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NancyMehl
03-17-2008, 09:59 PM
Is there anyone here who is an Ebay seller - or who knows someone who sells on Ebay?

I need to know what would happen if someone contacted you and asked you to tell them who had purchased an item from you. The only thing this person can see if the Ebay ID of the buyer, but they have an important reason to try to indentify them.

Does Ebay have rules that prohibit the sharing of a buyer's ID to a third party?

Thanks,

Nancy

auntybug
03-17-2008, 10:05 PM
Yes they do have tough poilcys. If that person has a problem with another seller, they need to go through ebay & not get another member involved.

ETA: Don't get involved. If its legit - ebay will deal with it. Ther are too many ebay scams & e-mailers out there.

Here's a link - maybe that'll help.
http://pages.ebay.com/securitycenter/deterring_identity_theft.html

underthecity
03-17-2008, 10:16 PM
I'm an eBay seller. Not lately, but I've done a lot of it.

If someone emailed me to ask who had won my auction, I would not give the details. However, that person could track down the winner easily by looking at the user ID of who won.

allen

NancyMehl
03-17-2008, 10:27 PM
I'm an eBay seller. Not lately, but I've done a lot of it.

If someone emailed me to ask who had won my auction, I would not give the details. However, that person could track down the winner easily by looking at the user ID of who won.

allen

Allen,

But someone's ID doesn't tell you exactly who they are, does it? I've looked on Ebay, and although I can see who won an auction by their ID, it doesn't give me any other info as far as name or e-mail address if I wanted to contact them. (I'm talking about a buyer, not a seller.)

Am I missing something?

Nancy

auntybug
03-17-2008, 10:39 PM
Not directed at me but here's my experience anyway....

IIRC - you cannot ask for information of another member unless you have a transaction going on with them.

Zelenka
03-17-2008, 10:42 PM
Is there anyone here who is an Ebay seller - or who knows someone who sells on Ebay?

I need to know what would happen if someone contacted you and asked you to tell them who had purchased an item from you. The only thing this person can see if the Ebay ID of the buyer, but they have an important reason to try to indentify them.

Does Ebay have rules that prohibit the sharing of a buyer's ID to a third party?

Thanks,

Nancy

I've sold some stuff there in the past and I'd agree with Underthecity - if someone asked for details of a seller I'd shipped items to, I wouldn't give it out and would probably contact ebay to let them know someone was using my contact details to ask about buyers too. Basically I'd risk losing my ebay account if I was found out to be doing anything dodgy, like say the buyer complained that a third party had contacted him using details I'd given them. They discourage any communication outside their own channels.

Is this story research? I mean, who is asking - if it's the authorities or police or something, I would imagine they could get the information directly from ebay if they had a valid warrant for that information (in the case of the police, I imagine the security services wouldn't need it), as ebay keeps a record of names, addresses and credit cards associated with each account (even if you don't pay by credit card, they often ask for the details of one so as to verify your identity when setting up an account).

Or, you can actually contact the buyer using ebay's systems, if you have an ID there yourself. You just click on that person's ID and there is a link to 'contact member'.

NancyMehl
03-17-2008, 10:52 PM
My protag is trying to find out who bought a doll from Ebay. The owner is dead, and she is trying to find out who the dead person is. She wonders if she can find out through Ebay.

Since this won't be the way she finds his identity, it doesn't matter how the seller responds. I just wanted it to be accurate.

I will have the seller contact her and tell her that she cannot divulge personal information about her buyers. She will tell her to contact Ebay if she needs something more. And my protag will realize that it would take some kind of official intervention to get the victim's identity that way.

Thanks, guys. That answers my question. <S>

Nancy

benbradley
03-17-2008, 10:53 PM
Allen,

But someone's ID doesn't tell you exactly who they are, does it? I've looked on Ebay, and although I can see who won an auction by their ID, it doesn't give me any other info as far as name or e-mail address if I wanted to contact them. (I'm talking about a buyer, not a seller.)

Am I missing something?

Nancy
Yes, all that is kept secret in eBay's system. Here's a site that helps search for neutral/negative feedback on an ID (I think it tells you nothing that's not already available directly through eBay, but this is more convenient for getting the 'dirty' feedback left for or by an ID):
http://toolhaus.org

eBay does have a "mail system" where you can send a message to another ID without knowing their email address or anything else, but there are limitations on it, and I forget them all. This sort of thing is discouraged, as such messages involve "off-ebay" sales, in which not only does eBay not get its percentage of the sale, but it bypasses many of eBay's protections and guarantees, and is a major method of buyers and sellers ripping off each other.

Click on the ID to see things such as feedback, and look for a "contact this person" or somesuch. Perhaps they've tightened up things so much that that's not even allowed anymore. I haven't been active as a seller in well over a year, and during my time selling there were numerous rules and regulations that were always being modified, so nothing would surprise me.

But you can often learn some 'interesting' things about a person by looking at recent auctions they've won (or bid on - you used to be able to see all a person's bids for the past month or so, or at least a seller whose auction a bidder has bid on could...I think they stopped that).

Then there are the discussion forums, they're all chock full of drama and trolls. It's "moderated", but imagine an online forum moderated by a government institution (such as Government schools) - minor infractions are deleted and punished but a lot of major mean-spirited posts and tauntings are left.

eBay remimds me of the original Adventure computer game - "You're in a maze of turny, twisty passages."

heyjude
03-18-2008, 04:10 PM
There must be a way to do it. I recently sold a very expensive piece to someone and almost instantly they received a message from a guy--who knew my real first name and location--asking her to direct payment to him instead of me. He claimed to be my hubby (at least he didn't know hubby's first name). Luckily the buyer was at least smart enough to know something was wrong and emailed me.

And yes, we have each other's email address. Can your chara access the doll's owner's computer?

hammerklavier
03-18-2008, 05:49 PM
If the buyer is also offering items for sale (if they are a reseller of antiques for instance) then all you would need to do is bid on and win one of their auctions and then ask to pay by check.

benbradley
03-18-2008, 06:28 PM
There must be a way to do it. I recently sold a very expensive piece to someone and almost instantly they received a message from a guy--who knew my real first name and location--asking her to direct payment to him instead of me. He claimed to be my hubby (at least he didn't know hubby's first name). Luckily the buyer was at least smart enough to know something was wrong and emailed me.

And yes, we have each other's email address. Can your chara access the doll's owner's computer?
For a crook doing it, I'm imagining things such as "Phishing site" or "key logger." For this to have actually happened in real life, you might investigate a little more, perhaps even ask on the <cringe> eBay discussion boards. The Seller Central board always had a lot of scam-savvy people who knew exactly how scammers do things and how to avoid them.

If the buyer is also offering items for sale (if they are a reseller of antiques for instance) then all you would need to do is bid on and win one of their auctions and then ask to pay by check.
This could work with some sellers, but I learned quickly when I started selling on my original account to create a new buying-only account and buy with it, and only sell with the selling account (ebay allows you to have up to four accounts/ID's, but you can only sell on one of them), and keep them publicly separate (so no one who knows you as one account would know about the other). This helps in several ways. If you buy something and a deal goes bad, you don't have to fear leaving negative feedback and then have the seller use another ID to buy something from you and leave you retaliatory feedback. You can also buy things on ebay to resell, and people can't see that you're doing that since buying and selling the item are done on different, apparently unrelated accounts.

NancyMehl
03-20-2008, 12:32 AM
Thanks for all the additional info.

I've written the scene and feel confident about it. I actually contacted an Ebay seller who sold me a doll I needed for research for this book - but she didn't respond. So, there is obviously some paranoia going on there, huh?

Wonder if there are any mystery or suspense novels that use Ebay as a back drop? Could be very interesting! LOL!

Nancy

Tsu Dho Nimh
03-20-2008, 04:40 AM
Is there anyone here who is an Ebay seller - or who knows someone who sells on Ebay?

I need to know what would happen if someone contacted you and asked you to tell them who had purchased an item from you. The only thing this person can see if the Ebay ID of the buyer, but they have an important reason to try to indentify them.

Does Ebay have rules that prohibit the sharing of a buyer's ID to a third party?


eBay itself will hand over the info to law enforcement, and when I was actively selling they weren't too fussy about the subpoena part of it. Your inquisitive character could fake being a cop if they have ot. (But I would change the name of the auciton srevice - eBay has no sense of humor about being involved in ficiton)

One hting a seller CAN do is get the contact info from the "someone" and pass it along to the buyer, leaving the contact decision up to them.

Gillhoughly
03-23-2008, 12:19 AM
I would suggest you call it "Cyber-Bay" and make up your own rules.

You won't trip over Ebay rules or their trademarks or tick off its regular users.

Or you can sell the doll via "Joe's List" instead of bothering Craig.

Or via a consignment store, then you can have character interaction between your MC and the store owner. That's got to be more interesting than an e-mail exchange--gives you a chance to show, not tell!

hammerklavier
03-23-2008, 10:58 PM
I would suggest you call it "Cyber-Bay" and make up your own rules.

You won't trip over Ebay rules or their trademarks or tick off its regular users.

Or you can sell the doll via "Joe's List" instead of bothering Craig.

Or via a consignment store, then you can have character interaction between your MC and the store owner. That's got to be more interesting than an e-mail exchange--gives you a chance to show, not tell!


Or buy the doll "on that big online auction site"