Sunday, September 19, 2010

Dear Canadian Codbags:

Dear Canadian Codbags:
International shipping means shipping between two nations. Canada and the United States are seperate nations. Therefore, if an ad says "No International Shipping," that includes you.
That is all.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Mandatory Testing for eBay Users

I am proposing a mandatory comprehension test for all new and existing eBay users.
I think users are actually getting dumber and recently I have had a slough of questions that lead me to believe that people don't even grasp the basic concept of eBay.

Take the 30" Kobe Range Hood we are auctioning. We started the bid at $99 and within a day got this question:

Q:I dont understand how you can sell this so cheaply... Am I missing something?
A: Most likely you are. First, you are missing an apostrophe in the word 'dont', but I also suspect you may be missing some cognitive skills. This is an auction. You bid on things, the price goes up and eventually the item sells for more money. Google it.

Then, on the same item, this gem:

Q:I am interested in a 36" hood is there a price difference? How do I order/bid on the 36" hood? Thanks! Bernadette
A: My suggestion would be to find someone who is selling a 36-inch hood and bid on theirs. This, as you can clearly see, is a 30-inch hood.

Back to my point. I'm not suggesting a hard test, mind you. I was thinking something more like the one you take after sexual harassment training at work. You know, "Patting a co-worker's ass is an appropriate way to say hello: True or False?" or "Which of the following is an appropriate thing to shout in a staff meeting: a) Where's all the white women at? b) That's what she said! c) I see London, I see France... or d) None of the Above

The intent is just to see if people have grasped the basic concept. There will always be codbags, but the really stupid ones are excessive time wasters for all involved.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

E-Bay Circumventing Ignorant Cod-Bag

Yesterday we encountered a new breed of Cod-Bag. At least he was new to us. This may happen in big cities all the time... dunno.
A guy had seen a vacuum on eBay and decided to come to the store to buy it. On eBay it was a $99 auction with a $134 Buy-It-Now price. Coincidentally we had it for sale in the store for $134. So this old guy engages one of my employees claiming it is for sale on eBay for $99. My guy, wisely opens a browser session and offers the keyboard to the old fart to find the listing. Of course gramps starts back-pedaling, knowing full well that it was a starting price he was looking at, so he started negotiating from the standpoint of, "well it doesn't have any bids, so it is probably going to sell for that price."
My guy is a good salesperson and doesn't get flapped up very easily, (unlike me) so he calmly explained the concept of eBay. However, the codbag continued to play dumb and started griping about driving all this way and "woe is me for the gas I spent" and eluding to bait and switch, wha, wha, wha. Then he hits my guy with, "So what can you do for me?"
Now, my team has some leeway on prices and this could have been handled without me getting involved, but I think my guy just felt like pulling the pin on a grenade to see what would happen. He told the guy he would have to check with the boss and it was GAME ON!
Me and the guy went through an abbreviated version of the conversation I had just overheard, ending with the same question: "What can you do for me?"
My initial tact was to explain how snipers come in at the end and bid items up and that the vacuum would not end for $99. But then something wierd happened. Before my very eyes this old codger miraculously transformed into an eBay expert. Suddenly he knew everything about how it works, what stuff ends for, all eBay's fees, PayPal fees and the whole bit. Now his point was that I could avoid all those fees buy selling directly to him and it was a valid point, but rather than impress me with his knowledge he just pissed me off. Now I realized that, rather than a newb, I was dealing with a con-man. This was the pitiful old man version of the classic "Yo no jable the inglish" or the Phil Hartman caveman "Your strange ways frighten and confuse me." negotiating tactic.
Realizing I was being had, I shifted gears and decided to abbreviate the bullshit.
"Well sir, here is what I can do. If you'd like to buy it here in the store for $134 you'll save $20 on shipping. Or you could go home and bid on it and hope to get it for $99 and then drive back up here and pick it up. Of course we both know it's not going to sell for $99, so you will have to factor that into your decision. I've got a lot of stuff to do, so I will let you dwell it over and tell the cashier your decision." and I walked away.
I'd love to say the guy bought the thing for $134, but I think he had a little too much pride. Oh well, last I checked it was at $126 with 10 watchers on eBay. I think we'll do OK on the vacuum.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Enough CAPTCHA! Seriously... Enough!

Craigslist! I understand the need to filter out douchebags, scammers and automated spiders. I get it! but goddamn CAPTCHA is just ridiculous. The only people confused by nonsense words are people who speak the english language. Nigerian con-men and spider programs would be just as easily confused by real words as by the garbage words captcha produces.

That said, today Captcha reached a new low... I may be old and stuck in my ways, but I think everyone would agree that the characters you need to type in should at least exist on the keyboard. See the image below. This was an actual screen capture as I tried to sell an item on the local craigslist.
I realize everything is made in China, but has it really come to this?

Friday, July 30, 2010

Let Me Google That For You!

I know you guys are gonna dig this.

A new employee pointed this website out to me the other day.
It is an acronym for "Let Me Google That For You" and here is how it works:
  1. A time-wasting codbag asks you a question they could have easily looked up themselves. In my recent case it was "What is the size (motor amps) of the $0.99 vacuum cleaner you are selling?
  2. Type in a search term, click a button and it produces a short web link.
  3. Copy/Paste the link and send it to your codbag.
  4. When they click the link a Google screen opens in their browser, the mouse moves to the search field, slowly types in the search term you entered, and the mouse clicks the "Google Search" button. Half a second later, Ta-Da, the same freeking Google results you would have gotten are now produced for the idiot who asked you the question.
Lets take a look at the process at work; shall we?

Codbag question: What is the size (motor amps) of this Vacuum?

Answer: Here is a link to a bunch of information on this item:

Its beautiful in its simplicity.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Scammers posing as CodBags

This isn't a new scam, but it is worth mentioning to our angry and militant masses. I got the following e-mail today from what appeared to be a slightly over the top CodBag:
I payed you and you didn`t ship me the item .I have reported you to eBay and to the police ! You will not get away with this .I`ll find you if it`s the last thing i do !!!
I might have sent my standard verbal middle finger if I hadn't been tipped off by one critical piece of the e-mail. The cops. This guy claims to have reported me to the cops. Here is what I know about the cops: They have less time for cod-bags than I do. Anyone contacting their local police about an eBay transaction gone bad would be so beat down and humiliated they would likely slink into a corner, curl up in a ball and suck their thumb for a week until their family eventually interjected and coaxed them to come out and eat something. After months of counseling, they would eventually reach the point where thinking about the whole ordeal would not immediately cause them to convulse into a fit of vomiting.

The last thing that person would do is pick-up a keyboard and send a threatening e-mail.

So here is how it works. Scammers know you don't want Viagera, or Ciallis or whatever the pill dejour is. They know you don't want to look at dude's schlongs. They send you all those e-mails so eventually you will send an irate response, screaming "Stop sending me pictures of Schlongs!" and then they've got you. They now know theer is a pulse on the other end of your e-mail address and you get elevated to the next tier in their scam factory. The same goes for the wolf in CodBag's clothing e-mail I got. Either I will hit a link in the e-mail or scream at them, or (most unlikely) remove my hat and start apologizing as I research a transaction that does not exist. But in all of those scenarios, "They got my ass!"

Well not this ass my Nigerian friend. Not this ass.

Unfortunately, the only viable defense was to add it to my spam filter and move on. Of coarse I didn't want to let all that rage go to waste, so I took it out on the douche three e-mails down who demanded positive feedback.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Cold War CodBag

Who knew my grandpa was purchasing crap on eBay from beyond the grave?

We received a bunch of locking cash deposit bags and, completely by mistake, erroneously described them as “Made in America.” Had we looked at the packaging rather than copy/paste the manufacturer's description we would have seen that, like 98% of the things bought and sold in America, these bags were “Imported from the Orient.”

Now let me apologize to Detroit in advance for my next statement. Detroit, I am sorry your cars suck so bad. Whew, I’m glad I got that off my chest, but I just don’t consider American craftsmanship worth seeking out. Never in my life have I chosen one product over another because it was made in America. Germany? Maybe. Japan? Of course. But never America.

But apparently at least one old codger out there differs with me on that subject. After receiving his cash bag this was his negative buyer feedback:
Please be honest , product made in RED CHINA, poor quality
That’s right, “RED CHINA.” Red China?… Is that a province of China? Maybe out by Tibet or up near Mongolia? I haven’t heard that term in decades. I’m pretty sure China is barely even communist at this point. They seem more capitalist than us in a lot of ways. Pillaging their environment for a profit, selling their kids’ futures for a buck, that’s our gig.

Anyway, I get it. If you’re a crusty old fart stuck in the Cold War you might be morally opposed to using products made in China. Granted this would be a nearly crippling stance to take, rendering the afflicted person a virtual shut-in, but I get it. So here’s the thing you old CodBag, turn off your 1984 wood console Zenith, pick up your AT&T bakelite rotary phone and call us. We’ll issue you a refund. Leaving negative feedback is over the top on this one. It sends a message to the rest of the world that I am something I am not.

So I was left with a dilemma. How to rebuff such a slanderous attack on my character. Obviously I couldn’t leave negative feedback. I am a seller and sellers aren’t allowed to be dissatisfied with transactions. No problem. I decided the only equitable response was to provide the world a skewed view of my buyer via positive feedback. See Below.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Choose Your Favorite Response:

I had to laugh at this one. Apparently we have the same item listed on eBay for two different prices. An unsuspecting CodBag purchased (as in actually paid for) two of the more expensive listing and then realized he had paid too much. Less than a minute later we got this lovely e-mail via eBay. (Please be advised the sender of this note is from New Jersey. Some of the content may not be suitable for reasonable human beings or small children.)
You are selling this same product in another listing
for $6.50. I want you to refund me $6 right away
through Paypal or cancel the order. You should pay
attention to your listings.
So now I need the help of our faithful followers. Should our response be:

A. We pay extreme attention to our listings and simply listed this more expensive item as a social experiment to see if there were any clinically retarded people using eBay. Early research indicates Yes, there is at least one retard using eBay.

B. Congratulations on your thorough price research. Simply impressive. Might I suggest in the future you do that type of thing BEFORE you purchase an item.

C. Thank you for your astute observation and free business advice. We shall take it under advisement. The candid words of a hot-headed half-wit are such a rare and valuable thing, one would be a fool not to take them to heart.


D. Based on the over-the-top anger and outrage in your initial communication, I am dying to know what other negotiating tactics you have up your sleeve. It seems to me it doesn't really leave you much room for escalation. Therefore, out of pure morbid curiosity I must reply, "Go fuck yourself!" I look forward to your response.

Of coarse I plan on refunding this douche his money. I really have no reason not to, but I so enjoy torturing guys like this.