We always welcome guest posts from our readers and today tell the story of a reader who was subjected to feedback abuse from one of their competitors.
Normally we don’t publish anonymous stories, but in this case we’ve chosen to withhold the sellers name to ensure that the parties involved can’t be identified. This in their own words is what happened:
A fellow seller seeks to damage my TRS status
I like many professional full time sellers have experienced difficult buyers and have needed to contact eBay Customer Services to seek assistance for the removal of a Feedback comment or resolution of a problem.
On each previous occasion the problem was easily identifiable and eBay provided a mechanism for resolution. Some I won and some I didn’t.
However I recently experienced a “Smiling Assassin” – a fellow seller who deliberately sought to sabotage my Detailed Seller Ratings (DSRs) by leaving three positive feedbacks along with 3 low score DSR marks for communication.
This particular seller was grief from the very beginning and it was only because I anticipated some back stabbing that I managed to identify and correct it.
The seller sells media items as do I and openly stated that were buying to resell, something I have no problem with. It appears that they had received a ‘PayPal Coupon’ and wanted to use it to purchase goods for resale. I combined 4 separate orders and sent an invoice to which the buyer replied “Sorry I thought I could use my ‘PayPal Coupon’ to pay for all the items, but it seems that I can only use it for a single item. I will send you a Postal Order by Recorded Delivery for payment.”
Firstly I only accept PayPal as a payment method and why, I asked myself, would a seller who accepts payment by PayPal not use their PayPal account regardless of any coupon.
Needless to say no Postal Order arrived and repeated requests for the Recorded Delivery tracking number were ignored. Nine emails down the line (apparently I am a poor communicator!) I had had enough and filed a non payment claim in the eBay Resolution Centre.
Payment by PayPal followed immediately.
Amongst the various emails between us this were comments from this buyer thanking me for “prompt responses and being helpful” and they left 3 positive feedback comments.
However a few days later upon checking my Dashboard I noticed a blip and my communications score had jumped up by 3 taking me close to the loss of Top Rated Seller (TRS) status.
eBay customer support
I contacted eBay Customer Services and informed the agent that I thought I had been the victim of ‘Malicious DSR scoring’ and named the person I suspected. To my surprise they confirmed the identity of this buyer!
I should point out that I was fuming angry and informed eBay Customer Services that I was quite prepared to take this buyer to the small claims court and would blog about this incident (yes I admit I used the threat of TameBay) in order to get the removal of this DSRs.
To cut a long story short after much discussion and consultation with supervisors eBay Customer Services agreed to remove the DSRs (took 36 hours to clear.)
As I previously stated I have no problem with a fellow seller purchasing and reselling my products. However when that fellow seller has TRS status and seeks to damage my TRS status with malicious DSRs and gain an advantage over me I get bloody angry.
My little example really shows the danger of anonymous DSR and the need for eBay to better police feedback and DSRs.
Once eBay removed the DSR scores I contacted the seller and told them exactly what I thought about them and they were full of apologies. Unfortunately they haven’t been suspended.
One final comment – as a regular moaner about eBay Customer Services I have to say that on this occasion they came up trumps – “Thank you, eBay Customer Services”.