Ebay's feedback system...
I stirred the pot a couple of years ago, trying to get some momentum to change the feedback system. Although I got a lot of positive remarks on forums from buyers and a lot of negative arguments from sellers, nothing seemed to happen. Then, suddenly, Ebay adds the multiple star ratings to feedback - amazingly similar to what I had proposed.
At least I can have a good feeling that I was right, and that it DID need to happen, even if I did not get even a thank you from corporate for suggesting it.
Now, as for not being able to leave negative feedback for buyers. I Don't support that, as I think that the field should be pretty open. The fact that Ebay splits up feedback between selling and buying now allows a buyer to determine if a given vendor is a more or less safe bet. Feedback for buyers has been useful to me, though, as it has helped me understand the reason for negative feedback for a given seller.
I am not sure that I am happy that they are going to "age off" feedback. I fear that this will allow a bad seller to simply play nice for a bit, then, get to a point that they look good, and can hook in a bunch of buyers before sticking it to them.
I don't just look at the numbers of positive/negative feedbacks, but, rather check how they are distributed, and, look at what percentages of the total mass are negative and positive. Alas, it is true enough that there are some folks that are impossible to please, and, one way or another a seller will end up with a negative feedback from them. However, if that seller has 95% positive feedbacks, and, there seems to be reasonable explanations on the negative feedback exchange, that does not mean I will not buy from that vendor.
I do like very much sellers that give feedback when they ship the package out. That seems an appropriate time for them to do it. The only negative I have gotten so far was retalitory, in that I negged a guy for not following through on a sale, and, he negged me with false claims about bouncing an E-check on him. My feeling was that he got a better offer on the item I was purchasing, so blew off my bid, and sold it to someone else.
By the by...speaking of E-checks and such, that brings to mind Paypal. which was mentioned earlier too. In terms of payments and such, remember that Ebay, which owns Paypal, is making a truckload of money every day on the "float" on payments, so, they are unlikely to EVER cut down on the four or five days it takes to credit a payment to a seller. They pull the funds out of my bank account by midnight of the day I make the payment, and hold onto them for at least four full days before crediting them to the seller. What do they do with that cash in that time? Believe me, it does not go into a big piggy bank somewhere in the Midwest of America! They are likely investing it in overnight and very short term loans with relatively high interest rates, and keeping that income for management and stockholders. On top of that, they ding the sellers for fees!
While the overnight interest on a US$40 transaction is not much at all, remember that they are collecting over a million payments a DAY, and THAT starts to mount up to a decent pile of cash.
I could go on, but, there are only terabytes of storage out there, so I probably should leave a bit of space for other, wiser folks...
Thanks for listening.