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Thu Feb 14 2013 20:56:15

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

By: Reader

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Dear Ina,
I have been receiving the EcommerceBytes Newsletter for sometime and appreciate your efforts on behalf of the sellers on eBay, plus the comments by others. It never occurred to me that I would have an issue to share with you and your readers until this evening.

I have been a member on eBay since 1999 and a Power Seller for some time. eBay's lastest "panty change" has me livid! During the course of the many years spent working on eBay, I have met several special people and we have become friends. One of the things I enjoy about eBay is the people that has crossed my path.

I have recently shared emails with a customer that was a pleasure to communicate with. She asked for my email address to send a photo of dolls she is crafting. I replied with my email address in the body of the email. eBay blocked the email and deleted it! Where do they get the right to control with whom we communicate? That is our decision not theirs!

Note: I refer to their many policy changes as "panty changes", which is a more appropriate title. Several years ago I spent the two months before Christmas revising all of my 4,000 plus listings due to a "new" policy at the most critical time of the year. There was no time for new listings since all others had to be revised. The most asinine experience with eBay was when I tried to list a magazine that had an article on Johnny Cash. They blocked the listing due to using the word "Cash".

Needless to say, I no longer have all those items on eBay and have moved most of my inventory to another site. The only reason I still sell on eBay is because that is where the most sells are which supplements my SSI. If only there was another option!

At one time (many years ago) I enjoyed working on eBay. Now it is a drudgery.
Sign me,
"Made Grumpy by eBay"




Comments (32) | Permalink

Readers Comments

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

This user has validated their user name. by: Basset

Thu Feb 14 22:01:12 2013

a friend that I had not been in touch with for a few years contacted me through eBay messages recently. She knew that I have a store.

I messaged her back with a spelled out email address, explaining that it may not show up and why. Fortunately it did go through.

awkward.  

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

by: AuctionMonkey This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 14 23:05:07 2013

Can you link to an outside web page? Perhaps you can create a basic contact details page, or ask them to look you up on Facebook with a link to your account there... You can also attach images to some messages, and could have a graphic 'business card' to send to people who want to see it also. :)

Yep, eBay makes it harder every day, you work more and more, and your sales juuuuust keep slipping.

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

by: BonzSeller This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 14 23:13:35 2013

As much as I sympathize with you, there's nothing you can do about it and getting mad is a waste of time.
EBay owns their mail system, not you. Ebay owns the whole company, not you. So, they can decide what goes through their mail system and what gets listed for sale on their auctions or stores. It's fact that they own the place and it's their rules and such that you have to obey. It's like this with any of the selling sites. It's not private mail like out here in the real world, it's their servers these mails are going through and they have the right to control it. Do I like it, NO.
Do I agree with it, NO

But until the government changes the laws then that's what you have to deal with

If I really want my email address to get through, I spell it out as the other person here suggested.

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

This user has validated their user name. by: Anonymous Annie

Thu Feb 14 23:28:47 2013

Just for fun, I'd like to send an image of a QR code (the ubiquitous square ''barcode'') though the eBay message system. It would include all my contact information: email, business phone, website, etc.

Try to filter THAT eBay! (Or do they already?)

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

by: Disillusioned-Seller This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 14 23:31:22 2013

Made Grumpy, you are right. I did not realize until you wrote this how I used to make friends with some of my customers and we used to be able to exchange email addresses to communicate and share photos.

I have all but halted any socialization with buyers in recent years. They order, I ship, that's it. It is a shame. EBay was social media before FB and MySpace. Sellers and buyers had friendly communication and banter back then.

But BonzSeller is right. It is their company and they make the rules. In this case they do this to prevent sellers from making a sale outside of eBay which would preclude them from getting their pound of flesh in fees.

You will need to spell out your email address to get around that.  

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

by: BackInBlack This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 14 23:42:57 2013

They've blocked e-mail addresses for a long, long time, as well as websites.  This is to keep people from going 'off the reservation' to make deals.  Many sites (YouTube, etc.) have filters for that.  All you have to do is spell 'em out, e.g.
youremail [at] domain d0t c0m
or whatever - put spaces in it, substitute zero for the "O" in dot com, etc.  Old trick.
My motto: "There's always a way to beat the system."

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

by: jdlkreations This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 14 23:44:54 2013

You can also try this little trick as I just had one today and it worked  ~ this is a pretend email address by the way :) ( Maybe LOL ) abcde[@]yahoo ~ if you put the brackets around the @ sign it should go thru :) Do not use the .com :)  

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

by: miaonorato This user has validated their user name.

Thu Feb 14 23:48:55 2013

I had this happen to myself and another seller. We have been ''friendly'' for over 2 years. So...when my email address would not go through, I looked up a purchase I had made from her several months ago, went to Pay Pal and looked at the details of the sale. In there I found the other sellers personal email address and wrote to her that way. I did of course ask if it was OK before I did that. Like DS I to used to have some friends through my buyers and other sellers. That has dwindled in the past year. SAD!  

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

by: smithy713 This user has validated their user name.

Fri Feb 15 00:01:02 2013

Ebay keeps trying desperately to prevent members from contacting one another to possibly sell outside the site.  Has it ever occurred to them that their own stupid policies, feesandconstant seller updates are the driving forces behind this?  Perhaps if they lightened up sellers would return to the site and we all know every seller is a buyer so it would be a win win?

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

by: BackInBlack This user has validated their user name.

Fri Feb 15 00:25:06 2013

@jdlkreations - That might work on eBay for right now, but in most system filters, the 'bad' terms are the @ symbol, 'dot' and 'com' in any context or character string.  Best to avoid the @ altogether and just say 'at.'
In case you don't know it *every* e-mail sent over the Internet (anywhere, to anyone) is filtered for certain 'keywords' that could indicate you are... trouble.  (If you doubt it, watch PBS Nova, "The Spy Factory," available on YouTube & elsewhere).

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

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

Fri Feb 15 00:26:50 2013

OP, if you read eBay’s 2700-page terms and conditions, that you have agreed to abide by, you will see that they have total control over you. When they say “touch your toes”, you will touch your toes or else “no soup for you” …

Regardless, eBay’s programmer’s are such simple folk, most users already know that eBay will simply delete anything which contains a “@” even if it is not an email address. …

As others have inferred, the way around that is to simply express your email address as “name(at)address.com”

eBay / PayPal / Donahoe: Dead Men Walking ... http://bit.ly/11F2eas

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

by: PowerSeller2007 This user has validated their user name.

Fri Feb 15 02:02:05 2013

ebay make communication between sellers and buyers so difficult.  At the same time, ebay wanted buyer to rate seller on communication.

When buyers asked questions, many times, I could only reply once.  So I told buyer that I would do some verification and reply to him back quickly.  Then I found that I could no longer reply to him the 2nd time.

Also, a few times, the random ebay address expired.  

Also, ebay now add option to send photos on message.  I found none of them could be of any use.  ebay reduced the resolution to the level of a thumb print and their is no way to expand it.  Buyer expectation is that I saw his photos.  But in reality, it was useless to get any detail out of a thumb print.

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

by: Oh Really? This user has validated their user name.

Fri Feb 15 03:35:21 2013

If they were a customer of yours as you say would you not have their email address and vice versa

eBay provides both both buyers and sellers with email addresses once there is an actual transaction.

If this person was not a previous customer than its likely you might be trying to conduct off eBay sales which for obvious reasons eBay is not interested in helping you do.

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

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

Fri Feb 15 06:33:17 2013

@Oh Really?,

"If they were a customer of yours as you say would you not have their email address and vice versa. eBay provides both buyers and sellers with email addresses once there is an actual transaction."

There is some truth to that statement. So, eBafia goes to the trouble of stripping any string of contiguous visible characters containing a “@” character from any communication via their messaging system, and then they allow sellers to insert a direct email address in the “Message from seller” area of their never-ending stream of various notices that follow a sale.

So, eBafia, in its very small brain, thereby thinks that it is “protecting” the first sale, at possibly great nuisance to the buyer and seller, but thereafter a buyer may go direct … the logic applied by the headless turkeys at eBafia, frankly, defies logic … no wonder the house of cards is tottering …

These seller’s email addresses are undoubtedly getting through because these headless turkeys are so incompetent they cannot programme anything logically … but, sooner or later they may notice this loophole and then they will attempt to close it …

eBay / PayPal / Donahoe: Dead Men Walking ... http://bit.ly/11F2eas

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

by: RAOTFLMAO This user has validated their user name.

Fri Feb 15 07:51:36 2013

I used to be like "Grumpy"...chat a bit with customers but now what little I sell, I just want the money.  Socialization on ebay is pointless. Get a facebook page if you want to share.  

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Fri Feb 15 08:45:47 2013

And yet they court the mega- and big box retailers who are just there to target and acquire new customers.  Once those megas make a sale, they own that customer--and target them with their own web site.

Ebay once had wonderful ecommerce site-a perfect ecosystem of buyers and sellers.  But Donahoe knew better (insert eye roll)

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

by: RAOTFLMAO This user has validated their user name.

Fri Feb 15 09:49:22 2013

Rexford is right! It used to be the only place I would consider selling, I chatted with buyers, loved leaving feedback but long ago I saw the writting on the wall and created my own website.  I urged my customers to shop there, added them to my mailing list, and I am so glad I did it years ago.  All that said I still use ebay...I keep one item listed at all times to ''grab'' views.  Heck for 50 cents a  month for the one item (10 available)with a BIN price it is still an advertising bargain.  This brings me to the real point...USE YOUR ME PAGE... I have my web sites listed with a direct link, I have my email address there also.  There will probably be a day that ebay will stop this practice but I have done it for the past 5 or 6 years. Once you have converted your customer you can chat and have those friendly conversations to your little hearts content!!!  

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

by: adrian44 This user has validated their user name.

Fri Feb 15 10:16:20 2013

I have sent my email many time through ebay. I just type
kittycat at tomcat.net It always goes through.

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

This user has validated their user name. by: Anonymous Annie

Fri Feb 15 11:02:40 2013

Isn't it amazing that eBay is SO PARANOID about losing a sale that they COMPULSIVELY spend an inordinate amount of time trying to discourage this ''problem''. (Which, until recently, was probably the LEAST of their worries. Until JD came on-board, I was perfectly content to conduct ALL of my transactions ON eBay.)

In any case... it reveals a LOT about a company when you see that THIS is the type of thing that takes priority over the HUNDREDS of other things that need more URGENT attention.

For example: The latest snafu with the postage rates that is now costing sellers money!!

Shouldn't THAT have been a bigger concern to eBay?! Well? Shouldn't it have?

Idiots.

Incompetent, corrupt, idiots.

eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses   eBay Blocks Messages Containing Email Addresses

This user has validated their user name. by: Ric

Fri Feb 15 11:24:32 2013

If only the dunderheads in San Jose were paying attention early in JD's tenure - none of this would have been necessary.

If fees had not been raised so high, sellers would not be looking for ways to circumvent them.

If policies were realistic, fair and balanced, sellers would not have abandoned eBay for other sites or would not have built their own.

If eBay listened to their sellers instead of being assimilated into JD's "noise" culture sellers would be a happy lot, sales would be higher and eBay would be profitable without having to resort to parlor tricks in the accounting department.

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