EcommerceBytes-Update, Number 276 - December 05, 2010 - ISSN 1528-6703     7 of 7

AuctionBytes Soundoff: Letters to the Editor

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In every issue, readers soundoff about issues important to them. From feedback to payment services, from fees to online marketplace policies, AuctionBytes Soundoff gives you a chance to air your views. Send your letter to the editor by emailing ina@auctionbytes.com with "Letters to the Editor" in the subject line. (Remember to include your name as you would like it to appear.)

Visit the Letters to the Editor blog, here are links to letters published from November 21, 2010 to present:

Free Shipping on eBay Means Higher Fees (December 4, 2010) - Link to letter

Trials and Tribulations Re-Listing and Revising on eBay (December 1, 2010) - Link to letter

eBay Sends a Holiday Message to Buyers,...We Have Problems (November 29, 2010) - Link to letter

User Spots Factory Items on Etsy Artisan Site (November 27, 2010) - Link to letter

Marketplace Sellers Should Build Their Own Websites (November 26, 2010) - Link to letter

eBay Blocks Messages to Buyer Resulting in Claim (November 24, 2010) - Link to letter

The Game of eBay Monopoly (November 21, 2010) - Link to letter

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Hello Ina:
EBay is at it again with an unannounced change.

Note the subject line of the search e-mails sent to potential buyers went from "eBay Saved Search" to "New items that match:"

Many of us have this automated to place the e-mail notice in a folder for later examination & so it does not clutter things up.

Oh, well - craftsmanship and courtesy to your users are passe with eBay. Al G

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Ina... I think it's time that we called out for a REAL commitment from disgruntled Ebayers. I just posted this in my Monoply Game of Ebay thread- but think it should be a thread of it's own. From time to time, we have someone pop up and initiate a Boycott. This does NO good at all- I'm sure Ebay laughs at this small endevor... it's time to pull out the BIG GUNS- to make an impact! Betty

It is my plan to no longer sell, OR buy, on Ebay, after Christmas (once my listings have expired).

Many sellers DO stop selling on Ebay- but are still reluctant to completely "pull the plug", so they stay registered.

They also continue to BUY from Ebay.

I suggest that we make a REAL commitment and totally unregister from Ebay- and also refuse to BUY anything off of Ebay as well.

Ebay WILL feel this.

Ebay is still counting members, who are registered, even though they haven't used Ebay for selling or buying, for YEARS now.

This ONLY helps Ebay to SHOW a very HIGH number of registered, ACTIVE, members who are totally inactive. Why help them show an inaccurate member list?

Ebay does not WANT you to unregister- as a matter of fact, if you DO unregister from Ebay- you will NOT be allowed to re-register using the same email address. Ever wonder WHY they would stoop to this measure? It's obvious that they don't CARE if you no longer sell on the site (especially if you are a small seller) but they DO want their large (misleading) NUMBERS. Otherwise, they would NOT warn you that you CANNOT come back- They'd be HAPPY to have you re-register.

So- when I quit- I will go "all the way" and un-register as well. And THAT my friends, is a TRUE commitment. Better than any boycott- that does NO good at all

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To the Editor,
I had a bidder purchase an item from me this past summer. With each of my packing slips I include a small blurb requesting that they leave me five stars, and if for whatever reason they can't or don't want to, to please contact me before leaving feedback.

This buyer decided not to contact me, and left me a 3 in my shipping star. Once I determined she had done so, I blocked her. We are not permitted to contact and question buyers about the DSRs they leave, so I did not do so, I just blocked her.

Today she emailed me asking why she was unable to purchase two of my items, OOAK vintage items of a particular type that I sell on eBay. I replied back that I had blocked her for the reasons above, and told her I was not interested in seller to her.

Later today, another eBay buyer purchased those exact same OOAK items, and paid for them immediately. This seemed odd to me (I have over 900 items in my store), and when I did a little digging around about the second buyer, I discovered he was from the first buyer's hometown (he lists it on his Facebook account.)

So I called eBay, and tried to report him for malicious bidding, based on the fact of these very odd coincidences. After a lot of discussion, then being put on hold for about ten minutes, I was told there was no proof that the two buyers had any connection at all.

So if the second buyer negs or dings my stars, I have absolutely no recourse at all. The CSR I spoke to told me that even if I was negged or had all 1s given to me, I could do nothing about it, and tried to tell me it would not affect my TSR rating or discount. I am, frankly, skeptical.

Once again, eBay is not protecting the seller, and allows a blocked buyer to just call up an old high school buddy to purchase things she has been blocked from buying. Just lovely. Thanks eBay, for having my back on that one, just in time for holiday selling.
(Please do not publish my name or email.)

PS: It gets better. A bit of digging on Google shows that the second buyer is actually the son in-law of the blocked buyer. Wow.

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Something really needs to be done to eBay in terms of legal issues.

I have been selling for 5 years now every day my dsr ratings drop 5 points and when i contact them about this they tell me it is a glitch and they will fix it but twice now within 30 minutes of contact I'm dropped another 3 to 5 points or they say it is because old feedback is dropping off and is not being replaced with new feedback another words you have to make them so much money or you are suspended which can not be done because low dsr puts you on the back search engines on top of their so called bs blackouts.

EBay is a nightmare now and i suggest to everyone who is unhappy to quit complaining and leave they will either be forced to shut their doors or change" without sellers there is no eBay it is that simple.

We are all frustrated and sad and a lot angry we don't want to lose our eBay but the war is over we have lost it anyway and nothing changes if we don't change it look were not making money their anyway eBay has seen to that i left and went to ebid before they gave me the boot.

Please fellow ebayers walk away we must stand together on this.

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Soon to be gone for good.........

Why would a 12 year seller on eBay, with 100% feedback perfect dsr's and good sales, want to leave?

eBay has become the absolute worst company and environment we have ever dealt with, we can no longer run our successful business thru eBay anymore, they are not stable, and have completely lost their minds, it's like we are dealing with a headless machine gone wrong, as a business we need a stable platform, and cannot continue with this kind of distorted warped instability, or take the chance of a few buyers ruining our company name with insulting feedback, with no recourse

We strongly believe the single worst change for eBay and us was "best match" even the scientist "Ragav Gupta" that invented it, said in his own words was never meant to be used how eBay is using it, he actually quit eBay over it, best match is a self destructing algorithm which is really designed to kill the weak and push the strong to the top, (great for the animal world) but unfortunately implementing a search algorithm of this structure on a business model like eBay's, is not only useless it's extremely destructive to eBay's business and to their customers, Ragav Gupta was correct and now only a couple of years later it really is starting to show why.

It's quite simple, we pay rent to have a store on the mall, if the mall boards up our windows and doors, whenever they decide too. we would have to be absolutely crazy to stay.

In the last couple of years we have been investing in our company thru our own website, and our own advertising, now with almost equal sales as our eBay listings, soon we will be just another seller name with 0 items listed

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Ina, Read great article by you regarding ebay trading assistants. In dealing with one who picks up my merchandise, will I know what their physical address is or will ebay have it?

This is in case you could have them pick up and then never hear from them again.


About the author:

Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.


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