eBay began blocking some messages sent through its messaging system, according to buyers and sellers. We began researching the issue when a seller reported the problem on Ecommerce EKG
"eBay Messages are not being received. Confirmed with eBay Support. They see several messages from customers that never got to me the seller. First time discovered was today. This also was first week I saw the warning about messaging enforcement."
Buyers and sellers began reporting the issue on the eBay boards as early as Monday, April 5, some referring to a new banner on the eBay messaging page about getting tough on messaging violations. (eBay has long been concerned about people taking transactions offsite, not only because it's a technique used by scammers, but because of lost fee revenue.)
In this thread
, a seller said they need information from buyers before fulfilling the order.
In this thread
, a buyer compared eBay's messaging platform to email from 2002. "To clarify: Seller and I are messaging back and forth about a shipping issue," the customer wrote. "The only way I can message the seller at this point is to either initiate a new message from the purchased product page; or click REPLY on the last message they sent me. So as a work around I did the latter, and copy/pasted the content of my last message to seller in the message to them."
At least one user even turned to Down Detector
to report the problem, writing: "ebay messages are not working. Sellers can't read buyers messages and vice-versa."
What makes the problem so worrisome for sellers in particular: the possibility of negative feedback - and that proved to be the case according to this seller
"I just received a negative feedback and the buyer stated in the comments "no reply to comms". I checked all my messages and found no messages in my inbox from this buyer.
"So I rang eBay and I've just got off the phone with eBay now and they can see that the buyer messaged me on their end but the message is not coming through to my inbox. It's definitely a site issue, which the call agent refused the accept!
"Is anyone else experiencing this? It's not fair on us sellers to receive negative feedback as a result of eBay's own site errors if you ask me...
"Just so unfair on me as I never received this message and I've now received a negative feedback due eBay's own website not working!
"Will be interesting to see if anyone else is experiencing this same issue of sending and receiving messages on eBay."
So far, we've been unable to see any response from eBay about the issue and are unsure whether it's technical in nature or a new practice.