Monday, October 26, 2009

eBay Annoyances

It's been a bit love-hate-hate between me and eBay recently. First eBay managed to set me up with a very nice guy who was very grateful to get a pair of tickets for Daniel Johnston and Laura Marling. He was due to be taking a young lady and had forgotten to get tickets, so he was very pleased to be able to buy a pair from me at face value. Then eBay refused to let me cancel the auction, which was still running, as they have some stupid there must be at least 12 hours remaining to cancel a sale rule. I mean, I didn't have a genuine reason, but what if you were selling a hamster and it died? Or a cigar that got wet? So having gone through the rigmarole of cancelling every single bid by hand, giving the reason as "Item no longer available." and quickly selling them to my girlfriend at £5 I thought that was the end of the matter. But no, this morning I get an arsey email from "flying giraffe" demanding to know why he didn't win the tickets for his £10 bid when they sold for £5, despite the fact that they were at £26 when I cancelled the bids. Here is my reply to him, all the text of his second email is contained within.
> I'm sorry,

Are you really?

> but why have they become unavailable?

They were tragically lost in a terrible tickets-left-in-pocket washing machine accident.

> When you put something up for auction you are
> legally obliged to go through with the sale.

No you are not, there is no contract at that point, otherwise eBay would not let a seller cancel an auction at all. If what you say were true then everybody who cancels an auction would be breaking the law. The only reason eBay stop a seller cancelling an auction 12 hours from the end is that they want to make as much money as possible.
Perhaps I should have just replied "So sue me." Serously, do not email a stranger with some bullshit story about how they've just commited a crime. eBay buyers are quickly becoming my second favourite group of people, just behind pedestrians who jump out in front of me from between (not parked) cars.
Meanwhile my other eBay saga continues.

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