FYI Paying for equipment via Paypal...

10:40 a.m. on January 23, 2012 (EST)
28 reviewer rep
1,261 forum posts

There is a new technique for scamming that all traders should be aware of when making a payment through PayPal for an item bought online. A relatively new feature on PayPal’s website is the ability to send a fee-free “gift” or "personal" payment. Such a payment is solely for the purpose of sending a cash gift -– not for the payment of goods bought/sold on the internet.

You may be saying, “that’s great! – the seller will be happy that he/she isn’t going to be docked a fee for our transaction!” But, what is not readily explained is: this “gift” payment option comes with ZERO buyer protection – meaning, you cannot dispute a transaction if you receive a faulty item or do not receive your item at all. Many online scammers are requesting payment in this way so that the buyer cannot file a PayPal claim – if a seller requests that you pay via this method for a substantial item, please be very cautious as the item could be defective or not exist!


>>> How to avoid selecting the "gift" payment option:

This feature is somewhat disguised when making a payment on PayPal’s website. After selecting the “send money” tab in your PayPal account, type in the amount you want to send. To maintain your buyer protection and charge the seller a fee, keep the "payment reason" tab on "purchase" and select an option such as "goods." To send money as a "gift payment" or (personal payment), select the tab "personal" and select an option such as "other" or "payment powed" -- toggling back to the "purchase" tab will return to the "normal" (fee included) payment method.

12:57 p.m. on January 23, 2012 (EST)
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411 forum posts

It should also be noted that PayPal will not hesitate to lock, or delete, an account with suspicious "gift" activity.  They want their fees.  I depend on my PayPal account too much to have it taken away.  There are 1001 reasons for a claim to be filed and a deal to go bad, and this is yet another way to ask for that to happen.  I don't like paying the fees anymore than anyone else, but the problems that can potentially arise with playing with their rules are something I prefer to avoid.

9:50 a.m. on January 24, 2012 (EST)
77 reviewer rep
123 forum posts

here is another scam

if you dispute an item with pay-pal and they reverse the payment, they do nothing to make sure you get your "sold" item back.  so it is possible to sell something - receive payment - buyer disputes the transaction - paypal reverses payment - you do not get your item back.  so you're out the $$$$ and the merchandise

5:12 p.m. on January 28, 2012 (EST)
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1,344 forum posts

Yeah, I had something like that happen a few months back.  I sold a cell phone that worked perfectly for me prior to my upgrade to an iPhone.  I sold it to someone who claimed it didn't work.  Before even asking me to resolve it, she filed a grievance with eBay.  When she did explain the issue, i recognized it as something that had happened to me before I learned how to configure it properly  I tried to explain to the buyer that there were configuration parameters requiring adjustment, and she immediately started accusing me of "riding the crazy train" (those were her words).  I refunded her money, but never got the cell phone back.  It wasn't worth pushing the point, or paying the return fees myself.  Ebay was useless in this matter (they seem to basically ignore issues like this).

Also beware of the eBay "feedback" scoring system.  I have been on eBay since 1998 and never had a negative score.  My score has ALWAYS been 100%, and I pride myself in that - conducting smooth ethical transactions is inherent to who I am.  But this person reported a scathing negative feedback entry, and eBay's system caused that one score to drop my score to 66%.  Apparently they only count entries within the past year.  Bleh.  By the time I got around to noticing the negative feedback it was too late to dispute it.  And eBay blatantly admits that they will rarely correct incorrect feedback anyway.

Beware of dealing with people thru sales like this.  I suppose in over a dozen years of favorable dealings this was bound to happen eventually.

8:38 p.m. on January 28, 2012 (EST)
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1,902 forum posts

I've been pretty lucky over the years, only one bad experience and that was with a pair of ski boots I bought from the member of another site off its classified board. I complained and sent them back. He wasn't happy, but sent me back my money. Peer pressure on that site tends to keep people honest, members don't hesitate to call out bad actors.

EBay and Craigslist can be dicey, but I've had good experiences on both, buying and selling. I've been able to talk people into mailing me stuff off Craigslist, which most won't, but if you explain yourself and offer to pay postage, people are relatively trusting.  Craigslist warns against "mail order" transactions, but I've done several with no problems. Things are cheaper on Craigslist, too.

I use Pay Pal, but recently the seller wanted a check. I had talked to her and her husband and felt they were honest, so it worked out fine. They just didn't want to pay the PayPal fees.

8:39 a.m. on February 11, 2012 (EST)
28 reviewer rep
1,261 forum posts

Just wanted to bump this because I see a lot of classifieds for items that I believe are being sold by "questionable" on-line retailers and not by people who have any interest in becoming a member of our community.


AGAIN - If you are asked to pay thru Pay Pal AS A GIFT...immediately terminate all dealings with that person.

5:29 p.m. on February 11, 2012 (EST)
848 reviewer rep
3,897 forum posts

Hi all,

I wanted to point out that we've added some Trailspace Classifieds Rules:

I'm open to adding suggestions and guidelines for buyers and sellers. They should be short and to-the-point.

For example:

Sellers Should/should not:

  • X
  • Y
  • Z

Buyers should/should not:

  • X
  • Y
  • Z

If you have any suggestions, please share them in that thread:

8:23 a.m. on February 25, 2012 (EST)
0 reviewer rep
606 forum posts

Bump so pine sap can read it.

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