The talk of suing eBay seems rather ludicrous when Mr. Surpin’s
"problem" is simply that he was unable to buy something. Obviously,
he was disappointed (and was expressing that emotion through
righteous indignation). It was fortunate that the auction failed.
Better not to have been cheated!
I’ve been buying and occasionally selling on eBay since 1999, and
bought more stones than anything else. Over the years, my
experiences have varied; I’ve learned and developed techniques to
estimate the credibility of th= e seller and the item (by
communicating, by examining the completed auctions very
carefully–sometimes even contacting a previous buyer, by only
selecting sellers who accept refunds, by seeing what the seller has
bought, and by other ways).
Once a $500 stone was never sent to me (nor to a half-dozen other
buyers) and eBay (or PayPal) refunded my money. I didn’t have to
fight for it or go to court. I just stated that I never received the
item and was reimbursed. Recently, I sold something to a person who
chose to return it, and it came back damaged in a way that made it
of no value, provable by before and after photos. By eBay’s
decision, I kept my payment from the buyer. However, when the buyer
made a fuss, eBay also paid her back.
About I used to get very good deals, contrary to Mr.
Horowitz (“The final word is if its cheap and a bargain its a fraud
!!”). The quality and authenticity were verified for me by a
certified gemologist. I stress" used to" though. The market, as Mr.
Horowitz bemoaned, is now rather chaotic. But there still are good
sellers with deals (to be found on eBay).
Through eBay, I’ve established relationships with some nice honest
people. Last year, after I bought used tools, the seller–retiring
from jewelry-making–gifted me her bench with my payment being only
for the cost of shipping from her state to mine. Plus, she wrote
down useful advice with the tools.
I don’t want to imply that I’m in love with the company (when
selling, I find it unfair for percentages to be taken both by eBay
and by Paypal, an eBay subsidiary). And there are several aspects of
auctions that I don’t care for.
But I just wanted to establish that eBay can be a practical venue
for buying, and that we needn’t judge and dismiss according to one
Barbara in northern California