T Nation

Scammed on Ebay - what would you do?

The setup: a comic book called Elektra was recently released with unauthorized nude artwork published in it, to Marvel comic’s horror. They recalled them and sent out replacements. The “nude edition” is now a coveted collectible, and sells for ~$30.

I bid in an auction titled “Elektra #3 “Nude” edition, signed,” for an autographed copy. The auction details said, “Elektra #3 NUDE edition This auction is for the version of Elektra #3…that never made it on the shelves.”

I won, and received the item. $29.00.

Here’s the fun part: it’s NOT the collectible
nude edition." It’s the regular, off-the-shelves edition! It includes a “Certificate of Authenticity” printed on computer paper (and misspelled), and cut out with scissors, which still identifies it as the “nude edition.” Since the book wasn’t what was promised, and the CoA was phony, I have doubts about the autographs being real, either.

You ready for the crappy part? The seller says it’s MY fault! He says he never claimed it was the nude edition, and that he only used the words “nude edition” in the auction to bring in more search hits, not to imply that this actually WAS that edition, and I should have asked first! He says that since he never used the actual specific words, “This is…[the nude edition],” I should not have assumed it was the limited collectible!

What’s more, he refuses a refund, and has complained to Ebay about ME, saying I’m harassing him for even disputing the matter.

So if anyone’s in the Lansing, Michigan area, or just has some interesting ideas on how to handle this, I’d love to hear it!

Clearly the only option here is to hunt him down and kill him, so get going already.

Well obviously you could contact a lawyer and sue and all, but for only $30 that would get too expensive. You could complain to Ebay. But I think the only logical conclusion would be to go to his house with your buddies and “get a refund.”

Bitch to ebay, and if they are not receptive, find a way to spread your story, bad publicty will hurt them more than anything else, foward it to everyone you know. But before you do send them a draft explaining why you are doing this and how many people you will be sending it to , entitle it something like “boycott ebay” that’ll get there attension.

I actually went through this with ebay but with a much more expensive item (1200.00 guitar). Options…send your complain to ebay through their safe harbor program. They will investigate and possibly help with a refund. Secondly, if you paid by credit card through paypal, billpoint, or through his business you can dispute the charges through your credit card company. This is how I got my money back eventually.

I paid through paypal…Do they let you dispute a payment and reclaim it?

Also, let me ask again: anyone here near Lansing, Michigan? Wanna do me a favor? Free Advanced Protein…

If you paid by credit card you can dispute it. Complain to Ebay as well.

The advice of other readers on what to do is valuable for larger sums lost. But in this case, chalk it up to what I call the frictions of life. You’ll live longer. (I’m on my way to 120, 54 years to go.)

i live somewhat near lansing… my bro lives there

I DID IT!!! I took care of it and got a refund this morning–and still have the book! I researched the laws on mail fraud and how to file a claim, and challenged every contradicting lie he was telling in a humorous “Columbo” kind of way. He tried to change his story and claim it wasn’t him–some hacker stole his ID and did all this and he’s really innocent and has no idea what’s going on. So I researched identity theft and told him how it’s investigated, and what the penalties are in Michigan, and that even pretending ID theft was a felony. I got four other buyers into it, all collaberating on filing charges for mail fraud and identity fraud, and it scared him so bad he sent the refund by Paypal this morning–to ALL of us. I have a surge of testosterone over this triumph, and it feels good to so astoundingly win over a con artist and watch him buckle under and plead.

Now have the bastard arrested so he doesn’t scam anyone else!!

My cousin lives in east lansing(msu territory) and I’m a couple hours from there. Guess you didn’t need to know now that you got your money back UNLESSS you still need somebody to make a house call. :slight_smile:

I just got an email from the second fellow in the scam, and he’s confessed too: “SO I got caught once out of the many times I have done this. Big Deal, who knows, you may be buying things from me again soon and not even know it. HAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAH Loser!!!”

the only part I regret is that since they’re using Hotmail accounts, I don’t know the second man’s real address, only the first one.

It’s likely the same guy, Aki - just using a second phony hotmail account to make you think there’s someone else - that way you won’t “press charges.” The best thing to do is leave them a BAD rating and never buy from anyone who isn’t established with great feedback…though unfortunately this, too, can be fixed.

I used to be a big collector myself. I’ve got about 1/3 of the entire spiderman collection. Can’t WAIT for the money so I can cash in!

forward those emails on to ebay. they will (or should)deal with the seller.

Even coming out of hotmail, there’s an “outgoing IP address” in every header to indicate what ISP he’s writing from. I’m traced that to which ISP is his, but can’t get any further than that. I can’t get specific enough t oget an address to use for pressing charges. Is anyone out there an expert in auditing headers and tracking down bad guys’ whereabouts?

every machine has an ID that is specific to that machine, but i am unsure if Hotmail allows that to imprint onto the email. i don’t believe so, because it is supposed to be anonamous. however, 99.9% of microsoft productst have a back door and if he is using IE and hotmail i am sure there is an ID somewhere. have you contacted ebay directly to make a complaint? make sure to forward them the emails