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07-25-2012, 11:36 PM   #1
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eBay rant (as a seller)

Every once in a while I sell some items on eBay because I want the best visibility and worldwide selling for my items. It was fun, but those times are now long gone...

Some background: I'm an eBay member since 1997, but not with a high feedback score (almost 200, but still with a 100% rating, more than half of that for selling fairly valuable items). I even received an e-mail letter from eBay last month congratulating me with my 15-year anniversary on eBay. Nice, eh? So what did they give me as a present?

I've sold numerous items on eBay, but not on a weekly basis. Sometimes months pass by and then I decide to put a few new items up for auction.
Like one week ago. The items ended last saturday and I was paid right away by most bidders. So I happily went to PayPal, logged in and the smile on my face changed. I winced. What happened? eBay instructed PayPal to block access to my funds for up to 21 days after the end of the auction. What the heck? I soon discovered that this seems to be normal practice on eBay for new sellers. It seems that I triggered something in "the system".

But I'm not a new seller. Of course, I asked PayPal and they pointed to eBay. Unfortunately eBay cannot be contacted by e-mail anymore, that option has been removed from the site. So there is nothing I can do at the moment to correct the situation. The eBay help system stated that it could help to quickly ship the items (I always do that) and add tracking information to the auctions (which is pointless because I'm not based in the US and the tracking system is definitely US-centric).

So, no money for me in the coming three weeks (!). And the fun part? Everyone involved will have a big fat grin on their face, but not me, the seller, because:

- PayPal already received their fees from the payments;
- PayPal lets me pay fees for the shipping costs (which are expenses, not income!)
- eBay will receive their fees before my funds have even been released;
- eBay lets me pay fees for the shipping costs (which are expenses, not income!)
- The buyer will very soon have received the item

And I, the lowly seller? I have no access to my funds. Exactly 625 effing dollars are blocked. I have to pay the shipping of the items FROM MY OWN WALLET, 100 dollars, IN ADVANCE, because my funds have been blocked. Everyone is happy but I, the seller, must be punished because I took the effing time to put my items up for auction, take hundreds pictures of them, ship them at my own expense, and to thank me for that I have to wait 21 effing days before I have access to my OWN funds!!!

Thank you eBay, you can keep your lousy site for yourself. It was fun indeed, but I don't like to be punished for promoting your site for 15 years for free, funding you with lots of money but unfortunately your greedy paws grew too long. Bye bye... I'm angry as hell and you don't easily get me angry...

07-26-2012, 12:05 AM   #2
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This is not a new policy. Ever since Pay Pal and Ebay merged the situation with both has just been getting worse and worse. I have friends on and offline who have been on Ebay for years like yourself who have also been screwed royally by Ebay, Pay Pal and the new feedback system to the point where they are actively migrating off Ebay and not using Pay Pal now. My credit union won't link any account to Pay Pal or allow their credit cards to be used for that either. That's a lot of business to turn down when you think about it so I can only imagine they must have very good reason for not going there. I don't like online payments actually, but I can't afford a merchant account as yet. Amazon payments will have to do, for now. I don't get it actually it's like Ebay is becoming Emall and they don't care about the mom and pop sellers at all now. They made their business on those people but now that they're big it's like they couldn't care less.
07-26-2012, 12:11 AM   #3
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Ya, I had to start a new ebay account not to long ago and your stressin out. If you upload the tracking number to paypal your funds will be released as soon as the person leaves you positive feedback, which I hate because some people dont bother to leave feedback in which your funds will be released like 3 - 4 days after it is marked as shipped and that was what I had to do after I sold my first item on ebay...

EDIT: You should of also had ebay handle the shipping and just of printed up the shipping label and the shipping charge would of been taken out when the funds were released and you wouldnt of paid anything but for the ink and paper you used to print the shipping label...
07-26-2012, 12:12 AM   #4
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It's not just eBay that pisses me off, it's also PayPal that keeps asking me for a copy of my social security card, utility bills, and ID every couple months...

07-26-2012, 02:24 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Asahiflex Quote
(which are expenses, not income!)
I agree with most of your points, and you have my sympathy. However, I don't understand why you would take exception to this aspect of the fees taken. PayPal has always taken fees based on total amounts received, they don't care what it's for, or what you use it for. They've never represented themselves otherwise, or given the impression that expenses for sellers are somehow exempt from fees.

That said, personally, I would be very leery of (read as: refusing to) ship an item until I had the payment. If PayPal seizes a payment, I don't have it. I would ship when it's released, and I have the money to move out of the PayPal system, and not a second before, and the buyer would be getting an email to that effect. I suppose it's a good thing I don't sell on Ebay, as they'd probably ban someone for this. It seems common sense though. What if they decided not to release the funds? If I've already shipped, I'm screwed.
07-26-2012, 02:35 AM   #6
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Oh, they will release the funds for sure. But my main gripe is that the eBay/PayPal clique is going from bad to worse. Sure, they have high final value fees/fees for receiving money, I knew that. I can cope with that. But I hate that suddenly I have to wait 21 days for my money even though my selling habits, shipping costs (always the actual costs), speed of delivery etc., the accuracy of my descriptions, my feedback rating etc. have absolutely not changed. So it's eBay that has changed, for the worse.

To summarize this all: everyone involved will benefit from the sale, eBay, PayPal and even the buyer, but not me, the seller. At least not before I've waited 21 days. And that makes me very angry. Hey, it's me who's doing all the hard work, and to thank me for that I'm parasitized!
07-26-2012, 03:29 AM   #7
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I'd be worried that if the buyer complained about anything, no matter how minor, while the funds are held that there could be an increased risk of Ebay reversing the transaction even though it's been shipped. That's why I'd be very hesitant.

You're entirely right, of course. Ebay has been increasingly shitty to sellers for years now, and every year it gets worse. Why they would penalize you, a long-standing but occasional seller (with perfect feedback, no less), is beyond me. I'd stop using them altogether if I were in your position.

I hope you get it resolved quickly, and get your funds without further issue.
07-26-2012, 08:34 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by LeDave Quote
It's not just eBay that pisses me off, it's also PayPal that keeps asking me for a copy of my social security card, utility bills, and ID every couple months...
Are you sure those requests are from PayPal and not some scam? I used to get a lot of scam requests that looked like they were from PayPal. It is very common.

QuoteOriginally posted by Asahiflex Quote
...But my main gripe is that the eBay/PayPal clique is going from bad to worse..
Yeah, see my response below.

QuoteOriginally posted by Philoslothical Quote
...You're entirely right, of course. Ebay has been increasingly shitty to sellers for years now, and every year it gets worse...
Notice how now the only feedback that sellers can leave for buyers is "Positive." Also notice how now sellers don't have the option of when they want their auctions to begin. That is a major disadvantage as far as I am concerned.

I think that Ebay wants to enhance its image of being a good place for buyers. There will never be a shortage of sellers, but if they can't attract buyers then their business model falls apart. If buyers are reticent of using Ebay, then Ebay is screwed. Hope Asahiflex gets it resolved, but it sounds like he just needs to wait it out.


Last edited by lammie200; 07-26-2012 at 08:42 AM.
07-26-2012, 09:05 AM   #9
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It's a very common thing on Ebay now for scammers to buy an expensive item, claim it's defective, wait for Pay Pal to reverse the transaction and then scramble with the item. There are several people on my one doll board who are hundreds of dollars in the hole because of people pulling that stunt and Ebay/Pay Pal letting them get away with it. Go look at the boards on Ebay. Ebay is not doing much if anything at all to protect sellers these days.
07-26-2012, 11:46 AM   #10
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That happened to me recently despite the fact that it was our corporate account which runs around $100k through PP per year. New seller? Have to protect the buyer? WTHeck! All for a $45 sale? I am not looking for another method of taking CC payments and finding some that appear cheaper and more efficient than PP. They'll loose the fees on our $100k because they messed with me on a $45 sale by holding my money and then lecturing me on how I'm a new seller? Seriously arrogant and stupid simultaneously - a great combination IMHO.
07-26-2012, 12:02 PM   #11
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And that's what's completely wrong with eBay at the moment. They're a bunch of morons who think that they can make money by extorting their sellers.

On a side note: even though eBay.com cannot be contacted by e-mail I found out that I could still mail them through my local eBay.nl site. They replied relatively quickly (after a few hours) and the eBay employee told me that the payment blocks were in effect because I sold my items on eBay.com instead of my local eBay site. Which effectively means that my payments would never have been blocked if I had started my auctions on eBay.nl (with worldwide visibility). How stupid... and incomprehensible.

I will try to post a new auction, this time on eBay.nl and see how it goes...
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