SAN JOSE, CALIFORNIA -- I purchased a pre-owned Nic + Zoe cardigan on 08/17/2013 for $24.99 on eBay, plus $11 shipping and handling. Ebay advertised that this item was covered under their buyer protection program; therefore, I felt safe making the purchase if it failed to meet the description. In addition, the item was described as in "pristine" condition, which implies that it would be in its original state, or free of stains, odorless, and the material not decaying.
When I received the item somewhere between Aug 20th and the 22nd, and opened the shipment, I immediately noticed that the cardigan had a strange smell; moreover, it smelled as though the seller had doused it with a men's cologne to cover up something else, maybe cigarette smoke. I had tried to contact the seller twice before to ask for a feedback rating before the item was received, had not received a rating or an e-mail, therefore, I decided not to attempt to contact the seller again directly. I just gave her a negative rating, stating poor communication and that the cardigan smells bad.
I hoped that if I let it air out for a week or so and soaked it in Woolite for a few hours, the smell would dissipate. Unfortunately, it did not; it smelled just as bad as it did when it arrived. Upon opening the case with eBay, the seller stated she had never received correspondence from me, did not know there was a problem with the transaction, and further stated that she thought it was suspect that I was opening a case so long after the cardigan arrived, implying I was trying to steal it or something.
I opened the case within eBay's buyer protection; therefore, opening it up a couple weeks after its receipt is irrelevant to the case file due to it being within the allotted time frame for dispute. I informed the seller that I attempted to contact her twice for feedback, but that I had also left negative feedback on the purchase, and I was concerned that she did not even check her feedback as a seller. You would think that would be a responsible thing to do as a small business owner, since positive word of mouth and written feedback would generate more sales.
So I went to where I left the feedback on her eBay page (adesignercloset), and come to find out, she posted a reply to it on 08/27/2013, not long after I had posted feedback; therefore, she was completely aware of the problem that I had with the transaction. Her response to my feedback was that she thought my comments were funny, implied that I was giving her a derogatory rating because she did not leave me feedback (which was not the case) and stated in writing that other sellers should "beware" of me. I was appalled to say the least, especially since I gave the cardigan the benefit of the doubt, hoping if I aired it out and washed it, the smell would dissipate.
After opening the case with eBay, I received a denial of my claim, specifically stating the reason for the decline was that the seller's description was correct; therefore, my claim did not fall under eBay's policy. The seller stated it was in pristine condition, and it was not; therefore, the description is inaccurate and does fall under their buyer protection plan. Pristine condition implicitly implies that it is in its original condition, which would mean that the cardigan would be free of smells (e.g. foul, cigarette, cologne, etc).
I filed an appeal, advised them I had filed a complaint with the BBB of San Jose, planned to file a complaint with the Attorney General's Office, and would file a dispute with American Express if my appeal was turned down as well. This isn't the first problem I've had with eBay. Although I've been buying from them for years, I've had two problems in the last year: one with Half.com their subsidiary, and now with eBay directly. They tried to get out of the Half.com claim as well when the item was not as described.
Ebay doesn't seem like they typically abide by their protection plan, which is obviously misleading advertising, only when one files complaints with the BBB of San Jose and the Attorney General's office does anything get done (besides filing a dispute with your credit card company). In addition, I just received an e-mail from eBay stating the feedback I provided on the seller's item has been removed, specifically because they ruled in the seller's favor.
This doesn't seem to fairly represent a seller's histories, specifically since they are removing valid feedback which would determine whether or not a future customer wants to do business with the seller. Moreover, it is baiting customers to buy from sellers on eBay that have poorer ratings than reflected, and if the buyer has to file their own complaint in the future or retain legal counsel, they have no track record of the feedback that eBay has willfully removed to protect their and their seller's interests.
Furthermore, there is no track record for the BBB of San Jose or the Attorney General of California to refer to if they need to detect a pattern of behavior. Removal of ratings is a poor business practice to say the least, and it looks highly deceptive. No wonder eBay's stock has been sinking like an anchor over the past few years. If you are having the same problems with eBay, please file your own BBB of San Jose and Attorney General of California report. They both have online complaint systems. eBay's corporate address is: 2065 Hamilton Ave, San Jose CA 95125, and their phone number is 800-322-9266 (you'll need this information when you file complaints).
SAN JOSE, CALIFORNIA -- Reference Case #: I would like to share my eye-opening experience at eBay. I would like to advice everyone to double weigh their decision before purchasing at eBay rather than Amazon only for some price benefits here. You are not sure that you will receive the same item you saw as advertised on eBay. If you're unlucky and do not receive the same item then eBay will not protect your purchase by their exaggerated policy "eBay Buyer Protection."
I live in USA and I purchased leather car seat cushion covers from eBay some time back. The seller (car0010) advertised this product as a leather product mentioning them as made up of "High-Grade Imported Leather" at frequent places in their advertisement. But when I received the delivery I found that the covers are made up of Faux Leather (rexine). The back side of the material has fabric lining like rexine (synthetic leather) and it doesn't smell like leather even.
When I contacted seller regarding this they straight way rejected my observation saying that the material is genuine leather. On further communications they accepted that the material is faux leather but refused to take care of return shipment saying "Return shipping is responsibility of the buyer, we will full refund you when we got the item soundly."
I was not happy with the seller's reply as the cost of shipping back the item from USA to China would be more than the cost of item itself. I escalated the case with eBay with proper documentation and send them the photos of the items I received but they replied back as follows:
When you receive the wrong item or it doesn't match the seller's description, you're required to pay for return shipping. It would certainly be great customer service for the seller to cover the cost of return shipping and it is something we strongly encourage. However, it is not something we are able to enforce as we only have access to the funds that you originally paid them. If the seller is unwilling or has failed to assist you in that aspect, then the return costs will be the buyer's responsibility.
I cannot see any content in eBay's answer different than the seller's reply. I can surely bet that either they have overlooked the facts or their decision is simply biased with the seller's intent. Definitely it is not the honest resolution by eBay showcasing policies like "eBay Buyer Protection" to the customer. On one hand eBay is admitting that the item sent by seller doesn't match its description and at the same time they ask customer to bear the return shipment (for sending the wrong item back to the seller) for getting their refund.
The customer care guys are rude to talk with, they provide meaningless arguments and try to enforce their decision on you without having any valid reasoning. I am certainly not happy with eBay. Now onwards I will not consider myself purchasing anything from eBay in future and I will not endorse eBay within my known circle in any way. I know that certainly eBay will not be in loss after losing a customer like me. But I definitely know that if this is the way eBay continues to work it will not have a long life cycle ahead.
CALIFORNIA -- I purchased a rather expensive item and learned that Ebays "Buyer Protection" program always assumes that an item sent by priority mail, USPS, has been delivered. Unfortunately, in my case, this could not be further from the truth. To date, I have not received the item for which I paid a decent sum and for which I also paid shipping. The seller failed to exercise reasonable responsibility in shipping, "signature required" and so on, and I suffered in the end.
The repetition of the "Buyer Protection" logo on the Ebay website is a deceptive business practice, leading to a confidence in purchasing that is not warranted in the actual application of their policies. The "loophole" logic that once would have been termed "fraud".
Moreover, once a complaint is lodged in the "Resolution Center", Ebay will not permit honest feedback about experiences particular to given sellers. Feedback, which I did consult before buying, is therefore not at all helpful. It is manipulated to screen reviews negative regarding sellers. That said, people should pursue alternate venues for posting honest reviews about unethical sellers.
I see the complaints from sellers and I think: Wake up people! It's not bad buyers or bad sellers. There is something wrong at Ebay. If nothing else, I strongly suspect that actual people do not make decisions. After many years, I will never do business with them again. For the past few years, a few amazing things but increasingly many sellers nearing fraud status, goods not quite up to the listings and similar but not quite worth pursuing.
SALT LAKE CITY, ARIZONA -- I was sold a gauge for my 4 wheeler. It was described as like new. When I received it the lens was so fogged you could not read the gage in sunlight. I went through a dispute process to return it because Rivergrange Powersports was impossible to communicate with and refused to give me a refund number. The result of the dispute process was that eBay gave me a return label from UPS to send it back. It has been one month and I after many hours on the phone with eBay and PayPal have yet to receive one penny in refund on a $211.99 purchase.
The only thing worse than dealing with eBay is dealing with PayPal. Both of these entities should cease to exist along with the unscrupulous sellers. They do their most to put you on hold for hours and then trying to blame you for not getting a refund when they tell you to send an item back.
What a joke. I never have issues like this when dealing with Amazon or other good Internet companies. The dispute process on my credit card is 100 times easier and better than dealing with PayPal. In summary "buyer beware" when dealing with eBay and PayPal. At all costs and even if it cost more you are probably much better not dealing with these guys.
I purchased a set of kitchen knives that were described as immaculate. But, the knives I received were dulled to the point of useless. Seller refused to refund my money so I invoked eBay buyer protection plan. Ebay sided with the seller and closed the case. I appealed and my appeal was denied.
Ebay never contacted me once through the whole process. The case was in appeal for 3 weeks so I call eBay customer service. They told me the case worker lost track of my case and would contact me soon. Few days later I checked, found out my appeal was denied. And no one from eBay ever contacted me to hear my side. I bought many things off eBay and this is the first time I've ever had a problem and tried to use eBay's so call buyer protection plan. I am extremely disappointed and hope this complaint finds other folks to give them a warning about buying things on eBay. I for one will never shop on eBay ever again.
MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA -- Purchased 6/23/13 from a seller with 99.1% rated. I felt safe and paid for the item with PayPal. When it seemed like a long time and I did not received it, I tracked it, and it said, "customer refused". It was never delivered! I work from home, so I am aware of all deliveries. Even if I was NOT home, don't they leave a note on your door?
Anyhow, I opened a case and contacted the seller, with no reply. I received an email from PayPal that my credit was being processed, then 2 days later another e-mail that my refund was rejected by the seller's bank. THAT is when Ebay stopped all communication.
Resolution Center says they need more time for a decision. That was on 7/12/13. Today is 7/26/13 and it says the same thing! "Have you read the Buyer Protection Plan? Refund after 48 hours of opening a case?" REALLY? I am out $115.50, 2 hours on the phone including Hold time and discussions with reps. Trying to save money is actually costing me money. This will definitely be my very last purchase using Ebay.
I have read many of the complaints against eBay, eBay customer service, and the eBay resolution center and I have to agree that it is seriously broken. I have to preface my narrative with the information that I am a long time eBay user and online buyer.
I have purchased 4 boats, marine electronics, boat seats, all kinds of things on eBay. I have had few issues and find most sellers are honest straightforward and try to accurately describe their products. I purchased a marine radar from a consignment shop in Texas paying for shipping to Michigan. The radar was not described as having any damage, and the photos of the radar did not disclose any damage.
Upon receipt I discovered that the radar dome had numerous cracks around the mounting bolt nut plates, cracks in the top of the radome indicating that it had been dropped or stuck with something, and scrapes all over the top like it had been stored on a concrete floor upside down in a garage and pushed around on its top. The radar screen was inoperative. As a matter of fact both fuses in it, the primary one and the backup replacement fuse were blown indicating an internal short.
The consignment shop did have a disclaimer in their listing that stated they did not have the ability to determine the functionality of any of their items, and they would provide a refund if the item was returned. To their credit they did promptly refund my payment, minus shipping. Between shipping to Michigan and shipping back it cost me over $130 dollars.
When I received the item I took pictures of the cracks to the radome showing the damage. I contacted the seller opening a dialog requesting that my shipping be returned as his listing did not indicate any physical damage to the unit. I can sympathize that he may not have had the ability to evaluate the electronics, but the information and/or pictures about the cracks and damage would have been a red flag to any buyer that the unit likely had been abused and did not function. His response was that I took the risk, he would not return my shipping expense or pay for the return shipping.
Upon contacting eBay resolution center it took a month to be reviewed, and then it was little more than a rubber stamp. DENIED. Although I contacted them three times asking how I could send photographs of the damage prior to resolution I did not get a response until after they had made their decision. Their response was "I'm sorry, we do not accept any photographs in resolving a claim other than the ones in the sellers listing as you may have digitally altered them."
I am grateful that I am only out $130 dollars considering the size and type of purchases I have made on eBay in the past. It could have been much worse. This particular seller either intentionally hid the damage the way his listing photos were taken, but more likely was just lazy and did not make any effort to accurately describe the item. Either way, it opened my eyes to the risks of using eBay, and the false sense of protection that the eBay customer protection polity provides.
I have by the way bought 2 other marine radars from Second Wave consignments in Washington State along with other items and been very pleased with the purchases. In other words it takes only one bad apple to sour your outlook. I have since found that I often can use Craigslist and a search engine like Site Mash to find what I am looking for closer to home where I can either pick up the item or enter into a long term buying/selling relationship with a vendor. My use of eBay will be much more selective in the future. Ebay resolution for me this time two thumbs down. Ebay in general one thumb up with caution and reservations.
LA, CALIFORNIA -- Incident: I purchased a Red and black contemporary sofa from LA Furniture via Ebay. I called prior to purchase to confirm the red was primary red rather than some off color. I paid 1895 dollars for the sofa. While waiting for the sofa I painted my living room, two of the walls primary red. When the sofa arrived I was horrified to discover that the color was reddish orange and immediately contacted the seller who admitted fault.
He said he called the warehouse and asked about the color rather than actually checking it himself. He promised to 'make it right' and I waited. The next day my husband and I went to move one of the pieces of this section to another arrangement. When he went to push the sofa he was stabbed in the finger by a nail that had come through the leather from the inside of the sofa. We discovered that it had torn the sofa and shredded the back of the cushion that rested against that part of the back.
I called ** at LA Furniture again and told him about the defect and the damage done by the defect. One of his managers actually accused me of having stuck the nail inside the sofa because I didn't like the color. Again ** assured me that he would contact the manufacturer and 'make it right'. When he called back he suggested that he would refund $200! I asked him what the price difference between a perfect and 'damaged' sofa would be. He replied that he wouldn't sell a defective sofa. I said "so, as far as your concerned, a defective sofa has no value?" he started hemming and hawing.
Having exhausted my patience I contacted eBay buyer protection. The first thing I received there was a note telling me that If I chose to return the sofa for a refund that I was responsible for the freight shipping (495 dollars worth). So returning the sofa meant I was automatically out $500! I think that's outrageous. Did I feel protected? No! Can anyone afford to just toss out $500? I doubt it! Even if they sent a replacement that means I spent $2400 for the sofa, not the amount I agreed to pay in the first place. So sending it back wasn't an option. So I waited, and waited, and waited.
After a few days I received a $200 refund from LA Furniture. So, apparently the difference in price between a new high quality leather sofa (correct color) and a torn leather sofa with a shredded cushion and that is the wrong color is $200! Naturally I went on and left negative feedback! I stated in my feedback the eBay buyer protection would not help! Guess what? Ebay, who had waited days to even give me that sham of a refund, immediately removed my feedback because apparently you are not supposed to tell people that eBay's buyer protection won't protect them. That's a secret and eBay makes sure it stays that way!
Now the hole is about as big as a quarter. It tears if anyone sits on it so I will have to pay to have it repaired or it will get bigger still. The cushion will have to be remade. From calls I've made it is going to cost between $200-350 to repair. So, for 1900 + dollars I will, after considerable legwork, have a repaired leather sofa that is the wrong color and will have to repaint my living room to keep it from clashing at the cost of over 200.00 more dollars. Total cost? Well over $2000.
End result, a firm belief that eBay will protect their scamming sellers because that's who pays them. They will even become an accomplice to the fraud if you try to warn others from being conned! And LA Furniture thinks that if you send them money they can send you any defective piece of ** they happen to have lying around even if it's the wrong color, and your stuck with it. And since they get away with it and eBay removes any warning placed by buyers, they will continue to do so. But don't you worry, they'll pay eBay the required listing fees! And we all know that those fees are what eBay really cares about!!!
SAN FRANCISO -- A seller advertised a watch as an ECO Drive Watch. When it arrived it was marked Solar not Eco Drive. It was a fraud. I asked for my money back and eBay ruled for the dealer, not me and I Lost my money. I have four Citizen ECO DRIVE watches and I am not stupid and can tell a fraud from a mile away. eBay advertises money back guarantee; that is lie also.
I bid on and won a Gucci tote purse early in December as a Christmas present for a relative. I paid for the item almost immediately and assumed it would arrive within the 9 days the shipping info stated. After 9 days I still had not received the item, so I contacted the seller to inquire about shipping info. I asked for a tracking number. It took DAYS before the seller responded, and when he did, he told me he'd shipped the item on December 9th, the day I paid for the purse. He did not provide tracking info.
After another 2 or 3 days, I still had not received the purse, so I wrote to the seller again. He still did not provide tracking info. By the time I did receive the item, I discovered that it hadn't been mailed until December 17th!!! The seller blatantly lied to me. It was too late to send the purse to my relative in time for Christmas.
I asked the seller to refund my money and I sent him the item the very day I received it. He said he would not refund my money, so I contacted Ebay. Ebay found in favor of the seller. Their justification for their decision was that the item was described accurately. That was never the issue!
Frankly, I never believed Ebay would rule in my favor. I've heard too many complaints about them, that their buyer protection is nonexistent. I will never deal with them again and felt that I should add my complaint to this list to warn others of the dangers of dealing with them.