The Daily Mail reports that an eBay buyer is being sued by a seller for whom he left negative feedback. Chris Read bought a mobile phone described as being in good condition, but when he received it, he says it was both damaged, and not the model he ordered. He left negative feedback for his seller, and assumed that would be the end of the matter. But he’s now received a letter informing him that if he doesn’t retract his comments, he will be sued for libel.
The seller told reporters that he’d given the buyer a no-quibble refund: “surely that is great customer service and deserves positive feedback.” It’s not quite clear whether the refund was before or after the feedback: the buyer commented that it “took a while to come through”.
Earlier this year, a seller in the US tried to sue a buyer for leaving neutral feedback, though the judge in the case threw it out. But as Mr Read’s seller says he has been disadvantaged in search results due to this negative feedback – and with 2 negs out of 30 feedback in the last month, that would sound right – feedback really does now have the power to damage someone’s livelihood. I think we’ll be seeing a few more of these cases in the very near future.