Shady Dealers
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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 10:02 am 
 

Taking a break from Pip's moral connundrums.......



I recently did a BIN on one of the recent R/RPGA series auctions run on ebay. The buy was NOT for me, but for a Italian Acaeum member (doing a buddy a favor).  The item arrived quickly and packaged well...so well I didn't even undo the packaging, I was simply going to put the envelope in a box and send it on to Italy.



Then yesterday I get this....



I sent you the wrong item (to the aid of falx) instead of (the egg of the phoenix) by mistake! Please return it and as soon as I get it Ill send the correct one to you and refund your shipping cost. Sorry for the mix up. They both have similar color covers.


Sure enough I open it, I've overpaid for an R1... :roll:

Here's my response. Am I an ass or just over cautious?

I have to tell you I'm very disappointed in this. What is my protection should the module disappear mailing it back to you (I.E., post office loses or damages it)? I'm going to have to ask you for a refund before I mail it back so as to guard against this possibility. I will give you back the money once the correct module is in my hands. I'll also ask you to include my shipping cost when you mail the module back. The refund is very easy to do from the paypal page, I've had to do it before when messing up an order.
The worst aspect of this is that I hadn't even unwrapped it since it was being mailed to a friend in Italy. It is only dumb luck it was not already on it's way overseas.
I do understand problems like this happen because as a seller I've had it occur; however NOT with a $250 item!!!
I have to say as things are now you are looking at a neg and "1's" across the board on DSRs. I hope you can fix this mixup and turn it around. Feel free to contact me via email...


My overly paranoid thinking goes like this:  I ship the item back, it gets lost, and not only do I not have a module but I'm out the money (or at the very least have to go through a long and overdrawn back and forth with paypal to get my refund).  

As a seller, I have to say that I would either refund the money completely, or send the R3 and wait until the buyer had it in his hands before sending back the R1. Is it wrong to expect someone else to do likewise?  To top it off, said seller has this on his auction's boilerplate:

US bidders only. I require payment via Verified Paypal ONLY and will only ship after payment is confirmed. Due to the rarity of this item I highly recommend insurance as I will not be responsible for lost or damaged packages. Check out my feedback and bid with confidence! Good luck and thanks for checking out my listing. I have a number of other rare RPGA modules listed as well so don't pass up this opportunity to own a piece of gaming history.




Can someone who states they are "not responsible" for lost or damaged packages have me trust them if something happens to the package I send back?  My thinking is...no.



Discuss?



Mike B.


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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 10:15 am 
 

Buyer beware is long obsolete...

It is???????????? Only someone who takes zero responsibility for their actions could suggest that. I know it takes a little effort, but before you make any purchase whatsoever, you should be clear on what you are getting, how much it costs and YOU as the buyer fully understand the transaction. I know ebay has created a world where the buyer is protected from their own idiocy, but that does not make it right.

My responsibility is to hit the button and pay.

Which apparently you did in a fit of greed. I am not saying there is anything wrong with that. You saw a deal and you jumped at it. But there are clear and present dangers in doing so with a seller who clearly had no idea what she was doing. No way you dodge this. You took a chance and the payoff was well short of your anticipation. So freaking what. You feel she screwed up, well you are right she did. She made an honest mistake. How do I know this. If she were really trying to screw someone with a shady deal she would have sent you photocopies or the asking price would have been way higher as a BIN - maybe $100 which is still a steal for the buyer and would certainly entice someone to jump it. No, she sold $60 (conservatively) worth of books for $15. That is not a crook. A stupid auction, but that is all.


Her actions as a seller were reprehensible and she has been held accountable.  

By who. The self-appointed ebay police Pip? Oh yeah, I forgot. As a buyer you can never be held accountable. Leaving a neg in this instance is hardly an act of bravery or heroism in the face of evil. It is a cowardly act of vindictiveness.

And, no, I don't email people to ask if they are honest after I buy something from them....

I am not saying you have to do anything. But we all know why you did not. It would have alerted her (seller) that something was not in her favor. It so obvious that those pictures may not be correct. First of all, they are not pictures, but scans - you first freaking clue that something may not be right. About the only time I see a scan anymore is if it is lifted from another source - and even more so if it is from a seller that never sells this kind of material.
This was never about honesty, but about clarification.

Buyer beware.... lol.  I never understood why attorneys had so much work until I joined this website and found a bunch of extremely bright people so misinformed about basic commercial code law and ethics.  No wonder the courts are clotted up.

I don't see any misinformed people here. You made a purchase and the item was not as described. Did you make a single effort to return/refund the transaction? Nope. Because you still came out way ahead. You just got pissed because you did not make more money than you did - back to that pesky greed thing again. It wasn't good enough for you to get a great deal - you were expecting the mother-of-all-deals.

You can keep thinking you are the one who got screwed - and in a way you did came out short of what you thought was an awesome buy. But there was no malice intended by that seller. Do you honestly think she wend out and found scans of rare-as-hell items to post on here auction so she would get her $15???????? And some guy like you would go freaking nuts after the books arrived. I guess you do, which is most confusing.

All I can say is that I rarely - and I mean rarely - get this worked up on this site. But your response is so grossly outrageous I had to chime in. Do the right thing and drop that neg.

We all get pissed. But what you do after that is what counts in the long run.


And I could've bought these damn modules off the 1$ rack!!!

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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 10:29 am 
 

Pipswich wrote:Yep, quite a few of you are all lined up for it.

Buyer beware is long obsolete, has it's origins in real estate and should be left at the flea markets and garage sales where it only survives because the value of the transactions do not justify holding people accountable for their word/truth.  Buyer beware holds no water in a documented transaction, a regulated transaction, or on ebay where a buyer beware position would destroy consumer confidence in the site.  Even where the seller to have used the term in the listing, which she did not there is always "exception ... if the seller actively concealed latent defects."

My responsibility is to hit the button and pay.
The seller is responsible for describing properly, shipping properly, charging appropriate shipping/handling and for providing courteous service.  She actively lifted photos, and intentionally or unintentionally concealed both the nature of the product and latent defects.

You are very confused about what is wrong with the world.  In a world of  moral relativism, people dodge responsibility for their actions. The chain of effect her does not start with my leaving feedback, or even my hitting the button.  The actions started when she began lifting photos and continued as she described the material.  Her actions were made actionable when she listed the item for sale, sold it and delivered a different product.  From that point on, everything I did is responsive to a seller who has misrepresented merchandise and it is my right to hold her accountable for her acts.  And, since she committed the acts.... guess what fellas.... within certain parameters it is the BUYERS RIGHT to hold someone accountable in what ever way is negotiated with the seller.  Her actions as a seller were reprehensible and she has been held accountable.  

And, no, I don't email people to ask if they are honest after I buy something from them.... I presume it until they demonstrate otherwise.  That is my right, and it is the way the world should be.  I do not have an obligation to help her figure out how to run a business.  I am collecting... not running a free counseling service for idiot sellers.

Some of you need to take your armchair lawyering to the flea markets where some of the people reading your posts do not know better.

Buyer beware.... lol.  I never understood why attorneys had so much work until I joined this website and found a bunch of extremely bright people so misinformed about basic commercial code law and ethics.  No wonder the courts are clotted up.


Pip;

The short response: Either nut up like a man, or I guarantee you, whatever high moral ground you have taken, you will NOT be taken seriously on this forum at any point in the future. And if you choose to once again edit all your responses, I can also guarantee you that you will be the punch-line for every joke from here until the sun becomes a burnt out cinder in space.  Christ, she REFUNDED YOU!  You've lost whatever small moral high ground you had and are now looking at a very swift John Edwards-like fall that will render all further posts by you irrelevant, if they weren't already.

You are confusing what is "legally correct" with what is "ethically correct".  Should the seller have been held to account? Of course.  Should you have have acted like an ungrateful troll at this? Of course not.  In the parlance of sports, you were a "sore winner", which a sports fan can tell you, is the worst offense (see: New England Patriots fans).

It's why everyone who kills someone in the US isn't immediately put to death. Sometimes the crime is classified by degrees....if I plan and execute the complicated murder of my wife, I'm getting the needle. If I accidentally speed through a neighborhood and run down a jogger, I may only get 5 years.  Even our legal system recognizes intentional vs accidental actions and judge accordingly.  

There are degrees of sin. You may not agree with it and say all murderers deserve death, but the law, and the moral and ethical construct that our society goes by, does not agree.  Likewise someone that inadvertently screwed up a listing (see my dilemma above for someone who has apparantly inadvertently screwed up a sale) should get a little more slack than someone who intentionally tried to rip someone off. I think it's more than clear if the seller was a super-villain they would have charged a price more in line with the pictures shown; the fact they didn't should tip you off the seller is simply lazy and uninformed, and not evil. The fact this distinction has completely escaped you bothers me on a lot of levels.  The more you continue to defend your indefensible behavior the more you become an outlier of this site and lose what little credibility you still have.  

I've learned someting in life.  When I think I'm right, yet everyone else thinks I'm wrong, it's time to perhaps re-evaluate my position and admit I might be acting too harshly (or too leniently as the case may be).

Suck it up and move on.

Mike B.


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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 11:36 am 
 

bbarsh wrote:Finally, I can say all of this without reservation. I have been down this road. More than once. I have jumped BINs with items that don't even have pictures, or the picture is just a box and I have to hope all the stuff the seller say's is actually in the box is there and complete. But for $15, I am taking that risk. Sometimes I win, sometimes I only barely win. So what. If I am going to bid without asking questions about a vague auction, that is my choice. Been there, done that.

Exactly, and well said.  Most of us have been down this road before, and most of us have learned a lesson from it.

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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 11:44 am 
 

All well said and all points well made... let me sum-up:

Everything is gray (not black or white). Pip is RIGHT but has acted like as asshat in response.

Because the "degree" (thanks mike) of this situation is maybe a dark shade of gray... and you are on the wrong side of it now since she gave you a refund, you ought to work towards fixing her feedback.

Be a man of diplomacy... be a man.


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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 11:46 am 
 

Badmike wrote:Can someone who states they are "not responsible" for lost or damaged packages have me trust them if something happens to the package I send back?  My thinking is...no.

I think you worded your reply slightly harshly, but yes, you're on the right track there Mike.  The seller should do an "advance replacement", sending you the correct module first.

When you've confirmed you've received it, he should also cover the cost of you returning the incorrect one, as it was his error, and take the hit.  Good luck.

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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 11:57 am 
 

deimos3428 wrote:I think you worded your reply slightly harshly, but yes, you're on the right track there Mike.  The seller should do an "advance replacement", sending you the correct module first.

When you've confirmed you've received it, he should also cover the cost of you returning the incorrect one, as it was his error, and take the hit.  Good luck.


Mike, you could have just simply said... "Please send me the correct item with a return shipping label included in the parcel so that I may return the wrong item upon it's arrival."

Make the point without saying anything more than needed.

If the seller does not comply I would start the refund process.


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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 12:11 pm 
 

Badmike wrote:


Can someone who states they are "not responsible" for lost or damaged packages have me trust them if something happens to the package I send back?  My thinking is...no.

Discuss?

Mike B.


That was laying the hammer down, but sometimes you have to do it and you also have to trust your instincts. Since you've been doing the online thing for so long, I say go with your instincts.

The seller owes you what you paid for, regardless of what they sent you, and if they want it back the responsibility is theirs. I would call paypal immediately and find out what you are required to do to get what you paid for or a refund.

Normally the shipper is responsible for anything lost or damaged in transit, but you are returning missent goods, so I'm not sure what the responsibilities are according to paypal.

  

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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 12:14 pm 
 

TheMilford wrote:
Mike, you could have just simply said... "Please send me the correct item with a return shipping label included in the parcel so that I may return the wrong item upon it's arrival."

Make the point without saying anything more than needed.

If the seller does not comply I would start the refund process.


Either way, the seller needs to correct the situation at his cost. He made a mistake. No way you should be sending an item back without refund in hand.


And I could've bought these damn modules off the 1$ rack!!!

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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 12:38 pm 
 

Thanks guys, all good advice here.  Ok, I probably did word things too harshly, so I'm sending a reply indicating when I do receive the R3, I'll send back the R1.  Returning the correct items is probably going to be a lot easier than refunding the item, and all I want is the correct item anyway.  It pays to have someone outside the situation look at it for you, especially when you are pissed and not thinking straight.

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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 1:06 pm 
 

Badmike wrote:It pays to have someone outside the situation look at it for you, especially when you are pissed and not thinking straight.


There you go!  

Perfect wisdom for Ebay and any other situation.


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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 1:11 pm 
 

It pays to have someone outside the situation look at it for you, especially when you are pissed and not thinking straight.


Agreed! Whenever someone has me do this I advise them to "lash out" and "destroy" the source of their temporary frustrations :wink:

FormCritic, I think people take you more seriously just because of your R.E.H. avatar. I bet a study would show that a goofy post made by someone with your avatar Vs a big bouncing boobs avatar... well, your avatar would win in that study even though it's a worse avatar.

  

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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 1:14 pm 
 

Step away from the situation and sleep on it, I always get a better perspective.

  

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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 1:31 pm 
 

Badmike wrote:Can someone who states they are "not responsible" for lost or damaged packages have me trust them if something happens to the package I send back?  My thinking is...no.


In this case, Mike, Ebay agrees with you.  The seller can say he's "not responsible" all he wants.  No matter what he says, he is responsible.

It's like a store that posts a "no refunds" policy on their wall.  They can post whatever they want.  Their sign is not the law.  In the case of an electronics store, for instance, the only question is how far you are willing to go to make them obey the law.  On Ebay, we  have PayPal.

That's possibly the greatest thing about using PayPal.  

Right now, I'm waiting on a seller from a site other than Ebay.  

I've sent him a very courteous reminder note that my PayPal payment to him was over a month ago and the product has not arrived.

In another week I'm going to send him another very courteous note.

Before the delay reaches 90 days, if the item does not appear, I will file a PayPal claim and the refund will be pretty much automatic.  No need to argue.  No need to be upset at all.


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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 1:54 pm 
 

Tharizdun wrote:FormCritic, I think people take you more seriously just because of your R.E.H. avatar. I bet a study would show that a goofy post made by someone with your avatar Vs a big bouncing boobs avatar... well, your avatar would win in that study even though it's a worse avatar.


What's funny about this R.E.H. avatar is that R.E.H. himself was not like this picture at all.

He was an overgrown boy in grubby clothes with great writing talent...much more like a cliche' gamer guy (one of us, in other words) than anyone like the grim fellow posing in the Al Capone hat.

I've often thought that R.E.H. would have been a much happier man if he'd had role-playing games and the relationships that go with them.  He might not have succumbed to his inner darkness.

Then again, perhaps he might never have written much either.  :?

I once used Dallas Egbert as my avatar, just as a prank.  It freaked people out.  Ironically, R.E.H. and Dallas Egbert had more in common than we might like to think.


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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 2:15 pm 
 

FormCritic wrote:What's funny about this R.E.H. avatar is that R.E.H. himself was not like this picture at all.
I thought that was Dick Tracy, but apparently he isn't a real person.

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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 2:31 pm 
 

FormCritic wrote:
What's funny about this R.E.H. avatar is that R.E.H. himself was not like this picture at all.

He was an overgrown boy in grubby clothes with great writing talent...much more like a cliche' gamer guy (one of us, in other words) than anyone like the grim fellow posing in the Al Capone hat.

I've often thought that R.E.H. would have been a much happier man if he'd had role-playing games and the relationships that go with them.  He might not have succumbed to his inner darkness.

Then again, perhaps he might never have written much either.  :?

I once used Dallas Egbert as my avatar, just as a prank.  It freaked people out.  Ironically, R.E.H. and Dallas Egbert had more in common than we might like to think.



REH had this picture taken as a joke...trying to look all "gangsta" with some of his buddies.  

Unfortunately, some of the greatest artists of all time have had demons. Arguably, these demons are what made them successful.  I just can't see REH as the same sort of writer had his situation in life been one of peaches and cream. Sometimes tragedy creates art and I do believe this is the truth in REH's case.

Mike B.


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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 5:49 pm 
 

I appreciate everyone's feedback.  A few of the recent comments do intrigue me.

I did not intend to leave negative feedback until I got the rude comment with the unsolicited refund.  That certainly pushed me over the edge to the neg.  I also have never gotten an apology or a note that indicates that she recognizes there is an issue with how she listed or what arrived.  What I got was a rude comment that suggests she doesn't need my money enough to fool with the matter.  That leaves me to wonder if she would have kept a larger amount if I had seriously overpaid.  I also still don't know a switch did not happen.  

Nonetheless, I plan to keep an eye on her feedback and if no other issues crop up, I will consider initiating a feedback withdrawal.  I do appreciate the nature of community input and decisions.  If others here have subsequent transactions and emails with her which reveal her to be ignorant but learning rather than intentionally misrepresenting or switching merchandise, I will reconsider my initial judgment based upon the additional evidence.  I will most certainly not be doing business with her myself.

Do note that she has neither apologized nor requested a feedback withdrawal... nor yet demonstrated that she is well intentioned.  Even BenJ's emails from her demonstrate continued duplicity as others noted.... so I will wait a week or so to see how things appear to pan out with her other customers.  If BenJ is so disposed, a short pm or message here that he is satisfied with a completed transaction would be helpful.

Thanks for the input all.

I don't think I jumped the gun here, and I don't think we yet know she is honest.  But if after a couple of weeks, it appears that way, I don't feel strongly about sticking her with the negative forever.  My post here and my feedback were meant to protect innocent buyers, not to overly harshly punish an slopy newbie seller.


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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 5:52 pm 
 

Slopy = sloppy  It's gonna kill me to leave misspelled words in my posts when I see them, but I will try to leave them alone, lol.


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Post Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 6:29 pm 
 

Pipswich wrote:I appreciate everyone's feedback.  A few of the recent comments do intrigue me.

I did not intend to leave negative feedback until I got the rude comment with the unsolicited refund.  That certainly pushed me over the edge to the neg.  I also have never gotten an apology or a note that indicates that she recognizes there is an issue with how she listed or what arrived.  What I got was a rude comment that suggests she doesn't need my money enough to fool with the matter.  That leaves me to wonder if she would have kept a larger amount if I had seriously overpaid.  I also still don't know a switch did not happen.  

Nonetheless, I plan to keep an eye on her feedback and if no other issues crop up, I will consider initiating a feedback withdrawal.  I do appreciate the nature of community input and decisions.  If others here have subsequent transactions and emails with her which reveal her to be ignorant but learning rather than intentionally misrepresenting or switching merchandise, I will reconsider my initial judgment based upon the additional evidence.  I will most certainly not be doing business with her myself.

Do note that she has neither apologized nor requested a feedback withdrawal... nor yet demonstrated that she is well intentioned.  Even BenJ's emails from her demonstrate continued duplicity as others noted.... so I will wait a week or so to see how things appear to pan out with her other customers.  If BenJ is so disposed, a short pm or message here that he is satisfied with a completed transaction would be helpful.

Thanks for the input all.

I don't think I jumped the gun here, and I don't think we yet know she is honest.  But if after a couple of weeks, it appears that way, I don't feel strongly about sticking her with the negative forever.  My post here and my feedback were meant to protect innocent buyers, not to overly harshly punish an slopy newbie seller.



What Ekim said is so often the truth. I should have slept on it before I hammered the seller in the above example. I think that is good advice most of the time for all of us.

Mike B.


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