1. It is the seller's responsibility to make sure the item is received in the described condition by the buyer. The buyer is under no obligation to buy insurance, the buyer cannot file a claim for shipping damage.
2. Always check a seller's feedback on http://www.toolhaus.org/cgi-bin/negs and read the negs and neutrals. Be especially critical of how the seller responds. (Note the seller's responses in this case, often times calling buyers names, and otherwise trying to blame the buyer!)
3. Always file a SNAD (that's Significantly Not As Described) with eBay/PayPal.
4. Always pay with PayPal and a credit card. Never by money order or check. Do not deal with sellers who don't accept PayPal.
5. Always clarify terms like “WORKS ALL THE WAY"... That is some meaningless verbiage, it says nothing. It would possibly limit your ability to claim SNAD (probably not in this case, but always ask, never assume anything.)
6. Always keep all communications through eBay. If the seller sends a non-eBay message to you, simply go back to eBay's message system and send a followup: "I'm sorry, but I've not received a reply from you, please be sure you reply through eBay's messaging system, as email is not reliable."
7. If there is any dispute, do full screen captures of all the eBay page(s) for the listing! That way if for some reason the item's page is deleted, you still have a record of what was displayed when you bought it.
I am a major eBay seller (not huge, but big enough). I have 100% feedback, and I can assure you that there is little or no reason for a seller to have less than perfect feedback scores. The seller in question has some really bad feedback. (Yes, it is possible for even the best seller to get one negative, but read the comments in that case--you'll probably see something like "full refund given" or whatever action was necessary to satisfy the buyer.
The great majority of eBay sales go very smoothly and generally all parties are happy.
I agree with all of that with the possible exception of #4..... There are still many very honest people out there that still haven't signed up with PayPal for any number of reasons. If their feedback checks out OK, they are probaly safe to deal with. Even though I do accpet PayPal payments, and did long before they changed to the "PayPal Only" policy, I would still prefer to accept a check or Money Order with a short waiting period for check clearance, than to keep paying the rediculas PayPal fees. PayPal does open up a seller to a wider market and payments are instant so items should ship the same day or the very next business day, but there are still benefits to the "other" payment methods.
I too have 100% Positive as a seller, and if anyone were to check me out (otto-dude) on Toolhaus they would find that the Only Negatives I got as a buyer were retallitory negs from other sellers that abused the system, which is why sellers can no longer leave negative feedback for buyers even if it's a non paying buyer. And that's the reason why so many of them are now resorting to filing the phony non paying bidder strikes against buyers trying to block them from being able to leave the seller the negative they deserve.
One of the absolute worst offenders I have ever found (yet) on eBay was ohojim , who went into hiding for over a year and in the process changed his user ID to rockislandharbor and now is going by simple_how_to_manuals ... Look him up on www.Toolhaus.org and prepare to be shocked by how many PAGES of negatives he has against him. He's gone through a couple name changes trying to hide from previous customers, went into hiding for over a year so he now has 100% positive, and after he 'buys' a few more items to finish filling up the short 25 item per page feedback he will likely start selling again. One of his latest 'purchases' was a book telling him how to use certain keywords and descriptions to 'trigger' impulse buys from people that don't really have any interest in what he's listing. He's getting ready to start up again. You have to look him up under his most recent user ID or it comes up as Invalid, but he currently has 326 Neg 239 Neutral and 28 withdrawn feedback, not to mention the several hundred that he got blocked by filing phony non paying bidder strikes. I thought he had many more Negs than that, but with my slow dial up connection, my computer 'timed out' on me and those were the numbers that showed up in the time frame allowed, they may be accurate(?) or they may show even higher. When I was tracking him prior to knowing about Toolhaus, I thought he was approaching the thousand negative mark.
Hope this does not scare off any future E bayer The seller was a jerk and there are a few on E bay. As a seller I try to treat every customer like I would like to be treated I have learned to pack thing much better than when I first started selling saves a lot of hassle down the road and makes me feel good when I get a comment how good it was packed it should not matter what it sold for everyone likes a good deal and if you do your research you should know what things sell for unfortunately I see a lot of people that list things for crazy prices just makes you laugh I have questioned a few people trying to help them out so they don't waste fees some get quite indignant you think they would do a simple item search before they list something. well that my little input glad it work out for you to bad you had to go through all that hassle Tony K
Thanks again to y’all who have posted. I’ve received other broken things in the past and dealt with it; for some reason I though this time I’d start this thread.
I will say that the experience has changed my attitude a bit in regard to purchasing items on eBay. I used to send money orders off to almost all my sellers, some for fairly large sums, without a second thought; and I’ve never been “stuck” with paying for something this way I didn’t receive. I’ve found all my sellers to be very honest in this regard. If I were a seller, I think I would appreciate getting a money order and not have to put up with the PayPal fees.
I’ve come to realize that I’m probably living on borrowed time with this though, especially for a seller with whom I haven’t done business in the past. I realize that there is nothing that I, as a buyer, can do if I pay with a money order and the seller doesn’t ship; and eBay certainly won’t help me.
This event is causing me to be somewhat more cautious. I think I’m going to do a lot more buying with PayPal than I have in the past, even though I despise pounding on the credit card and paying the credit card bill come month end.