Sunday, May 24, 2009

Postage, Shipping Insurance and trivia

I've heard the complaints from Postal Employees this week - the local post office is cutting back (this is not the one that delivers to my house - more about them in a minute) this is the one we go to when we have to mail First Class International and where we have a mail box.

The post office that delivers to our house is cutting 9 routes. My mail man expects to get a lot more houses/businesses to deliver. He's worried.

Ok, WHAT exactly was the Post OFFICE management expecting? The economy stinks. Sales online have dropped (in my case 50% on ebay or more) and every other seller I know says pretty much the same thing. Even big retailers and etailers are complaining. So of course mail volume is down.

And the Postal Service management's brilliant response to the shortfall and declining economy was ???

"Let's raise the rates".

That works, fellas and girls! NOT!

Personally I can't wait for GOIP...I see your quizzical looks. You've heard of VOIP? Voice over Internet Protocols? meaning phone calls on the internet??? Sames lines as your cable or DSL internet access? Well I'm hoping for something like the "transporter" on the Star Trek ship, Enterprise - GOIP - Glass over IP. put the depression glass piece on the computer...push a button and it shows up at the customer's house.

Meanwhile, to the PO I say:

1. QUIT breaking my stuff - yes I insure it (I double insure fragile stuff - once with the PO and then again with Shipsurance thru my account with them - Need shipping insurance? See them - Tell them I sent you -http://www.shipsurance.com/?refId=130

2. Stop raising Rates just because you can. A letter at 44 cents is eminently reasonable. Raising Delivery Confirmation (from $.65 to $.70 for Priority mail and from $.65 to $.80 for everything else and Signature Confirmation (from $1.75 to $2.35? why) is ridiculous. Why? You're not scanning it except at the beginning and end. WHAT exactly am I getting for that increase?

3. Bring back surface transport for international shipping. The merchant fleet needs business too and it's cheaper - and folks liked it. Plus the FCI limit of 4 lbs and 36 inches? That don't work for me, babe.

4. MAKE Paypal and eBay offer First Class International shipping on their label systems or cut their access off altogether. They say you won't let them offer it and I've been told repeated by Postal Officials that that is just not true that it is in fact their decision. *if something is not true, it's a ? ____________

Lack of access to that type of label/postage is a major factor in many small sellers decision to not ship internationally. Lack of business cross-border is going to end up being one of eBay's excuses for eliminating us small sellers. (you heard it here first...wait til next year as the 76'ers keeps telling us Phila. fans)

Please realize. I respect the amazing United States Post Office and most of it's employees.
I support the PO as best I can. But I'm tired of the price increases combined with the lousy handling of my packages. Tell the Post Office "soccer" team to knock off drop-kicking FRAGILE items, clearly marked FRAGILE across the back room every Monday morning.

13 damage claims in one 14 month period were more than I could stand. So - I'm now a UPS customer til the PO gets over itself.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Well ! I was going to complain about eBay's new Fakes policy

But the thought of me ranting here, must have scared the bejesus out of them...so they changed their minds and rescinded their stupid new policy to institute a "slightly less stupid new" policy.

HERE's what they said:

On May 15, eBay will be releasing a revised user agreement. This revision will address the obligations of buyers and sellers in transactions where a buyer has alleged receipt of a counterfeit item.
Under the revised agreement:
Buyers and sellers shall work in good faith during the resolution process to determine that the item is not counterfeit.
If buyer and seller cannot determine that the item is not counterfeit, buyers are required to send the item back to the seller. Cost of return shipping will be paid by the buyer or eBay, unless both buyer and seller have agreed otherwise.
Covered claims that meet the conditions and are not excluded will count as a violation by the seller of our prohibited and infringing items policy.
If eBay determines the buyer is not acting in good faith, eBay may restrict or eliminate their ability to return items or make future claims.
Sellers shall not list, advertise, or cause that item to appear for sale, barter or trade, on any eBay Inc. web site or service.
These revisions to the user agreement are being made to:
Provide sellers protections against inaccurate counterfeit claims.
Provide buyers assurances about the authenticity of the item received.
Maintain integrity of the eBay marketplace.
The new User Agreement is effective immediately for new members registering on or after today, and on June 14, 2009, for current members. You don't need to do anything to accept the new User Agreement. If you don't wish to accept it, you can follow these instructions to close your account.
Sincerely, Scott Shipman Senior Counsel eBay Inc.
Link to this announcement Back to top
***Original: Changes to the eBay User Agreement***
May 04, 2009 02:00PM PST/PT

Scott Shipman
As part of the spring 2009 Update, announced on April 14, we introduced new programs that involve some changes to eBay’s User Agreement.
eBay Purchase ProtectionThe biggest change to the agreement is the addition of eBay Resolutions and the new eBay Purchase Protection policy. eBay is now going to run the purchase protection program instead of requiring buyers to go to PayPal. The new User Agreement incorporates the new policy and describes the legal parameters.
As with earlier updates to the User Agreement, we’ve made other minor changes to reflect eBay’s current product and service offerings and industry legal standards. You'll see references to, “eBay site, services and tools” where the old agreement simply reads, “eBay site.” These changes reflect the many new ways you can access eBay’s offerings through other websites, wireless devices, and tools. We’ve also highlighted a few sections of the agreement, based on our interpretation of state regulations.
The new User Agreement is effective immediately for new members registering on or after today, and on June 8, 2009, for current members. You don’t need to do anything to accept the new User Agreement. If you don't wish to accept it, you can follow these instructions to close your account.
Thank you for being a part of the eBay Community.
Sincerely, Scott Shipman Senior Counsel eBay Inc.
Link to this announcement Back to top

OK, so what's my problem?? This paragraph

Covered claims that meet the conditions and are not excluded will count as a violation by the seller of our prohibited and infringing items policy.


Why? Because, they decide to reimburse the buyer - regardless of what I say or what documentation I provide and I can still get a violation. Get enough of those and you're off ebay - for who knows how long. Why doesn't eBay pay for an independent appraisal or examination by an INDEPENDENT, QUALIFED judge/3rd party etc - (like someone from the COACH company for the COACH disputes)

DO YOU TRUST EBAY??? WEll, why should we?

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