I have come to have a great respect for the SirSteves Guide Community. It is in defference to this fact that I now post the following thread. For the second time in the last two years, eBay has proven that they have no concept of customer service, nor do they have any desire to seek after as much. They have simply grown so large that they have become a faceless and monolithic entity, secure in the knowledge that the loss of one or two customers here and there will be as nothing to the droves that arrive daily based solely on thier current reputation.
I will begin with the most recent incident and follow iwth the pror one, as the most recent is very fresh in my mind. I will thien follow with the second, from last year, as the former reflects a lack of respect on eBay's part for their sellers, the latter the same in regard to buyers.
I spent last weekend (off and on) posting about 30 different auctions. As I post from time to time on eBay, I had long ago created a statement of shpping charge and payment instructions that I could cut and paste to speed up the posting process. Within this statement was an invitation to buyers to send me a want list of any items they may be seeking as I may have them available. This statement had appeared on over 100 prior auctions, possibly as many as 300. It appears that said statment is considered "circumvnting eBay fees" in the eyes of the auction giant. This is as may be, and I fully respect eBay's right to set such policy and duly enforce it as well, such is thier right. However, they simply cancelled all of my auctions sumarrily with no prior notice, thusly erradicating all evidence of thier existance from my account history. The end result is that I must now remake hours of previous work when a simple notice via email from eBay would have served the same purpose as I could have easily revised each of the auctions removing the unauthorized statement. That eBay favors a kind of ham-fisted, push-button approach to correcting perceived slights illustrates their total lack of interest in maintaining favorable customer relations.
Now, to show their lack of regard for buyers, I will recount a tale of a near rip-off that I nearly suffered. Last year I came upon an auction for all five of the Riddell Star Wars Mini-Helmets. Needless to say, I won the auction, sent my payment and awaited the arrival of my helmets. Two weeks passed and nothing, so I wrote the seller who replied that the helmets were being sent. To make a long story short, soon the seller proved unreachable by email and had since been removed from eBay as a seller due to excessive negative feedback. I sought to exercise eBay's proported insurance of all auctions. If you have never had to utilize this so-called service, count yourself lucky. You cannot file a claim until 30 days after the auction closes, and then you can only do so after you have registered a complaint to eBay about the seller and an additional 30 days have passed. So, roughly 60 days after the auction ended, I finally posted my claim on their fraud insurance offer. However, when I did, I was told that I did not file the claim in time, within 60 days of auction close. In other words, I was told that I could not file a claim until after 60 days had passed, yet I could not file a claim after 60 days! After running the gauntlet of links that one must navigate to find the well hidden email link to eBay's customer service department, I wrote asking eBay if they truly had the insurance coverage the web site touts. The reply was a form letter with links to various FAQ pages and general information that I had already read. Again, eBay encorporates a simple "push-button" policy, favoring form letter replies over addressing the issues at hand. My hightly detailed email (and those of you who have read my posts in the past know how concise I can be when I want to make a point) was read and promptly ignored. The customer service representative charged with fielding my complaint simply zeroed in on some portion of my email that would be addressed instantly by directing me to pages on thier site that I already knew intimatly. It took an additional email to get a response from someone who could not only read the English language, but comprehend the meaining of the words. What followed was a correspondence that ultimatly revealed that the time limit for filing a fraud claim (monitarily) was in fact 90 days (or within 30 days of the point wheere fling said claim was allowed). However, eBay's delay tactics put me within 2 days of missing the deadline! And I was forced to mail in documents via next-day mail to meet the deadline. And then it was almost 30 days more before eBay wrote to confirm that the claim was processed and approved and they needed only to confirm that I was still without my purchased items. As luck would have it, exactly 95 days after the auction ended, and quite out of the blue and unannounced, the helmets had arrived, the day before eBay's final e-mail! And this was only due to my own personal dilligence in officially filing mail fraud charges against the seller through the U.S. Postal Inspector's office! I have no doubt that eBay did not lift a finger in an attempt to resolve the situation. Needless to say, I informed eBAy that after the long odyssey, I no longer needed their insurance money.
I really just needed to blow off a little steam to day as eBay had me quite riled, and not for the first time. I also wanted to share the above as it is just another example of an alarming trend in American business, the loss of concern for the customer base. Comfortable in the might of their business empires, the larger companies of this country have jettisoned even the slightest hints of customer service.