Feedback Value Weighting Would Improve eBay
Indexing the value of transactions into eBay's feedback system could help stop scams and create better and fairer system, reduce abuse, and improve user experience.
Complaints About Ripoffs Frauds Crooks Scams
If you read many of these eBay guides, you cannot fail to notice that many of them are complaining about being robbed or ripped off by all sorts of crooks and scammers. Some offer valuable advice about how to try to spot the scammers, and avoid being ripped off, others simply complain about their own negative experience.
Even when you know some of the things to look for, it is still too easy to get robbed by another eBay member, whether it be a buyer or seller.
Do eBay Care?
eBay have a wonderful marketing department, and a better still press office. You will see statements by eBay spokespersons saying that they believe most people are honest, and most eBay transactions are completed satisfactorily. It's i bit like Ford saying most of our cars don't crash or break down, it's about numbers and percentages. If most people are so honest, why then are eBay guides and user forums so full of bitter invective about being conned, eBay not being safe, and PayPal providing little if any protection? Again it's down to numbers. If most eBay members are honest, that leaves up to 49.9% of them who may be crooks, which doesn't sound so good.
eBay's usual get-out clause (excuse) is that they only provide the venue, but if you go to a music concert, do you want muggers, crooks and drug-pushers to be allowed in also? We hope your answer to this last semi-rhetorical question is "no", so the venue organisers should take some responsibility to keep out undesirables. Perhaps one part of the problem is that eBay make a lot of money out of these undesirables. Every fake pair of designer jeans, sunglasses, perfume, coin, every stolen item sold on eBay makes eBay money from listing fees, FVF (Final Value Fees), and on many items they also make fat profits out of the PayPal fees, (eBay own PayPal in case you did not know).
If eBay fail to listen to its members, it could eventually suffer a backlash, we for example would be the first to use an alternative auction site if eBay did not hold a world monopoly. Its lack of action is probably because they are so busy counting their huge profits.
We believe eBay should work a little bit harder, well actually an awful lot harder, at keeping the crooks and scammers at bay. One way would be to alter their deeply flawed feedback system, and make it "Value Weighted".
Value Weighted Feedback
We hope this does not sound complicated, it is actually very simple.
All eBay needs to programme its computers to do is multiply each feedback by the monetary value of the goods which change hands. This would make it harder for the crooks who build up fake feedback by buying say 100 items, from their friends, their other accounts, or other members, at 1 cent or 1 penny each, then using the 100+ and 100% positive feedback to con honest people out of their money. This would expose their 100 feedback as being worth $1, On the other hand respectable traders, buyers and sellers who transact high value deals would get feedback ratings which would more accurately represent their reliability.
If you think eBay should stick with its existing feedback system, then fine, it could actually do both at the same time.
We believe there are a few other simple changes which would make the eBay feedback system better. One would be to stop NPB's (Non Paying Bidders) from leaving negative feedback. It is ludicrous that it can happen. anther would be to deduct feedback points for things such as copyright abuse, and using misleading descriptions.
As we write this guide, our own feedback is over 3,000. This represents goods valued at over 1 million pound sterling. Yet we probably have same feedback as somebody selling near worthless e-books, for under a dollar each, or fake CD's for a fiver. This doesn't seem fair, and we aren't simply complaining about for own own benefit, a truly representative rating would benefit all our customers, and give potential bidders a better way to judge who is honest, and who isn't.
Shush, we don't think eBay like anybody to mention Google in case eBay members realise there are other ways to find things you want to buy on the internet. But Google use a weighting system when allocating value to back-links. A link to a page or site from a high rated site gets a higher Google page rating than a link from an unimportant site. In the same way eBay could index its feedback system so that feedback from known reputable members would score more highly than feedback from those who are little known or as yet unproved.
Was This Guide Useful?
If you found this guide interesting, informative or useful, please spare few seconds of your time to vote for it by clicking on the "Yes" button below, thanks. We will undoubtedly get a few "No" votes from people selling these coins.
A better test than usefulness might be to vote "Yes" if you agree that most or any of our points, thanks.
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Value Weighting Feedback Would Help eBay Deter Scams
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12 September 2006
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