Sellers still being banned for contact details in eBay messages

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We’re still receiving emails at Tamebay HQ about sellers being suspended for sharing contact details in eBay messages, even if it’s the buyer that sent their number.

The latest is a seller of sofas, frankly the type of purchase that you might want to examine the goods before you order. No amount of description can tell you just how comfortable (or uncomfortable!) a new sofa might be and images can’t show you how soft the leather is, how well stuffed the cushions are, or whether the arm rests are soft or hard enough for your preference. A relatively expensive purchase that you’re going to have to live with for many years deserves a bit of consideration.

Our seller, a 13 year eBay veteran, received a suspension for giving out his phone number in an eBay Best Offer to a buyer who wanted to discuss collecting the same day. Two weeks later another buyer had the audacity to send our seller their phone number through eBay messages and they received an indefinite ban. It’s worth nothing the seller didn’t ask for their phone number or in any way indicate they buyer should send it.

eBay have reinstated our seller’s account, but they’re on a final warning and have told the seller if any buyer sends their contact details through eBay messages prior to a purchase being made that the seller will be kicked off eBay forever.

It’s a bit of a ridiculous situation where a buyer can send their contact details and get a seller suspended. There’s just no way that a seller has any control of this situation. This is the part of eBay’s new enforcement policy I have most issue with – a seller can at least decide what information to send buyers but there is no way that they can prevent a buyer sending an unsolicited phone number so why are eBay suspending sellers when this happens?

We know all the arguments about keeping buyers safe and preventing them from getting ripped off when purchasing outside the safely of the eBay Buyer guarantee and PayPal protection. We’re also pretty sure that some sellers would take deals direct once a buyer was in their showroom. A happy buyer and no fees for eBay isn’t really the problem eBay are trying to solve, although doubtless they’d prefer to get their commission. The reality is however that eBay are fed up to the back teeth with stories in the press about buyers being tempted off eBay and then losing their money and the only way they can stamp this out is prevent buyers and sellers exchanging details.

Would you be happy to buy a sofa without seeing it and sitting on it first? Certainly many thousands of people do purchase sight unseen sofas on eBay, but I guess the message eBay are giving out is if you want to try before you buy then eBay is not the place for you to go shopping on.

84 Responses

  1. I had a customer from Malta enquire about shipping costs for a jacuzzi the other day. I asked Concierge how to respond as we need an address to provide a quote.

    They told me to ask the buyer to order it but not pay so we could see the buyers address.

    Farcical.

  2. Has nobody from the eBay higher ups realized how stupid this policy is?

    Personally I think they owe an apology to all sellers caught up in this, and some heads should be rolling in their policy departments as to how a policy with so many flaws can be so rigorously policed without either suitable communication to sellers beforehand, nor a facility in place to help them manage their communication needs and the needs of their customers.

    Not only that but buyers need to also be made clearly aware of this. We get buyers sending their phone numbers etc, and we just ignore them now and just end up looking rude.

  3. CS us Dublin are lost on how to answer these questions.
    We lost a £500 sale recently because we were 3 messages into dealing with a complicated enquiry about an item that a customer wanted to retro-fit to a car that they weren’t designed (or listed for) and then they sent a message saying ‘Can I call in at your warehouse and try them on my car before buying, my phone number is **** *** ******’ so we stopped communicating with the potential customer. I called CS and they read the messages and said they weren’t sure if we should respond so we didn’t.
    They buyer messaged two days later and said that because we ignored them, they bought elsewhere.
    I suggested to CS that eBay ought to implement an additional drop-down answer box that says something like ‘I’m sorry, we can’t reply to that message due to it containing information that is not allowed to be discussed on the site’ like an eBay sanctioned answer that protects the seller from bans. Fell on deaf ears I think.

  4. Whatever one says to Ebay about whatever problem created by ebay policies always falls on deaf ears ! Never once in over 15 years of selling on ebay have I had a call back by a more senior person to discuss my problems and my suggestions as to how ebay can modify their rules or computer programmes.

  5. eBay are on a slippery slope. The arrogance of their recent communications; their ever changing demands and this issue relating to not giving personal contact details, when to do so will convert the sale, suggests that they have lost sight of who they should be working with; that is to say, ‘us’ the sellers using the eBay platform. Another example worthy of ridicule are the new rules regarding ‘compliant content’. We sell sheds and garages and one of the real issues for buyers when thinking about an online purchase, is how will they install their shed; [will it be difficult; will there be problems; can they do it?] if they don’t use our installations service [which is comparatively expensive, given that sheds are easy to install if time and care is taken]. To put customers at their ease we provide videos showing how our sheds & garages are to be erected; but now, due to the new compliant content rules, we can’t show those videos and they have to be removed; and have been. As a result sales have dropped because people want and need reassuring videos to be sure that they can do the work themselves. Having spoken to eBay they say that they will be looking again at the use of videos which can be used in situations such as ours. This beggars belief. Why stop the use of them in the first place? As a result our focus has changed and we are now successfully selling on our own Shopify website. Yes we still use eBay but who knows for how long; they really have become the proverbial ‘pain in the butt’ driven by typical big corporation arrogant values. Just as with the ‘communication with clients’ issue it is all so sad and so easily avoidable.

  6. Customer the other day had an issue with their spa. They asked if we could ring them as it was complex and wondered if we could talk them through identifying if the part they were looking at was the correct one. they had put their number on the message… so we have spent several days wondering if we will be banned because of this!
    I had to reply that i couldn’t call them as it was against ebay policy to exchange details. Although if i didnt help them then ebay could and proberly would see a no sale as a subsequent off ebay sale!
    Obviosuly the damage was already done so we did call and the buyer was quite simply dumbstruck by the new policy ( which they were totally unaware of.
    Sadly this policy and it’s implementation will drive more people away from ebay as they can’t be bothered to waste time wondering what is ok and what isnt when contacting. Not to mention the angry buyers when told ‘no, we can’t call you and no you can’t call us’….
    So far my only answer has been to now say that we are unable to give out our number via ebay but if they felt that the ebay messaging service was not suitable for their enquiry then they would have to search for us via social media.

  7. In the fourth paragraph in the top story, it says “prior to a purchase” does this mean that it’s OK to send contact details after the purchase?

  8. Cheers for that Whirly, we do personalised items and sometimes the customer wants their phone number printing on the item but they normally buy first and tell us what they want printing afterwards, so that’s quite a relief!

  9. I have just been restricted from selling as customer asked if they could WhatsApp me a photo so I could advise them on the best fitting to use on a product they had already brought from me.

    I asked them to send photo through eBay. 4 hours later suspended even though I explained that I had said send through eBay and customer had already brought through eBay and they agreed,

    I can not be reinstated as I potentially tried to take the business away from Ebay.

    but they cant explain how I could do this when they had already purchased the item just wanted a little advise on the best way to fit them.

    but still suspended now on 3rd day.

  10. so ebay clearly CAN identify contact info in a message.

    seems to me the reasonable, normal thing to do, would be to prevent the sending of that message in the first place.
    we’ve seen it before “this message appears to contain contact info and can’t be sent”.

    but no, ebay will allow the message to be sent, and then blame the receiver of the message.

    they really do have nothing but contempt for sellers.

  11. I do not get this! Am I wrong? We have to provide a customer service phone number in our “Seller Details” under “Legal Information”. It is there for all to see on a Business Seller account. I have changed all my icons, listings etc to remove email or phone numbers, but it is still obtainable by customer!!???

  12. At the bottom of all my listings and probably all other sellers ebay listings is a section of info inserted by the ebay system, it’s called BUSINESS SELLER INFORMATION and gives my Company name, address, telephone number and VAT number. Surely ebay should be banning themselves for this oversight.

    I agree with James above, ebay appear to have nothing but contempt for sellers. My ebay business has gone down and down in the last few years whereas my Amazon business continues to go up with exactly the same titles and descriptions for my items. Ebay are spending too much effort on things that don’t matter instead of focusing on driving traffic to our listings.

  13. Alan, ebay are banning people when at the same time they (ebay) are displaying sellers contact details on every listing. Also you can walk into any shop in the UK to examine an item and then go any and buy it at argos, another shop, or on the internet, it’s the way the world is. All businesses lose business to their competitors, even you, I certainly do, but am I whining about it?. Also, you don’t hear Amazon whining about this problem and my contact details are also clearly displayed in the details alongside my Amazon shop. I’m not saying ebay are wrong, they’re just going about it in an unjust and wrong way. I have not personally been banned yet but I do know someone who was, he was banned for a very innocent reply to a customer message and gave no specific info about his location or contact details.

  14. I spoke with eBay on live chat (concerned by all of this) about 2 weeks ado.

    I was told specifically (as I often sell used furniture) that the customer can be messaged with ANY contact details once the sale has been accepted / won / BIN pressed.
    Also that in my description I SHOULD comment that due to new ebay rules blah blah – that they should view my “Legal Business Information” if they need to speak to me about possible delivery quotes etc. this is as I can only list as “Collection Only” and state local delivery maybe possible via quotation.

    So far (fingers crossed) so good but these stories DO NOT build any sort of confidence in offering the customer service I’m used to to my customers / potential customers.

    eBay should look into this as a matter of urgency. That being said the 2 people I spoke to stated for record that No Sellers were being banned for this sort of thing and the press is incorrect. The one claimed to have been in a meeting that morning as so many sellers were refering to it and that in the meeting they were told to ignore it as its simply the media reporting incorrectly. All bans have been for other policy breaches….. BUNKEM

  15. I just had 2 lengthy Conversations with ebay Customer Service. Even when a Sale has gone through and Payment has been made, you are no longer allowed to message and ask for complete Address Details, if some Details like House Number, Street or Town is missing on the registered Address Details. I am absolutely fuming as very often Customers do not take enough Care when completing the Address Details. So basically Customer Service has ended for me. I will just cancel any order from now on if the Address is incomplete. Thank you ebay.

  16. We need this Issue clarified in writing by ebay as I am not running the Risk of being suspended for doing nothing wrong.I have to be able to communicate with my Customers. I am so fed up.

  17. I bet Amazon are rubbing there hands over this one as buyers and sellers move across to them when they get caught up in this stupid, ridiculous situation. In the short term EBay will look at there turnover and think why has this gone down so drastically, oh that’s right we banned everybody. It must be costing them more in fee’s that are not coming in compared to off site sales that they will lose commission. They might be fed up with people being ripped of when they do sales off site but that is the customers fault for doing that in the first place. The protection is there if they want to buy on EBay otherwise you are not covered, everybody knows that.
    I think if we hear more horror stories of customers being banned we may ring EBay to find out how to turn messaging off so at least we will be safe but I can already hear the answer “sorry there is no way we can do that” which says to me as we already know that they are not bothered about the sellers on there platform. What what they will think when they have no sellers left?

  18. To Alan…I now have spoken to 3 Customer Service Reps and all confirmed that I cannot ask a customer who purchased and paid for an item to provide me with their correct Address Details if sonething is missing. I was told, I either have to send to the incomplete Address or cancel the Order and refund. So this needs to be claryfied by ebay. I also just read that a Seller had a 7 Day Restriction put on his Account by putting an Item Number into the Message as ebay’s System thought it was a Mobile Number. I do not know who is losing the Plot, but I will ask to have my Messaging Option disabled…lol.. as it seems we are not allowed to communicate basic Details anylonger. I understand what ebay tries to achieve, but Common Sense should be used. ?

  19. I had a conversation with eBay the other day and they said once they can confirm a transaction has completed you can discuss that sort of stuff I’ve done it this evening where someone needed to clarify the address. They said pre order chat gets flagged and they have a team who review the content and slap your wrists the robots only flag the keywords apparently.

  20. well ive had this message this morning along the top of my seller hub (Some of your listings have invalid product identifiers and will not be automatically renewed) check which ones in the seller growth tab

    you then click on the link and it says we dont have any?rang concierge,they have no idea why.so are my listings going to be removed when they all have valid product identifiers?honestly its one thing after another at the minute

  21. A buyer purchased a product from us nearly 11 months ago and we enclose a leaflet on how to use the product. It is a PDF and is stored on our PC. The buyer contacted us and asked if i could send the PDF to them as they had now lost it. I explained that we could not as it is a file type that does not go through ebay messages so they need to contact us via other means and we cannot tell them that but i said our details are on the item listing.
    Now 4 days later they have suspended our account claiming we are trying to transact outside of ebay.
    We spend thousands with eBay in fees and this item is £7.99 so 79p fees not once did we mention transacting and eBays policy says you can give contact details when you have transacted with a person. It does not mention any time limit. They then spouted 120 days to me on the phone and would not lift the restrictions.

    I waited till after i rang a local solicitor and local trading standards then called back armed with. UK law states we have to show all contact details in a prominent position and offer them to a customer before during and after any transaction online. The solicitor i spoke to said nowhere on ebays policy does it say 120 days for the transaction to count.

    I called back and after another 30 minutes arguing on the phone they agreed to lift the restriction.
    YOU CANNOT MAKE IT UP

  22. The bot or whatever is now picking up item numbers as potential contact numbers and giving a warning.

    I’ve been told no action is required by a ‘policy expert’ but it is alarming.

  23. I’m not sure the article is completely correct. The problem seems to be when a buyer sends you their phone number, AND you reply.

    The ‘bot picks up the number in the reply and accuses the seller of sharing numbers (and you can’t delete the original information). If you don’t reply, then you won’t be accused. I personally block buyers who send information and don’t reply (and haven’t had any issues).

    Sadly I had somebody in Germany enquiring about something the other day, and they sent me their German VAT registration number in the message. They didn’t get the courtesy of a reply and I had to block them.

    It is, of course, madness.

  24. eBay’s reaction to this problem will end up costing them 100x more than the problem. Such a hard nosed short sighted reaction will slowly destroy the face of eBay starting with the nose & then the head.

    Hey Mr Wenig…ever heard this old saying that I was taught in school? It’s universal & has been going around since 867 AD

    Cutting off the nose to spite the face” is an expression used to describe a needlessly self-destructive over-reaction to a problem: “Don’t cut off your nose to spite your face” is a warning against acting out of pique, or against pursuing revenge in a way that would damage oneself more than the object of one’s anger

  25. @ Alan Paterson.
    I am truly gratified that somebody who seems to have the ear of Herr Wennig and or other big muckyups can find the time to post here and explain to us the inner workings of eBay policy.

  26. @Alan P
    Welcome to the eBay pricelist.
    I acknowledge that eBay has a problem. The problem is greater now that FEES are higher than ever, their sponsored offerings being the latest initiative responsible for that.
    I KNOW that if I want to BUY new specialist gear or something large then I will almost invariably get a better deal by not buying it on eBay. Most sellers now have other outlets where they can be found eg own website, B&M etc. I can do all of that without eBay messages. QED.
    eBay is only a good place to SELL bulk stuff that can be heavily discounted, end of line clearance, seconds, refurbished goods and one-off second hand items.
    eBay has a problem here in Europe that it doesn’t have in the US, that of needing to display Business Seller Information.

  27. Alan,

    You keep claiming that the circumvention of fees is a far bigger problem than anyone on here is acknowledging. You may be right, but given there is no information shared by E-Bay on the topic (as far as I know), how can any of us know for sure. An alternative theory is that E-Bay is perhaps under-performing against its competitors, and getting increasingly desperate to try and shore up its figures. Who knows which is true.

    That aside, I haven’t seen people moaning about not being able to take transactions outside of E-Bay, but what I have seen is people who are dumbfounded by the crudeness of E-Bay’s approach to it.

    I understand what E-Bay are trying to do, and have no quibble with the reason behind it. What I, and many have a problem with though is that sellers can potentially have their business destroyed because a buyer contacts them with a message containing what E-Bay deem ‘contact information’, and the seller makes the mistake of replying to it, even to politely decline.

    I have always replied to messages from my customers, and long ago learned to politely refuse the occasional request for sales outside of E-Bay. Now though, I am having to ignore those messages. In the past, when I have declined the request to trade outside of E-Bay, the buyer has often made the purchase from me through E-Bay anyway. This won’t happen now because I do not answer messages that could even vaguely be construed as containing contact information.

    I don’t think it is right to assume that EVERYONE who contacts a seller before purchasing is trying to get the sale off of E-Bay, that is tarring everyone with the same brush and we all know that isn’t very fair.

    Ultimately, sellers are getting bans for simply rejecting offers to trade outside of E-Bay, so they are being banned for doing the RIGHT thing are they not ?

    Potential buyers are now being ignored which may mean they buy from another seller, or it may mean they leave E-Bay and go and buy elsewhere. Any sort of negative experience on E-Bay, regardless of the seller or reason, impacts on the buyers view of E-Bay and their probability of coming back again. How can forcing sellers to ignore buyers possibly end well for anyone ???

    In short, whilst I understand and support the issue E-Bay are trying to deal with, their approach is ham-fisted, and this is not the first occasion that E-Bay will have been accused of being ham-fisted.

  28. Alan,

    I don’t doubt that its a serious problem for E-Bay, and I am sure the fees lost would be material for them. I have no issue with them enforcing the policy at all. I think however that the ban (or whatever penalty it is) should be assessed against the party that initiated the request to transact outside of E-Bay (normally the buyer), unless the seller agrees to it, in which case it should be the seller AND the buyer who are penalised.

    So, I think we are in full agreement Alan, I think we should both take a moment to savour this occasion !! 🙂

  29. It is almost impossible for ebay to stop this as business have to display they contact information. In the category and items I sell a lot of competitor run a “business” yet are not registered as a business and list as a private seller yet all their items are very similar in the fact they are new/end of like customer returns etc. Clearly buying to sell. Most likely list when they get the final value credits so pay very little fees.

    Currently renovating my house also and been looking for salvage items and countless times come across adds showing 1 item for sale yet pictured and in the description they have multiple to sell. This ebat can control by enforcing the rules they have.

    Sales off site will continue to happen and always will when it is law that you have to display business contact information.

  30. Ebay have a Glitch at the moment , many account are getting “Your account may be restricted. Keep transactions on eBay.” at the top of the dashboard. On live chat that nothing to worry about, but there a glitch. Scared me :O

  31. @ alan paterson
    How do you know what you say is accurate? I think it’s arrogant of you to call me arrogant for having an opinion. Sure 100x MAY be exaggerated….but only eBay know the correct figures. You are guesstimating & so am I. Unless of course you know Devon Wenig personally. Which I doubt you do. You do speak like you have a photo of him on your desk though.

  32. Has anyone noticed that eBay has moved the (contact seller) link from the bottom of the description to just under the seller ID?

    For a moment I thought they had removed it completely!

  33. @Alan P
    Thank you for taking time to respond.
    By bulk stuff I mean stuff that is normally bought in bulk by the seller (to then sell on eBay), perhaps commodity would have been a better description.
    You must be a real eBayphobe to buy on eBay when you could buy cheaper elsewhere! I will give you a case in point for a prospective upcoming purchase of a specialist item.
    Checking eBay best price £233 plus £63 postage from Japan, unspecified Customs clearance and duties to pay on top.
    Best UK seller eBay price £328, ‘free’ postage. Best UK seller net price £288, £5 postage. The latter 2 are actually from the SAME seller.
    Should/will I pay an extra £35 for the ‘privilege’ of buying on eBay?
    I don’t think so!

  34. If you look at an item from a business seller on eBay Germany there is usually a huge amount of information.. Personal details, full contact inc. phone / email etc and something about an EU online dispute process.

    I doubt that German sellers do this for the fun of it and have always thought it was a STRICT legal requirement.

    I’m wondering if eBay have plans to remove all this, the cynic in me says no because I suspect that the Germans have a “Trading Standards” with teeth that would have no hesitation in hauling eBay straight into court.

    Anybody know anything??

  35. So many of you don’t seem to get it. Your business seller information is still there. Just ebay don’t want it splashed across every listing description you have. If you are shopping online at M&S for a shirt you don’t see there contact details in the description of every listing. Most retailers have a contact us option at the bottom of the page where you can email, phone write, live chat etc.

  36. It appears that buyers are receiving slapped wrists for sending contact details. My husband had an infrequent dabble on our account and inadvertently (even though I’d told him!!!) put his mobile number in as he wanted to ask a question. The message did not go through. However it turns out we are now temporarily restricted from messaging sellers. I hope that is the extent of it, as I don’t want to be ignoring my buyers! Selling account seems otherwise unaffected. Husband is in doghouse.

  37. I have been suspended from eBay indefinitely after a buyer sent me his phone number in a message!! I never asked for his phone number!

  38. We got a warning from eBay, not a suspension. Customer wanted to call us to discuss some technical aspects of the product. I messaged to say they should just use the ebay message system and give us their questions, but the following violated eBay policy:
    Violating Text: “Our number is on our contact page”

    Normally after a conversation on the phone, we tell them to click the buy button. So, in this case, no sale for us, no revenue for ebay.

    How do I feel about it?

    Well our Amazon business has doubled on the last 2 years, eBay is static, we are now selling more on our website now that we have revamped it. Why would anyone put time and effort into a marketplace like ebay where sellers are treated so abysmally. They are light years behind Amazon. Now with the sword of Damocles hanging over our heads, all my spare effort and budget is being put into promoting our website. With the huge upsurge in social media, there are just so many ways to sell nowdays, eBay just feels so yesterday.

    It is a delicious irony that eBay feels this is the right action to take against sellers it suspects are taking sales off eBay when for years, people have been using bricks and mortar stores to view products and then go and buy on eBay. The biter, bitten.

    So come on eBay, stop acting like some fascist regime, show us sellers some love and we will get behind your business.

  39. @Alan Paterson,

    You have stated (I think a couple of times via repetition/duplication), that some/alot of the sellers that have been banned, were ALREADY on a watch list? I don’t see that as particularly revealing, I see that as to be kind of expected surely?
    Ebay obviously knew who some of the problem sellers were, and have taken action.
    That’s fine. I have no problem with that.
    What I DO have a problem with, is the blanket approach they have taken, to warn/ban anyone for giving contact details BEFORE a purchase.
    And as far as sellers being banned because of buyers giving their contact info WITHOUT being prompted….. I’m sorry, but they’re completely off their rockers!
    You seem to make a lot of assumptions as to the extent of the off-ebay problem, as if you have some sort of inside knowledge that the rest of us dont?

    “On another note: my estimates (guesses) are based on projections and percentages of a cross section of the small amount of clients I have dealt with and networked over the years.”

    So, really, you’re just guessing and your ‘estimates’ may not turn out to be reliable at all, although……

    “However, I do have the blessing of finding out later that my “guesses” are usually correct.”

    Of course, it’s very easy to say on a forum like this, something like that, where you might have the pleasure of not being able to back that up with evidence.
    The fact that ebay have started this new policy isn’t necessarily evidence of anything at all (although I’m not saying that the off-ebay problem has never existed, but I am referring to the extent of it).
    It is entirely possible for large companies like ebay to make mistakes, which they appear to be making a big one now.

    On a final note, I also feel that you come close to contradicting yourself somewhat, by referring to the problem as “mammoth”, and then seemingly saying that no-one knows the extent of the problem! What does the wor ‘mammoth’ mean then?

  40. @frances knight @Dawn @kika @Geoff Mack

    This issue of phone numbers is classic eBay…they can/will act a the SPEED of light, when it’s a question of possible? risk to revenue, much in the same way as they will NOT act against shill bidders/scammers.

    A successful scam is worth 10% to ebay, yet it’s illegal in all cases, eBay & scammer/shill bidders.

  41. @Alan,

    “The reality is that my guess is often better than most sellers facts. ” – a seemingly arrogant comment to make, however I don’t know you, so can’t say further than that.
    It would seem that YOU may have been mis-interpreting my comments also, because I wasn’t ‘trying to pick holes’ in your posts, just pointing out what I thought was contradictory, that’s all.

    “If sellers understood the extent of the problem maybe it would put bays§s actions in a better perspective.”
    Even if your right, and sellers don’t understand the extent, the way that ebay seem to have approached this (sledgehammer to crack nut springs to mind), they’ve done themselves no favours whatsoever. In fact, they may have lost some sellers because of this problem (ebay might consider this acceptable damage though, who knows?).

    “I regularly send my details through Ebay messages and nothing has happened to me.” – out of interest, was that BEFORE or AFTER a sale, or both?

  42. @Alan – I’m not on here to debate whether you are or aren’t correct, or whether you are or aren’t arrogant. Frankly, I am just interested to know what people are saying about ebay, that’s all!
    Everybody has the right to a view, whether they’re wildly off the mark, or spot on.
    I can’t speak about balance, but I am interested to know exactly what’s going on, and from what I see so far, it doesn’t look good. IF what people are saying is true (which it looks like), then I think some employees at ebay need to be sacked for what seems to be going on (whether they do that though….. 🙂 )
    Putting aside your (potential) arrogance, can you answer my last question please? You seem to have missed/ignored it?

  43. @jrichie. I think thats what i am saying – there IS NO BALANCE on here. if you were to look at the general theme of sellers posting on Tamebay – you wouldn’t want to sell on ebay. ebay consistently get trashed and referred to as (among many things) “crooks”, “incompetent” , it is portrayed that they are unwilling to help – which i have always found exactly the opposite. its often painful to read. many of my clients wanted to sell on other platforms FIRST because of what they had read about ebay online. This just harms all our ebay businesses if sellers portray ebay in this manner.

    Anyway onto your question. Yes i did intentionally avoid your question because the answer could be quite dangerous. However, here goes:

    yes i have sent my details before and after the transaction has taken place on several transactions. i do not recommend that you test this. based on posts above that would be stupidity. However, i have to report that everything was fine. I can only speculate that there is perhaps a list that ebay have of sellers that they suspect have circumvented fees in the past and they are only monitoring those who they suspect? This is off course only speculation.

    I would say after my “tests” and just to be on the safe side I would not do it again. I changed my mind when i read all these posts on Tamebay. Its not worth the risk, in fear of what may happen. But it did nothing when I did it and that was before and after several transactions took place. I do not want to tempt fate, so any seller reading this please do not try this at home.

  44. I have spoken to ebay again about their possible “watch list”. It was implied to me in the past that this was the case. However, the person I spoke to at ebay either doesn’t know or cannot divulge that information.

    I have spoken to them in the past and the presence of a “watch list” was hinted at but not confirmed. Who knows. Its certainly my guess. The folk (at least partly) to blame for this are the sellers over the years who have taken the sale off ebay. Everyone also seems to be ignoring the ITV documentary of a few months ago – scammers taking transactions off site. ebay (like any business) are only reacting to these problems.

  45. @Alan – you’ll only get balance if you have a rough 50/50 ratio of people who both criticise and defend. Generally speaking, I tend to find that bad news travels faster than good news?! People aren’t very slow to respond to issues, people will complain very quickly if there is a problem. There often IS unsavoury language used by some, but you can hardly blame them, given that they are usually the ones with the problems.

    “Yes i did intentionally avoid your question because the answer could be quite dangerous.”
    I’m not trying to be funny, but if that’s your thinking, why give an answer then, especially given that you ‘intentionally’ avoided my question?
    I don’t think your fears are really justified tbf, given that many people have already given seemingly truthful examples of their circumstances that lead to them being banned, warned etc. I think you’re just trying to be too PR/politically focused about this whole issue, but that is just my opinion (and I don’t know how popular that is?).
    I will stress again, that I have no problem with ebay keeping a ‘watch list’ of people, I would never have a problem with that, in the same way that I don’t have a problem with them banning people, where they have concrete proof of blatant examples of people trying to avoid paying ebay fees. It’s their platform, technically they should have been tracking THAT one, from day one really! If they haven’t, that’s down to their ‘shoddy’ businesses practices, and some might say ‘incompetence’?!

    I wouldn’t rely too heavily on what some of the staff advise, because (from past experience) many of them clearly don’t have a clue. I would hazard a guess that you’d have to be speaking to upper management to get any REAL sense of what’s going on, and even then, they might not be entirely honest with you.

    With regards to that ITV program, I’m not convinced of it’s relevance at all, with regards to this issue, in fact, I would side pretty much with what Gav has said (certainly with regards to fee avoidance). I couldn’t tell you exactly when the program was aired, but I remember it, and it wasn’t THAT long ago, and I believe these issues cropped up long before the program even aired. I even had a feeling of dejavu about the show, although I can’t remember whether it was specified to have been a brand new program or not?
    There are many many programs on TV these days that are biased, and seem to leave out certain details, don’t tell the whole story etc etc. So much so, that I feel the public in general are well used to it!

  46. @jritchie, I can see that you are systematically trying to “pick apart” everything I write so I will enter into no more discussion. It is not constructive and I am sure people reading this thread are now finding it quite boring. This will be my last word on this thread.

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