I blogged on Sunday about the challenges of dealing with PayPal echecks, and eBay and PayPal executives addressed the issue during yesterday's Town Hall Meeting. They provided a more articulate explanation of why it is taking away sellers' ability to block PayPal echecks. However, they failed to address the current glitch that is preventing echecks from clearing.
It's difficult to believe executives are unaware of the glitch. Sellers are discussing the problem on the boards and Answer Center, and one of our readers sent me (before the event) a copy of an email he had sent in to the Town Hall Meeting:
I just got off of the phone with a Paypal supervisor. EChecks from payment of Ebay purchases have not been clearing for at least a week. Paypal has no idea what is wrong and is working on a fix, with no specific time schedule to resolve this issue. Paypal has not and has no plan to contact buyers with uncleared eChecks to notify them of this problem. Their answer was that they sent an email to all Paypal users on May 1, letting them know of the systems updates and that there might be some problems. We contacted our buyers and let them know what is happening. They had not heard from Paypal and were unaware of any eCheck difficulties. Since we are rated on ship times and these ship times are affected by the prompt clearing of eChecks, what is eBay going to do to protect the sellers from lower DSR's directly caused by Paypal (an Ebay Company) ? Since this is a site wide problem, it would make an excellent topic for the Town Hall Meeting.
Another reader wrote in this morning, "None of the eCheck payments I've received since May 9 have cleared. Consequently, as a seller, I cannot ship, making for unhappy buyers." She also said, "Buyers are reporting the money is long gone from their bank accounts and yet the sellers don't have their payments and can't ship (eBay took it's fees for the sale though). eBay doesn't seem to understand (or learn, after countless opportunities) that customers would be much more forgiving of a "glitch" if the company was upfront about it and kept their users informed instead of trying to hide the problem."
A third reader wrote about another known glitch. "The failure to send email payment notices to ebay sellers continues intermittently. Not a day goes by that at least one of them never arrives which has caused some shipping delays. When I complained for the fourth time in four weeks Monday to my PayPal rep, she continued to say that it is "known issue" and the PayPal continues to "work" on solving the problem which has been affecting me for more than four weeks. It seems to me that ebay should suspend a buyer's ability to leave shipping time DSRs until PayPal finally resolves this ongoing problem which they seem in no hurry to fix. Neither ebay nor PayPal shows any sense of urgency to fix anything that negatively impacts sellers, but I suspect they break necks if the problem affects their revenues."
The glitches come as Australian regulators review eBay's request to make all transactions on eBay Australia be processed through PayPal, as eBay UK requires all sellers to accept PayPal, and as the US requires new users and sellers in certain situations to offer PayPal.
Received from yet another reader: I read your post this morning about PayPal glitches and I wanted to let you know about one I haven't seen reported. People who use PayPal shipping to print labels are finding that the PayPal print label screen indicates the buyer has purchased insurance when in fact they have not. I've attached two screenshots from my account where you can clearly see on the item details page that the buyer did not pay for insurance while the print label page shows in text and numerically that they have. The screenshots are from a few days ago but I just experienced this today as well. Here's a link to the discussion on the PowerSellers board (accessible only to eBay PowerSellers):