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Tue July 31 2018 16:00:48

eBay Gets Bad Press over Fee Avoidance Policy

By: Ina Steiner

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Two major newspapers wrote about eBay's policy of charging sellers commission fees even when they haven't sold an item - if they provide buyers with their contact information.

The Daily Mail wrote, "Irate eBay user slugged with $65 fee even though he DIDN'T sell the item he listed - and you could also fall victim to the charge." The seller in question was listing a mattress and had accommodated would-be buyers by letting them come by and test out the mattress - but it was too soft for their tastes, and he eventually withdrew the listing. He said eBay charged him the commission anyway, even though he didn't succeed in selling the item.

According to the paper, eBay suggested relisting the item, which the seller didn't want to do, and eBay then told the seller, "I completely understand why you don't want to relist the item. Albert, we greatly appreciate your business in eBay at the same time we can't reverse the charge as the action taken was valid."

We wrote about the eBay policy in September, noting eBay had changed its User Agreement to allow it to charge final value fees for listings in cases where sellers merely include their contact information or ask buyers for their contact information, even if the item remains unsold.

eBay also reserves the right to keep fees (including insertion fees) for listings it removes due to policy violations, as we reported in January.

And it charges 40% higher commission fees to sellers who receive "too many" SNAD claims.

These types of stories give eBay a black eye, and it will be interesting if anyone decides to challenge the policies in court.

Note: the other newspaper was the Sydney Morning Herald.



Comments (35) | Permalink

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This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Tue Jul 31 16:14:42 2018

We need more stories like this to hit the mainstream press and national and local news shows. The only thing eBay fears is bad publicity. I know the Daily Mail has a massive number of readers from the U.S. (I check them periodically throughout the day to see what's going on in the world), so hopefully this story will reach more people.

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This user has validated their user name. by: windsorbear

Tue Jul 31 16:26:42 2018

Share this article all over the internet.  I just shared it to Facebook.  This info has got to be put out there for the entire public to see.  Only then will eBay stop doing some of these idiotic things they do.

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by: sasikat9 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jul 31 16:29:27 2018

NO one cares about these kind of stories. Its like the descriptions in listings. NO ONE READS ANYMORE.

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by: ebayout This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jul 31 16:48:15 2018

@ sasikat9

If just two high profile muckrakers read it and act on it...game on.
Now go back to not caring.

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by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jul 31 16:56:35 2018

The problem is - eBay is already known for being greedy thieving pigs - so this isnt "new news".

Of course its theft from sellers - but eBay takes FVF on shipping and like shipping here as in there - eBay did nothing to deserve that money !

Theres a reason that eBay is known as the San Jose Mafia ... "you will continue to kick up money to the boss each and listing/transaction/thought/feeling"

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by: Deacon Blues This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jul 31 16:58:59 2018

Seeing a real world application of this policy will hopefully make eBay see how short-sited it is. So they extracted a $60 punitive fine from the seller, but they have pretty much closed the door on this guy ever doing business on eBay again. Furthermore, he is likely to devote considerable energy in convincing others not to use eBay either. If eBay wanted sellers to not take business off the platform, they should have created an environment that is more equitable with respect to fees and policies.

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by: ebayout This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jul 31 18:01:18 2018

The only similarity between "ebay" and "equitable" is the starting letter of each.
Sidenote: are the newest ebay shareholders emerging WWII cave dwellers?

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by: OnlyPollyPocket This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jul 31 18:26:01 2018

@Deacon Blues

Well said

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This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Tue Jul 31 18:42:48 2018

People read this site and other forums.  I don't see why there would not be plenty of people out there that read news articles.  Certainly get something televised is better, but at least we have a start.

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by: nuggets This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jul 31 18:44:04 2018

@Deacon Blues

I dont usually attaboy but my thought exactly.  If ebay loses me as a seller, they lose a lot in fees for years to come, everything as a buyer and my entire family and as many friends as I tell the story to.  

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by: ebayout This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jul 31 18:52:22 2018

Many of ebay's policies are both self-serving and self-destructive simultaneously.

"Simultaneous" is a concept not in their lexicon, because there are no fees associated.

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by: RL15 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jul 31 19:39:03 2018


hopefully a lot of U.S. media will pickup on this story and expose fleacebay as the scum that they are.

but, I'm sure the delusional ceo will just spew a bunch of nonsense, or fire someone (bobby cupcakes?) and say it was all that persons fault, that fleacebay would never screw one of their partners

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by: Silver Ice King This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jul 31 20:09:46 2018

@Deacon Blues

The biggest problem that Ebay has and has had since Donohoe took over is the lack of ability for long term planning.  He came from a company that comes in and takes over dying companies and makes a bunch of short term changes to make them look good, spin off a couple of pieces and then re-sell the company to another company who will then take over the long term planning.  These people just do not have a clue what to do other than think short term and that is why Ebay is where they are today and will continue to be as long as the current management team and BOD is in power.  

Every fix that they put in place is designed to take care of soething short term and then they have to do it all over again next quarter. Problem is they are running out of ideas and people to come up with ideas as all the good long term thinkers are gone or leaving Ebay for a company that appreciates their talents.

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by: Grady This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jul 31 20:46:46 2018

OK, so which was the other major newspaper to report on this issue?

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by: Carol Is Here This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jul 31 21:18:19 2018

It's the problem with having thieves and liars run a company. They steal. They lie.

Most "policy violations" are not violations at all. Often there isn't even pertinent policy to violate. They make it up as they go along.

They also continue to have offshore, foreign companies develop and implement bots to punish sellers for policy, and the bots are wrong.

Wenig and his cronies intended to run Ebay as a cash cow for their plundering, and the plundering of their Wall Street friends. But they don't even plunder very well, so they keep coming up with new ways to steal.

The Ebay Board of Directors is encouraging all of this. This is what happens when Bain plunderers are involved. They are not "business men." They are thieves.






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by: maxmad This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jul 31 21:33:36 2018

Anti-Customer delusional paranoid policy,

I can almost guarantee if ebay charged a seller a penalty fee for an item never sold, (basically saying your a theft) it would be the last time that seller would ever use ebay again, potentially losing all future fees that seller or buyer could generate for ebay. and they would certainly tell ten people about it, all for what? a few dollars, it doesn't get much more stupid

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by: Snapped This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jul 31 22:42:34 2018

''And the sign said anybody caught trespassin' would be shot on sight
So I jumped on the fence and-a yelled at the house
''Hey! What gives you the right?''
''To put up a fence to keep me out or to keep mother nature in''
''If God was here he'd tell you to your face, man, you're some kinda sinner''
- Signs, Five Man Electrical Band

Deacon Blues gets that.  eBay's been building walls for a decade.  Imagining it's paradise they were 'innovating'.  Instead of actually doing it, so those who do come in won't have reason to seek it elsewhere.

And doing THAT entirely hypocritically too, considering how much THEY acted to entice buyer eyes outward on every listing, even at the point of conversion no less.  

Man, they ARE some kind of sinner.  

And just like they rose, they will fall.  Like that classic Clairol ad intoned, (ironic, it's from an 'ad', no?), I'll tell two friends, and they'll tell two friends, and so on, and so on...

''Hey! What gives you the right..?''

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by: eBay Shill Buster This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jul 31 23:36:46 2018

That Greedy Desperate Delusional idiot Wenig needs to be fired or this company has no hope of survival.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Wed Aug 1 06:25:50 2018

I'll be posting this Daily Mail's article to my social media sites and asking everyone to share, regardless of what the gloomy gusses and doubting Debbies say.

Companies hate bad publicity. They often back down when a light is exposed on their unfair (in this case downright theft) practices.

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by: Grady This user has validated their user name.

Wed Aug 1 12:24:38 2018

They said two major newspapers wrote about this. Was that a blooper?

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