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  #1  
Old 08-15-2014, 04:40 PM
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Default OT: Ebay Policy Change

New e-bay policy change - Sellers are going to have pay return shipping if item is faulty or not as described. As a buyer I welcome the change, I have been stuck shipping garbage items back one to many times. As a seller I am concerned that deadbeat buyers who just changed their minds are going to use this to get away scott free. Any thoughts as to the long term effects of the change to e-bay?

Key updates to the eBay Money Back Guarantee:

Consistent After-Sale Experience. We updated the policy to reflect that we're simplifying the after-sale experience for buyers and sellers with a new improved return process that gives buyers a more convenient and consistent way to return items—right from My eBay. Many of our sellers who use eBay hassle-free returns are paying for return shipping on faulty or not-as-described items. Starting September 15, an initial group of sellers, (and after a transition period, all remaining sellers) will be responsible for return shipping on items which are faulty or not-as-described. Many sellers are facilitating returns for faulty or not as described items, but for those sellers who choose not to facilitate a return or provide a return shipping label for a faulty or not as described item, we may refund their buyers without requiring the buyers to return the item, and in turn seek reimbursement from sellers.

Last edited by rp12367; 08-15-2014 at 07:19 PM. Reason: spelling
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  #2  
Old 08-15-2014, 05:32 PM
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No, I can't see this being taken advantage of, no, not at all.
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  #3  
Old 08-15-2014, 06:06 PM
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I don't understand why they can't use their fabulous DSR star ratings on the "Item as described" to punish the bad sellers...instead ALL sellers are treated as the enemy. But in the corporate world we all know that the big dogs still get their bonuses and golden parachutes no matter how much they run down the company.
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Old 08-15-2014, 06:23 PM
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Another reason not to sell on eBay anymore. You heard the term "The straw that broke the camel's back". Well, my back is really beginning to hurt.
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Old 08-15-2014, 06:30 PM
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This is a boon to the auctioneers who are popping up like mushrooms on cowflops after a rain lately. Why would I pay eBay as much as an AH and agree to this silliness.

What it really means is that the buyers are getting a free trial period with every purchase. Or I can let the buyer keep the card and the money.

Screw eBay.
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Old 08-15-2014, 06:38 PM
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Oh, there's a worse one out there coming then this one. I've just been to the Ebay Powerseller boards, and am too speechless to comprehend Ebay's oncoming stupidity.

I'll just leave this little egg and let others figure it out. I'm worn out from the 20 minutes I just spent wringing my hands out over this.

This might be the one that gets me moving in a different direction altogether.
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Old 08-15-2014, 06:29 PM
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Can you provide a link to where you found that? The wording is far more upfront and plainly-spoken than I am used to seeing from ebay, especially where planned future changes are concerned.

My problem with the hassle-free return idea is that it presupposes that buyers will only return items that actually have defects and will only check the correct box for their scenario when initiating a return. The reality is that as soon as there is an opportunity and financial inventive to abuse the returns procedure, there will be more buyers doing so. It's bad enough now dealing with buyers who simply changed their mind when the buyer has to contact the seller and potentially eat the return shipping cost if they have buyer's remorse. Allow them to return anything at the seller's expense and without having to contact the seller if they just check the "not as described" box, and you WILL see the number of returns go way up. It won't be because sellers all of a sudden forget how to describe their wares accurately. It also won't be the majority, but it will be enough to make selling on ebay an unpleasant endeavor for many.

If you want an example of how a lack of accountability affects user behavior, look at the way that bid retractions are abused. The buyers you see with hundreds of retractions all checked the oops box over and over despite knowing full well what they were bidding. Without any repercussions or accountability though, it becomes a bidding strategy, even if it does require a white lie to utilize it each time.
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Old 08-15-2014, 06:42 PM
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Originally Posted by thecatspajamas View Post
If you want an example of how a lack of accountability affects user behavior, look at the way that bid retractions are abused. The buyers you see with hundreds of retractions all checked the oops box over and over despite knowing full well what they were bidding. Without any repercussions or accountability though, it becomes a bidding strategy, even if it does require a white lie to utilize it each time.
Yup, I just blocked two serial retractors this past week that sabotaged one of my items. It's out of hand.

People call it shilling, but it's no longer that in most cases. It's out and out interference of honest auctions. People need to start putting these clowns on their blocked bidder lists to discourage it, because Ebay's not doing it, and the big consignment houses certainly aren't doing it either.

I'm really beside myself right now.
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Old 08-15-2014, 07:43 PM
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Yup, I just blocked two serial retractors this past week that sabotaged one of my items. It's out of hand.
And if you would, PM or post the ID's of the serial retractors so that I can block them as well. I agree that this behavior has got to stop, and actively blocking them from getting "the stuff" is the only way to make it sink in for some of these yahoos.
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Old 08-15-2014, 07:26 PM
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Originally Posted by thecatspajamas View Post
Can you provide a link to where you found that? The wording is far more upfront and plainly-spoken than I am used to seeing from ebay, especially where planned future changes are concerned.

My problem with the hassle-free return idea is that it presupposes that buyers will only return items that actually have defects and will only check the correct box for their scenario when initiating a return. The reality is that as soon as there is an opportunity and financial inventive to abuse the returns procedure, there will be more buyers doing so. It's bad enough now dealing with buyers who simply changed their mind when the buyer has to contact the seller and potentially eat the return shipping cost if they have buyer's remorse. Allow them to return anything at the seller's expense and without having to contact the seller if they just check the "not as described" box, and you WILL see the number of returns go way up. It won't be because sellers all of a sudden forget how to describe their wares accurately. It also won't be the majority, but it will be enough to make selling on ebay an unpleasant endeavor for many.

If you want an example of how a lack of accountability affects user behavior, look at the way that bid retractions are abused. The buyers you see with hundreds of retractions all checked the oops box over and over despite knowing full well what they were bidding. Without any repercussions or accountability though, it becomes a bidding strategy, even if it does require a white lie to utilize it each time.
It came via e-bay messages:

I know it is pretty well spelt out, not like the usual ebay double talk.

If you are a seller check your inbox it should be there, the message was titled:

Updates to the eBay User Agreement, User Privacy Notice and Money Back Guarantee

Last edited by rp12367; 08-15-2014 at 07:28 PM.
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  #11  
Old 08-16-2014, 05:43 PM
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Let's say that I am the highest bidder on an item. Then, someone comes along, outbids me, wins the auction, and subsequently "cancels" within that one hour time period.

Would my obligation to purchase the item be considered void when I am outbid -or - would I be required to purchase it, since I was the highest "real" bidder?

Furthermore, if I was required to purchase the item, which price would I be invoiced for...the one in place before I was outbid or my max?

If required to purchase at max bid, shill bidding will run even more rampant than before.
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  #12  
Old 08-16-2014, 05:48 PM
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Let's say that I am the highest bidder on an item. Then, someone comes along, outbids me, wins the auction, and subsequently "cancels" within that one hour time period.

Would my obligation to purchase the item be considered void when I am outbid -or - would I be required to purchase it, since I was the highest "real" bidder?

Furthermore, if I was required to purchase the item, which price would I be invoiced for...the one in place before I was outbid or my max?

If required to purchase at max bid, shill bidding will run even more rampant than before.
From what I am reading, eBay's stance is that the seller should just re-list the item. If they aren't going to make the winning bidder pay, they certainly aren't going to make the underbidder do so.

Maybe there will be some provision for a second-chance offer to be made to the underbidder, but we all know how well those are usually received.
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  #13  
Old 08-17-2014, 06:27 AM
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I'm going to subscribe to this thread, and read it again this afternoon when I get up, because I think my medications are screwing with my brain. I thought I just read something that said auction winners could cancel their transaction within an hour of the auction end.

But that can't be. Because that would go down as the dumbest idea I've ever seen on the internet. Really. Just put absurd bids on all the items you want, and note the time the auctions end. Then, look at said auctions, and just summarily cancel any where you're not happy with the final price.

Why would anybody ever sell on Ebay again?
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  #14  
Old 08-17-2014, 06:59 AM
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Quote:
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I'm going to subscribe to this thread, and read it again this afternoon when I get up, because I think my medications are screwing with my brain. I thought I just read something that said auction winners could cancel their transaction within an hour of the auction end.

But that can't be. Because that would go down as the dumbest idea I've ever seen on the internet. Really. Just put absurd bids on all the items you want, and note the time the auctions end. Then, look at said auctions, and just summarily cancel any where you're not happy with the final price.

Why would anybody ever sell on Ebay again?
+1. Bill, this just put a feather in the hats of ALL the auction houses that sell baseball cards EXCEPT Ebay. I would much rather submit my cards to Love of the Game, Sterling, REA, Huggins and Scott, et al. Anyone EXCEPT Ebay! I can also see this being a logistical nightmare for Probstein and PWCC. What happens when a consignor sells a card and the winning buyer says, thanks but no thanks. The consingor now has to wait until next month for the HOPE that the auction goes through to completion and the winning bidder doesn't back out? Thanks, but no thanks!
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Old 08-17-2014, 08:09 AM
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I don't get it. EBay only collects final value fees if the item is paid for so the winning bid cancelation policy would negatively effect their revenue along with the sellers'. It sounds like a terrible policy to me but there has to be more to it...
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Old 08-17-2014, 11:11 AM
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All my eBay purchases are buy it now. I have searches set up for what I'm looking for and if it's what I consider a good price, I take it. If not, I keep looking. Ultimately, I have waited 7 days for an auction to end only to get sniped at the end or have the price end up too high.
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Old 08-17-2014, 01:24 PM
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EBay is still useful for buying, to a degree and depending upon what you are looking for, but as a seller I can't see it being too easy anymore. I stopped selling years ago on the site; I use the BST now for pretty much all my selling plus the occasional auction.
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Old 08-17-2014, 02:35 PM
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Leon,

I understand that eBay is a business and can do whatever they want (within the law).

What I am having a hard time understanding is how, right before you place a bid, they tell you that by doing so you are entering into a binding legal agreement. Then, after you have won an auction, they can say that you can undo that binding agreement, without any penalty, if you say you want to cancel your winning bid within an hour of the close of the auction.

To me, a bid being a binding legal agreement is a solid thing. What eBay seems to be saying is that it is a binding agreement up until a point that it is not a binding legal agreement.

I am trying to think of some other areas where this is the case.

For example, I go to a bank and get a loan for a house or a car and sign the contract then I have entered into a binding legal agreement. Even within an hour, if I decide I have made a mistake, I can not just back out of the deal. I have to go and sign some other legal papers to back out. I can't just throw my hands up and say I don't want to go through with what I agreed to.

David
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Old 08-17-2014, 04:12 PM
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Leon,

I understand that eBay is a business and can do whatever they want (within the law).

What I am having a hard time understanding is how, right before you place a bid, they tell you that by doing so you are entering into a binding legal agreement. Then, after you have won an auction, they can say that you can undo that binding agreement, without any penalty, if you say you want to cancel your winning bid within an hour of the close of the auction.

To me, a bid being a binding legal agreement is a solid thing. What eBay seems to be saying is that it is a binding agreement up until a point that it is not a binding legal agreement.

I am trying to think of some other areas where this is the case.

For example, I go to a bank and get a loan for a house or a car and sign the contract then I have entered into a binding legal agreement. Even within an hour, if I decide I have made a mistake, I can not just back out of the deal. I have to go and sign some other legal papers to back out. I can't just throw my hands up and say I don't want to go through with what I agreed to.

David
If the contract you signed said you could throw up your hands and back out then you could. That is what is happening here. I guarantee ebay changes their rules to reflect their new stance. Personally I don't like it but I am not their CFO....
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Old 08-17-2014, 08:11 PM
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After rereading the thread on the ebay boards, I think there is some misunderstanding about what exactly happens. It's not that the buyer clicks cancel and is immediately off the hook. The way I am understanding it is that the buyer clicks Cancel, and then the seller either clicks Agree (off the hook) or Decline (buyer still has to pay). Very similar to the way it is now where a seller can click to cancel a sale but the buyer has to click Agree before it's cancelled.

IF I'm understanding that right, it's not as bad as my original assumptions, though I think it doers still send the wrong message to buyers. Also, buyer's (predictably spiteful) reaction aside, it's not clear what eBay's reaction to a seller denying a buyer's cancellation request will be.
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Old 08-17-2014, 08:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thecatspajamas View Post
After rereading the thread on the ebay boards, I think there is some misunderstanding about what exactly happens. It's not that the buyer clicks cancel and is immediately off the hook. The way I am understanding it is that the buyer clicks Cancel, and then the seller either clicks Agree (off the hook) or Decline (buyer still has to pay). Very similar to the way it is now where a seller can click to cancel a sale but the buyer has to click Agree before it's cancelled.

IF I'm understanding that right, it's not as bad as my original assumptions, though I think it doers still send the wrong message to buyers. Also, buyer's (predictably spiteful) reaction aside, it's not clear what eBay's reaction to a seller denying a buyer's cancellation request will be.

I'd wager it would help to cause a "defect" at some point in time.

Whether a spiteful buyer, or Ebay's usual condescending "because I said so!".
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Old 08-18-2014, 06:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thecatspajamas View Post
After rereading the thread on the ebay boards, I think there is some misunderstanding about what exactly happens. It's not that the buyer clicks cancel and is immediately off the hook. The way I am understanding it is that the buyer clicks Cancel, and then the seller either clicks Agree (off the hook) or Decline (buyer still has to pay). Very similar to the way it is now where a seller can click to cancel a sale but the buyer has to click Agree before it's cancelled.

IF I'm understanding that right, it's not as bad as my original assumptions, though I think it doers still send the wrong message to buyers. Also, buyer's (predictably spiteful) reaction aside, it's not clear what eBay's reaction to a seller denying a buyer's cancellation request will be.
Thank you, Lance, for the clarification, because that is exactly how I was reading it.
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Old 08-18-2014, 10:59 AM
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Regarding allowing buyers to cancel their purchases an hour after they win an auction, I would just think of this as ebay is trying to become more like Amazon or even Walmart/Target where buyers are allowed to return items. ebay wants to position itself as one big superstore which everything buyers want rather than just a big auction house / flea market. So think of it that way. Regarding binding contracts, I thought many states including California where ebay is located had a 2-3 day "cooling off" period where contracts could be cancelled. Obviously, I'm not a lawyer so this might have nothing to do with what ebay is doing.
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Old 08-18-2014, 11:01 AM
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Regarding allowing buyers to cancel their purchases an hour after they win an auction, I would just think of this as ebay is trying to become more like Amazon or even Walmart/Target where buyers are allowed to return items. ebay wants to position itself as one big superstore which everything buyers want rather than just a big auction house / flea market. So think of it that way. Regarding binding contracts, I thought many states including California where ebay is located had a 2-3 day "cooling off" period where contracts could be cancelled. Obviously, I'm not a lawyer so this might have nothing to do with what ebay is doing.
I am no lawyer either but In Texas certain purchases have a 3 day cancellation clause automatically with them. I believe it is mostly larger purchases, especially real estate (believe it or not).

A quick search turned up this...

https://www.texasattorneygeneral.gov...mer/3day.shtml


.
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Old 08-18-2014, 11:53 AM
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It subverts the entire auction process, along with allowing supposed shillers to throw up bids acting as "hidden reserves", with no repercussions whatsoever when they cancel their bids right after the auction ends.

As usual, it also creates more animosity between buyers and sellers, when it becomes more and more difficult to tell what is a shill bid, and what is just part of standard bidding procedure.

It also lends more credence to serial retractors, who are not actually shillers, but have become savvy "bidders", creating doubt in the auction system, manipulating auctions to serve their own purpose, whether it be financial or simply egotistical.

Plenty of honest sellers will suffer when accusations start to get thrown their way, because of these jag-offs, who will go from thoughtlessly throwing out bid retractions on the last day, sending an item tumbling downwards, to throwing out cancellations on the hour after an auction closes.

Ebay creates all these loopholes, and then play f@#*ing stupid when people start to take advantage of them.
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Old 08-18-2014, 12:01 PM
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Ebay creates all these loopholes, and then play f@#*ing stupid when people start to take advantage of them.
+1
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Old 08-18-2014, 12:07 PM
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eBay could put a limit on the number of retractions and backings out a buyer can make. That would help with the serial bid retractors, while allowing for a few honest mistakes.

I can understand a mistake bid or two, but don't know how someone could make more than two a month. Stay off the sauce. I recall making one and that was about fifteen years ago. I typed in an extra zero in my bid. If you're making five or ten a week, I think it can be safely defined as abusing the system.

I do agree that backing out of winning bids is a bad idea for auctions. For centuries the entire auction process has been based on the saying and rule "Goes to the highest bidder." The seller is required to sell to the highest bidder and, if the bidder can't or won't honor his bids, he's not supposed to be participating. Some would compare not honoring your winning bids to not honoring your gambling debts.

There's an entire Laurel and Hardy short about a grandfather clock they have to carry home after accidentally placing the winning bid on it at an auction and being threatened over if they didn't pay what they owed. Alas, the clock is run over by a car before they can get it home and Oliver's wife isn't too happy about his expenditure on a pile of scrap wood.



But, as I said, an honest error in bidding once in a while is understandable and excusable.

Last edited by drcy; 08-18-2014 at 12:57 PM.
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Old 08-18-2014, 12:40 PM
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eBay could put a limit on the number of retractions and backings out a buyer can make. That would help with the serial bid retractors, while allowing for a few honest mistakes.

Sounds simple, and I think Ebay actually had a cap on bid retractions at one time, sending out a warning to prospective bidders when they were doing it.

They stopped that practice a couple years ago or so for whatever reason, and it has run rampant ever since.

I'm sure there are tons of people who read these boards who have a ton of bid retractions, but will never admit to it. There's too many of these guys out there right now, for it not to be the case.

I could even go as far in my own auctions to outline a policy of losing your bidding rights in my auctions with a retraction or cancellation without a good excuse to me personally, I don't like the perception of shilling, don't bid on it if you don't want it, blah, blah, blah............but Ebay would shut ME down faster then I could formulate a sneeze during allergy season, because that would break with the continuity of their own policies.

It would make ME the bad guy.

Last edited by D. Bergin; 08-18-2014 at 12:40 PM.
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Old 08-18-2014, 12:36 PM
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thecatspajamas thecatspajamas is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by glchen View Post
I would just think of this as ebay is trying to become more like Amazon or even Walmart/Target where buyers are allowed to return items. ebay wants to position itself as one big superstore which everything buyers want rather than just a big auction house / flea market. So think of it that way.
+1

And along these same lines, I actually posted this exactly a month ago over on the non-sports side in another eBay gripe thread (amazing how often these things pop up):

Bottom line is that over the last few years, eBay has moved from looking at themselves as a platform that anyone can use to sell their stuff to seeing themselves as the overarching retailer (think Amazon without the warehousing responsibilities) and all of the individual sellers are just ants feeding merch into the machine. If you don't feed it in fast enough, you get penalized (I mean, not rewarded) for not shipping the next day. If there are any complaints about your merch, or how it was packed, or how quickly it got there, or how your tone sounded in the invoice you sent, or how you didn't promptly communicate your eternal gratitude for gracing you with an incremental bid on this poorly-described fuzzy-pictured obviously sub-par piece of merch and how dare you look at me that way and I don't like the way that your screenname makes me feel there's no way this is real and it wasn't delivered in time for my cousin's birthday didn't you know it was the day after the auction ended blazy blah blah... Any of that, and you darn well will be refunding the buyer's money including their shipping cost (because the overlords have already removed the funds from your scrip account), and you'll probably have to pay the buyer's return shipping as well or just let them keep it, and you'll still get the big red N(egative) on your account that you deserve because it's obviously the seller's fault no matter what happens. No, wait, eBay is the seller now, so you REALLY deserve what you got, and we're going to dock your pay (I mean, not reward you) at the end of the month too because you made us look bad.

Anyway, just more of the usual ranting and raving, but at the end I always duck my head down and head back up the ant hill with my next load of mid- to low-end merch. There's really no other good way to list/move a high volume of relatively low-priced material anywhere else. I don't want to take over the B/S/T boards anywhere (would be more on the baseball side at this point), and setting up my own website hasn't helped with anything sales-wise due to the lack of an advertising budget. I may hate a lot of eBay's practices and policies, but they still do a much better job of getting eyes on the items (though not as good as they used to).
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