Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Mon Feb 16 2015 21:50:31

Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

By: Ina Steiner

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new report from the UK's Civil Justice Council explores the potential of ODR (online dispute resolution) for civil disputes of value less than 25,000 pounds. The report includes eBay as an example of a working online dispute resolution system. 

While the report itself states it doesn't endorse or recommend any of the systems it describes, its primary author Professor Richard Susskind has been talking up eBay's dispute resolution as a workable model.

According to the BBC, "Prof Susskind said (eBay's) model was "remarkable" and could be used in a similar way in the civil courts system which was "too costly, too complex and too slow,"" and he appeared on BBC Radio discussing the report.

"ODR is not science fiction. Famously, each year on eBay, around 60 million disagreements amongst traders are resolved through ODR. This is a well-established way of resolving disputes, appropriate for the Internet age."

What do you think of eBay's dispute resolution system? Does it work when it comes to non-paying bidders? Item not as described claims? Feedback disputes?

Can you see the eBay model working for small claims court and for other legal disputes that arise? 

Watch out, Judge Judy - you might be replaced one day!




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Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

This user has validated their user name. by: Basset

Mon Feb 16 22:14:14 2015

''The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers'' (William Shakespeare)

....And replace them all with bots.



Of course, if modeled on eBay's system, justice will be served in a lop-sided fashion.


Methinks Professor Susskind doth not have first-hand experience selling and resolving on eBay.

Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

by: JQ This user has validated their user name.

Mon Feb 16 22:23:46 2015

My immediate reaction to this story is that clearly Dr. Susskind has no ideal how completely dissatisfied almost all Ebay sellers are with how the company handles disputes. Just because 60 million disputes are handled each year by Ebay does not in any way indicate that the disputes are handled fairly or in a manner which satisfies any party (other than Ebay corporate management.)

Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Feb 16 22:26:35 2015

What exact dispute process are we talking about here?

Is it April Fools already?

Can I have some of the crack thats obviously being smoked here?

eBays "resolution process" is 1 sided. Buyers get to do as they please and sellers take one in the shorts in the name of "thats what business is all about" - so says the dummy in charge. Try not paying your eBay fees and see if he takes that same position.

eBay ignores sellers photos (if you can even send them since as of Sept, they were moved/removed from the inital complaint process. SOme interest they have in obtaining any kind of truth huh?

eBay also tilts the process by making money on the situation. They make money on the label as does its evil twin Paypal. IE they have their finger on the scale.

eBay also encounrages buyers to comit fraud by returning things as SNAD when they arent - just to avoid paying return shipping.

In short, the entire process is a sham as is eBay - and as I suspect this "professor" ... Maybe hes a professor of THUGanomics ....

Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

by: aim04744 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Feb 16 22:33:08 2015

I actually thought this was a joke at first.

Yep, that is just what I want. someone in another country being paid less than minimum wage reading from a script to decide disputes. Especially when the system they are modeling is as one sided as Ebay is.  

Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

by: AuctionMonkey This user has validated their user name.

Mon Feb 16 22:37:53 2015

60 million are resolved, In Favour Of The Buyer. :P  

Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

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

Mon Feb 16 22:55:14 2015

"... its primary author Professor Richard Susskind has been talking up eBay's dispute resolution as a workable model."

Seriously funny ...

I wonder from where the good professor acquired his credentials, bought them for 99c on eBay possibly?

The eBay executive suite—where the incompetent mingle with the disingenuous, the malevolent and the outright criminal, and the just plain stupid ... http://bit.ly/11F2eas


Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

by: brokentoys19 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Feb 16 22:57:45 2015

Obviously this guy is out of touch with today's ebay systems.  

hmmm but for some reason reminds me of other great thought leaders, noodlers and doodlers.


http://legalsketchpad.com/2010/10/sketch-notes-from-keynot
e-richard-susskind/

(click
the image there)

ebay style Disruptive Innovation for the legal system? Imagine the possiblities? Worked great for ebay, didn't it?.



Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

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

Mon Feb 16 23:29:09 2015

Eye popping ignorance spouted by another bought and paid for corporatist lackey masquerading as an academic.

Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

This user has validated their user name. by: Bill

Mon Feb 16 23:56:38 2015

Ming:

Amen!

Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

by: BargainzBabylon This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 17 00:40:27 2015

eBay was only one of a list of ODR processes presented in no particular order. The article also talking about process, not outcome. Legally, any ODR would be bound to the laws of the land and not be a law unto itself, which eBay has basically done.  

Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

by: Puamelia This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 17 00:57:41 2015

Dispute resolution based on Ebay's method? Somebody PLEASE tell me they're kidding.

Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

This user has validated their user name. by: bitbybit

Tue Feb 17 01:19:22 2015

Looks like this professor received his degree out of the same cracker jack box as ebay's esteemed cough,cough MBAs.

Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

by: Ebay Seller-Ebay Buyer This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 17 01:31:46 2015

60 million disputes resolved? And how many hours did ebay customer service reps  spend to resolve these cases?  How many millions of hourly wages were spent by Ebay? Maybe this is why the stock market is at an all time high and Ebay stock has barely moved the past couple of years?

Small claims court is not complex and also is not costly and it resolves cases quickly. Replacing small claims court with ebay's system is very costly as many ebay cases find in favor of the buyer, but do not have the seller pay the buyer, but instead ebay pays the buyer. So ebay pays a rep to review the case and then often pays the buyer out of their own pocket

Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

by: JustMe This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 17 02:12:19 2015

Fortunately I do medium volume on small-mid uniques ($3-$20 items), a little over 6000 transactions on eBay in the last year, only had 5 disputes but every one was a scammer, trying to beat me out of $2-3. I feel for people trying to sell higher end items as in my case, I just send a refund immediately and move on.

That's what eBay wants. No questions asked refunds. It really isn't a problem for me but I can see how it can be a problem for others (especially sellers of clothing or electronics).

Unfortunately, eBay thinks "one size fits all" policies and automation are the answer.

This Professor Richard Susskind should try selling his toupee on eBay and see how he feels when the buyer files a SNAD to return it.

Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

by: skl3255 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 17 02:56:15 2015

All you have to do is read the community boards on Ebay to see how people feel about Ebay's dispute resolution.  It is almost entirely slanted in the buyer's favor. Seller's lose all the time to scammers, have their items stolen, and pay for returns because buyers abuse the dispute resolution process.Read the horror stories  as there are hundreds of these cases.  It's enough to make anyone afraid to sell on Ebay. If the buyers don't pay, your items are held up from relisting for lengthy periods. If Ebay gave real consideration to the seller's side of the transaction issues perhaps people would be happier.  Moreover, seller's are not able to leave negative feedback for non-paying buyers, and those who abuse the system. Therefore, these buyers are able to continue hurting other sellers, and scamming people.  It is very difficult to identify these people due to the lack of seller feedback. Dishonest buyers can hurt the sellers with unwarranted defects and Ebay refuses the delete them.  Although I sell on Ebay I have been fortunate because I sell in a niche area where it's difficult to scam.  Partly because I won't sell internationally, and don't sell in high risk categories.

Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Tue Feb 17 02:58:00 2015

Before everyone gets really excited here, the rules in the UK are VERY different than in the USA.  Ebay does not get away with the stuff they get away with here.  As I understand it they have much stronger consumer laws that we do.  I'm certainly no expert on it by any stretch of the imagination, but I have read enough to know that it is very different.

If they looked closely at the US site, I'm confident they would be running for cover.

As for Judge Judy, I've seen several cases on her show that were Ebay related.  The rulings varied, but she always reviewed the evidence and ruled fairly from what I saw.

Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

by: val2525 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 17 03:14:37 2015

WTF? Is this guy on drugs? Obviously he's only reviewed the PROCESS, not the RESULTS.

Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

by: Lois This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 17 05:37:13 2015

I cannot believe how so-called 'experts' are being hoodwinked deliberately by eBay into believing the site has a workable solution.

Given my one experience with it, I respectfully disagree. A buyer purchased a piece of signed jewelry from me.

It was very clearly pictured, front and back with closeups, against a background that was my own,


The buyer told eBay the piece she received was not the piece shown in the picture - it had - she said a different colored stone at the top.

I had no other even vaguely similar one in my possession.

When I spoke to the eBay 'service representative,' she replied that, yes, it was clear that the buyer had sent back her own damaged piece, but that I had no recourse except to refund her entirely.

Being out a lot of money, receiving back an item that couldn't possibly be sold because it was damaged, I question the concept that eBay's system is workable. No way. No how. Not ever.

The people who did this 'study' are incredibly gullible - or else they were paid by eBay to totally slant their questions in order to get the desired results, and did not even ask half the equation - the sellers who had been victimized.

Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Tue Feb 17 06:46:16 2015

Ming says "Eye popping ignorance spouted by another bought and paid for corporatist lackey masquerading as an academic."

I think Ming nailed it.

And Marie, that must be why so many UK sellers are so very happy.  Wait a minute, they're not.

Perminate Link for Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts   Report Holds eBay Dispute Resolution as Model for Courts

by: dreamweaver149 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Feb 17 06:53:19 2015

@Marie.....I usually read your comments with interest and find them to be very informative, however, in this instance I am afraid to say you are very wrong. Yes our laws may be different, but, the ebay rules are just as draconian our side of the pond as this side.
eBay are frequently working out new wheezes and using our side as the guiney pig before it appears your side. (The reverse is also true!)
As for our laws being different, they are, for instance, we had something called ''Distance selling regulations'' which by law gave ''ebuyers'' a 2 week period to return items for any reason, (More or less), with conditions attached. Our Government changed that to a SIX MONTH period, and most of the conditions you see on the paypal policy are almost a direct cut and paste of that new legislation......(And many thought it was all Paypals very own idea).
Yes, our side of the pond, we not only have eBay and PayPal seller protection, we also have the UK government and the European Court, (Not to be confused with the European court of human rights), all looking after our interests, (GROAN!)
It could be said that we have a little more on our plate UK side than we would like, it seems we are fighting a war on several fronts at the same time, with eBay also driving a coach and horses through the said legislation and giving the buyers even more rights than our government states they should have....and, taking away the very few that we as ''esellers'' have been left.
I was as much surprised when I first heard the news that was aired at 0600 our side, but after choking on my mug of tea and spitting out my toast, I refrained from throwing the radio through the window and listened to the extended interview that explained it was the idea of it that they were looking at and not the eBay process. What they are proposing apparently is a 3 stage system ending with a video conference with both parties with an actual judge, now this though still making me feel very uneasy, is a vast improvement on the soundbite that was originally aired.
I hope that eBay boast about their system a lot, the more that people in political circles talk about it, the more likely it is that one or two decent jounalists will look deeper into the eBay system, and hopefully put a sensationalist spin on it asking if this really is the future of UK Justice to come.....(Would you be wanting to trumpet a resolution system that was needed to be used 60 million times a year, as proof that your system was a fair one?)...Should be interesting, this story will run and run with a little luck.
I hope that you don't take this as a bad review of your comment Marie, it is not meant as such. It is understandable that you would think the way you did though because it is in eBays' interests to foster that opinion of ''The other side of the pond'', on both sides, believe me, and it is unbelievable, but there are more than a few sellers my side that think that sellers in the States, have it ''Easy''. compared to us ''Poor'' Brits. Anyone who can read though soon discovers the ugly truth.
I hope I have been able to explain it sufficiently well enough for you from a UK point of view, I have tried to make it as unbiased as I can, taking into account that I am writing from an editorial point of view rather than just reporting the ''Facts''.
Take care, Kindest regards, Andrew.  

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