14 February 2006 was my first unfortunate brush with a bad Canadian eBayer.
Like all my watch auctions, this one started at 0.99c and the photo and description pretty much told the story, not a great watch but in working condition and — if you’ve ever tried to put a broken watch on a holder to photograph it you’ll know it’s nigh on impossible — intact.
And then Mr Shouty (from Canada) won the auction.
Mr Shouty didn’t seem to understand that sometimes things are damaged in transit and, while I don’t rule out refunding people if loss or damage occurs, I only do it by going through the process where I can check the damage and also send it to the postal authorities for them to investigate — since they are the ones who ultimately pay out.
So to receive the following (verbatim) email didn’t do much for my generous spirit:
“I am Very Disappointed in this Casio LCD World Time Watch. It came shipped with one part of the strap taped to the plastic bubble wrap because: The Back of the case where the PIN pops is in BROKEN. It was shipped BROKEN and NOT Broken in the mail. There is ABSOLUTELY NO MENTION in your listing of this Condition of this Watch. You have MISREPRENTED WHAT YOU SOLD ME. Had I know this I would NOT HAVE BID ON THIS WATCH and most likely would NOT have bought the other one either. VERY VERY UNHAPPY. Don”
Bloke must be Nostradamus to ascertain the watch was broken before I posted it. Not sure why I’d bother packaging and posting a $50 watch to send halfway around the world if it was broken, but this was my first experience so asked him to send it back so I could initiate the postal investigation. He writes:
“You asked me to return this watch — no mention of if you are paying shipping back or not. I want $51.00 US refund if watch NOT RETURNED & I want an ADDITIONAL $20.00 US if you want this junk sent back to you. So refund my Paypal account for either $51.00 US or $71.00 US — Your Choice. Do it NOW to avoid further PROBLEMS. Don”
So now he wants double the postage I originally charged, plus a refund, before he will send the watch back. His overuse of the CAPS LOCK key continues, and I imagine flecks of spittle spattering on his 14″ beige monitor as he shouts each word he types, mercilessly beating his keyboard. Naturally I suggest that in order for him to be refunded I kind of have to see the watch which made him more shouty and threaty:
“If I return this watch to you I am out $20.00 in shipping costs and then have to wait for a refund that may NEVER COME. You TOTALLY AND COMPLETELY MISREPRESENTED THIS WATCH by NOT DISCLOSING THE FACT that it IS NOT WEARABLE AND UNFIXABLE. Even your PICTURE SHOWS it in tact which is VERY MISLEADING. I want a full refund in advance for this watch PLUS the cost of returning it back to you. I will contact EBAY and PAYPAL within 48 hours to register a FORMAL COMPLAINT plus leave APPROPRIATE FEEDBACK. This watch is A PIECE OF JUNK that I paid you $51.00 US PLUS SHIPPING FOR. Don”
Just one flaw in his wonderful logic above — if the auction photo showed the watch intact, then wouldn’t it stand to reason that the watch was actually intact when I sent it, and damage occurred in transit?
By now though I was convinced he had some psychological issues and was likely to damage my eBay and Paypal accounts and, if you’ve dealt with either, you’ll know they tend to take notice of shouty unhinged disgruntled moaners (SUDMs) at the expense of honest sellers and do silly things like block funds and stop you trading while they dawdle through their own investigation before eventually coming to the conclusion that the SUDMs are just that, and reinstate your account.
So I cut my losses and refunded his money and never saw the watch again — hope he got a good price for it. End of story? No, then he sent me a final communique:
“I left you feedback — how about returning it????”
Ummm. No, I don’t think so — the eBay feedback system doesn’t allow quite enough space for everything I wanted to say. Needless to say, I was wary after that, but stupidly continued to ship worldwide until I met bad Canadian eBayer #2…