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Old 2007-11-01, 20:45   #1
ewmayer's Avatar
Sep 2002
República de California

266128 Posts
Default The Weird, Wacky World of eBay Feedback

My sister has a set of Riedel Chardonnay glasses on her Christmas wish list. First place that came up in Google search was, which sells a set of 6 for $96, with free shipping. Not bad, but still not eaxctly cheap, either.

Looking at other sellers' prices for same and similar items, it seems like prices are also very uniform from seller to seller for these - a classic sign of price collusion. ;)

So of course I also check eBay, where most sellers' prices are no better than amazon's [and usually wind up being worse once S&H is added], but one seller was offering a good deal:

I was all ready to send the above seller an e-mail asking about ordering multiple sets-of-2 and combined shipping, when I noticed the Feedback Score of 73.8% Positive. [For those who don't use eBay - anything less than high-90s is a massive red flag]. Digging deeper, there's a very interesting trend in the Seller's feedback history - I present it here in the reverse order from what eBay shows it you, i.e. starting with the early and finishing with the latest:

Page 4 [03 Sep - 16 Sep 2007]: 7 Positive, 0 Neutral, 0 Negative:

Page 3 [17 Sep - 28 Sep 2007]: 23 Positive, 0 Neutral, 2 Negative:

Page 2 [29 Sep - 10 Oct 2007]: 19 Positive, 1 Neutral, 5 Negative:

Page 1 [11 Oct - 31 Oct 2007]: 10 Positive, 1 Neutral, 14 Negative(!):

In particular check out the feedback comments on the last page [Page 1] ... ouch. Even more interestingly, if you look closely, many of the "positives" are really not so great, along the lines of "not as advertised, after much frustration and wasted time, seller refunded money - great! Two thumbs up!! Would have my time wasted again!!!"

Actual examples of this masochistic approach:

"Open box not disclosed. Fast shipping. Great buy. Overall good transaction."

"Unit was a refurb not new but still a good over all transaction"

"Used was sold as new, but seller refunded all moneys. Satisfied buyer." - So you're happy that your time was wasted?

"wasn't new and didn't it fixed still ok deal" - Uh, most of call that ‘dumpster diving’, but hey, if you want to pay for the privilege...

"Item as described, very, very slow shipping...... but everything OK" - except for the grindingly slow shipping and the wasted e-mails that probably led to.

"Quick shipping...I broke it trying to fix it. My bad. Thanks!" - Uh, unless it was advertised as a fix-it-yourselfer, it arriving broken is usually considered a *bad* thing.

"Item came damaged however i was able to get a full refund, thank you." - Once again, thank you so very much for wasting my time!

"Haven't tried it yet, but sure looks nice, A+++" - That's right, you bought your 'Euro Pro Convection Toaster Oven' strictly for its *looks*
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Old 2007-11-01, 20:59   #2
Xyzzy's Avatar
Aug 2002

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Old 2007-11-02, 04:21   #3
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Oct 2006
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