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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 03-06-2010, 01:29 PM
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Default Any chance to win this dispute? Buyer claims item not as described

Hey guys, I am very annoyed with this buyer. I sold a lens for a medium format camera recently on ebay for over $300 dollars, in perfect working order. It had some paint loss on the body of the lens, but it worked great and the front and rear glass were very clear as far as I could tell. However, to avoid buyer disputes, instead of saying "the front and rear glass have no scratches", I instead say that they have no scratches that would affect picture quality. This is the only thing that is relevant anyway. Small scratches like what he is describing now are very difficult to see, and if they don't affect picture quality, there's no problem there. It's a used lens, it won't look perfect. I don't want to examine a lens, miss something, and have a buyer dispute the sale just because he looks with a magnifying glass.

So the ad read as follows: lens in perfect working shape, some cosmetic wear, blah blah blah, front and rear glass are clear of any marks/scratches that would affect picture quality.

So the buyer received the item on Weds. and had very poor communication, and didn't leave me feedback until Friday. He left me positive feedback, saying "great item and seller".

But last night he sends me a message saying there are "plenty of fine scratches" on the front glass. Well, I completely disagree, but I pointed out that unfortunaely I didn't say there were no marks/scratches, rather none that would affect picture quality. So he responds by asking for $70 back, which would mean he literally stole the lens from me. The lens, in the condition it's in, is worth maybe more than what he paid me. He could easily sell it, which by the way is what I'm sure he intends to do (he sells nothing but Hasselblad equipment on ebay, and lots of it).

So of course I say no, and repeat that the item was accurately described. So then he opens a dispute. Anyway, I'm wondering whether I have a chance or not. Here's the basic rundown:

-Used lens described as not having scratches/marks that would affect picture quality.

-Buyer receives item and leaves positive feedback, saying "great item".

-Buyer then complains of fine scratches on the front glass. I don't believe him, but even if there were, they don't affect picture quality.

-Buyer asks for $70 back, I decline, he disputes.

So I elevate it to ebay Customer Support and lay out my case that I described it the way I did because it's the best way to describe it, what he's describing is not to the contrary of what the ad said, and I point out that he left positive feedback so it must not be very significant "damage".

Sorry for the wordy post, but this comes at a bad time, and it'd be a pretty big inconvenience if I lose the dispute. Does he even have an argument? He's unfortunately got 2000+ positive feedback and I've only got about 15

Thanks!

EDIT: By the way, Paypal isn't listing a dispute, but should I remove my bank/credit card info in case they try to take money from me for a refund? Because he gave me positive feedback, I spent the money and won't have the money for a refund right away. I'm just a college student :(

Last edited by stathunwagun; 03-06-2010 at 02:27 PM.
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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 03-06-2010, 02:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stathunwagun View Post
front and rear glass are clear of any marks/scratches that would affect picture quality.[/I]
Sorry, but to be blunt...I agree with your customer.

When you sell used merchandise, it is your obligation to fully disclose EVERYTHING. You tried to use "word play" in your description and now you are paying for it.

You will probably lose your dispute in my opinion. If you are asking for advise, just do the partial refund and be done with it.
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Old 03-06-2010, 03:10 PM
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Originally Posted by TheyGotMeToo View Post
Sorry, but to be blunt...I agree with your customer.

When you sell used merchandise, it is your obligation to fully disclose EVERYTHING. You tried to use "word play" in your description and now you are paying for it.

You will probably lose your dispute in my opinion. If you are asking for advise, just do the partial refund and be done with it.
While I might understand where you're coming from, "word play" was not intentional. The main reason for wording it the way I did is because I don't want to miss some tiny imperfection on a lens's glass and have the buyer dispute just because I missed something microscopic that wouldn't affect picture quality and isn't easily visible. I explained it to ebay as follows:

Quote:
I clearly state that the lens glass has no scratches or marks that "would affect picture quality". This is a better way of describing a used lens, because unless there are very obvious bad scratches, little scratches or marks may exist that are difficult to see, but they will not have any effect on the way the lens functions.


As I stated before, I saw nothing on either element, and I sell lenses quite often. If the buyer was initially satisfied enough to leave me positive feedback, I don't see how anything he was able to see later could be considered significant enough.

I think most photographers would agree that unless a lens has obvious blemishes on the glass, small imperfections are irrelevant if they do not affect picture quality, as even new lenses can show these.

But anyway, I'd rather give a full refund as I said earlier. $70 back means I sold the lens for $280 and I could easily sell it for what I sold it to him for in a day, even if I disclose everything. Just a hassle. If I gave him $70 back, he'd sell it tomorrow and make a big profit.

Last edited by stathunwagun; 03-06-2010 at 03:22 PM.
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Old 03-06-2010, 03:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stathunwagun View Post
Hey guys, I am very annoyed with this buyer. I sold a lens for a medium format camera recently on ebay for over $300 dollars, in perfect working order. It had some paint loss on the body of the lens, but it worked great and the front and rear glass were very clear as far as I could tell. However, to avoid buyer disputes, instead of saying "the front and rear glass have no scratches", I instead say that they have no scratches that would affect picture quality. This is the only thing that is relevant anyway. Small scratches like what he is describing now are very difficult to see, and if they don't affect picture quality, there's no problem there. It's a used lens, it won't look perfect. I don't want to examine a lens, miss something, and have a buyer dispute the sale just because he looks with a magnifying glass.

So the ad read as follows: lens in perfect working shape, some cosmetic wear, blah blah blah, front and rear glass are clear of any marks/scratches that would affect picture quality.

So the buyer received the item on Weds. and had very poor communication, and didn't leave me feedback until Friday. He left me positive feedback, saying "great item and seller".
Quote:

EDIT: By the way, Paypal isn't listing a dispute, but should I remove my bank/credit card info in case they try to take money from me for a refund? Because he gave me positive feedback, I spent the money and won't have the money for a refund right away. I'm just a college student :(
Welcome to the world of on-line selling. From that description, you were selling a well battered lens and used smooth words for a sale. (Lots do this & sometimes it works). You missed a valuable learning point when you got asked for a refund. You let your (young) ego get in the way of sense. (Again, this happens.) Buyer did not have poor communication: getting the item Wedesday & leaving feedback Friday is reasonable. Do you expect a buyer to be sending constant emails about this? Like you they have a life.
'I'm just a student' is an excuse. This is the big world...you either play in it or you don't. I'd seriously try to borrow $70 and get rid of the problem. Then you can pat yourself on your back and have learned something.
Soz to rain on your parade, doubtful you will win
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Old 03-06-2010, 03:35 PM
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Originally Posted by GreenBean View Post
Welcome to the world of on-line selling. From that description, you were selling a well battered lens and used smooth words for a sale. (Lots do this & sometimes it works). You missed a valuable learning point when you got asked for a refund. You let your (young) ego get in the way of sense. (Again, this happens.) Buyer did not have poor communication: getting the item Wedesday & leaving feedback Friday is reasonable. Do you expect a buyer to be sending constant emails about this? Like you they have a life.
'I'm just a student' is an excuse. This is the big world...you either play in it or you don't. I'd seriously try to borrow $70 and get rid of the problem. Then you can pat yourself on your back and have learned something.
Soz to rain on your parade, doubtful you will win
Well, certainly, I don't want that to be how I come off. However, I do have a few problems with your opinion:

-The lens was not 'well battered'. As I said several times, I admit that the body of the lens had some wear but the glass to me looked very, very good. I didn't notice anything that I considered worth mentioning at all.

-Smooth words... maybe, however, I feel they are at least somewhat justified, due to used lens glass being exposed all the time to that which could damage them. If the buyer is right and the lens has 'plenty of fine scratches', that's news to me.



But the advice to take the refund is something I can't do. I can sell the lens as soon as he sends it back for what I sold it to him, or more. It's just a hassle is all.

And last of all, do I not even have an argument at all? I mean, I think a couple of my points are valid: the imperfections must be small, because neither I nor him noticed them until he did after giving me positive feedback. Is it not a fair question to ask how far under the microscope a used, 30 year old lens with cosmetic wear should have to go?

But I do thank you for your honesty, maybe I can avoid this problem next time around.

(By the way, he had poor communication every step of the way.)

Last edited by stathunwagun; 03-06-2010 at 03:42 PM.
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Old 03-06-2010, 03:45 PM
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I'm trying to drink my 2nd coffee for the day. Here's what I think.
You know, I know and the buyer knew what you were selling. You were selling a piece of equipment that enables photos to be taken. This is called a lens. Now ebay/paypal will see 'lens' and have no clue that the body of a lens might have imperfections without out affecting the actual lens working well. That bit of info would hardly register with them. You've not mentioned what magnification the lens was. This would be pertinent if the buyer comes back and says it is less than ideal.
You asked about winning: you have a slim chance. If it was me at ebay I'd maybe be a little sympathetic. PTL I am not there. We are here. Find the money, move on....next lens you sell be ultra careful with the description
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Old 03-06-2010, 03:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GreenBean View Post
I'm trying to drink my 2nd coffee for the day. Here's what I think.
You know, I know and the buyer knew what you were selling. You were selling a piece of equipment that enables photos to be taken. This is called a lens. Now ebay/paypal will see 'lens' and have no clue that the body of a lens might have imperfections without out affecting the actual lens working well. That bit of info would hardly register with them. You've not mentioned what magnification the lens was. This would be pertinent if the buyer comes back and says it is less than ideal.
You asked about winning: you have a slim chance. If it was me at ebay I'd maybe be a little sympathetic. PTL I am not there. We are here. Find the money, move on....next lens you sell be ultra careful with the description
Yes, I agree with all of this. I'll just have to refund him fully and sell the lens over again probably. Better than letting him sell it for a profit.
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Old 03-06-2010, 04:03 PM
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It does sux: you get caught. Without knowing the buyer, he'll be very clever. The actual item is what causes the problem. Eg, I have Nikon lenses that have survived bad treatment by me. but the equivalent Sigma/Tamron lenses don't withstand similar treatment. And it is not until you carefully analyse the glass that you find the pesky imperfections. Then what annoys you might not annoy me. I gather this might be what the buyer thinks as well
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Old 03-06-2010, 04:46 PM
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Your buyer was a dealer and in my experience, dealers are bottom feeders who will try everything in the book to get your item for next to nothing.

I own a few Hassy lenses and if I were buying your lens I would want to know about minor scratches, I would have sent an email asking for details. In my book a minor scatch can introduce flare.

A filter would have prevented all this

Anyway, I had a nightmare buying experience. Won my case and sent item back by recorded delivery. Seller decided not to accept the returned package so Paypal couldn't confirm that I has sent the item and didn't refund my money in the end. I have now paid even more money for a pair of jeans that don't fit me.

If you feeling wronged by any decision, follow the example of my problem seller.

What focal length? 60 diameter? I might be tempted. Do you accept Paypal??
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Old 03-06-2010, 07:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bode View Post
Your buyer was a dealer and in my experience, dealers are bottom feeders who will try everything in the book to get your item for next to nothing.

I own a few Hassy lenses and if I were buying your lens I would want to know about minor scratches, I would have sent an email asking for details. In my book a minor scatch can introduce flare.

A filter would have prevented all this

Anyway, I had a nightmare buying experience. Won my case and sent item back by recorded delivery. Seller decided not to accept the returned package so Paypal couldn't confirm that I has sent the item and didn't refund my money in the end. I have now paid even more money for a pair of jeans that don't fit me.

If you feeling wronged by any decision, follow the example of my problem seller.

What focal length? 60 diameter? I might be tempted. Do you accept Paypal??
It's the 80 C T*. Most people I know have an 80 already unfortunately! I sold it only to buy a slightly more modern-looking version, the late C T*, which looks a lot more like the later CF series. That, and the barrel is more worn than the rest of my system (the rest of it's pretty much mint) so I thought it looked kind of weird.

Last edited by stathunwagun; 03-06-2010 at 07:52 PM.
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Old 03-06-2010, 09:30 PM
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In my opinion, a guy with 2000+ feedback should know better.

He asked for a 70 dollar refund? Over a 20 dollar refund. It's called negotiating.

Worse case scenario, he sends it back you resell it.
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Old 03-07-2010, 12:52 PM
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My experience on eBay dispute, seller has no chance at all, buyer takes it all ..
I don't think eBay will force buyers to return the item, because it never happen to me, eBay will just refund the buyer and ask seller for the money.

I quit selling items over $20 on eBay now just to reduce my risk, and whenever there is a dispute, I withdraw all my money from Paypal and prepare the worst to come - eBay close my account.
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Old 03-08-2010, 05:26 PM
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You know you can win a eBay dispute as I seller as I have won one but then again the buyer sent me a email telling me to go F**K my self and a few other things that showed he was lying.

Just refund the guy or try to take him down to 40 or something like that.
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Old 03-09-2010, 09:00 AM
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I agree either come to terms on a settlement or tell them to return it with tracking info ...i have people try and scam me anywhere from 2-5 times a month and let me tell you it is people with HIGH FEEDBACK AND LONGTIME EBAYERS they know how the system works .back before when i didnt use DC for Tracking as my items were under 9.99 , it was always high feedback people who would force me to refund or send another item and spell out how the sytem worked to me .
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