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Wed Feb 4 2009 10:19:44

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

By: Ina Steiner

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A long-time AuctionBytes reader forwarded us an email from eBay that shows that, at least in one situation, eBay is not supporting sellers who comply with its paper-payments ban. The seller asked eBay for help in a transaction in which the buyer said he needed to pay by check because he didn't have a PayPal account.

Since eBay bans sellers from accepting checks and money orders as part of its Accepted Payments policy, the seller reported the request to eBay, explaining he did not accept checks and had long ago set his account to block any buyer who did not have a PayPal account. The seller ended the communication to eBay with the following:

So we are surprised that in 2009 we received the following message from a buyer:
I need to pay by check. I dont have a paypal account.
thanks
(name of buyer withheld)

The eBay customer service representative apparently skimmed the letter and thought it was the buyer who had sent eBay the email. He replied to the seller, thinking his letter was going to the buyer in the transaction. Nowhere in the response to the "buyer" did the representative explain that it was eBay's policy to ban sellers from accepting checks.

Rather, the rep apologized to the buyer for the difficulty he was having with the transaction, and encouraged him to contact the seller. But the real punch line is this part of eBay's letter to the supposed buyer:  

"If you're still unable to reach the seller by email or by phone after a reasonable amount of time, we encourage you to leave appropriate Feedback. This will alert other bidders about your experience. Here's how to leave Feedback,..."

Is this a case of one eBay customer service rep who doesn't understand eBay's Accepted Payments policy? Or has eBay failed to communicate to its reps that sellers are banned from accepting checks? Or does eBay condone its reps telling buyers it's okay to neg a seller if they don't accept checks, even though eBay bans sellers for advertising that they accept them?





Comments (75) | Permalink

Readers Comments

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

by: Windsor Bear

Wed Feb 4 10:36:21 2009

Makes you wonder how eBay manages to stay in business.  Sooner or later, this is all going to catch up with them.  When it does, I'm just going to make popcorn and sit and watch the fun.

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

by: o.c.d.collectibles

Wed Feb 4 11:06:42 2009

Not only do they not stand with sellers on their own fleecebay policies, they condone the practice of sellers who are platinum status..etc etc.. STILL stating in their auction listings that they actually refuse to accept paypal!

I'm not mentioning any names, but there are some very high income sellers who are still stating in their auctions that they do NOT take paypal payments, and only take bank wires and money orders.

These are not equipment or auto sellers, nor are they "adult" material sellers.

We're talking "plain 'ol high priced retail" sellers!


We're thinking, well, maybe the highest rating sellers ARE allowed to break the new rules? But of course, if it was a small seller posting auctions like this, they'd be thrown off the site "tute sweet", correct?


As usual, the management turns a blind eye to their retail megalisters, and they knock off the small honest law abiding sellers.

It's no wonder there are millions of new listings pouring into the alternative sites. I'm seeing ex sellers from ebay that I NEVER thought I'd see leaving, to go to Bonanzle and Etsy. It's just amazing!

The ebay management continues to "blow it" every single day. Just when you think they've done all the damage they CAN do, they do some MORE!

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

by: Daisy

Wed Feb 4 11:10:21 2009

What's so insane is the country is in the worst economic crisis in nearly 100 years and Ebay is blatantly kicking customers off their site. They can't lose customers fast enough. Their earnings stats are bad. How long can this go on before they're flattened?

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

by: Sue

Wed Feb 4 11:25:18 2009

Why do they continue to dig their own grave? tsk, tsk

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

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

Wed Feb 4 11:31:58 2009

I must have missed something.

I thought ebay's latest inre paper payments was that all references had to be removed from the item description page but that a seller could accept checks and money orders as long as the buyer requested to pay that way and if the vast majority of the seller's sales were paid using PayPal.

Did something change...again?

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

by: ebay = penny stock

Wed Feb 4 11:36:25 2009

Doesn't take a rocket scientist to know when enough is enough. Ebay is in its death throbs and all you sellers who insist on giving them more of your money are going down with them.

My donna hole and co-horts soles rot in hell.

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

by: Lars

Wed Feb 4 11:41:04 2009

A nightmare waiting to happen and don't get me started on the Seller Protection nightmare I just went through. I had to beg I was covered even after I proved it time and time again by providing all required documentation. You would think Seller Protection was automatic. Paypal knew what they were doing when the closed a chargeback, did not send out emails indicating it was closed and charged $10 on top of it. I only discovered it by logging into my Paypal account. Sneaky! After 3 emails and 2 phone calls, the money was finally reimbursed. It was for only $32, but it was principle to me. Paypal is hoping lazy sellers will not use the terrible Seller Protection gimmick.

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

by: Patricia

Wed Feb 4 11:41:30 2009

Fairness certainly isn't a word in Ebay's vocabulary these days.  Its a shame because it puts an even deeper shadow on a company that already has a tarnished reputation.

Truth is the buyer was within his rights to ask the seller if he could pay by checks.  Checks and moneyorders are allowed ONLY when the buyer specifically asks to pay that way...however, Ebay never made it clear whether or not a seller can deny payment by check.  I can't see this as a situation that warrants a negative...hopefully the customer service rep was acting on his own and not on behalf of Ebay?  I just have to shake my head and laugh - once again Ebay looks the bully and the fool!  It just never stops LOL

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

by: John

Wed Feb 4 11:42:39 2009

HOLY COW ....WOW.... TOTALLY TAKEN BACK....I feel real bad for sellers on eBay they are in for a mess of problems. I know one seller in particular who has been selling since 1997. 98% of his buyers pay by check and high end items. Some selling in the THOUSANDS. I have been watching to see what eBay will be doing with this great seller since the majority of his buyers still prefer paper over electronic. I think he will be in for a heap of problems as well. Bad day for sellers.

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

by: don roth

Wed Feb 4 11:52:13 2009

Lets all pitch in and purchase full page advertisement for e-bay. Telling  buyers it does not allow sellers to except there checks...Since e-bay has never told  buyers this .....it make  sellers out to be the bad guys!

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

by: voodoo

Wed Feb 4 11:57:15 2009

@don roth

Ebay isn't making sellers out to be the bad guys. As far as Ebay is concerned all sellers with the exception of a few diamond sellers are the scum of the earth,  losers, scammers and down outright bad.

Ebay will be more than happy to cancel your account at any time.

Sellers beware-- your days are numbered.

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

by: o.c.d.collectibles

Wed Feb 4 12:09:02 2009

I'm really thinking hard on this...

Is there a possibility that all of this was intentional?

Could ebay just be breaking down the site so that they can re-do it?

Didn't Donahoe say that he wanted to do it that way, but could not?


Perhaps this is the method. Of course, we are all uninformed, no one there EVER speaks on it...


perhaps "someone" is in the process of being fired? (one can only hope!)

I guess we'll all find out eventually..

and so the ebay drama continues....

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

by: Bob Blabah

Wed Feb 4 12:11:08 2009

I am in the process of moving 9,000+ listing from ebay to bonanzle. Whether they sell on bonanzle remains to be seen but sooner or later some site will compete with ebay. I have been with ebay for 12 years and I think it is time for a change. >>> Note, I am not a Bonanzle cheerleader in any way. This is my first post ever on auctionbytes.

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

by: Todd

Wed Feb 4 12:27:45 2009

Thanks Just Sick !!!!!
Why not put a bag over my head and beat me to death
I cant believe the response Ebay gave
>>>WAIT YES I DO ITS EBAY

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

by: Shelley

Wed Feb 4 12:37:28 2009

Not surprising. Another typical canned response where the eBay REP didn't read. I am thinking more and more of these "reps" are from India, sourced out.

I am HOPING GRIFF or SOMEONE can look into this and FIRE THE ASS OF THAT REP.

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

by: TekGems

Wed Feb 4 12:53:45 2009

As a seller, I wouldn't waste my time reporting communication like that to eBay. What benefit does it give you?

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

by: John

Wed Feb 4 13:20:42 2009

I don't see any reason why buyers can't pay by check. I think the only reason is so Ebay can get a bit more money when people use Paypal to pay.

It should be fairly easy for the regulators to build a 'restraint of trade' case by the various ways Ebay forces people to use Paypal.

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

by: noneya

Wed Feb 4 13:30:08 2009

Been busy selling elsewhere and haven't been posting to AB..

EBAY: Same Stupidity, Different Day.

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

by: John

Wed Feb 4 13:48:57 2009

For what its worth, we once had a power seller rep tell us that the best way to drive traffic to our listings was to place links to outside sites in our listings! The more the better was her mantra. She reccomended wiki.com sites as the best outside website to link to because of their high rankings on all the search engines... she went on to show us examples of others who had done the same thing to great success... What she failed to mention was that if you do this as she explained ebay Trust & Safety will suspend you from the site!

eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban   eBay Not Standing with Sellers on Paper-Payments Ban

by: Jennifer & Jack

Wed Feb 4 13:54:02 2009

Our posted terms say we accept Paypal only, as per eBay rules and that Paper payments are no longer accepted per eBay policy. Simple.

We get emails from prospective buyers: ''Can I please pay by check or money order?''

We reply, ''Sure.''

Buyer bids. We make sale. Broke no policy. Buyer happy. Seems simple enough.

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