoking up in eBay's ivory tower?''

Maybe not good stuff, or not enough of it.

Perhaps they should consult with ''Tool'' and we may all be better off.........

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

This user has validated their user name. by: Ming the Merciless

Sun Nov 12 23:12:40 2017

@TomH

Maui Wowie courtesy of Pierre?

Weare normalizing far, far too many things in our country these days -- MOST ESPECIALLY white collar crimes, consumer fraud, postal fraud, and lying among others.

Too bad Robert Mueller can't be recruited to investigate ebafia.

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

by: Sunflower This user has validated their user name.

Sun Nov 12 23:46:39 2017

Ming said it best " crewsay bayeay". Best laugh I have had over this and I have been a victim punished for 10 days because someone else sent a phone number.

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

by: Sunflower This user has validated their user name.

Sun Nov 12 23:49:22 2017

Ming I will share my 18 yrs worth of email addresses with you anytime!

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

This user has validated their user name. by: LasVagueness

Mon Nov 13 00:07:01 2017

Thanks for the laugh, Bob!  

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

This user has validated their user name. by: Philo

Mon Nov 13 00:10:31 2017

I have been having a hell of a time telling sellers measurements and critical answers to questions.....I never thought to use pig latin.  I am  going to use it for real, genius, pure genius.

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

by: smallstuff This user has validated their user name.

Mon Nov 13 00:39:30 2017

All of this is ironic.  I saw a listing yesterday that had the following in the description.  I assume he has the same in all 1,200 of his or her listings.
''This item is also available for a viewings and/or free local pickups and is located in Los Angeles zip code 90606,  Call or Text xxx-xxx-xxxx to arrange a meeting.''
(actual number not given).  How can a seller put something like that in his listings - yet the rest of us are harassed for being good eBay sellers.

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

by: CreeksideManor This user has validated their user name.

Mon Nov 13 00:53:44 2017

Dunno.

On the one hand, I don't doubt Ebay's ability to shoot itself in its own (sellers) foot with hyper-vigilant, poorly-automated kick-you-to-the-curb scans of ''possibly problematic'' communications.

OTOH, I recently asked another seller for volume pricing if I wanted to buy 50+ of an item they were offering as a single sale (with 50+ units available).

Their response was a 'brazen' come-on to an off-ebay purchase, complete with link to their website. ''For the best price, click here''...

This was a long-established, high-feedback ''power'' seller, but certainly not some Chinese reseller...

So can Ebay -really truly- be THAT focused on shutting down off-site sales if sellers can blatantly say ''come buy on our site at (link here)''? with no apparent problem?

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

by: CreeksideManor This user has validated their user name.

Mon Nov 13 00:57:28 2017

@smallstuff:

I totally agree.

I see listings constantly in violation. From having watermarks and framing of their images, to phone numbers and blatant inducements to transact ''off ebay'' right in their listings.

I'm unsure if this means some sellers are ''above the law'' (though I have to say I see it from folks who are NOT offshore, who are NOT huge sellers, who don't fit any 'pattern' of being 'too big to fail')...

Or is it simply a matter of Ebay says something but can't / won't enforce it?  

eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.   eBay Takes Aim at Its Own Sellers. Again.

by: Paul W This user has validated their user name.

Mon Nov 13 01:27:38 2017

I don't violate eBay policy in messages, but you can bet there is information about my eCRATER store on every packing slip in every package I send out.  While eCRATER volume is far below eBay, it is not insignificant and has been inching upward steadily.

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