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Discussion Starter #1
First, I have read:
9. Communicate, communicate, communicate! By simply keeping the other party to the transaction updated on timing and shipping method (i.e., tracking number) most of the problems experienced in transactions could be avoided.

While APC facilitates sales between members, we DO NOT endorse either the buyer or the seller. All disputes must be handled by the parties to the transaction. APC and its staff will not be held liable for anything related to the transaction. APC WILL NOT mediate on behalf of any party to the transaction.
So here goes:

I bought something on the FS/FT forum (equipment, $85 worth) and paid for it on 11/19 - (I was hoping to get it the week of Thanksgiving so I could install it). I did get a notification in my yahoo mail that the item was shipped 11/24, but do not have the tracking number (I must have deleted the yahoo mail, because I can no longer find it).

I still have not received the item.

Last week, I started getting concerned , so I sent two PMs asking for a tracking number - no response. This person has over 1000 posts on APD, and has been on-line almost daily (and posted at least 4 times in the last week). I then sent an e-mail (through APD) to this person (Saturday, I think) asking for a refund - no response (and they've been on-line at least twice since then).

All I hear are Crickets chirping off in the distance...

Now, I'm starting to get upset - I hate leaving someone negative feedback, but when they're not responding (and I'm out $85 bucks) I don't know what else to do???

Also, and this is somewhat of an additional etiquette question: Let's say this person did ship it, and it got lost in the mail - should I expect my money back? I'm not the one who packaged it, put an address on it, weighed and put postage on it, etc...

I'm the one out money...

I believe, that until the product arrives on my doorstep - in working order - that I'm due a FULL refund if it never arrives (I realize that neither APC, nor anyone here, can really enforce this). I just believe this is the "kosher" way of doing things. We're all (most of us) respectable adults here who participate and trade mostly on an "honor" basis...

Several months ago, I had a plant package get lost in the mail and as soon as I realized it was lost (because the person PM'ed me), I immediately refunded the Paypal. (USPS put their "Priority Mail" tape over the recipient's address... 14 days later it came back to me mush...)

So, should I give negative feedback (and risk same negative in return) and be content for being out $85? Wait another week to see if I get a refund? Start blasting him with an e-mail and hour? I'm just beflummexed at this whole thing.

Thanks,

- Jeff

p.s.: Taking the name public is not an option, so don't ask.
 

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A tracking number would probably help you the most here. You'd know if the package was ever really even shipped. You've done everything you can do to try to resolve this with the seller. He/she refuses to communicate with you.

It's time to take the next step and escalate the problem to your paypal account and let them know you never received the item. It sucks for it to be resolved in this manner, but what other choice do you have? I'm glad that you're taking a cool and calm approach at this. Publicly naming the seller will accomplish nothing at this point. Has the seller posted on APD during the time you tried contacting them?
 

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Why not have a friend try to contact that person? That way if they are avoiding you they might not avoid them. All I know is that as a seller I always will either ressend or give a full refund if I can't prove the seller has received it or if it's damaged. At $85 I would always get insurance. That way you can always collect.
 

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Well, these sort of deals make the FS/FT forum much less fun. Almost any of us can tolerate the loss of a $10 box of plants. $85 is quite a bit though, and I think at this point, you've done everything possible.

Might I also commend you for taking a mature, reasonable approach to this? I get so frustrated with those who start bellyaching at the first sign of trouble.

Like Snyper and TexGal said, I'd carefully document your attempts to communicate with the individual (save the PM's and e-mails somewhere) and then go through the PayPal complaint system. My guess is that he will respond straightaway when those messages start showing up in his mailbox.

If he sent the package USPS Priority, there probably won't be a tracking number - so its location may always remain a bit of a mystery. It's possible that in the end neither of you will receive complete satisfaction from the transaction.

If you never hear back, please leave a specific negative iTrader rating. That should protect the rest of our members from that individual in the future.
 

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Sorry to hear of your problems with this seller.
As the others said, I commend you on your level headed approach to this. Thank you.

If you never hear back, please leave a specific negative iTrader rating. That should protect the rest of our members from that individual in the future.
Yes, I believe you've already made sufficient attempts, and if you continue to be ignored while this seller is still actively posting, please do use the rating system for what it was meant for - to hear the good and the not so good experiences with buyers and sellers.

I hope it all works out for you in the end.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
A tracking number would probably help you the most here. You'd know if the package was ever really even shipped.
As I said, I cannot find the e-mail that I got when the package was shipped with USPS (from the USPS, I'm a "verified address").

Has the seller posted on APD during the time you tried contacting them?
Mentioned - he has been online almost daily while I've been trying to contact this person... and yes, at least 5-6 posts in the last week (including one yesterday).

Why not have a friend try to contact that person?
By friend, I don't want to badmouth anyone by asking "whatshisname" to contact "soandso" for me as whatshisname shouldn't be involved, so the only "friend" I have on APC is APC staff - and I really don't believe it should be Staff's responsibility to ensure and mediate deals. The guidelines state this and it's a bridge or precident we (i.e., yous-guys) don't want to set...

At $85 I would always get insurance. That way you can always collect.
I agree as well (I insure anything I ship of value, as I believe till it's working on the other end, I'm only holding the money as collateral - not as a bank deposit), but as the receive-ee and not the ship-ee I really don't have control over this.

<snip>... It's possible that in the end neither of you will receive complete satisfaction from the transaction.

If you never hear back, please leave a specific negative iTrader rating. That should protect the rest of our members from that individual in the future.
Well, I'm just stuck on principle here - It's not about the money as much as the frustration (but I really do want the equipment). I can survive an $85 loss (yes, I'll contact Paypal tomorrow if I see nothing in the mail). My concern about itrader - and afterthefact I checked his rating, is about a year ago this person received a negative feedback for the exact same thing (buyer never received, nor did the seller respond/communicate), and in return the seller provided the buyer negative feedback.

- Jeff
 

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As a buyer you can request that they insure the package - on your dime of course. I do think if you contact paypal they will give your money back (less shipping) unless the seller can prove you have received the shipment. That is how it's always worked for me. I imagine just opening up a claim with paypal will be enough to get a response.

BTW I do think it's better to tell one friend than to leave bad feedback, but I don't think you have a responsibility to protect this person anymore. Seems like you have tried VERY hard to contact them. I imagine they have even seen this thread.....
 

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My concern about itrader - and afterthefact I checked his rating, is about a year ago this person received a negative feedback for the exact same thing (buyer never received, nor did the seller respond/communicate), and in return the seller provided the buyer negative feedback.

- Jeff
But there are a few of us around here that have the ability to reverse unwarranted negative iTrader ratings. Otherwise the system doesn't work. Have no fear!
 

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But there are a few of us around here that have the ability to reverse unwarranted negative iTrader ratings. Otherwise the system doesn't work. Have no fear!
Well I can certainly understand how taekwondodo feels about this. After selling countless plants and shrimp on this site I received one negative rating a while back after the buyer for some reason couldn't retrive the package from the post office after the post office left a note that they couldn't deliver. I even asked the buyer if the delivery date was going to be good for them. So I went above and beyond and still got a negative rating because I didn't get back to the buyer about a discount on more shrimp within one day. Sorry taekwondodo but I felt it was relevant to the discussion.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Update 12/10: FS deal going bad... Proper etiquette (what next)?

Update 12/10 - I filed a claim with Paypal, and several hours later the person responded to the Paypal inquiry stating the item was mailed.

What's interesting, is Paypal shows one tracking number (item never shipped), and this person gave me another tracking number.

To make things more interesting, the details under the tracking number show the following:

Bullet Processed, December 06, 2008, 1:52 pm, SAINT PAUL, MN 55121
Bullet Processed, December 03, 2008, 1:23 pm, RICHMOND, CA 94804
Bullet Processed, November 26, 2008, 12:04 pm, SPRINGFIELD, MA 01152
Bullet Electronic Shipping Info Received, November 24, 2008

Note: I live in Gilroy, which is about 80 miles from Richmond, CA. Why would it get sent to Richmond, then BACK TO Saint Paul, MN???

This makes no sense.

So - now that it's obvious the person shipped something, is it proper form to request my money back if it never arrives? I had no control over how it was packaged, putting the right address on it, paying the right amount of postage, etc...

Although, I am still set-aback also at the lack of this persons response via APD.

- Jeff
 

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So it went from Mass to California then over the Minnesota?

My guess is it is indeliverable package and now it's headed back to the sender. At least you now have the tracking information.
 

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I agree. I had the same problem with a box of plants I shipped to Cali. It was "lost" in nowhereville for 2-3 weeks before I got it back. It stated it was undeliverable, but in fact the reciever's roommate refused the package or something similar. USPS Priority without bells and whistles is sometimes a P.I.T.A.

GL!
 

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time to throw my hat in this ring here.

hes talking about a deal made with me I sold him an Iwaki pump and shipped it quite punctually on the 24th as promised I do realize that my lack of response is frustrating but all I can say is its finals week here and I expected the package to reach you soon after your pm was sent (which i thought it had) so i stupidly assumed the matter resolved itself. looks like i was wrong

however aside from my mistake in a lack of response, I shipped the Item as promised on the 24th to the registered address as listed on paypal assuming that that address listed here is correct. now I do not work for the post office I am a student in college so as far as trying to get the package to you any faster really is out of my hands. I can assure you i am not trying to rip you off so if the package is actually on its way back to me I will resend it via priority mail this time and pay for the extra shipping myself. I just want to let you know that the fact that its taking so long to reach you is really not my fault once i shipped the item its in the hands of usps. now i do sympathize and realize it is frustrating waiting three weeks for something to arrive that was due two weeks ago but ill call usps today and let you know what they tell me.

if worst comes to worst. I DID en fact pay for insurance so either way I will issue a refund or you will receive a pump. I am not a bad guy and I am not out trying rip you off lets just make things work!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
time to throw my hat in this ring here.

hes talking about a deal made with me I sold him an Iwaki pump and shipped it quite punctually on the 24th as promised I do realize that my lack of response is frustrating but all I can say is its finals week here and I expected the package to reach you soon after your pm was sent (which i thought it had) so i stupidly assumed the matter resolved itself. looks like i was wrong

however aside from my mistake in a lack of response, I shipped the Item as promised on the 24th to the registered address as listed on paypal assuming that that address listed here is correct. now I do not work for the post office I am a student in college so as far as trying to get the package to you any faster really is out of my hands. I can assure you i am not trying to rip you off so if the package is actually on its way back to me I will resend it via priority mail this time and pay for the extra shipping myself. I just want to let you know that the fact that its taking so long to reach you is really not my fault once i shipped the item its in the hands of usps. now i do sympathize and realize it is frustrating waiting three weeks for something to arrive that was due two weeks ago but ill call usps today and let you know what they tell me.

if worst comes to worst. I DID en fact pay for insurance so either way I will issue a refund or you will receive a pump. I am not a bad guy and I am not out trying rip you off lets just make things work!
Thank you. My frustrations lie more in the lack of communication - especially seeing you come on-line and post...all it would have taken was a quick (less than a minute) PM reply with the tracking number, and not an escalation to Paypal (to see how screwed up our postal service is).

Let's continue to communicate via PM...

And good luck on your finals. I remember those...

- Jeff
 

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Most of the members here are real good people so I'm not surprised this has come down to simply communication. That being said, I think communication is probably the most important component when dealing with online buying/selling. Think about it, a buyer is sending an individual money in advance for a product/service. Without the communication the buyer is left wondering. I think it's only natural to assume the worst after a certain amount of time goes by. On the flip side a buyer still needs to give adequate time for the seller to communicate. I don't think we are making a living selling plants here and are simply doing it between other things.
 

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yeah I can relate. I received a DOA fish yesterday at noon, emailed a few times and have yet to get a response. I am not assuming the worst yet. Sometimes you just aren't in front of a computer.

I think both sides need to ask themselves, before selling OR buying, "do I have the time to communicate with the person I am potentially doing business with?". If you don't, you probably should wait to sell (or buy) at a time when you DO have the time to properly ship, receive, and keep the other person up-to-date.
 

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I think both sides need to ask themselves, before selling OR buying, "do I have the time to communicate with the person I am potentially doing business with?". If you don't, you probably should wait to sell (or buy) at a time when you DO have the time to properly ship, receive, and keep the other person up-to-date.
Well said. I think the time thing is a big deal. You need to be able to preform the service and follow up on it. On the other side you need to be able to received the package. So glad this has worked out for everybody. Communication works out the bumps. :D
 

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I am glad to hear this is being amicably worked out. It is understandable that folks aren't always on their computers or want to particularly deal with certain things at certain times. But when you're the one that has gotten the dead fish or plants, it's human nature to want immediate communication with whomever you dealt with. This is a good time for common sense and patience to set in.

Hats off to both of you for coming together here! :thumbsup:
 

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Both of you guys are valued APC members. I'm glad this is working toward an acceptable solution.

Communication, communication, communication...... :)

Thread closed.
 
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