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Tue Apr 25 2017 11:35:57

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

By: Ina Steiner

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A process that was supposed to make a seller's listings compliant with eBay's upcoming ban on Active Content instead wiped out the seller's entire descriptions from every one of their listings.

That's according to a news tip received today.

The seller said they had been active in removing the offending content from their eBay listings while using the opportunity to make them mobile-friendly as well. 

They noticed a tool they were using from a third-party service was not mobile-friendly, nor was it compliant with the pending ban on Active Content. Every time they added a new listing to eBay, the service provider would include the non-compliant feature.

The seller said the third-party service offered to run a script that would remove its tool from all of their listings. When the process was complete however, the seller said all of the descriptions had been wiped out.

Have others experienced any issues relating to third-party services, and do you have your listings backed up in case of a catastrophe like the one described by this reader? In the meantime, you can learn more about the ban on Active Content here.




Comments (34) | Permalink

Readers Comments

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

by: ignatz This user has validated their user name.

Tue Apr 25 13:05:34 2017

"instead wiped out the seller's entire descriptions from every one of their listings."

eBay Developer: "Does that not fit in with your plans?"

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

by: sellerchick This user has validated their user name.

Tue Apr 25 13:27:16 2017

Why can't ebay just include the DESCRIPTION field as part of the exports via File Exchange??? Does anyone know why they can't/won't?

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

by: phantom This user has validated their user name.

Tue Apr 25 14:46:33 2017

To to make thinks clear, this problem was created by a 3rd party ebay partner that managed a picture gallery scroll bar. When removing the Active Content they also deleted the items description.

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

by: Scotty This user has validated their user name.

Tue Apr 25 16:15:45 2017

I can tell you Auctiva keeps saying they will remove active content items, but it only applies to the Counter and Scrolling Gallery.  If you ask them about applying this to their Templates, you do not get a straight answer.  They will not be ready and it is going to affect millions.  How this was not addressed, I have no idea.  I have been trying to get this issue to the forefront for about 2 months now and it does not seem to get traction.  This is a BIG deal that will cause big problems.  When dealing with Auctiva customer service, it's like your dealing with children.  AUCTIVA - you ARE NOT ready and compliant if you only address 2 of the 3 active content items used by YOUR CUSTOMERS.
I can't believe I'm the only one concerned with this issue,.,..,

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

by: Trying-My-Best This user has validated their user name.

Tue Apr 25 21:15:28 2017

8 months ago, I signed up for a free Auctiva trial - they immediately added all their bells & whistles to all my listings ... without permission - I had their annoying useless scroll bar, their watch counters.

I cancelled their free trial - and they refuse to scrape their clutter off my listings.  

It's a nightmare.  I'm having to end all my listings and re-write descriptions.  

Millions of sellers use them ... it's pathetic they are not ready for this ban.  

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

This user has validated their user name. by: Bill

Wed Apr 26 00:39:28 2017

If Auctiva is not ready and millions of accounts are blocked/wiped out/etc. they are setting themselves up for a big law suit.
As far as I can tell the counter and the gallery has been changed and they told us it was. As far as templates go you the seller have to change them and they told you so last fall when all of this info came from eBay and have been stressing that ever since. If you did noty do that then it is your fault.

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

by: Snapped This user has validated their user name.

Wed Apr 26 01:29:15 2017

What's pathetic is eBay instituting the ban to begin with.  

They have NEVER made their mobile 'friendly' element work right.  This is supposed to 'fix' it?  

Pretty soon there's going to be three ppl in a conference room who actually are real employees, and everything else will be outsourced.  

Maybe the bots will buy something.  Assuming they haven't 'defected' all the sellers.

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Wed Apr 26 02:19:19 2017

@Trying-My-Best

A similar thing happened to me a few years back.  I dabbled with Auctiva for awhile when they were free.  That scroll bar got added to all my listings.  After I used it for awhile I decided that I liked TurboLister much better.

So I proceeded to just using TL.  I asked Auctiva at that time how I get that scroll bar off my listings.  I was told then [years ago] that they could not remove them, I had to go and do it myself.  They explained what I had to do to get it removed.

OMG, one by one I had to fix about 3,000+ listings.  To say I was ticked off would be an understatement.  One would think however, after all this time, they would have found a way to fix this issue.

I feel you pain.

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

by: Volvo351 This user has validated their user name.

Wed Apr 26 09:07:12 2017

Well, Ina, you've done a disservice to the readers here. You've mentioned a guilty 'third party' without telling anyone WHO those incompetents are! I mean, What TF! If there's a faulty 'tool,' app, bot, whatever out there that's going to damage sellers' listings, then identify the darn thing so we can avoid it like the plague!

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

by: Volvo351 This user has validated their user name.

Wed Apr 26 09:10:18 2017

@Scotty [&others] So, the guilty party is Auctiva? If so, why didn't Ina tell us that in the OP?

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

This user has validated their user name. by: eXtinctBay

Wed Apr 26 11:41:07 2017

The guilty party seems to be Froo / Frooition where all description content was removed.

I ran the ShipScript tool, and the ''offending'' script was either free Auctiva counters & scrolling galleries, or Turbo Lister links.

It frankly scares me to death to change my listings at all, and since Turbo Lister is an eBay product, I will trust (with my fingers crossed) that both Auctiva and eBay will automatically remove the (active) script with no harm to my descriptions.

This seems to have the makings of a flaming hot mess come June. I wonder if these changes will actually be enacted, as changing code on descriptions takes a great deal of time, and there will be a huge percentage of sellers that will not comply.

ShipScript even admits that there is no perfect method to deal with the removal of all non-compliant code.

A ''wait and see'' approach will be what I will employ for my business.

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Wed Apr 26 13:01:30 2017

@volvo351

It is NOT Auctiva that is removing complete descriptions, at least not to my knowledge.  And I don't believe anyone said that on this thread.  What a couple of us have said is that Auctiva CAN'T remove the scroll bar or anything else in your listing.  They can auto add them, but the can't auto remove them.

So if they can't remove their add on's to a members listing, certainly they can't remove entire descriptions.

@extinctbay

I agree with you.  I have some left over stuff from Auctiva that appears to be counters on a few listings.  I too am just going to wait and see what happens to those listings.

For me I think that is safer than me trying to go in and delete the the code from each listing.

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

by: Snapped This user has validated their user name.

Wed Apr 26 13:38:44 2017

If eBay was smart ( there's an oxymoron for ya), they would allow grandfathering of current listing content while enforcing their ban, 'as of'.  For those 'good til cancelled', they can require a cancellation (or banned content removal) after X days (30?) following the effective date.

This would instantly remove any anxiety related to any need for impactful changes, and any 'unintended' consequences related.

IF.  If only.  

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Wed Apr 26 13:48:41 2017

Snapped, I'm not sure I understand.  Ebay has given sellers several months [or more] to work on removing active content from their listings.  This didn't come as a surprise in the Spring 2017 Seller's Update.  I could be wrong, but I think they told us about it early last year.

So how does less of a notice help sellers?  And 30 days isn't much time if you are a seller running 1000's of listings.

For me, it is only about 2% of my listings that still have some active content in them.  I'm willing to wait and see what happens to those listings after the ban takes affect.  I'll deal with whatever happens at that time.  But that is just what I'm willing to do, I'm not suggesting that will work for others.

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

by: Scotty This user has validated their user name.

Wed Apr 26 13:51:52 2017

@Bill
Not true...Auctiva has been dragging their feet with regards to the template tool for months.  The statement they made was in regards to ''Customized'' seller created templates applied to listing via Auctiva.  Their internal suite of standard Auctiva templates...they were to fix and remove the active content in compliance with the ebay directive.  Why do you think they are working on a tool to do this?  Problem is, they will not commit to having it completed in time nor will they inform or answer queries as to whether this will be a bulk editing tool or will we have to do this listing by listing (one at a time)...which will be a nightmare as well.  So, yes, it is a sellers fault if they have ''custom'' templates they have created and applied via Auctiva and have not modified yet....but using Auctiva supplied templates is 100% on Auctiva to fix...not the seller (how could they anyway as it is a proprietary Auctiva product).  You should get the facts straight before you lob false news out there.

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

by: Scotty This user has validated their user name.

Wed Apr 26 13:54:58 2017

@Volvo351
I'm not saying Ina is writing about Auctiva...but I am as I have been trying to bring this to light for a couple months.  Ina can respond regarding who she writes about...

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

by: phantom This user has validated their user name.

Wed Apr 26 15:15:03 2017

The culprit is Vendio, owned by Opensky, same company that owns Auctiva.

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

by: Snapped This user has validated their user name.

Wed Apr 26 22:37:40 2017

I realize it wasn't a 'surprise' Marie.  The point is, it wasn't necessary at all as a means to exclude active content by x date.  Instead of the work (ongoing) and anxiety (arising) necessary to 'change' them all, they end via attrition (or by what 3% STR now?), and any relist requires leaving active content out.

Of course, this assumes that is possible given what is written in the thread so far.  But if the choice is to use the 3P product or not, or a more nimble competitor, I'd bet the 3P would find a more expedient solution or risk losing clients.

Any 'extra' time postulated would be provided as a measure of fairness to any unexpired listings (after grandfathering expired) that might remain before they too were then deemed uncompliant and then cancelled (by eBay), requiring a relist without the active content at that point.

All this assumes due prudence by listers to have backup 'description content' available for use, of course.  That should apply regardless of this issue, no?


eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

by: Cargo11 This user has validated their user name.

Thu Apr 27 00:22:12 2017

Just my 2 cents worth:
I think the links either have been identified as slowing down the site (for cookies sake) OR the favorite assumption - that Ebay hates competition and the links are preventing their robo force from preventing sales off-site.  I got a call from ebay - it's funny to learn that their OWN relist or Sell Similar links can be triggered as ACTIVE CONTENT - so I think they want their sellers to direct type descriptions short and sweet in the description box (the type I dislike - when you click on ONE photo and the only crap noted in the description is ''Like New'' or ''I ship out in 2 days'' and no description really.  Something is going on with MOBILE APPS and I think that the Ebay data Collection Programs will not be able to track their own customers without cutting the links to any third party or off-site content.  Ebay is becoming CLOSED OFF from the world - there are so many patches now to correct old problems that anyone touching a Bulk Edit may get a result that is not wonderful.  I wish strength for anyone that had their content destroyed.  In light of that - I believe the way to Adapt to May 2017 changes is to CREATE NEW instead of either relisting or sell similar to just be assured no links will be causing your listings to show on page 1000+ or not at all with any active content on it.  With each change, new sellers and foreign sellers, and big commerce add ons - the piece of pie for the ''little People'' is smaller and smaller then in the past.

eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban   eBay Selling Horror Story Related to Active Content Ban

by: moonmyst This user has validated their user name.

Thu Apr 27 00:25:43 2017

I feel so bad for the writer and their issue. I can barely tolerate or keep up with eBay's changes and micro managing. So, I have never EVER wanted to get a third-party app involved. And thankfully, I haven't had any major issues during the last ten years I've been selling.

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