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Thu Feb 14 2008 20:31:25

eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay is changing its longstanding feedback system so that sellers will be unable to leave buyers negative or neutral ratings. While the new system has not yet rolled out, I'm hearing eBay sellers complain that negative feedback from buyers is on the rise ever since eBay announced the new policy. Some say buyers are leaving negs because they don't realize sellers can still leave them negative feedback in return. Here are two of the emails I received today.

The Ebay "Feedback" discussion board is discussing the fact that there are now sellers getting negative feedbacks immediately after a "0"/new buyer wins an auction. It is thought that these buyers are folks trying to stir up a bunch of sellers so as to get Ebay to modify it's new feedback policy. Very scary and potentially problematic.


This is an example of what will happen more often after the feedback rules change. This buyer set up an ID, trolled the Seller Central board and used "Buy-It-Now" to win items just to leave negative feedback. Fortunately, the sellers were still able to leave negative feedback and have this one narued and the feedback left for them removed. How long will it take eBay to ban buyers like this after the change? Even if the buyer will have to wait 3 days to leave feedback, I can imagine this will be happening more frequently. We all know that eBay isn't the best at customer service as it is, how long will it take them to respond when they are deluged by sellers that have been scammed by buyers like this one? I'm glad I'm leaving !!


Comments (25) | Permalink

Readers Comments

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: dlila

Thu Feb 14 21:45:07 2008

People who are trying to log into the eBay forums are now getting this message as of today.

~~~ Share my information with LiveWorld, Inc.

To protect your account, eBay requires your consent before we share your information with another company. Please note: We will not share your eBay password or credit card information.

We strongly encourage you to read LiveWorld, Inc.'s terms and conditions and privacy policy because these policies will affect your use of their services. eBay does not manage policies set by third-party companies.

By clicking on the "I agree" button, you're authorizing eBay to share your information with LiveWorld, Inc..

I agree No thanks, please return me to LiveWorld, Inc. ~~~

Live World is the company that provides the forum. I believe eBay is handing over the policing of the forums to Live World so they won't be blamed for pulling threads and/or banning users that have anything to do with the boycott, alternative venues for selling, and the regular old outrage and uproar having to do with the new policies.

But I am sure the main reason is that it will keep prying eyes out as well. You have to be an eBay user to even log in to see the forums, so all these links people are putting in news stories, blogs and such for readers to go check out the forums themselves will no longer work. No one can simply go read the Boycott Thread with almost 10,000 posts.

If you don't want people to see what is going on, shut the door.

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: Peggy

Thu Feb 14 23:00:49 2008

Boycott Victoriously!!
This happened to me, but cleaning my cache and cookies let me get back in without going through live world.

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: Nancy Spaulding

Thu Feb 14 23:18:18 2008

Same thing happened to me. I changed my password and am doing a virus scan just in case.  

Thanks Ina for the article !!!

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: Nancy Spaulding

Thu Feb 14 23:26:03 2008

The Seller Central board has loads of posts about buyers that have become quite 'daring', thinking that the 'No Neg' rule is already in effect !!!!

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: Dizzy

Thu Feb 14 23:29:50 2008

Abandon ship!!!!

You only have to look at the Community Boards to see how it's going to end - badly!

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: Grandma Bunky

Fri Feb 15 00:41:06 2008

W00t!  EBay FTW! LMAO.  W00t!

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: Tim

Fri Feb 15 02:57:34 2008

EBay's discussion boards are so heavily censored now, it's become a joke. Try to state something negative about Paypal and see how fast your post is removed and you are warned not to do it again. Or you'll get attacked and harassed by undercover eBay employees like "Sandy" and "Cliniclady". Those two are obviously being paid to badger anyone who makes negative comments about eBay or Paypal. Doesn't say much about a company that pays plants to extoll the virues of Paypal, while demeaning anyone who thinks Paypal is a ripoff.  

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: warren zbon

Fri Feb 15 07:52:58 2008

why does it seem only in these blogs, does anyone know whats going on!, I wish the media would get involved, I figure since britney is on sabadical, they might want to pick up this story. I sell and buy on e-bay, and it is like an addiction, now that I am uncomfortable with the direction e-bay is going, what is a poor recovering e-bay addict supposed to do! I have 21 years of customer service experience in the face to face retail world, which I love, and online my customer service is no different. I truly have never objected to leaving my feedback when I buy something as soon as I recieve it and am happy, and when I sell, I sure as heck am not going to leave any sort of feedback for my customer untill I know they are 100% satisfied, or I have been allowed to correct the problem. e-bay is just the place where we set up shop, they made it convenient and fun, and anyone could do it. I guess all good things do come to an end. i will boycott untill they fire the stupid person who came up with one sided feedback, it’s voluntary anyway, or it was, I so hope that this one time, us the worker bee’s will finally see the satisfaction of making this so called ” noise” sing to a tune e-bay has never heard. They are ruining a good thing,how can they do this!!! I have read some horrible stories. I feel for anyone who is so involved, but if we want to win then we all need to stop buying and selling when we can,don’t take advantage of that stupid one day .20 listing, exec ebay idiots. and start sharing success stories about other sites. instead of focusing all this anger on e-bay, lets all start exploring and share our experiences (good ones) about other sites, heck why not discuss it right on e-bays message boards. that might be fun!
I also can’t believe those execs are allowed to sell all that stock before the announcement. hello lawers, want a good case of insider trading, it could land you a partnership!
e-bay thanks for bursting many american dreams. warren zbon

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: Magpie

Fri Feb 15 09:20:41 2008

Though this won't stop buyer from neging you. I send a email after item is shipped and explain the new feeback system and let the buyer know I am tryinh to do my best and everything can be work out if a problem arrives. I have also stopped deniing returns. Just take it back, send the refund then block them. When I forget to do the email thing is when bad comments are left in the feedback forum. So it works when I remember. Good luck to everyone

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: DecadentIndulgences

Fri Feb 15 10:15:31 2008

We developed our own website over the past few months and are now very glad we did.

We've invited all of our eBay customers to look at the new site. Many have ordered from us through it.

Ebay needs to reverse their feedback policy. They are losing many many sellers over this. Some of us won't be back.

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: Susan

Fri Feb 15 10:42:54 2008

Ebay says it's all about the buyer.  If there isn't anything to buy, THEN who is it about?   I'd like to see Google or MySpace open an auction platform.  Ebay is the gorilla in the room.  Pride comes before a fall.

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: Ds Coins

Fri Feb 15 12:11:26 2008

Ebay has lost all touch with reality.
I only wonder what in the heck they are smoking over there, Must be some pretty good chit in order to pull a stunt like they just did.


- Attention - Earning Cash Back at eBay And Your Favorite Retailers Is Easy!

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: Skippy

Fri Feb 15 12:25:39 2008

  I'm leaving ebay as a seller only because of the new feedback rules.  Of course, I wasn't thrilled about the FVF changes either, but I could have gotten around that by upping my prices a little. . . but not now . . I developed a 100% feedback rating over 5 years (I have over 5,000 positive feedbacks), and I'm not going to expose it to morons or competitors who try to take my rating down.  I will just sell elsewhere, including my own website, now under development.
 Yahoo Auctions really dropped the ball awhile back when they were active .... I saw their problem as insufficient advertising . . . the main Yahoo page had nothing on it about auctions ... you had to do a search to find them ... they never pushed their auction platform product ... I wish Yahoo would come back with advertised auctions and that Google would also start up.
Millions of angry ebayers are no doubt salivating at this moment, just looking for somewhere else to go.
Timing is everything, and I hope Google and other potential powerhouses see this now and act on it.

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: Becuz they can

Fri Feb 15 13:07:45 2008

People keep asking "why is Ebay doing such a dumb thing?" (eliminating seller feedback).  The answer is: because they can.  

They have incrementally hurt Sellers and pandered to Buyers and gotten away with it.  Why? Because (they believed) they were the only game in town.

Meg changed the culture of Ebay, dragging in larger numbers of buyers by "popularizing Ebay".  She equated bigger numbers with bigger profits.  Short term she was right.  But she was only interested in her next bonus check (not long term growth or customer satisfaction).

Ebay did this at the expense of their Sellers, thinking Sellers would just have to put up with it.  I can just hear them in their staff meetings... "What are the Sellers going to do - Nothing! - Where else can they go?"

So far it has worked. You watch.  They WILL respond in some way to this mess.  It will probably be in the form of one of their famous PR spins - that they have taken a look at the entire Seller/Buyer relationship and are revamping several things, and "rolling out" a new Feedback system that "is fair to everyone" and enhances the buyer/seller experience"... and that it has been in the planning for some time.

They would never admit they are just flat wrong. No, here comes another super-duper spin release that staves off the rabid masses from storming the castle.

I'm participating in the Boycott.  It won't change Ebay, but it will scare them.  And they'll issue a crisis communication PR spin release diguised as an enhancement of services.

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: Dave G

Fri Feb 15 13:42:32 2008

I JUST  WENT to an EBay public forum discussion sponsored by eBay this past week, in San Diego,  to discuss their planned implementations.

None of the sellers was happy with potential changes to feedback, OR  the  Potentially  as much as 67%  increase in fees on lower-selling items  (NOT  the balancing affect Bill Cobb promised).

There are  SOO  Many things they are changing, and if you look carefully, you will see that MOST  changes will significantly harm / negatively affect the sellers.

Take a CLOSE  look at eBay's Soapbox Discussion Board with title  The Big Lie  , or seller  named buymytoyz.  Kudos to this person for itemizing and logically analyzing all of the proposed changes.  This is a MUST  SEE if you are now, or PLAN  to sell on EBay.

This article addresses the myriad of changes, and how they will affect seller.

Another thing people should consider is:  the mystique, the eBay EXPERIENCE,  is GONE!!

Actual conversion rates  (auctions closed with bids)  are down SUBSTANTIALLY, and even when auctons DO  close, there is not the bidding frenzy there once was.  So auctions are selling lower than ever before, with first bids only.  You can ask sellers to verify this themselves.  It is my own experience, like that of many others.

I am supporting the e-Bay boycott next week, and pulling my store items from auction temporarily.  I encourage sellers, and caring buyers, to honor this boycott.

e-Bay boycott Feb.  18th to Feb 25th.  

PLEASE  Support this boycott, if you know or respect  ANYONE  who sells on eBay!!

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: attiegirl

Fri Feb 15 14:11:40 2008

I stand back and see the same situation year after year as buyers become worse and sellers are forced to raise prices or gouge shipping.  Ebay did no service to buyers or sellers with this latest fiasco.   And never forget!  Ebay has RAISED your fees - not lowered them.  Paypal will raise fees soon - you can bet on that.  But even if they didn't, remember that they can now HOLD YOUR MONEY for nearly a month before you ever see it!  Ebay will still take THEIR fees and Paypal will take THEIR fees but you will not get your money for your item sold if the buyer registers a complaint!  For many sellers that is rent money!

Ebay will always take their portion out of the middle of the pie.  They have been actively buying back their own stock which should make us ALL take a long look.  They do not cooperate with law enforcement over stolen goods and have pretty much turned a blind eye at the scams and frauds that take place every minute.  Vlad is still alive and well - wanna buy a Kabota tractor?

I have closed my store and will lot out my goods.  Enough is enough.  After 8 years, I am just not willing to lose money again.  Last year was not a banner year.  Break even is NOT a way of doing business!

READ YOUR TAG NOTES for this month! TAG has a great breakdown on what the fees REALLY mean.  

Most of you are not old enough to remember when Seattle was on it's knees many years ago.  There was a billboard as you left town on Interstate 5.  It read:  WILL THE LAST PERSON LEAVING SEATTLE PLEASE TURN OUT THE LIGHTS

Yep.  There it is!

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: gary

Fri Feb 15 16:25:05 2008

I had a buyer try to extort a free item from me this week after I had refunded 90% of her purchase price over 2 weeks ago.
My prices are going to be raised and from now on the buyer is on their own. I used to try to work with them on any problem. Not any more.
there will also be a flyer with every order itemizing all PayPal and eBay fees.
I am 60 years old and have NEVER participated in a boycott or strike but I AM participating in this one.
It might not help much but eBay will have 4000 items less listed on their site next week.
Ina, you interview eBay execs. what about asking them why when they buy or sell on the site they inform the buyer or seller they are with eBay. they are fond of telling us they are buyer & sellers also but they fail to disclose their disclosure. Ask em about it. Do you think a buyer is going to rip off someone that has identified themselves as an eBay employee?
Maybe we should all tell the buyers we work for eBay

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: Zipz

Fri Feb 15 18:28:02 2008

After riding Ebay's ups and downs for ten years I'm probably going to move to other venues for my sales. This feedback thing is the last straw, and I'm participating in the boycott. I spoke to a rep the other day to voice my extreme displeasure; she had an answer for pretty much everything, but I did manage to leave her speechless on a couple of things - like, How are other sellers going to be warned about consistently problem buyers? How can a seller research a bidder to see if they need to be canceled and blocked?

We're on our own, folks, at the edge of the abyss. All I can do is shake my head in disbelief and sorrow.

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: blt

Fri Feb 15 21:02:16 2008

Someone gave Donohue a badge and he intends to use it!! I have been selling on ebay since 1999. I have somehow managed to keep 100% positive on my 2600+ feedback. I thought the star rating system was a slap in the seller face but it was nothing compared to this! I have never made a dime off of shipping and ship as cheap as I can and still buyers leave less than perfect stars. Imagine what they will do now that I will have no recourse for a neg!!! I have been angered before over changes. Not just the price changes either!

Remember when they took away our ability to check closed listings over 2 weeks old? When I first started, I could look at listings that had closed for up to 90 days. Then they dropped it to 30 and now 2 weeks or less... or you can pay a fee and have access to closed listings. Greed! Nothing but greed.

This is just another greedy move. But I can't imagine why they are messing with the feedback. And how will paypal determine to withhold my funds. They will have to withhold everyone's until the buyer leaves feedback otherwise we will just pull out our funds after each payment.

I wish Auctiva would step up and pull all the sellers who use their service away from eBay and start their own site. They have the seller database and loyalty to do it!

I will participate in the boycott and I don't know how long I will continue it. Maybe forever!

Perminate Link for eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise   eBay Sellers Say Negs Are on the Rise

by: Allen

Fri Feb 15 21:46:05 2008

The feedback changes are the dumbest thing they could have done. Anyone making money on eBay can get past fee increases but to have you reputation destroyed by unreasonable buyers that have no reason for restraint and to put the cherry on top those morons decide if you get FVF discounts, lowered in the searches, money witheld by Paypal & how much buyers will pay for your item if your feedback looks low to them.
I have not found anything in the way of a viable alternative to make my living online so I searched for something that might bring some balance back.
There is a site called http://WWW.AFTERTHEGAVEL.COM. They let sellers & only sellers leave neutral and negative feedback for buyers. If enough of us sellers participate we can recreate the balance.
Buyers never cared what ebay thought of their feedback only what sellers thought. They are afraid of being found out that some of them are the biggest pains and sometimes crookedest. If sellers can still find out who is bad in the buyers pool then we can block them before they have a chance to soil our reputation. We will be able to quickly draw a big arrow to those buyers that will try to use feedback extortion to get their way and maybe even eliminate the problem altogether eventually.
I urge all sellers to check it out.

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