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Scammed on eBay as a seller and then - scammed by eBay customer services!


Andrew Reid
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Sorry to read what happened to you. Just push eBay, eventually they have to refound your money. 

Unfortunately, most huge companies end up like this. I have had a problem with amazon.de last year, even I wanted to buy from them, they could not solve the issue. These monster marketplaces create an optimal business process flow, build than into an integrated solution, and have a profitable business model. I am a business consultant my selv. Everything is fine, until something unforeseen (unprogrammed) happens. As the system can’t handle it, you need people. Unfortunately most of the first and second level suppport stuffed by folk with no real knowledge about the business. Oftest the first, even the second answer from them is just a prebaked “sorry, we will help you” template. Your letter might not even be read before. But if you insist, sooner or later somebody gets the message, understands the situation and handles. 

You could create here a “market place forum” for registered users. You could ask for a fee if something listed for sale, or if that gets sold, or just let it run for free, and accept peoples voluntary donations for the site and service.

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5 hours ago, Xavier Plagaro Mussard said:

I passed that phase too. It was a royal pita, because it is very stressful. I remember thinking how can I make it sure 100% with a video that I am sending this box. It is nearly impossible, unless you do everything and then hand it out to the courier, in the same take! 

It's not like eBay will take the time to watch that video anyway.

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I recently had two nightmare experiences with eBay. One, I sold a Roland TV switcher from Dublin to France. It was shipped with a courier with tracking. Because of a delay caused by Brexit, the buyer logged a claim with eBay. They refunded him the full amount, even though all parties could see from tracking that the item was in transit. I was blown away by the indifference they showed to me. Even though I sold on eBay.ie, because the buyer was in France his claim was made through eBay.fr. My local eBay washed their hands of it and said talk to France, which made communications extremely difficult. Ultimately they upheld in his favour and I was left with no money and no property. eBay simply didn't care. When the Brexit backlog cleared the buyer received his item. I then had to write a dozen anxious yet polite emails to him before I got a response. Luckily enough he sent me the money, and even acknowledged he was shocked eBay moved to re-pay him so quickly. I've vowed to delete my eBay accounts, but you have to wait at least a month after your last transaction with them before they'll let you leave. #sobad

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This story sounds so horrible that I am glad that I never tried to sell anything through eBay. I have bought a few things over the years and gotten some pretty good deals on used items, but since I've never sold anything I have no sellers feedback so I never saw the point in trying to sell on eBay; also it always seemed like such a hassle. 

I've sold a few items using Craigslist over the years, but like everything else its gotten worse and worse. At least with Craigslist its a cash only transaction and you meet face to face. The downside of course is that the more expensive the item is that you are trying to sell; the less likelihood that you will find a buyer in your area on Craigslist.

eBay really is my last resort even when it comes to buying things and the higher priced the item the worse it gets. I tried to buy a used C200, I won the bid and everything.....and the seller suddenly pulled the listing stating it was defective. The next day it was relisted for a higher price. Apparently there's some trick to get more buyers to bid on your item if you list it with no reserve, but if the final bid is too low eBay lets you claim it is defective and start the process over without penalty. I have absolutely no time for BS like that. I ended up buying it at full retail because even that was cheaper than losing my sanity on eBay.

I also had a seller try to scam me through PayPal by trying to get me to send payment without even having the actual item. I knew I was covered by Visa and PayPal so before I knew it was a scam I submitted the payment information through PayPal and it was blocked which was my first red flag. The "seller" then tried to get me to use a different payment system at which point I immediately reported the account to eBay. Somehow the seller had a 99% rating, I'm guessing they were using a hacked account.

I know some sellers on eBay and they all say never try to sell electronics on eBay or high priced items; its simply not worth it. The people I know who make a decent living off of eBay all stick to really simple items like used books, fake jewelry, clothes, etc. Not one of them sells anything over $200 on eBay or sells any electronics.

I have been considering selling my GH5; I'm definitely not going to use eBay and even Craigslist is a royal PITA with lowball offers and flaky buyers who back out of the sale 10min before they were supposed to meet you somewhere local. Honestly, after your story I might just take the hit and practically give it away to one of the camera resellers just to keep my sanity and at least end up right side up.

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Well, Andrew I sympathize with your experience. As you perhaps know I'm not a professional in the videography profession, but I am a professional in music. I run my own company which sells the musical instruments of my acoustical design and finishing preparations.

Over the years we've constantly had problems with eBay----sellers definitely get the short end of the stick on eBay---the VERY SHORT end. Because we  sell so much periodically we have some leverage---but it's always a battle.

Many years ago my first purchase on eBay was a Sony camera---can't recall the model, but it was $1,200.00.

The seller was rated gold standard by eBay rating. But after I paid the $$$ I began to read comments from buyers and it became clear this person was a scammer. I NEVER RECEIVED THE CAMERA.  The problem was so bad it ended in a class action suit (which you mentioned) and the seller was incarcerated for fraud.

It took around 2 years for all the legal proceedings. In compensation as being a part of the class action suit I received a grand total of about $150.00 of my original purchase. THAT was my very first transaction on eBay.

Sadder but wiser I still do my utmost with carry on absolutely fair, open, and above board transactions---but dealing with the public, either in my business, or with rotten "Gier über Alles" companies like eBay has really given a eye-opening perspective on human nature, the levels people will stoop to for $$$ or sometimes just from outright meanness.

Is there a solution? Yes, I think there is, but not an international one analogous to eBay. The solution is to sell as locally as possible and KNOW your seller as well as possible. Nothing replaces mutual good will and a sense of fairness. Without those I'm not sure there's any corporate entity that can insure a good experience. But eBay--they don't even try, while they plunder you for exorbitant fees. 

It's far from perfect. But I think you may find it better that what sellers routinely experience on eBay. 

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I have been selling on ebay for many years but I started moving to alternative posting places such as Sharegrid and Facebook Market Place. As long as you meet the person purchasing your item and possibly doing the exchange at a Police Station you should be good.

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So sorry for your misfortune, Andrew.

Some years back I sold some items there, and there was a rating system to make it possible to pick only buyers with a high rating from many transactions. Back then, that felt like some security to me as a seller, since deliberate scammers would have a hard time building such a score. But how is the buyers’ rating system functioning these days?

kind regards,

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My god, I did not think ebay was this bad. I think this is sign of the times where the freedom of the western countries are being misused by confidence profit looters and the law enforcement cannot keep up with the exploding fraud in almost all areas (banking, health, retail) due to lack of funding. 

Extreme gratitude on exposing the current situation on ebay as I was planning to sell things on it in a couple of years. Andrew, have you tried Amazon? I remember seeing individual sellers on it before. Maybe you can start a more equitable transaction pla

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Man, these stories are an eye opener. I was just thinking of listing my ATEM Mini Pro on eBay so I can move to an Mini Pro ISO. Not really feeling like doing that now. I could always try Craigslist, but I'm in a relatively small market for such a specialized product.

Anybody want to by a lightly-used ATEM for reasonable price?

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I've had good luck with camera gear in general, but I guess its a bit more specialized so you have less idiots. Not that you can't get screwed selling anything. Ebay sucks

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7 hours ago, TomTheDP said:

I've had good luck with camera gear in general, but I guess its a bit more specialized so you have less idiots. Not that you can't get screwed selling anything. Ebay sucks

Kind of the same when trying to sell something in person. Never had any problem selling photography/video gear, always nice and friendly people. But try to sell instead a smart phone, tablet, etc...

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Really sorry to hear about this Andrew. I'd heard eBay was bad for sellers - I've bought over 1000 items over the years with very few problems, but never sold anything on it. Was thinking of using it to sell some house clear-out, but won't do it with any high-priced items after your nightmare warning. I think your cautionary tale will act as a valuable warning to a lot of us, so that's one good thing to come out of this tale. 

Most people in my experience behave with integrity, but the minority who are willing to scam their fellow-humans create so much suffering. And as you say, eBay is almost perfectly designed for the con-artist to take advantage of sellers; it couldn't have been better for this if it had been designed for the purpose.

I agree with earlier posts suggesting you just sell stuff directly on EOSHD, where you're likely to get a better class of customer! I know you've done this several times over the years (I bought a Sony camera from you quite a few years ago). I dare say it would be slower, and you might not get as good a price as in a competitive auction, but at least you'd know it was going to a good home, and the transaction should be a smooth one. (Also as buyers we know we can trust you to behave with integrity). Though I guess this might not have worked with selling the smartphones, as we're perhaps not the right target audience (but worth a try I guess?). 

A previous post also suggested if you accepted donations to help defray your cost? I'd certainly be happy to chip in (in appreciation of the valuable service you provide with EOSHD). If you're open to this, just let us know what payment mechanism would work best for you. 

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8 hours ago, rainbowmerlin said:

A previous post also suggested if you accepted donations to help defray your cost? I'd certainly be happy to chip in (in appreciation of the valuable service you provide with EOSHD). If you're open to this, just let us know what payment mechanism would work best for you. 

Thanks for the concern mate, I would thank anybody who did this but I'd prefer to offer something in a return like a colour profile so this is the best way to support EOSHD - to buy Pro Color or one of my guides. It's been a very difficult year but hopefully will FINALLY get back to regular blog posts and Pro Color 5 release soon.

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Good idea Andrew - I've just bought one of your colour profiles (I already own the only guide you sell for a camera I own).

I know it's only a small drop in the ocean compared with how much you've lost, but as Tesco say, I guess every little helps.

Let's hope for a better year for all of us in the coming 12 months.

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Thanks! It's been a tough 12 months for many, many people. I count myself luckier than most! World is in a very bad place and the problems run deeper than 90% of people realise.

Enjoy your download 🙂

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On 5/9/2021 at 5:19 PM, EphraimP said:

Man, these stories are an eye opener. I was just thinking of listing my ATEM Mini Pro on eBay so I can move to an Mini Pro ISO. Not really feeling like doing that now. I could always try Craigslist, but I'm in a relatively small market for such a specialized product.

Anybody want to by a lightly-used ATEM for reasonable price?

I do but shouldn't! 😭😭😭

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Have been an ebayer buyer for years since they were a baby. For the most time had pretty good experience. I appreciate though times are a changing and there are always fraudsters out there.

I suspect that this is why facebook marketplace is making surge. I have bought camera and lenses through this medium (in the last MTH) with great bargain prices. Sold older photography stuff without fees. Speaks for itself as one comment already, sell local. 

Ebay died for me five years ago when online shops started to flood it it then became harder to find the personal seller against businesses. And prices got more than local stores.

I haven't traded at all in five years, and if i have, always gone in with my eyes wide open.

Sorry to hear your scam. Just keep on at ebay, you will eventually get there. Just for the record, mobile phones have always been a dodgy area on ebay they had to do something to protect the buyers. Sadly this penalises the honest sellers as in your case. 

Lesson learnt for you i guess.

 

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Facebook market place is more suited to selling your old sofa for £10 than it is a GFX 100. I don't think in my area there are many buyers for one of those. Maybe when I am in Berlin or a big city, it's a different situation.

You can sell local but it depends what local is.

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