• Sunshine and Unicorns
  • Sunshine and Unicorns
  • Sunshine and Unicorns
  • Sunshine and Unicorns
  • Sunshine and Unicorns
sunshine & unicorns: a blog about love, learning, and life in the upper midwest

25 January 2010

the priorities of the internets

I sell stuff on eBay, as I have mentioned. Last week I sold something I had bought, and later decided I did not want/need. It sold for $40.

The buyer did not pay right away. On Thursday, the second day of non-payment (after I had sent a reminder), she emailed me to tell me she was waiting for a check to clear and would pay the next day. I waited. No payment on Friday. I decided to deal with it on Monday.

Saturday morning I got another email from the buyer. To paraphrase, she said:

I'm not sure I want this item. I have changed my mind, $40 is a whole day's work for me...I'm just not sure this will work. You could just sell to the next bidder instead with a second chance offer, for only a few dollars less.

I don't like doing second chance offers. They almost never work out (unless whatever you're selling is super-rare), and it messes up the eBay final value fee assessment too. I'd rather re-list than do a second chance offer. But to re-list without penalty (and get a refund of my final value fee), I would need to file a non-paying bidder alert against her.

But... I was sympathetic to her situation with money. $40 a day is not a very high wage. I was also grateful that she emailed. Most non-paying bidders just ignore the seller, causing the seller to have to wait 30 days to re-list, which is a pain in the butt. I considered all this. But on the other hand, I take eBay seriously. I have been eBaying since 2000, and I believe in the power of feedback. Hell, my auctions info even states that I *will* give feedback to people to don't pay.

So I wrote back. To paraphrase, I said:

I wish you would have straightened out your concerns with the price and the item prior to winning the auction. If you do not pay I will need leave negative feedback for you.

Within a few hours, she wrote back:

I will take it. Just let me pay and be done with it. I don't want bad feedback!

Wow, so to recap: we went from 'It's so much money, my whole day's pay!' to 'Ooo I don't want bad feedback!'

Payment received.