Beware eBay Buyers: eBay Blocking Negative Feedback for Sellers!!!

One of the things that I had presumed to trust in using eBay has been an honest evaluation of transactions by buyers and sellers. I realize that on either end of the transaction this may not always be the case. Using the feedback mechanism as a tool of retribution by both buyers and sellers has been a form of abuse over the years. But, in the past, a prudent purchaser through due diligence could frequently sort through the maze of charges and counter-charges and come to a frequently accurate conclusion of where the truth may lie.

Today, I encountered a situation that totally astonished and frustrated me. eBay blocked my multiple attempts to leave negative feedback.

On 9 September 2009, I purchased an item on eBay and, as usual I received an invoice for that purchase. Nine days later, around the time I was expecting delivery through media mail, I received a notice of “shipment”. That’s right. Nine days after purchase … with  no explanation of delay …, my item was shipped. Five days later, yesterday, 23 September 2009, I received the item.

I don’t consider myself an unreasonable person. As a matter of fact, I encountered a similar problem about a week before. Another seller took about a week to ship an item. But, at least, this seller sent a message at the time of shipment stating that the shipment had been “returned” as undeliverable and was being reshipped. I accepted these excuses or reasons and chose not to leave a neutral or negative feedback even though shipping information didn’t support his contention.

I don’t know who thinks that taking nine days to process an order and arrange shipping is reasonable but I don’t. Period. That’s my standard and no amount of communication with a delinquent seller is going to resolve that sentiment.

But, eBay won’t allow you to leave a “negative” or even “neutral” evaluation of the seller.

I went to the feedback discussion boards and quickly found an entry related to this problem. Following the chain of comments I found some lame reason or excuse that a person had to “wait seven days” before leaving negative feedback. Well, seven days from when?

After taking the time to enter your feedback; 1) rating the seller as either positive, neutral or negative, 2) entering a comment and 3) going through the star ratings, you then click on the button” submit feedback”. If you’ve entered a neutral or negative rating, you’re taken to a page where you have to check on of three comments; 1) that you’ve communicated with the seller to try to resolve the “conflict”, 2) that you’ve allowed enough time for the item to arrive or 3) that your comment is factual and you’ve avoided personal remarks.

Well, “Choice #1” was unnecessary and irrelevant as was “Choice #2”. I was unaware that the seller was taking nine days to ship until that in fact was the case and once the item was shipped it did arrive in a timely fashion. Choice #3 was the most appropriate. My comment, “The seller took nine days to ship.”,  and evaluation was correct and factual. I understand that thinking it’s totally reasonable for sellers to ship promptly is an opinion but it’s my opinion and that’s what the feedback is supposed to be about.

For some reason after repeatedly clicking on the “Continue and leave feedback” button, nothing happened. After going back through the “revise feedback” process, still a dead button. The little highlighted red arrow point to the evaluation line “positive, neutral or negative” glares at you like you’re committing some cardinal sin that is totally unacceptable to eBay. It won’t even allow you to change from “negative” to “neutral” … again a cardinal sin.

I understand that eBay is trying to protect its sellers from harrassment by unreasonable buyers, but where’s the protection for the buyers? Making buyers jump through unnecessary hoops to protect sellers is simply poor policy.

One of the comments was that this policy was designed to protect “high volume” sellers. Well, if high volume sellers are having acute or chronic problems with a high volume of disgruntled buyers, what protection is there for daily buyers on that seller’s site when complaints about the seller are being blocked or delayed for weeks and months?

This is simply a poor implementation of a poor and one sided policy, designed to protect shoddy and unscrupulous sellers from legitimate complaints. It makes the ratings provided by eBay, at best, suspect and more realistically worthless.

Whoever is responsible for implementing this decision should carefully consider the ramifications of their one sided policy. 70% of the American economy is based on consumer purchases. EBay’s business is 100% based on consumer purchases. If eBay can’t figure this out, all of their business is based on “BUYERS” …

No buyers = no sellers!!!

Blocking negative feedback will eventually come back to haunt the powers that be at eBay. Eventually, enough buyers will encounter a bad seller and try to leave negative feedback and realize that the ratings they are depending on for honesty are totally worthless.

And, they will stop using eBay. Then it will be “Goodbye, eBay”. No buyers … and no sellers.


32 Responses

  1. Hi there Earl. Ill keep this short and sweet as I am a high volume seller and am busy dealing with about 6 people like you evry month who leave feedback based on your anger and emotion instead of the actual transaction. You use the word fraudulent when nobody has defraud you and have vented so much anger over a shipping delay. You are the problemy friend. You have what is “the world revolves around me syndrome.” I would block you as well and the fact that you have ranted this much, this long shows that you are the problem. Remember the seller blcoked you and moved on, why cant you? Thats right, becuase you are unreasonable. Being an unreasonable person gets you nowhere in life. Usually this lesson is covered ib kindergarten, when you learn about sharing, feelings and reputations about others, etc. But you were either asleep at the time or learned your anger/entitlement through you guardians. And spare me the reply where you tell me that I should mind my own business, do more for buyers, if I had done th e right thing I wouldnt have received the bad fedback, blah blag blah. Its all falling on deaf ears becauee you are unreasonable and any logical human being can spot one a mile away. Hence the reason you were blocked. Hard to make unreasonable angry people happy wouldnt you say?

    • Brad,

      I wasn’t blocked. Who said I was blocked? I didn’t. Unless it was on the comment section of eBay, apparently only concerned with protecting sellers who whine constantly and pathetically. I really don’t remember, except I do remember encountering a lot of people like you who don’t have any concept of providing business as a service. And, I’m not angry. I can be just as verbal as sellers who feel threatened, though. You don’t feel threatened? Good. Then why bother commenting on this thread?

      And to get the facts absolutely straight, it wasn’t necessarily the shipping delay that irritated me about the seller, although he didn’t ship AS ADVERTISED. That’s fairly poor, not doing what you say you’re going to do, … and merits a complaint. It certainly doesn’t merit approval, but I gather you don’t think keeping your word is important. Good to know.

      What really irritated me was the total lack of communication, … like, “Hey, I’ve been ill” or “My kids are sick” or “Sorry, I’ve been busy and gotten behind in mailing, or something, … anything. But nothing. No communication whatsoever. Basically, a very silent “You’ll get it when I feel like sending it and if you don’t like it, tough shit. Go complain. Ha ha ha, like that will do you any good.”

      And, I gather you, and John, and all the other pieces of sh*t who don’t like what I say feel the same way.

      And, I didn’t say if you did the right thing you wouldn’t get any complaints; therefore, if you get a complaint you must have done something wrong. I didn’t say that. I did say, “Welcome to the real world”.

      Some of you eBay sellers are real pieces of work, real wusses. And you’re like another roach crawling out of the woodwork. Damn, is the moon full?

    • Brad, I totally agree with you…….I am a seller and have someone now who opened a case on me because their item was shipped on monday (1 business day after purchase) and on thursday they opened a case because of the bogus estimated delivery times Ebay posts. But three days after being shipped opening a case on a seller……c’mon.

    • Personally, I was pleased to finally find Earl’s post re: issue with sellers, and found it very helpful. I do believe that YOU, Brad, are the problem. You had no reason to post except to scold Earl who made a legitimate complaint. It’s sellers like you that give eBay a bad name.

  2. “No buyers=no sellers” “No sellers=No Buyers” Like which came first the chicken or the egg? Gosh there are bad sellers and bad buyers. There are sanctimonious buyers and just plain bitter sellers, then there are buyers who are self appointed “eBay police” (qualified by 1 previous ebay transaction) – when you are a seller who tries to do right by their customers and you get some sociopath fabricating complete falsehoods – ie complete lies, well, it can really ruin things for a seller. When you are trying to support your family, because there are no jobs to be had and someone stomps your profile for no other apparent reason then “it was there” —- that can really be discouraging. When you rely on eBay and have nothing else to go on then lets just assume that most people who are in this situation and are selling on ebay are going to bend over backwards for the buyer (and we would regardless, we are just genuine people like that). But next time you go to leave that neg, please, make sure that it is deserved and not just some trivial bunch of sappy nonsense. You could be destroying someones livelihood and the lives of four young children, for instance. There’s always time to get to the bottom of it. Maybe the email never went through, maybe the seller thought they clicked send and miss-clicked it… maybe it went to your spam folder, etc…. there really is no good reason not to ask questions first and neg later, if it is really essential to do so. And by essential I mean health threatening, total disregard for all sense of decorum, etc…. Not “it was pink, but not the pink that I like” kind of ignorance. And if it states the defect in the description then that is no reason to leave a negative (3 out of 4 of the negatives in my profile pertain to deficiencies that were completely spelled out in the description of the listing, no minced words, bold and in red—- quite very clearly stated) —- the other negative was completely a falsehood, out-right, totally untrue). Then there are the neutrals: “Received promptly” and another is “Thank you” then there are the 4,767 positives…

    I left a negative once. I bought hand made soap and it had a dark curly hair in it… So I left the negative and had no intention of changing it, but then the sellers reply was that I was a liar and feedback extorter. You’ll never get anywhere good leaving a negative and if it makes you feel good to do so then you left it for the wrong purpose.

    So, in my humble opinion that’s when you neg, health and safety and, just possibly, a big AND/IF the seller is just so rude and outrageously so buyer-like that it needs to be done, but thats a stretch, because so many of you buyers are so self righteous, sanctimonious and plain anti-social that you wouldn’t even consider the possibility that you were being unreasonable… If you would only try to sell a couple things on ebay and you have a conscience (not necessarily a neurosis) then I do feel that you may be qualified to even consider leaving feedback. Until that day, I beg to differ, the seller is more important than the buyer… Lets face it, what can you buy if there is nothing for sale? There are always buyers (Dime a dozen dozen…)—- show some respect, you really don’t know whose life/lives you could be destroying.

    • Interesting comment, John.

      According to your “logic”, the following entities should stop their “comsumer protection” functions: CDC, FDA, NTSB, FAA, USDA, ICC, CPA (Consumer Protection Agency) to name just a few federal agencies and that should also apply to state licensing boards for professions and trades. All of these entities have as part of their stated functions the responsibility of protecting consumers (i.e., buyers) from unscrupulous, incompetent or negligent producers or sellers of goods and services. Your rationale is that there are “plenty of buyers” and they might hurt producers or sellers who have children to support, may not be well or may have fallen on hard times. Right???

      So, according to you, that farmer suffering from tuberculosis with six children to cloth and feed and the payment due on his $200,000 operating loan who sells lettuce from his field contaminated with salmonella which kills your wife when she eats a salad laden with his lettuce at the local Olive Garden should just be, … what??? Excused? Overlooked? Ignored? After all, your attitude is “Buyer beware” or “Screw the consumer”. Right??? The CDC, FDA, USDA and ICC and the local Department of Health should all just … ignore the problem and suppress complaints. Right??? To bad about your wife though. Better luck next time.

      Oh, … but you meant that only “sellers on eBay” shouldn’t have to meet any standards, be subject to regulation or review or be subject to criticism from the consuming public (buyers) regardless of whether the criticism or review is valid or not. Right?

      News Flash: When you sell on eBay, whether one item or 1,000, you’ve become a business person. And that changes the playing ground and rules, whether you like it or not. You’re subject to standards, review and criticism, unfounded or not. That’s just the way it is. And, eBay, by trying to suppress review of sellers by buyers, is creating an artificial, unrealistic environment completely alien from the real world.

      You’re down on your luck? Out of work? got kids to clothe and feed” Have health problems? Having financial problems” Try the unemployment office, welfare office, local church, soup kitchen, Goodwill or the Salvation Army. Or sell your wares on the street beneath your trench coat or get a tin cup.

      Ebay has no business being your “safe haven” and shouldn’t be running a charity or convalescent home. Its legitimate and conscientious sellers deserve better. They rightfully deserve to be separated from the whiners and malcontents who can’t meet the standards or stand the pressure of real world business.

      So, … did I understand you correctly?

  3. One important point that Earl made that brought me to this blog in the first place got somewhat lost down the line. As a buyer on Ebay, I try to rely on a seller’s feedback record before deciding rather I want to purchase from them or not. Knowing Ebay will and does block reasonable remarks by buyers makes the feedback system flawed. The same thing happened to me about the time Earl made his first post.

    I left a neutral feedback to a seller who made a mistake that cost me money. She advertised a new shirt with a vibrant design silk screened to the front that I really liked. She showed only one front view picture of it on a manikin with the large design. The seller had a reasonable feedback record (99% from about 100 scores) so I bought it. Upon arrival I found the shirt was a factory flaw where the manufacturer mistakenly printed the design on the inside so the shirt was inside out. To wear the shirt correctly all you’d see is some ink bleeding through hear and there from the original ink screen processing.

    I notified the seller immediately. She said, “Oh yes, I noticed I had it on the manikin inside out when I went to undress it. I figured maybe that is how it was being worn these days”. She made no mention of this fact in her auction page. The raw edges of the seams, loose threads, and sizing/care tag was obviously on the printed side and the seller agreed. She said, “I normally don’t give refunds but since this is such a strange shirt, return it for a refund”. Fine enough by me but in the end it cost me $9.00 to return it. The seller was not willing to help me recover my loses but did insist I return it for a refund. When she got it back, she put it back up for sale on Ebay but clearly advertised it as factory flawed with a price drop. I rated her with a neutral rating stating, “HAD TO PAY TO RETURN FACTORY FLAWED SHIRT, I’M OUT RETURN SHIP”. The seller returned my money without PayPal resolution which is nice but she did make me wait about ten days for it and I had to remind her twice.

    Was the seller all that bad? No, she made an honest mistake but her mistakes willfully cost the buyer money, time, and aggravation for nothing. Do I think my neutral comment was warranted? Absolutely! Did Ebay block my feedback remark just two days after I left it? YES, without warning! I also noticed one other bad remark she had disappeared just as mine did. After that do I trust Ebay’s feedback system? NO, and I do not advise anyone else does if they depend on that flawed system too much as I once did. Later I did a Google search to see if similar situations were being reported by other Ebay buyers and sure enough it was.

    After reading this blog it is apparently some sellers are automatically being protected while others are getting nearly the same treatment. Why? I don’t know but it has caused me to buy less on Ebay. I’ve been an active Ebay member since 2000 with over a thousand purchases.

    • Thanks for your comments. I really appreciate them.

      Unfortunately, I’ve found that any attempt to criticize the current system on the eBay site itself leads a person to being viciously attacked by what appears to be a well orchestrated group of hacks intent on maintaining the flawed system as it is.


    • Well said, TrustNot…….well said.

  4. The sad thing here is not only do you go on and on about this matter, but you take so much time to try to hurt an ebay seller over a delay in shipping. You got the item. It is not like you got ripped off and lost money.

    It’s people like you who need to understand that not every ebay member is an and is shipping items every single day with round the clock service. I don’t know the seller who you dealt with but a lot of ebay members sell stuff on ebay on the side. They are either doing this as a second job or sell once in awhile to clean house.

    Ebay sellers are people just like you and me, they have kids, husbands, wives, cats, dogs, a job or 2, a family member that is sick in the hospital, catch the flu and file their taxes. In other words, human. Things do come up. So why do ebay members such as yourself insist on getting bent out of shape over such small details and insist on being mean spirited by leaving negatives. If you didn’t like the service then just don’t do business with him or her again. Because all you really have done is hurt their business over a mishap and wasted your energy

    • Thanks for the comment, Charles.

      It’s amazing. People who have a propensity for doing things half-assed never seem to be lacking in the ability to come up with a multitude of excuses.


      • Once again Earl you jumped the gun to go right to the negative.

        My point wasn’t to provide many excuses. it was to point out that some Ebay sellers are people and not an or Walmart. An item arriving late or not up to a buyers expectations doesn’t mean the seller “half-assed” the job.

        If the seller provided the item as described with no major problems with the item then why should the seller get a Negative or Neutral Feedback? If there is a problem with the item, then you should always contact the seller first to find a resolution. In fact this is what Ebay suggest. All you are doing by leaving a negative is retaliating against another Ebay member in order to feel better about yourself.

        • No, Charles, you’ve missed my point if you’d taken the time to read my article and comments.

          I’ve done a number of transactions on eBay and literally as well as statistically 99% of the eBay sellers I’ve dealt with have either met or exceeded my expectations … or provided a reasonable explanation through “communication” for not meeting them … and were given a positive rating for at least communicating. I don’t intend to leave negative feedback to “feel better about myself” but to warn other buyers of a potential problem which the rating system is supposed to be about. And, where my money is concerned, I feel no inclination to pat someone on the back and say, “Well done” when their service and lack of communication stinks.

          What I don’t see is why people like yourself seem to be so intent on defending the 1%, in my experience, who shouldn’t be selling on eBay in the first place. Whether or not it was your point to provide excuses, that’s exactly what you did … ad nauseum.

          If 99% of the sellers I’ve dealt with have met my expectations regarding service and communication then I don’t see how my expectations, or standards, can be judged unreasonable or harsh. If anything, they might be too lenient. You might want to re-evaluate yours.


          • And, by the way, my article has nothing to do with items purchased. It’s all about “appropriate and timely seller service … or lack thereof” … period.

          • Earl, Your passion for the Ebay feed back system amuses me.

            I have read your article and comments. As I said before I am not the seller who you dealt with nor do I know him. So, I wasn’t making excuses for him I was providing examples of the fact that the seller may have been a human being. You jumped to that conclusion. Your article doesn’t have anything to do with items purchased, however it is people like you that will complain over such things. You will get angry at a seller over the quality of an item knowing very well that the seller didn’t manufacture it.

            I also never said “pat a seller on the back” when dissatisfied with the service. You do not have to leave any feedback. You have the option of not doing business with them again but to go to the trouble of providing a negative is just plane petty. At some point you will fall off that perfect ladder of yours and miss a step.

            As for me, My Ebay experience has been top notch with the exception of a few tight asses such as yourself. I only wish I knew your Ebay ID so that I could block it, as I do with many stupid people.

            Thank You.

          • Well, Charles, your presumptions to know what I will and won’t do are fairly amusing also.

            No, you didn’t say “Pat someone on the back” when dissatisfied with the service. I did … which is exactly what happens when negative feedback is blocked. If negative feedback is petty, then eBay shouldn’t even theoretically offer it as an option. What’s petty is YOUR attitude.

            I may be a tight ass and stupid but I do know the difference between “plain” and “plane”.

            Have a good one.


          • Well Earl, you have done it again. You perfect, perfect person you.
            I guess you showed me. Yes, I do know the difference between plain
            (as in plain Jane) and plane (as in fly a plane) Thanks for that. It is good to see that you are one of the few Ebay members that knows how to spell. I come across so many that do not. However, that was simple mistake on part for thinking faster than I type. Which is what can happen in an everyday occurrence. Think about that. Think about before you jump the gun.

            Have a nice day.

          • I know, Charles. I make typos all the time but I have the luxury of going back and correcting them… when I spot them. I just couldn’t resist a chance to get in a little dig at you.

            What’s really funny is that you criticize my dogged tenacity regarding my views … but have you gone back and re-read your comments. That’s sort of like the pot calling the kettle black … don’t you reckon’?

            You have a good day, too.


          • PS. I know about the few grammatical errors, but for some reason
            this blog runs off on the side and hides part of what I am writing making
            it harder to see.

  5. I think you are unreasonable towards the seller. Remember that one has to collect enough orders over a course of one week, for example, to process them all in one credit card charging batch in order to save on batch processing fees. Also, if one gets say orders for $40 in 5 days one may want to wait until they collect orders for $100 so it pays to pay the packer and the shipper. I think 1 to 2 weeks ship out time is reasonable, except if it is on Ebay, then the shipping out should happen within 7 days.
    Regarding Ebay, they are unreasonable and more, using unfair and crooked practices, no further comments.

    • Jim,

      Thanks for your comment.

      In reply, first of all, your defense for sellers taking forever to process and mail orders seems to rest entirely upon a seller depending on credit cards as a method of payment. So … what is the excuse for those who accept PayPal and receive immediate payment and credit to their PayPal account? That has nothing to do with batching credit card payments.

      Frankly, I’m not familiar with any discount for batching credit card payments. I accepted credit card payments in my practice for 13 years and was never aware of any such policy. Basically, I deposited credit card payments along with other payment forms into my business banking account and they were dealt with between the bank and the credit card company. And, I’m surprised that any credit card company would offer a discount for an amount as low as $100.

      As far as your other arguments, let’s put it this way. When a seller has his or her shipping policy stated to be: “usually ships within 3 days”, what is their excuse for taking 9 to 14 days to ship … other than false advertising?

      Having run a business myself for a number of years and grown up in a household where my mother owned and operated a small department store and my family ran a farming operation, I’m familiar with a number of business models. In all of them, long term success depended on up front honesty and integrity; providing service, merchandise or commodity in a timely and efficient manner with an acute appreciation of the cost of doing business and an acute appreciation of ensuring customer satisfaction and their understanding of your business policy through adequate and appropriate communication.

      In spite of your arguments or presumed justifications for a seller taking so long to ship an item once it’s paid for, there really is none.


      • P.S.

        There are a lot of excellent sellers on eBay who apparently understand what I’m saying and go to extreme efforts to satisfy those who purchase from them. They deserve better than being lumped with people who take a more lackadaisical attitude toward their customers or those who look for excuses for not providing good service … which includes prompt shipment.

        • Jim, Let me put it another way.

          Out of over 300 transactions on eBay, I’ve only been inclined to post a negative response on three or four sellers, about 1% … and I think that should be my prerogative based on my standards which seem to be supported by the vast majority, 99% in my personal experience, of eBay sellers.


      • …you should do your shopping at the mall.

  6. I have been selling things on ebay on and off for the past couple of years. I completely understand your point and agree that buyers should be able to leave negative feedback if they so choose. My thing is that under no cercumstance or waiting period are sellers allowed to post negative or neutral feedback about there buyers. Reguardless if they take 2 weeks to pay (which happens a lot) or changes there mind or whatever. I think it all comes down to whats best for ebay and how they can get those buyers to “feel” more secure and get every fee and percentage they can out of them. Bottom line the feedback policies are in place for one party’s intrest alone and that just happens to be ebay.

    • Thanks Jon.

      I really appreciate your input.

      “Feedback” should be just that … feedback … from both buyers and sellers and only referreed by eBay, not restricted or prohibited from either end of the transaction. Ebay, by disabling the Leave Feedback” button for buyers who feel that a seller doesn’t warrant a positive rating is censorship at its worst and not allowing sellers to leave negative feedback for worthless and untrustworthy buyers is equally reprehensible. eBay’s actions make a mockery and farce of the entire Feedback system.

      It’s apparently time for reputable buyers and sellers to tell eBay to get their act together and stop their inherently dishonest and fraudulent practices. It makes eBay no better than the lowlife they seem intent on protecting.

      I was attacked on the discussion board by a bunch of scuzzbags who thought it was totally appropriate for a seller to take nine days … or more to ship an item. If a buyer can’t or won’t pay within a reasonable time … like immediately or as soon as they have an invoice, then they should receive a negative rating for the transaction. These should be clearly defined rules of the transactions and repeat violators should be banned from doing transactions on eBay. This is not a difficult concept to comprehend.

      More than one mega business model has been relagated to the dusty shelves of history by loosing their way either in pursuit of squeezing the last penny out of their business model or perverting the inherent concept that created their success. eBay seems to be doing both.

      As I said in a previous comment, 99% of the sellers I’ve done business with deserved and worked hard for their positive rating. I can’t understand eBay selling out for a worthless 1%. It’s almost like they’re trying to destroy their own business.

      Thanks again for your input.


  7. I’m with you! Same thing happened to me. A slooow shipper, with no communication. Then a seller who sent the wrong item and them took 2 weeks to give me credit. Couldn’t leave neutral feedback. I had to leave positive feedback and entered my complaints in the comment line. Hopefully I saved a few people some hassle. I’ll never buy on eBay again.

    • Thanks for the comment. I really appreciate it.

      Today I went to the discussion board and made some comments about eBay’s policy which were immediately attacked by some of the vultures who apparently support eBay’s policy to protect sellers at all costs. After commenting that these people were essentially brainless automated detractors, my comment was deleted and I was blocked from making comments. So much for open discourse on eBay.

      99% of the sellers I’ve encountered on eBay have made a conscious effort to serve their buyers well and are the standard by which I judge all eBay sellers. They deserve positive feedback. Apparently, there are those on eBay who think lousy or, at best, mediocre service to buyers rates the same evaluation and buyers are being forced into this position which is inherently dishonest. I refuse to leave a positive feedback for a mediocre or lousy seller. It’s a disservice to the sellers who do a good job and it’s a terrible and dishonest service to eBay buyers.

      I understand why you decided to leave the positive feedback since it was the only way you felt you could be heard. Unfortunately, you may be right.

      Again, thanks for the comment.


      • I am a seller on Ebay and until yesterday I had a 100% rating with 4.9″s and 5.0’s in the Dsr rating system. A buyer (with less than 10 feedbacks) bounced an echeck and did not respond to a polite inquirie. I could not leave him negative feedback (shows up as positive unless one reads the feedback) but I did want to warn other sellers. I left negative feedback through an explanation that he bounced his check and did not respond. He retaliated by calling me a Whack Job and that I had hounded him for money two hours after auction close ( I emailed him a polite note three days after auction asking if he still wanted the $228.99 book set that he bid on). Even though this man never paid for the item he bid on (there were many other bidders-who now are not interested) he was allowed to lower my DSR’s and leave me negative feedback. I agree that sellers should not be allowed to leave negative feedback SO LONG as the buyer keeps his commitment and pays for the item he bid on. Ebay does state that bidding creates a contract. This man has libeled me through feedback and Ebay tells me they will not remove his libelous statement unless I get a court order. It does not matter that I had 966 100% positive rating or that he was allowed to lower my DSR scores. Even though he never participated in the receiving of the books (to determine if item was as described), shipping time (he never paid so item was never shipped) and shipping cost (shipping label was never purchased) he got to leave negative feedback through this rating also. There are four libel statements the buyer committed with no consequences or help from Ebay.
        I do have consequences: Ebay has lowered my rate of rebate pay from 20% to 5%. I have lost the other buyers who fairly bid on this item. I have lost my 100% feedback rating that I was so proud of. One could say this is my fault. That I should not have told the truth about the transaction. Isn’t the reason that Ebay stopped sellers from leaving negative feedback is that buyers were afraid to tell the truth because of retaliatory feedback? I know, I didn’t leave negative (or positive) for a horrible seller because he always responded in kind. Under the new system I could have told the truth. That he never responded about the problem of sending the wrong size shoe (they were a 7 1/2 instead of the stated 9). I donated the shoes and never told the truth. This time I did. I am the one who paid. Not EBay and not the bouncing buyer. Sincerely Sue

        • Sue,

          Thanks for responding. I mean it … really. I almost feel like I need to change the title of my article except … I assume that reputable buyers already know how bad eBay is. I’d appreciate you thoughts on any change to the title. It seems that, if all communication between buyers and sellers is handled through the eBay site, they would know the truth behind matters and could handle disputes fairly internally which, by your description, they are totally unwilling to do.

          I would presume that nearly every eBay buyer has thoughts of becoming an eBay seller. I have. From what you and Jon (previous comment) have said people who have any sense of decency and being treated fairly should really consider very carefully whether to make that move. I appreciate your courage in selling on eBay in the environment they have created.

          As a buyer, and someone who has thought about selling on Ebay, I would like to know that eBay is going to treat me fairly and watch my back … both ways. I have no confidence that they’re doing that for anyone. Their feedback is worthless and my experience with their discussion boards is that they’re a place for eBay pimps and parasites to practice self adulation and ridicule anyone who disagrees with them.

          I understand Meg Whitman is planning on running for governor of California. If what eBay has become is supposed to be the shining example of what she can accomplish, well …

          Where I grew up, owning and operating a business was about more than making money.

          Thanks again.


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