Sunday, April 5, 2015

Customer Disservice, Part I

Hello, once again my fellow prisoners... today's blog post comes to you in the form of the usual complaint or major pain in the ass grievance, if you will... But to put it all into words like that, really doesn't do the air of this here blog post any justice. I'd rather say that I'm sick and tired of getting reamed a monetary corn hole only to get offered the lousiest service for it all. And by that I mean; wheeling and dealing on eBay.

So, I'd like to begin this post by thanking the geniuses behind eBay's new policies, which have been in place for well over a few years now. The first of which is something that can make any seller cringe--- and by that, I mean the seller's inability to leave negative feedback for a customer. And why would you want to leave a negative rating for someone that's literally putting food on your table? Well, it's simple, really... it's because I (like a thousand other sellers out there) always happen to come across deadbeats that have nothing else better to do than to bid on an item that someone is selling and not pay for it right away, or worse yet: PAY FOR IT AT ALL!!!

It's things like this that I really do without. And lately, it just seems like every item that I sell (without getting reamed for it---percentage value-wise, that is) always winds up running into some kind of hassle or another... be it a deadbeat payer, or some idiot that doesn't pay up right away, or just has nothing else better to do than to waste your time (and most importantly your money). Sometimes when I happen to come across these geniuses, half of me likes to think... well, they're just a couple of light bulbs short of a bright idea. And the other, more cynical side (and sometimes paranoid to the point where I think it all must be some kind of plot against me) immediately thinks that someone out there is just FUCKING WITH ME... ARRRGGGHHHH!!!!

I had a few transactions that took place just this last year in which a customer buys an item and then immediately changes their mind and asks if they can cancel the order because they overlooked something in the description. Usually it's something to the extent of the item that they thought they were buying isn't exactly the item that I am selling. Well... to quote the latest Doctor Who incarnation; (and no, this is not another Doctor Who meme--- and yes, I know I still have to post more of those soon!) "Are you an idiot?"

I recall one point of sale (which abbreviated is POS, as in Piece of Shit, go figure!) instance that really had my blood boiling; to the extent that I wish the buyer was standing right in front of me so that I could easily remedy the situation via the modus operandi of strangulation. Of course, just thinking about something like that leaves me without the right amount of oxygen in my head... yes, that's right, as I get older I realize how frail my brain cells are, so I'll stop with my Frances Farmer getting her revenge on Seattle fixation and simply just recount the story to my avid followers (all one of you) and see if you'll agree with me at just how much of a grandiose asshole it was that I had the pleasure of dealing with.

So in this one instance, I had a lot of Kennedy Halves up for sale; basically giving them away for an amount agreed upon (i.e. Best Offer price) and not getting paid the full amount that I had in mind. And so the buyer sent me an offer and I agreed to it... actually, they may have one an auction which had a considerably lower starting price than a Buy It Now final price... but at any rate, let's just say the items were sold for less than what I had intended. So this jackass won the lot and time went by.

Now, in the ten plus years that I have been selling on eBay, when a buyer doesn't pay for an item right away that's a very bad sign. Because you have to be careful not to put your best foot forward (right up their ass) right away by sending them an invoice to remind them of the obvious; "Hey pal, are you going to pay or what?" No, you kind of have to handle it, seemingly professional... like for example, say something to the extent of: "Hey, the faster you pay for this, the sooner I can get it out to you!" Nine times out of ten; I get the most idiotic response imaginable, which is the usual: "Oh! I'm sorry... I hadn't realized that I had won and wasn't expecting to win this auction!" followed by the more typical bullshit excuse of... "I usually pay right away!" Yes, usually... but not today, because you just wanted to demonstrate to me just how big a fool you really take me for, correct?

Anyways... so this maggot (for lack of a better term) bought this coin lot from me and didn't pay right away, which prompted me to take the awfully diplomatic route as described above. In this case, I think I may have sent him two invoice reminders, followed by the aforementioned shipment diplomacy speech and I still didn't get a response from him. That was... until I broke out with the code orange deadbeat payer alert level response of: "Hey, are you going to pay for this, or what? I have seller fees to pay off, you know?" This is always a good thing to point out to these fuckos here; because it lets them know just how much their business is important to you; especially when eBay is siphoning off a great deal of your profits via the percentage that it gets for every sale you make, plus the percentage generated from making PayPal transactions... (a company which, in case you weren't aware, is also owned by them--- or at least was owned until they sent a notice out stating that they were going to be two separate entities both operating under the same umbrella, or something along those lines). Either way, it's really just a corporate shell game they're playing. Just figuring out a way to defraud the government in the truest white collar fashion imaginable until Congress steps in and taxes the shit out of them... which is probably going to happen. It always does, anyways, right? You can't really get away with taking a cut from these rich, white, political fat cats and not pay the pied piper, am I wrong?

Well... let's not get too political about it. Not while we're still at the diplomacy stage of this story. So the deadbeat responds and states that I would have my money by tomorrow. And this, by the way, was stated near the end of the week. I think it was on a Thursday and the tomorrow in question was a Friday. But either way, I had a couple of things that I was doing that week that kept me really busy and distracted long enough to not keep my eye on the ball with this loser. So Friday came and went, and I believe I had another sale that went off without a hitch. And the day turned into a Saturday. Now, something I forgot to make mention of earlier, but figured it best to wait until now for dramatic effect (in as far as a reader's digestive tract is concerned) is that I always state in my listings as a payment policy that I expect payments to be made no later than three days after the auctions' closing, just so I won't have to report the matter to eBay and make a federal case out of it all, which is where this was unfortunately heading now.

Anyways, since I got tired of waiting and hated the fact that I was hoping to use this buyer's payment to cover my already staggering seller fee bill (because I made a rather unprecedented sale right around that same time) I just kicked it up a notch into the code red spectrum of my self-patented deadbeat payer alert system. And since I was already seeing red, I just told this fucker (because that's what he was up until this point; a fucker, plain and simple) that I tomorrow came and went and I still hadn't received his payment, and that I demanded he pay up right now because I sure as hell wasn't going to wait another day in dealing with his deadbeat behavior. I also made it clear to him that aside from the fact that he didn't pay up right away, the other thing I couldn't stand from him (or just about any other eBayer out there) was that there was a big lack of communication going on here... mostly on his part. I, just so you know, am a very understanding person. Sometimes people get carried away buying shit they can't afford like they were binging on an all night insomniac party, and getting drunk with too many bad ideas... most of which involve buying something online and not paying for it, and probably getting the party on the other end with his blood pressure shooting through the roof. So the sobering moment comes in the form of my telling him off, of course... still in a very diplomatic way, for eBay is still playing Big Brother, you know? Monitoring every message between you and the parties involved, making sure you don't overstep the boundaries by crossing them. Of course, getting crossed is another acceptable standard. And so is having your balls in a vice if you're into S&M... however, I'm just not into that kind of kinkiness!

And so... the potential buyer responds by stating that he's very offended that I called him out for being a deadbeat (which he was, and probably still is) and that I could keep my little coins, because now all he wanted to do was simply cancel the transaction. So now, the deadbeat payer alert level has skyrocketed to a purple maroon (so you know it's serious shit now, right folks?) and I have to face that very familiar feeling once again of... oh great, your mouth has just run off again, and now you've lost out. So I just figured, well... okay, let's just end this fairly and amicably, so that this fucker can go on about his merry way and keep fucking over someone else in the meantime. And I decide to open up the cancellation process so that this asshole doesn't have to pay, but more importantly so that I can get my seller fees refunded to me... because, I'm definitely not going to fork over a percentage of a sale that didn't even exist. Of course, there's just one little, tiny, miserable pain in the ass aspect that I was overlooking here. And that was that when you open up a cancellation request, the ball is automatically in the buyer's court, and they have to respond to it, just so the case can officially close up and you can get your seller fees refunded to you and could then continue to relist your items.

But no... my friend over here decides that, in addition to raising the deadbeat payer alert level once again from a purple maroon, to a reddish magenta; he seriously wants to change his official honorary title from fucker to motherfucker by simply not closing up the case. And so, it begins... The ten day waiting period that eBay puts both parties on, as if almost certain communication was mandatory here... simply as a safeguard. The only drawback you have now is that you can't really report the buyer because your cancellation request is still open, so that gives the motherfucker enough leeway to basically twiddle his fingers and thumb his nose at you while you're stuck with a seller fee bill that might automatically be deducted from your account if you don't pay up quickly enough. So what's a disgruntled seller like me supposed to do now? Simple... now I have (or had) to get in touch with eBay and let them now that this deadbeat seller was being a complete arse (it just sounds fancier that way, doesn't it?) and that I had agreed to cancelling the purchase just as he requested, but he decided on being a complete prick about it just so that I could sweat it out for a couple of days needlessly... all because he can't be bothered enough to do the responsible thing and ACTUALLY PAY FOR THE FUCKING THING like every other sensible person does in this day and age.

But no... (in the best Steve Martin impression that I can pull off here, folks) this idiot decided that he wanted to teach me a lesson, just because he can! So anyways, that was pretty much my nightmare, and my means of diffusing my anger in dealing with pinheads such as this by blogging about it. Oh wait... I forgot, that was sort of the abridged version. The other thing I forgot to mention was eBay customer service, which is like having the best of both worlds. And by that I mean, a third world representative who hardly speaks English and is a bit difficult to understand at times, and a slightly bad phone connection, which is kind of like dinner and a show really. And did I forget to mention the long wait time of approximately one and a half hours of waiting on my cell phone and listening to the same puke inducing elevator music from hell interjected with the same boringly obvious: "All of our customer service representatives are currently busy assisting other customers, your call is very important to us, please stay on the line and your call will be answered in the order it was received." I can easily picture the lady doing this recording just making the universal wanking/jerking/whacking off gesture (depending on which side of the globe your on, that is) as she's doing this recording... since it really says a lot about my frame of my mind at the time.

In fact, I would go so far as to say that if there has ever been some sort of secret neo Nazi gathering that involved a vote to decide upon what kind of elevator music to be used for these rather impromptu calls to a customer service line that barely, I'm almost certain that the company in question has to be none other than eBay! And to that I say...

Fuck eBay Customer Service!

This has been P.S. Elliott (AKA: Dr. Gonzo XXVII; PhD in F.U.) reporting for the disassociated press, that is... The Gnoyze Guitar Mods & More Web Blog.

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