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eBay resolution centre only care about making money

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Why don't I learn?  I recently auctioned at 0.99 start price and then sold (or so I thought) for about £50 a wonderful used 12 year old The Bridge leather bag ' as photographed ' which looks great worn and still functions well.  The buyer had not asked me questions or asked for more photos before bidding.  She also seemed, judging by her forum name, to be in the marketplace to re-sell the same brand bags as the one I was auctioning, simply as an occasional attic clearer.  But after winning the bag, she didn't pay for a good while.  She appeared to have ducked out of her obligation to honour the payment after changing her mind.  So I contacted her and after getting no response at all, I reported her to eBay to prod her into paying me.  She did soon after via PayPal and then the fun began...

After she received the item she made no complaint to me, using the eBay messaging system.  I simply got unexpected Neutral Feedback from her, along with a message from eBay telling me that the buyer had told them that the item was misdescribed.  It wasn't and messaged her as to why that was not so.  After that, she decided, via eBay not direct to me, that she wanted a refund, which she hadn't asked for initially, which jibes with her neutral rather than negative feedback.

Had I misdescribed the bag?  No.  I have plenty of satisfied buyers of my attic clearances, including a few since this saga began.  I put an honest advert up for any buyer intending to wear the bag themselves.  It is not for me to second guess buy-to-sell marketeers more scrupulous criterion for reselling at a profit.  That is their risk, not mine.  The bag still looks great worn; there are no holes, no unsightly marks on the inside or outside and any signs of wear are minimum and don't show up when the bag is worn.  A close examination - simply with a view to resell the bag immediately at a profit - might have meant no resale profit.  That I will admit to.  But is that my problem?

I then got an eBay message giving me a chance to settle things with the buyer (which translates to 'refund her' or else..) before she escalates the issue to Customer Services.  I wrote to this buyer about 10 times, via messaging, and I also asked her to return the item for examination, and awaited her response each time, which was...  waiting...  waiting...  waiting...  waiting...  waiting...  waiting...  etc.  Nothing.

...she had escalated the complaint to the eBay Resolution Centre

The next thing I knew was she had escalated the complaint to the eBay Resolution Centre.  I then pointed out to eBay Customer Services, in my case notes, that I was having none of it.  She was a scammer trying to get a refund from me and keep the bag, which was probably sufficiently but accurately described as flawed enough not to make her a resale profit ' as she'd hoped she would do, but was every bit worth what she was willing to pay as a wearer of the item.  By exploiting eBay's BPP, she could still sell it at a reduced price from what she'd paid and still profit overall - with a refund too.  A scam if ever I saw one.  Meanwhile I was to either compromise my reputation and/or lose my money and the bag too in order to help her do that...  Like hell...

Did eBay agree she was a scammer?  What with no communication either before or after the win; no attempt to send the item back after request; no attempt to question the item in the first place before leaving neutral feedback?  All red flags?  Of course, I was unable to feedback on her ghastly behaviour by leaving negative feedback, so she still has a glowing 100% positive feedback, runs a business off the back of attic clearers like me and tries to screw anyone when she realises that a profit is unlikely to materialise if she leaves honest positive feedback for properly described 'used' items based on adverts aimed at wearers not resellers.

eBay Resolution Centre simply decided in the buyer's favour...

I wrote to eBay Resolution Centre explaining that I would not refund this buyer.  I also pointed out that she had made no attempt to initially pay me and even before getting the item she'd' made no attempt to communicate with me to settle the matter before eBay were involved, no attempt to send the item back to me either.  Enough for the Resolution Centre to rule in my favour?

Red flags anyone?  Hello?  Hello?

The result was that eBay Resolution Centre simply decided in the buyer's favour.  No explanation as to why they arrived at that decision either.  It seems a purely business one to me: they make more out of her bag resales ' resulting from screwing mugs like me, in all account, than they do out of my occasional attic clearances.  So I was screwed...  not her!

Ebay and Paypal, money comes before customers ...er...not quite..

Well, I have news for you sunshine (I mean, all you luvverly jubberlies at eBay Resolution Centre).  I withdrew all money from my PalPal holding account before you could freeze it 'as you predictably did, which is now in negative balance.  I have closed the connecting bank account and withdrawn all the monies in that account too by transferring it into another untouchable account to prevent you from raiding it.  So if you want to refund this scammer yourselves after ignoring all of my arguments and the evidence that shows what a prig this buyer is, then you can by all means do so - but you do it with your own money not mine!

The beauty of this story is that they won't find out any of this until the buyer has sent back the bag to me 'a condition the eBay Resolution Centre's imposed on the buyer before I am apparently 'obligated' to refund her the money.  When I don't get my bag back (and even if I do get my bag back ' even if it is not damaged at all) I have absolutely no intention of refunding her the money.

So, I will have kept the money she paid and got my bag back too.  Hows that for victory?  I know enough about UK law on auctions.  You buy as seen - the law is clear.  No buyers protection policy can change that and eBay are not courts of law and I'll be darned if I will let some tinpot eBay Customer Service rep act as judge and jury when all they can see is pound signs dangling under their noses.  They forget that sellers, even attic clearers are their customers (as I was in this case) who pay them a fee to advertise.  How dare they act like some kind of judge in court.  Plus I have all the evidence I need to fight a small claim to show eBay failed to adhere to their own policy, to consider the evidence properly and make an impartial decision based on the facts and UK law.  That is all this buyer is going to get from me after I get my bag back (if I do).  She'll get a Letter Before Action if she fails to return the bag; damages it if she does return it, or I will defend any action she takes to get her refund.  If eBay shoulder her payment then she won't profit at all.  She will merely get no more than she started with.

I call that a result, don't you?

Grumpy xx


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Terry

Terry

Same thing has just happened to me. I KNOW the buyer received the item as she mentioned that the label was missing. I had removed it as it was scratchy and put this as part of the description. Then, suddenly, she hasn't received it.....Ebay's resolution centre forced me to refund in spite of being able to read the 'conversation' between me and the buyer.

What gets me is that eBay charge final value fees on the postage amount (as though they are part of the post office) but when something 'goes missing', it is left to the seller to refund. Even though they have proof of posting. So, they lose the item, the original postage AND have to refund everything. OK, so they get a small refund of bank charges from Paypal. Big deal. Why oh why is there no serious competitor to eBay?
Terry
26th Jun 14 20:18

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Ocassional eBay seller

Ocassional eBay seller

I agree with the OP - eBay is unfairly biased against the seller. I have sent items 'signed for' and even though there was a signature, the buyer got away with 'item not received' and I was forced to refund. Nowadays, I rarely sell on eBay as the change to charging Final Value Fees on the item PLUS postage now makes it very difficult to break even, let alone make a profit. I am sick of eBay's little messages telling me to lower my price or offer free postage to attract buyers. The problem is that the fees they charge are too high. There is no point is my selling something at 99p with free postage - much better to donate it to a charity shop. EBay's greed will be the eventual undoing of this company.
Ocassional eBay seller
2nd Feb 14 17:16

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Davey

Davey

Ebay take the side of the buyer as they are feeling the pinch. People are turning to different options for selling. Local pages on Facebook, in and around local areas are great places for selling items and it's all face to face dealing. Just search on Facebook for sale in your area/village or town.
Davey
24th Jan 14 17:27

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Grumpy xx

Grumpy xx

EBay had requested of the The 'buyer' (if you can call her that) that she send them photos of the alleged flaw that I had misdescribed (I hadn't mentioned anything at all). She did too, which resulted in the buyer winning the dispute. The photos were those macro-lens close ups you get from elite sellers on the eBay market place that magnifies flaws to several times the 'naked eye' size making the flaws look far worse than they were to any buyer who bought to wear the bag. Ebay did not ask me to send in my 'naked eye' photo or even confirm if these photos were photo-shopped to make the flaws stand out more or appear bigger than they were. The whole process is highly flawed. Apparently, according to eBay I am expected to 'know' what questions would be swilling around the mind of a potential buyer and if they don't ask them before bidding, that is my fault. Apparently, I am expected to know the buyer's intentions once they receive the item and turn my buyer-to wear advert into draft copywriting fodder - containing all re-seller substance about the condition of the item (as forensically viewed through a micro-scope pretty much) for a buyer's re-sale efforts to sell it on at a profit. This is the daftest thing I have ever encountered on eBay. If my role was to do that I would have billed the action winner for draft copywriting services. UK Auction law is clear: you buy as seen; you ask questions if you have doubts or there are photographic omissions that may create an issue or not. Sometimes you win great items for a pittance you won the auction at; sometime you pay more than you wished you had after receiving an item. That is the name of the game and that is the nature of auctioneering which is fair. If you can't stand risk like that then buy from reputable sellers from the high street or stick to buy it now items off eBay where distance selling regs actually mean something in UK law. Don't expect eBay to act like a dictatorship by circumventing the law and introducing their dictatorical authoritarian claptrap into auction based seller and buyer disputes, which should be settled by a neutral court of law.
Grumpy xx
15th Jan 14 16:05

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You

You

I totally agree with this post - eBay always sides with the buyer. Good on you closing PayPal, removing links to bank accounts, etc. It really annoys me when eBay sides with the buyer! I've 'sold' items recently only for the buyer not to pay, not bother responding to messages, etc - for me then have the hassle of contacting eBay to get fees refunded and left with an item which I have to relist. Just before Christmas I 'sold' an item, despite promises from the buyer he never bothered to contact me or pay. I gave him extra time because of Christmas and this went against me! eBay basically said as I'd left too long after the auction closed I won't be getting a refund on my fees! I did everything right, gave the buyer plenty of time to contact me and pay, but I'm penalised. I complained to eBay and eventually got my fees refunded but only after a load of hassle on my part. I've relisted the item, blocked the buyer from bidding and on my listing started a list of 'buyers' who have caused me hassle so people viewing my listings can see who to avoid.
You
14th Jan 14 08:50

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