Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Tue May 13 2014 13:24:20

eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

By: Ina Steiner

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An eBay shareholder who also happens to be a Top Rated Seller asked eBay CEO John Donahoe and the board of directors why he was being punished for something outside of his control. The seller raised the question at the company's annual shareholder meeting in San Jose, California today.

The seller, named Dave, said he was a hobby seller (since 1998) with over 1500 positive feedback ratings who listed things around his house, from laptops and hard drives to coins, baseball cards and bobbleheads.

He said he would lose his TRS status in August due to new tracking requirements that will require TRS sellers to upload tracking on 90% of their shipments. Dave said he places his lightweight items into USPS First Class envelopes along with a tracking bar code, but the Postal Service won't scan them.

"I think everybody in this room probably does not think that anybody should be punished for things over which they have no control. I have no control over the Postal Service."

The seller suggested eBay make an exception to the tracking requirement for small, lightweight items that the Postal Service won't scan, perhaps for items that are four ounces or less or for domestic shipping where flat rate shipping costs less than $3.

"I'm sure there are thousands just like me," he said, and it would benefit buyers as well.

Donahoe thanked the seller for his suggestion and said "I'm certain Devin (Wenig) and his team will take it."

The tracking requirement was first announced in 2012, when sellers of lightweight items like postage stamps, coins, ephemera, labels, etc., said the requirement would make it impossible to sell those inexpensive, lightweight items on eBay.

It's rare, though not unheard of, for eBay sellers to use the company's annual shareholder meeting to talk about challenges they face and make suggestions to the top executives gathered there.

Also new this year - after the formal voting (everything went eBay's way, including the rejection of a shareholder proposal) and a presentation by John Donahoe, Rev. Jesse Jackson was allowed to make a statement calling for tech companies to take action to promote diversity, part of the Rainbow Push Coalition's "digital inclusion initiative."

Rev. Jackson called out Silicon Valley firms for the lack of diversity on their boards and C-Suites (chief officers), and in their financial transactions, advertising and professional services.

Donahoe pointed to the challenge of diversity when hiring engineers, though I'm not sure how many eBay board members and senior executives are actually engineers. He pointed to eBay's Girls Who Code initiative and said he would spend time with Rev. Jackson after the meeting.

Update: Here is a link to the article covering the Annual Meeting, "eBay CEO Asked About Amazon, Bitcoin and Unpopular Seller Policy."

Comments (85) | Leave Comment | Permalink
Readers Comments

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

This user has validated their user name. by: Puck

Thu May 15 10:36:25 2014

''Just the sight of his smug face makes me ill. He's in over his head.''

His trademark smirk is probably a gas pain.

''If Ina knows what this shareholder's user ID is, it would be interesting to track the seller and see if ebay exterminates Dave''

Donahoe probably keeps a Richard Nixonesque ''Enemies  List''.

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

This user has validated their user name. by: Puck

Thu May 15 10:42:54 2014

'' All of you complainers and malcontents are lucky you have a place to sell your crap and make some money...''

Groan...

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

by: FREDDY This user has validated their user name.

Thu May 15 11:08:35 2014

Why did JD tell Jackson, we will talk privately afterwards. Say, lets meet in the payoff room???

Didn't JD make reference to buyers first then sellers. That is how he treats HIS customers. Buyers first and foremost and then noise sellers.
How many expensive items can you get screwed on and still make any money.  
Put a post card into a #10 envelope and go to the post office and ask for a forever stamp and that you want it scanned. Good luck with that one.  

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

by: Gina This user has validated their user name.

Thu May 15 11:27:44 2014

"Do the Chinese "trinket" sellers have the same requirement.?"
#$&(# no!  They bring in more business & more money, so the rules won't apply to them!  eBay is courting the big-volume sellers to the exclusion and death of us little "noise"-es  

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

This user has validated their user name. by: The End

Thu May 15 11:45:14 2014

Ebay stock just cannot break the $60 (hasn't even reached that level) ceiling. That's the mark of a languishing environment. Donahoe is hoarding money that rightfully belongs to the sellers.
He is a predator /leach / schemer / liar.
Take away his gateway to our money and he is a homeless, hungry nobody...and he knows it. Let us now starve this ingrate.
He has nothing positive to contribute to Americans. He is a self centered, self congratulatory disease. The ONLY reason he remains at Ebay is the FIXED / ILLEGITIMATE voting process. He is deathly afraid of losing all he has, and will go to any length in an attempt to preserve his life style.

BOYCOTT EBAY.

This scares the daylights out of Donahoe.
So far, the stock price is evidence of this ongoing event.

BOYCOTT EBAY.

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

by: Moonwishes This user has validated their user name.
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Thu May 15 12:08:05 2014

>>As expected, no discussion of the point that I made which was essentially about free market capitalism and competition. Instead of engaging in a thoughtful dialogue, the malcontents' answer is to call names and shut down the debate. <<

@flying Childers
Why would you try to be starting a NEW topic in the midst of a discussion that had a different topic? That is one reason why no one followed you into 'thoughtful dialog' and who would want to discuss anything with someone that was rude to everyone on this discussion board and the only one calling names was you. Malcontents, complainers, whiners just a few of them.

This discussion was not to be a debate of how glorious ebay is to sell on or whatever whacked out scheme you were thinking of. Many if not most of us have been burned bad by ebay and to see the same CEO getting paid huge amounts of money to destroy a venue that worked perfectly before Meg, All the money that WE should have earned went into their pockets. I see no basis for a thoughtful dialog about ebay at all and if you want such a dialog about some other or all selling venues, etc. you might want to start a thread of your own and not try to hijack one, which is what you tried to do.

But in general when I see rants/comments like the one you made I know you will never be happy with anything that anyone says. You can't see how rude you are being, how nasty to others you have been, and how off the mark you are. So as far as I'm concerned you can take your dialog and stuff it. I won't be commenting to you again because I know with your kind it is hopeless.

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

by: ebay refugee camp This user has validated their user name.

Thu May 15 12:39:27 2014

@Flying Childers
I happen to own a licensed small business and I do well on multiple venues.
I do not have problems on my website, etsy, bonanza however ebay is a absolute pain because of policies which have created a legion of bad buyers who feel empowered by the ebay 100 buyer guarantee, 100 percent get it, guranteed using the sellers funds.
What if the buyer is wrong or a thief, if you do not settle ebay punishes the seller.
You really should have the facts before you attack the sellers on here.

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

This user has validated their user name. by: LasVagueness

Thu May 15 14:07:07 2014

@Flying Childers  Personally, I think you bring some balance to the discussion.

@steevo  Outstanding rebuttal to @Flying Childers

@mjr55  My top-rated discount can earn me $15-25 per transaction so it IS important.

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

by: HonestyBytes This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Thu May 15 17:41:03 2014

Still no reality with this CEO who made the statement that if sellers sell, everything is okay.  Ebay is bleeding at the seams.  There no rules to hurt sellers and decrease sales are coming from a madman who needs help.  They dont care who is answering the phone at ebay. A bunch of uneducated idiots.  Its all over the internet.  Just type in paypal or ebay complaints and there are millions. Thank God I dont sell on ebay anymore.

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

by: HonestyBytes This user has validated their user name.
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Thu May 15 17:43:37 2014

Esay, Payloss, a bunch of uneducated idiots.  They just dont get it do they?  Hurting sellers will ruin you!
hiring uneducated low class customer support will cost you.  They are breaking consumer law and federal law.  Its only a matter of time before Enrons sister fraudster ends up in the brink.

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

This user has validated their user name. by: Screaming Banshee

Thu May 15 18:09:58 2014

Donahoe: "If you don't sell, we don't get anything."

Since when?  

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

by: used2luv2sell This user has validated their user name.

Thu May 15 21:44:34 2014

@Flying Childers,
Ebay may have been started by a brilliant entrepreneur, but it is not run by brilliant people any longer; they only THINK they are gods!  The way you speak down to others seems vaguely familiar; most likely because that's how sellers are treated by Ebay.
What I and many others miss about Ebay is that it used to be FUN.  So what if some people would be at Flea Markets were it not for Ebay?  Obviously you are stating that Flea Markets are beneath you.  Well, some of us enjoy them.  But of course, you are the judge who gets to say that is lowly and wrong.  I don't think the items I sell are "crap", but obviously you know better than me.  
You're kidding - I'm not being forced to stay on Ebay?  I must be dumber than a doorknob; here I thought I had to stay!
Now I have news for you - This is NOT CHINA!  We have freedom of speech in this country yet & can complain if we want.  We have reason to complain, but of course, you've never used Ebay, so you haven't a clue.  
Thanks for the spanking, but why don't you go sit in your golden chair next to Johnny and drink some more Kool Aid.

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

by: Flying Childers This user has validated their user name.

Thu May 15 22:29:14 2014

Like one of the commentators said, this isn't China, there's still free speech. Unless you have something to say that nobody wants to hear because it upsets their world view about Ebay or whatever the topic is. Amazing the assumptions that people make about someone who expresses a different opinion.

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

by: LinneyPinney This user has validated their user name.

Thu May 15 23:29:35 2014

@Flying Childers
If you are weary of our complaining, please stop reading these threads and simply go away. Problem solved.  

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

by: booklover27 This user has validated their user name.

Fri May 16 10:17:39 2014

Kudos to the Top Rated Seller for pointing out Ebay's idiotic tendencies and total lack of logic, empathy and common sense.  Also, we need to organize and bring this moron company to its knees...

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

by: JB This user has validated their user name.

Fri May 16 13:54:43 2014

@flying childers:...


Tell me you haven't complained about a venue change from an internet company. If you own a business in your community tell me you haven't gone to meetings and complain about a community process that can affect your business.

ebay became successful upon the foundation of small sellers. ebay then created by their own doing the compliant venue by stepping on and over that foundation.

People in business (internet or B+M) have three choices as I see it.

Adapt to change
Complain and struggle on
Or close up shop.

Ecommercebytes allows comments by all.

Sellers, complainers, and nobodies who happen to read the article.

Depending on the comment will ultimately decide who answers back.

I prefer complainers They remind me of the Founding Fathers who listened to them.

Regarding the OP He has every right to be concerned based on the companies past history.

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

This user has validated their user name. by: Frankcoins
Web Site

Fri May 16 16:05:18 2014

Ebay is the type of company that depends more on "stakeholders" than "stockholders."  Many progressive companies realize that actions to simply maximize return to shareholders and provide bonuses to management reward the people LEAST RESPONSIBLE for the company's success.   From  http://www.ourmomentum.com/stakeholders_vs_stockholders.html


"Forward
thinking companies take their stakeholders into account and operate their businesses in consideration of all those who are affected by its operations. According to the stakeholder business theory, if stakeholder interests conflict, the business should be managed in such a way as to balance the conflicting claims of the multiple stakeholders. This implies that there will be instances when management is obligated to sacrifice the profit interests of stockholders for those of other stakeholders. This theory operates based on the implicit assumption that businesses have responsibilities to all those affected by the business itself."

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

This user has validated their user name. by: Philip Cohen
Web Site

Fri May 16 16:54:17 2014

@Frankcoins,

Your summary is spot on. But, not even eBay's shareholders have received anything during the seven years of the reign of Johnny Ho; only the Ho and his cohorts have taken home any cash ...

Notwithstanding that the eBay Dept of Spin likes to claim a “400% increase” in eBay’s share price since the GFC, the fact is, in August 2007, prior to the GFC, when the "Pain From Bain", Johnny Ho, was already effectively in control of eBay, the share prices of eBay and Amazon were both ~$40; with eBay recently ~$51 and Amazon ~$303, clearly, the “smart money” on Wall Street (now) considers eBay to be a "dog", and Johnny Ho to be a very poor dog handler ...

One also has to wonder if founder Omidyar has ever thought about just how much more fabulously wealthy he might now have been had he not ok'd the handing over of the control of eBay to the delusional, destructive, incompetent, unscrupulous, narcissistic, sociopathic Johnny Ho? Indeed, had he, in August 2007, traded in just the ~108 million eBay shares, that he still holds today, for shares in Amazon, instead of ~$6 billion, his worth would now have been ~$32 billion! Now that, surely, is something for all of eBay's long-suffering "long" investors to think about, is it not? ...

eBay Inc, where the incompetent mingle with the malevolent and the criminal … http://bit.ly/11F2eas

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

This user has validated their user name. by: The End

Fri May 16 17:21:25 2014

THIS JUST IN :
I've just completed my Latest 72 hour Ebay Survey, where I ask all the people I come in contact with everywhere in the Real World over a 72 hour period, "Have you dealt with Ebay lately?".
Out of 34 people NONE OF THEM has EVER dealt with Ebay and don't see any reason to do so.
That, to me, says it all.
By comparison, 13 years ago (in 2001), I couldn't find anybody who Didn't sell on Ebay.
Ya John Donahoe, looks like you've Disrupted yourself right out of existence old boy  :o)

Perminate Link for eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting   eBay CEO Gets Earful from Top Rated Seller at Annual Meeting

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

Fri May 16 23:29:18 2014

The only "opinions" worth debating are those that are fabricated from falsehoods and have no little or factual basis in reality.

Such as the opinions held by Flying Childers whose "opinions" about ebay appears to be based on gossamer wings and butterflies.

The majority those here have opinions based on provable, reproducible facts and share centuries of experience with the evil entity that ebafia is.

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