The Ebay Rag Mag

August 26, 2008

Class action law suit: Unwelcome & Malicious bidding policy

An anonymous powerseller is seeking other eBay sellers whose business reputation has been damaged by lack of enforcement of eBays’ Unwelcome & Malicious bidding policy.

This policy states that sellers may exclude buyers at any time prior to the listing close and are free to cancel unwelcome bids.  After a seller has cancelled a bid, the bidder may not place a new bid without the seller’s permission.  Buyers who do not meet the seller’s terms as outlined in the item listing also are not permitted to bid on or buy the item.

Additionally, members are prohibited from bidding on or purchasing an item to disrupt or to leave non-positive Feedback or Detailed Seller Ratings for the seller, with no intention of completing the transaction.

Sellers are permitted to exclude bidders at any time prior to the listing close and are free to cancel unwelcome bids.  After a seller has cancelled a bid, the bidder may not place a new bid without the seller’s permission.

Failure to meet a seller’s terms


  • Seller states item will only be shipped domestically. Buyer is registered outside the shipping area.
  • Seller states that buyers with negative feedback comments are not permitted to bid. The buyer has negative feedback.

Buying with the intent to disrupt a listing Examples:

  • Buyer places a bid that greatly exceeds the value of the item in order to prevent a sale.
  • Buyer bids on multiple items listed by a seller without intent to complete the sale.
  • Buyer attempts to purchase an item after having been placed on a seller’s blocked bidders list.

The policy sites violations of this policy may result in a range of actions, including:

  • Listing cancellation
  • Limits on account privileges
  • Account suspension
  • Forfeit of eBay fees on cancelled listings
  • Loss of PowerSeller status

  • Why does eBay have this policy?

    This policy is intended to protect the integrity of the eBay marketplace by prohibiting conduct that would interfere with the completion or performance of eBay transactions.

  • Point 1:  eBay is choosing to look the other way when bidders violate this policy.  eBay refuses to cancel the listing thus allowing the Unwelcome & Malicious bidders to participate in the feedback process including the Detailed Seller Ratings portion of the feedback system.  eBays’ stance on the matter (in writing) is feedback removal is not an option even though the bidder has violated site wide policy.

    Point 2:  Policy wording in the range of action portion is not addressing bidding activity, it is addressing seller activity.  A seller is not doing the bidding, a bidder is doing the bidding.

    Point 3:  By lack of enforcement of this policy eBay is sending the message that Unwelcome & Malicious bidding is encouraged and it is acceptable to committ libelous acts on their site .  Unwelcome and Malicious bidders may be unaware of the policy or they may be a scorned buyer or even a ruthless competitor.

    Point 4:  Sellers are being denied their appropriate search standing, and their appropriate selling fee discounts thus causing financial hardships.

    Point 5: Sellers are losing their accounts causing financial hardships, undue stress and damage to their business reputations.

    The anonymous seller has attempted to address this issue through appropriate channels at ebay, first starting with the Safe Harbour Department, the Feedback department and Powerseller e-mail & phone support.  The anonymous seller escalated the issue to eBays’ office of the President who acknowledges that the actions displayed by their site  staff  is inconsistent and unfair, yet refuse to make the necessary changes and maintain that the bids of any unwelcome and (or) malicious bidder will stand and the transaction will remain valid.  eBay representatives also maintain that although it has been determined that the bidder has violated policy and should not have been allowed to place their bid, all feedback they leave will stand.

    We have discovered a live recording from Griffs call-in radio show where he is in full agreement that the actions of eBay staff is condradictory in nature and the policy needs to be revisited.  Unfortunately, as griff states, he is not God, and even Griff was unable to convince ebay executives to understand that they are out of line.  Griff  is the “eBay Ambassador”. He is the most visible and well know eBay media spokesperson and claims to be an advocate for buyers and sellers when they have encountered inappopriate behavior committed by eBays’ staff.  Griff also functions as Dean of eBay Education.

    Lack of enforcement of this policy destroys the integrity of the eBay marketplace by permitting conduct that would interfere with the completion or performance of eBay transactions.

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