|Wed Jan 23 2013 21:59:33|
eBay Suspends Sellers for Dupes Caused by Glitch
By: Ina Steiner
eBay has been cracking down on sellers it believes are violating its duplicate listings policy, but some dupes are listed by eBay itself due to a glitch, according to sellers.
Last week, sellers began reporting eBay had suspended their accounts for 7 days due to policy violations. While buyers and sellers who are frustrated by search results filled with identical listings from the same sellers might be happy about that development, some of the sellers who were suspended say they never listed duplicate items and are victims of an eBay glitch.
A reader said, "Around January 12 or so a lot of sellers are being hit with having some of their listings removed as duplicates. Fact of the matter is they are not listing duplicates. Whatever software eBay is using to determine whether or not listings are duplicates has failed. In turn eBay has restricted sellers accounts for 7 days where they cannot sell."
Sellers have been discussing the issue on the eBay forums. One group says an eBay glitch caused some of their listings to be duplicated without their knowledge, an issue that has arisen in the past.
Another group says the listings eBay called duplicates were products for the same item but with differences, such as size or color. For example, a shoe seller who lost listing privileges for one week said, "I sell women's shoes - one shoe was a wide width, one was a medium. The difference was listed in the item specifics and in the description. It was clearly advertised as different. After calling eBay and arguing with four people, what EBAY REALLY means is NOT a duplicate listing, but a duplicate Title and picture. So in translation for everyone, a Duplicate listing has NOTHING to do with your content, even though that is defined as part of the listing. The "listing" in this policy means "title and picture,"" he wrote
The crack down from eBay's Trust & Safety department comes as sellers continue to report Diamond powersellers listing the same duplicate items using multiple user accounts, which is against eBay policy.
In October, when discussing the issue of duplicate listings on eBay with spokesperson Johnna Hoff, I asked her about a Diamond seller who was listing duplicates across at least 4 of his User IDs. She would not respond to that specific issue. So I asked the seller directly, who acknowledged the dupes and told me he was "currently working on getting rid of duplicate listings."
A reader wrote this week to complain that eBay continues to allow Diamond sellers to list duplicates. "It's very frustrating as the whole electronics categories are flooded with sellers doing this including eBay's biggest seller."
Has eBay successfully dealt with duplicate listings in your categories, or do duplicate listings remain a problem on the site?