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Letters to Nowhere

Sunday, August 28, 2005

The PayPal / Ebay saga..

On May 21st I bought a gown off of Ebay. On June 21st after numerous attempts to get the seller to respond to me I filed a "buyers protection" claim as the gown was not finished. TWO months later I was 'refunded' minus a processing fee that was never disclosed when I filed the complaint.

Yesterday I got this:

Dear Red Clover,

We understand that you may have initiated a dispute with a seller recently. We appreciate your cooperation during this process.

As part of PayPal's Commitment to excellence, we would like to ask you to take just a few minutes to answer questions regarding PayPal's dispute resolution process.

It was like Christmas came early. HELL YEAH I wanted to fill out a survey.

It had the usual fill in the circle somewhat satisfied, neither satisfied nor dissatisfied bubbles.

It also had 4 sections to free form in your thoughts on the process. Here is my letter to PayPal / Ebay.


I offered, in my original complaint, to send in photos of the garment to support my claim. Instead, I had to go through the hassle of finding someone who would write a letter stating that the garment was not finished (which would have been obvious in photos). The added expense and hassle alone will prevent me from trusting Ebay or Paypal with any transaction of more than a few dollars in the future.

The fact that it took two months to the DAY, combined with the above, gave me the impression that it was a willful attempt to make the process clumsy and drawn out in hopes of avoiding having to refund the monies I was due. The seller’s deadline to acknowledge of receipt of the returned goods expired two weeks before any other action was taken by PayPal.

As an added and dissatisfying surprise there was a $25 processing fee. When I initially tried to file my complaint with Ebay I was immediately directed to PayPal since they had collected the money. Paypal made no mention of any “service fee” until the claim had been resolved. When I followed the link of explanation I was sent back to Ebay. This waffling between parts of, what is in reality, the same company reinforced the feeling of intentional disinterest/misdirection. It is Ebay’s policy to charge a fee, but it wasn’t Ebay who handled my dispute as Ebay made forcefully clear when I tried to start the claim. That information should have been available on Paypals site as well. *Note: Your policy on processing fees changed with in 5 days of my complaint. In the event of a recent change in policy there should be a notification.

If anyone should have had to pay this fee it should have been the seller. I did not do anything wrong. I did not deceive a customer in regards to my product. It was adding insult to injury that I had to pay out of pocket to return the garment. In my opinion she should have had to pay any processing fees, as she was the one at fault.

My dissatisfaction in all areas of the complaint process will assure that I never use Ebay or Paypal for any transaction I deem important or of any real monetary value.


I doubt it will do any good.. But hey. Also if you use Ebay for purchases you might want to check out their "buyers protection" policy. Long story short.. if it costs more than $10 - $15, I wont be using Ebay.


  • i try not to use ebay at all unless the seller has impeccable ratings. and then only for things that shouldn't have too much value...

    no milk please

    By Blogger no milk, at 12:05 AM  

  • Do blog bots love you or what??

    By Blogger Amanda, at 1:39 AM  

  • I swear it's a keyword thing.. I deleted 6 of them off this post..

    By Blogger Red Clover, at 7:11 AM  

  • Consumer Affairs Online is collecting complaints on PayPal. There is even a PayPalSucks.com. Apparently Ebay has a history of pissing people off, and then shrugging them off.

    I hope you find the perfect gown.

    By Blogger Justice, at 2:47 PM  

  • Quite some of you are correct about paypal: paypal is a private company who dictates the term in the contract. We the sucker sign up, and we subject ourselves to their mercy, all because we think it's a cheaper alternative to bank wire or western union.

    To share my experience with you: A year ago, I sold a wallet on ebay. It's shipped and all, but after the buyer received the item, he turned around and made a claim on me (on ebay and paypal) asking me for a refund. I told him to return the wallet, and I'll refund. Then he disappeared on me, leaving the dispute unresolved. Since that account became unusable (for situations like this, paypal DOES NOT provide me as a seller any recourse to dispute false claims like that), I opened another paypal account to send money to someone, and I transferred in $1600 (into A$). After the account was opened, paypal let me put money in, but then turned around and told me they found a match of names/addresses of the previous and the new accounts. So, now, BOTH accounts were suspended. I can't get the money back (it was fortunate the recipient had withdrawn half of the funds transferred). You can't imagine how many emails I had with paypal back-and-forth on how I can get my money back. At the last count, paypal said to me, I have to wait SIX MONTHS and they'll release the money back to my linked bank account. And I CANNOT CLOSE any of these 2 accounts.

    Naturally I stopped using paypal completely. I'm posting to all blogs that I can find about paypal.

    Oh, by the way, for those tens of million accounts/users that paypal claims it has, 2 of those are mine, and they wouldn't let me close them. I wonder how many out there are like me.

    One last thing: Oftentimes, corporates deliberately make the terms vague, to catch-all. But basically, yes, they can screw you over, and eat your lunch in a heartbeat.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:55 PM  

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