Ebay Morons Galore!

January 30, 2008

Ebay to sellers: SCREW YOU … Analysis Part One (Fees)

Filed under: ebay is the moron — Tags: , , , , , , — J @ 4:27 am

I’ve spent a very large majority of my night reading and posting on various message boards about the new ebay changes. In summary, almost everything they’re changing is for the worse, in some cases, mind-boggling so. Over the next few days, I will be posting my personal detailed analysis of the changes. I was going to put it all in one post, but it was getting extremely long. I don’t think anyone wants to read a 30-page bitch session on ebay in one sitting. Today I’m going to look at the new fee structure that will go into effect on February 20.

Again, here’s the link to the official 2008 Ebay Changes Overview page: http://pages.ebay.com/sell/update08/overview/index.html

Fees are going up considerably, no matter how ebay spins it.

Anyone who disagrees either sells one item a month, or cannot do math. Listing fees have been reduced by $.05 on items with a starting bid of $.01 – 24.99, $.20 for items $25 – 49.99, $.40 for items $50 – 199.99, $.60 for items $200 – 499.99, and $.80 for items $500 and up. However, the base rate of the final value fees (FVFs) have gone up from 5.25% to 8.75% of the first $25. The gallery upgrade is also free instead of $.35 per auction. Ebay says, “You asked, we listened. We’re reducing Insertion Fees and adjusting Final Value Fees to lower your up-front cost to sell on eBay.”

I’m fairly certain that when people complained about high fees, they meant TOTAL fees, not just insertion fees. Seriously, who cares if listing fees are reduced by a nickel if FVFs are increased by 3+%? The total amount of fees is all that matters. We asked for this? Piss off, no we didn’t. Yes, ebay, charge us more, I insist! It’s nice that gallery is free now, but it still doesn’t make up the difference. I’ve taken a look at some common scenarios I run into on a daily basis and here is the math:

Item starting at 9.99, ends at 17:

CURRENT FEES:

listing fee: .40
gallery: .35
FVF: .89

total: $1.64

FUTURE FEES:

listing fee: .35
gallery: free
FVF: 1.49

total: $1.84

Difference: $.20

Item starting at 24.99, ends at 32:

CURRENT FEES:

listing fee: .60
gallery: .35
FVF: 1.31 + .23 = 1.54

total: $2.49

FUTURE FEES:

listing fee: .55
gallery: free
FVF: 2.19 + .25 = 2.44

total: $2.99

Difference: $.50

Item starting at .01, ends at $80:

CURRENT FEES:

listing fee: .20
gallery: .35
FVF: 1.31 + 1.79 = 3.10

total: $3.65

FUTURE FEES:

listing fee: .15
gallery: free
FVF: 2.19 + 1.93 = 4.12

total: $4.27

Difference: $.62

For me, it seems my total fees will be going up around $.50-.60 per auction. I know that doesn’t sound like much, but multiply that by 50, or even 100, and that is a good chunk of change lost per month. I’m simply going to have to raise my shipping/handling fees by $.50 on Feb 20.

The only new fee scenario that doesn’t conclude with a net loss is this:

Item starting at .01, ends at $1:

CURRENT FEES:

listing fee: .20
gallery: .35
FVF: .05

total: $.60

FUTURE FEES:

listing fee: .15
gallery: free
FVF: .09

total: $.24

Difference: -$.36

So essentially, whenever you list an item for under a buck, and it sells for around that amount, it ends up being cheaper under the new system, mostly because gallery is free now. I don’t even know if you would have used gallery in the first place for a $1 item, so in that case, the difference is zero.

The free gallery also spells the end of the usefulness of the Value Pack (gallery, subtitle and the worthless listing designer for $.65). Ebay is still keeping it around, in a modified, insignificant form. It will stay with the subtitle and listing designer, but instead of gallery, it will come with gallery plus, which is somehow more unessential than listing designer. Subtitles are handy, but if I really need one, I’ll just pay the fifty cents.

I’ve never included a reserve price on any of my auctions, but ebay is really doing their best to get rid of these completely, because they’re doubling the reserve fee *again* to $2. Also, this fee is now non-refundable, while under the old system, if the item met the reserve price, you were refunded the reserve fee. Honestly, it’s hard to care about this one, because reserve prices are pretty damn useless.

I also don’t run an ebay store, but those fees are going up too. The base rate FVF is now 12%! That’s insane. They just raised the FVFs for store items to 10% about a year and a half ago. It’s simply not worth running a store over listing items manually, the “normal” way. Gallery for store listings will be free now, but they were only a penny to begin with, so big freakin’ deal.

Interestingly enough, when the changes go into effect, you won’t be able to set up a fixed-price or store listing for $.99 or less. Again, this is another new “feature” that doesn’t affect me personally, but what about people who rely on a steady stream of low-priced items, like sports card dealers? They’re screwed, simply put. This also hurts buyers who are looking for specific, individual, common cards. Who’s going to list that Neil Lomax rookie card now? These card dealers aren’t going to waste their time listing and re-listing thousands of relatively worthless cards every week. It was only worth the time and effort when you could post each card once per year and maybe sell one or two over that span.

Tomorrow I’ll look at the new feedback changes and what they mean for sellers. (Spoiler alert: it fucking sucks)

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January 29, 2008

Ebay to sellers: SCREW YOU

Filed under: ebay is the moron — Tags: , , , , , — J @ 7:37 pm

Ebay just released major changes that will go into effect sometime in the next few months, most of them horrible for small-to-mid-range sellers, including higher fees and the inability to leave negative or neutral feedback to buyers. This is actually making headlines and it was one of the lead stories on cnn.com.

Everything can be found right here: http://pages.ebay.com/sell/update08/overview/index.html

I’ll write more about this later and in great detail. Fuck.

January 15, 2008

On second thought, maybe I should quit accepting mailed payments…

I’ve had a lot of problems with mailed payments recently. Normally I prefer them, since there’s no Paypal fees and no real threat of chargeback. I see a lot of sellers worried about bounced checks, but that’s never happened to me, and I’ve accepted hundreds of personal checks over the years. Obviously money orders are okay, since the money is guaranteed.

I’ve already shown you the woman who underpaid via money order (even though she included the total 3-4 times) a few posts back. I emailed her, she apologized and said she’d send the rest of the money. She never did, but I sent the item anyway because $2 isn’t going to make anyone richer or poorer.

Now I’m getting more and more people who just send money with no information whatsoever. I clearly say in my item description, shipping details, and automatic invoice that if you do not include exactly what you won with your full name and shipping address, I can’t possibly be expected to ship. I refuse to mail a package in a situation where I’m not 100% confident that the name/address is accurate and that it will arrive.

If I just get $30 cash in the mail with only a scribbled return address, this does me no good. Same with blank money orders for a common amount. $24.99 + $8 shipping for a total of $32.99 is a very common payment amount and doesn’t help me find what item you won. If the total is $43.81, I might be able to find who you are because that’s an unusual amount that stands out. You know what I mean. If a buyer includes their name, I can search my email because their name shows up in the ebay “Your Item Sold!” email. This obviously doesn’t work when they pay with a business check when the account is registered to a single person and vice versa.

Like every other kind of ebay nonsense, the holidays are the worst time for this. People just mail checks and are apparently too busy to say who they are and what they won. So I deposit the payment, write down whatever information is given, email the buyer if possible, and simply wait for the buyer to get back in touch with me. I had a nice stack of four payments a few weeks ago with literally no contact/ebay info to work from, which is a personal best for “on-hold” payments at a time.

This reached a new level of absurdity last week when a buyer opened an “Item Not Received” ebay dispute. I asked them in the Dispute Console for their name, shipping address, how/if they paid, and so on to see if they matched one of my “on-hold” payments. After a quick email search, it turns out I emailed this user 4-5 times to verify basic information, because the handwriting was beyond sloppy, they wanted the item shipped to a friend’s address but didn’t make it clear exactly which address belonged to the friend, and they didn’t say what item it was. They never responded, and in the Dispute Console, they said they never received any emails from me.

Essentially, I had a personal check from a person with a dead email address who wasn’t the buyer, didn’t say what they won, and didn’t make it clear where I should mail this mystery item. Clearly this is my fault.

They flipped out in the Dispute Console and finally, everything was sorted out and all the necessary information was given to me. Apparently this was a birthday gift, which might be a bit late, since the auction ended November 17.

It’s times like this I wish everyone just paid with Paypal.

January 4, 2008

New Year, Same Ol’ Nutjobs

Here’s some fun emails I’ve received over the last few weeks. I know the holidays make some people a little crazy, but this is too much. Morons in red, emailed replies in blue, ass-kicking commentary in black, MAGIC BONUS TEXT in purple.

I made an offer on this item, you accepted. then you never followed thru. that is terrible Ebay practice. I was hoping to give that jersey to my son for christmas. Thanks for nothing. I am going to report to ebay about your practices.

I read that email and I thought to myself, “Holy shit, did I forget to mail something?” I actually do try to get items mailed ASAP during December and my way of record-keeping makes forgotten shipments a thing of the past. I looked up their username and found that they never actually bought anything from me.

What happened was they wanted an item that didn’t sell, they made an offer, I said sure, “pay and I’ll ship tomorrow,” and that was the last I heard from them. Clearly this is my fault. Also this email was sent on Dec 18, which is still a full week before Christmas Day. I sent them another invoice and again, nothing.

Uh oh, I better watch out because they are going to report me to ebay for not shipping an item they didn’t win or pay for. I’m on the bad seller train, first stop: Suspension Town.

Let’s not forget that the item in question was a dirty Drew Brees Chargers jersey, who hasn’t played for that team in quite some time. What a shitty gift. I did that kid a favor.



Hi it has been 20 days since I have paid you for this jersey, where is it and why is your shipping so fucking slow???

I am going to basically leave you a negative now because the shipping is so damn slow, thanks anyhow.

What is the matter with you? I mailed the jersey the day after you paid via International Priority Mail, which is the fastest way to Canada, aside from EMS, which would have cost you $40. It’s the holiday season and the mail can take anywhere from a week to a month. I do not work for Canada Post and I am not your mailman, so what do you want me to tell you?

You know, as much as I hate receiving shipping status emails, I hate snarky, passive-aggressive bullshit like this even more. You’re “basically” going to leave me a neg? Just how would that work?

I love the “your shipping is slow” line too. People have to know that once a seller drops off an item at the post office, it’s physically and figuratively out of their hands, right? Right…? Oh god they don’t.



Hey Mario,

Any progress on closing the auction so I can pay you?

Thank, Tom

Who the hell is Mario and why should I thank Tom?



i not griping but why no confirmation

This email isn’t taken out of context. They bought an item, paid, and the next day I see that in my inbox out of nowhere. What?



Email Subject: just tracking down my order
if and when you send it out i want to no so i can leave feed back

“If” I send it out? Wow, I didn’t know that was an acceptable option. This makes sense, though, because I suppose if you’re the kind of person that can’t spell “know” and “feedback,” you’re used to losing money left and right.



The Quebec Rafales were NOT the ancien Nordiques. Check your infos before posting those errors. The Rafales were in the IHL.
– crj50

Where do I say that the Rafales are the Nordiques? Learn how to read an item description.

Let me just check my “infos” to make sure. Direct from my item description:

“Up for auction today is one Quebec Rafales #15 hockey jersey, size adult large. 100% heavy polyester. This jersey is brand new and has never been worn. The Rafales only existed for two seasons (1996-98, both in the IHL), so their jerseys are impossible to find today in new condition, especially in adult sizes!”

Oh, and there are also two huge photos of the jersey. How dare I deceive these innocent customers who think they’re bidding on an “ancien” Nordiques jersey!

December 17, 2007

A late entry for the Dumbest Buyer ’07 Award

I just got home from my real job (sadly, ebay doesn’t pay all the bills) and I just went through my mail, which included some mailed payments. Great. I love these. No Paypal fees and no threat of a chargeback. It’s also pretty tough to screw up. Well, you’d think so at least.

Someone just underpaid by $1.99, while also including a two-page printout of the invoice and the item page, which had the correct total three times. How does this happen?

money order

I don’t even care about the two bucks. It’s too little an amount to make her mail another payment, but big enough where it’s clearly noticeable and annoying. I seriously want to know exactly how this happens. I’ve had people purchase the wrong money order amount, but they’ve always included the remainder with payment.

I emailed the woman and I guess we’ll see what she says.

December 15, 2007

I hate these people

So far, I’ve only really posted minor morons; the ones you can just laugh off. Their mistakes are relatively harmless in the grand scheme of things and they’re easy to poke fun at with a smile.

However, the users I’m featuring today are absolute scum. They are worthless and they piss me off. I hate them and I think they should be banned from ebay and the rest of the internet. They don’t read, they have a bad attitude, and they make life miserable for good sellers.

First there’s this asshole who has the reading comprehension skills of a retarded dolphin. He recently won a Willis McGahee youth jersey from me, but minutes before the auction ended, he emailed to say he wanted to cancel the bid. Well, why not just retract it? You’re allowed to. You don’t need to ask my permission. Of course I wasn’t there, so he ended up winning, then a few days later I see this:

I emailed you before this ended and was still wondering if we can more or less pretend this never happened. I don’t know how it would work, just pretend it was paid and you keep the item or there is a way to cancle the sale? Any response would be pretty helpful. The reason I no longer want to purchase this item is the fact that it is a Youth size and not an adult.

More or less pretend this never happened? Pretend it was paid? “Cancle” the sale? Keep the item? Any response would be helpful? Ok, here’s a response. Die in a ditch you illiterate fool. Is that pretty helpful enough?

You thought it was an adult? How is this possible? Let’s look at the title, item details and item description:

title item desc/details

Clearly this is an adult jersey. I mean, why bother reading the title, item details or item description when you can just look at all the perty picshurs and bid away, drooling like a mongoloid. Not surprisingly, this guy’s address was a frat at Pitt University. Have you ever met anyone of any value to society who lived in a frathouse?

Here’s someone who’s somehow stupider. Check out this amazing combination of dipshit logic and first-grade writing ability:

Yes Iwas trying to pay for the item that I won and my computer went out so instead I purchased your second item. What do I need to doin order to un due this transaction?

In English, I think this woman is trying to say, “I bought an item from you and I was about to pay with Paypal, but my library dial-up connection died, so I bought another, different item from you because I’m an imbicile who has no idea what she’s doing on the internet. I am bottom-feeding filth that embodies everything wrong with this country. Go Yankees!”

I mean, really. I understand that not everyone is going to be a computer expert, but this doesn’t even make sense. Whenever I need to know the point of view of the computer sub-novice, I ask my mom. I brought up the situation and even she thinks this moron is beyond dense. Way to set a new standard of stupidity. I didn’t think it was possible.

This last loser is a wonderful combination of stupid, naive, cheap, and opinionated. What a winner. In a nutshell, this guy bought an item and never paid during the course of 2+ weeks, so I filed a non-paying bidder dispute. He then emailed to ask what size the jersey he bought was. What the hell is that? Just look at the damn auction. Like my friend and fellow seller Dave says, if you don’t believe the auction, why would you believe the email? Stupid questions are insta-deleted.

I waited another week, sent him another Paypal invoice, but nothing. I closed the dispute and negged him. A week later, I start receiving stupid emails from him. Here they are, in order, him in red, me in blue. It’s pretty self-explanitory.

one thing i dont appreciate the feedback you left on my feedback area, i emailed you twice asking you what size the jersey was and you never responded not even once, oh but how quick you are to respond you not getting your money.

You asked AFTER you already won. At that point, it doesn’t matter what size the jersey is. You are bound to buy it, because you bid and won. If there was any confusion, you should have asked before you bid. Stop passing the buck. It’s pathetic.

no the point was and is i was still going to buy it no matter the size but u have you head so far up god knows where you dont see it that is why i refused to pay MORON. learn to communicate when your customers and maybe youd understand.

Bullshit. If you didn’t care about the size, you would have paid and been happy with the jersey in either size. Stop making up logically faulty excuses for why you didn’t pay. You sound like a child.

no im not making excuses the point is if you are a seller and the buyer no matter if the bid is over has a question. you should answer it, very simple, all you care about it the money who cares about the buyer as long as i get my money, but whats done is done, no sense arguing over this esp. with someone like you a seller who doesnt know how to sell properly and list the right sizes on his listings Mr “ive been doing this since 1998!” if you would have responded to my email you would have gotten your money very easily, it about the customer not the seller!! get it? good luck with the rest “business”

Thanks for the naive and hilariously incorrect opinions. I filed them under “Worthless” for future reference. Keep selling video games for 25% of their ebay value and have a nice life.

Oh, this is another one of those guys who is confused by stock photos and stock photo disclaimers, just like these jerks. That’s what he means when he says I don’t “know how to sell properly.” He sells around one item a month, very poorly, usually a video game system, always for far less than its actual value. What a tool. I’m sick of these worthless cretins. Until next time…

November 28, 2007

Stupid shit people have included with their Paypal payment

Paypal sucks and we all know that already, but they do make a pretty good job of making things easy for buyers. Once your account is set up, all it takes is a few mouse clicks to pay for an ebay item. They’ve even fixed the combined shipping problem which used to be a hassle for years. However, dumb people still screw things up and people put some really stupid crap in the “Note to Seller” section. Their text is in red; I am in black.

Note to seller:
If possible please use as return address: Ultimate Sports Enterprises P.O. Box XXXXX YYYYY, OH 44ZZZ

What? Why would I want to give someone else credit? The jersey came from me, not some crappy company from Ohio. Let’s look them up.

Wonderful. It’s a second-rate Yahoo sporting goods store. Anyone up for KC Royals Tailgating Merchandise? Do people tailgate for baseball games to begin with?

I also did a whois search on their domain, and the name registered didn’t match the name that bought the jersey, even though the Paypal email was an admin account from the domain. What does it all mean? Hell if I know.

Literally minutes later, I receive another payment with this stupid note attached:

Note to seller:
DO NOT OPEN GATE..RING BELL ON GATE

I guess I’m delivering this one myself. Who’s up for a road trip to Liverpool, NY?

Here’s another one that reminds me of the return address loser above:

Note to seller:
If possible, include a gift card saying:  Happy Belated Birthday, enjoy!.  Love, T,M,Z&G.

There is absolutely no way that is happening. I’m an ebay seller, not the museum gift shop. I really hope Derek enjoyed his unlicensed Trinidad 2006 World Cup jersey, even though it was late. It’s a shitty gift made worse, because it took four people to come up with it. If four of my friends or family members came together to get me cheap bootleg garbage, I’d be pissed.

The last one for today happened a while ago, but it’s still hilarious and the ultimate standard of Note to Seller stupidity:

Note to seller:
Hi! Sorry about the delay! Here is payment for the above, plus some suggestions for preparation and packaging: If necesary to fold, PLEASE do so in manner so as NOT to crease screenprinted lettering/logos; then CAREFULLY envelop in tissue or wrap (NO TAPE) to ensure against dust, fingerprints, staining, snags, stretching, or tears to garment; and finally, place between TWO appropriate sized backing boards to keep sturdy, flat, and again to avoid ANY markings, pinholes, pilling, discoloration, deformation or rips. If any tags, keep INTACT and ATTACHED, preventing these from folds or edge fraying as well. I appreciate the throughness and added precautions, as I do like my collectibles to arrive in PRISTINE condition. A heavy duty reinforced mailer, or box with bubble wrap for cushioning, and to keep jostling/shifting minimal would be great to. Let me know funds received and order being readied at jpXXXXX@yahoo.com or ebay. Hope you are well and enjoying the Summer! JP

Are you kidding me? He won some old dirty Toronto Blue Jays jersey and he wants it wrapped in tissue paper and sandwiched by cardboard? Yeah, I’d hate to get fingerprints on your jersey. Eat a bag of dicks. Who has time for that? You didn’t win an autographed Ben Franklin 8×10, you won something a fat guy sweat in and probably spilled mustard on. I folded it and threw it in a brown 9×12 envelope like I do for all other transactions and I later received a positive feedback. I guess he was joking.

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