eBay Bans Negative Feedback For Buyers; Everyone Be Good Now

from the here-in-lake-wobegone... dept

eBay has been making some changes lately that aren't sitting well with eBay sellers. First, it announced fee changes that initially were promoted as "lower fees," but the details showed were only lower for goods that didn't sell. The fees on sold goods were actually higher. Now, the company has banned sellers from giving "negative" feedback on buyers. This is quite an interesting move. Years back, eBay was often held up as the epitome of user feedback/rating systems. However, over the years, problems have cropped up, leading to questions about how effective the system really is, as it's often been gamed. A specific complaint is that many buyers are afraid to leave negative feedback, as a seller can retaliate and provide a similarly negative response to the buyers. The hope, then, is that by not allowing negative feedback, buyers can start being more honest about sellers. Of course, from the sellers' standpoint, it also means it's much more likely that buyers can now be problematic, without worrying about a response. eBay claims that it will now personally handle complaints from sellers about problem buyers -- which seems like a pretty big undertaking for the company. Either way, there does seem to be something silly in having a company offer a feedback system if you can only say positive things.

Filed Under: bans, feedback, negative feedback
Companies: ebay


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  1. identicon
    SmellyG, 5 Feb 2008 @ 7:33pm

    This is really the best solution?

    I can understand/relate to the Buyer's problem, and yes, it is annoying receiving negative 'retaliation' feedback.

    But what about non-paying buyers? There are lots of them, and as Mike points out, that is a lot of complaints for eBay to take on, including the number of complaints and issues they already have to deal with. It takes effort and money for the seller to list things, so that is equally annoying having the do things twice.
    The amount of non paying buyers also could go up if theres a small likeliness of repercussions from doing it.

    Like its been mentioned a few times in these comments, not showing each others feedback until both sides have commented seems a better solution. Maybe not perfect, but better than stopping negative feedback.

    What is the point of buyer feedback then? If it can only be good, whats the point of giving it?

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