Do You Think I'm Being Unfair?

Fellas and dames,

I have recently been selling my stuff on eBay. Someone bid on one of my items, then sent the following 3 days after winning:
i must say that i was excited to bid n this item however, after looking closely at the ad, you stated that the item has dents on it and I CANNOT PURCHASE THAT LIKE THAT. I collect these things and display them and i cannot display something like that i am sorry. could you cancel the transaction, i cannot pay for this sorry.
-deadbeatbidder (name changed to protect the guilty)
 What would you do? I'm awfully close to replying thusly:

I was initially happy to see you bidding on this item. However, after seeing your completely ignorant response, I can see it is very clear that you did not examine my pictures nor the auction text carefully before bidding.

Nothing has changed in the description since you bid on the item. The only thing that's changed is your attitude. If you didn't want the item as-is, you shouldn't have bid. A bid is a legal contract. I have canceled bids for people before, but they made it clear their bid was an accident. They also asked me, politely, before the auction had been completed--not 3 days after while I have the item packed and awaiting payment. You're shouting at me (CAPS) showing neither politeness nor respect.

If you want someone to be angry with, be angry at yourself for not reading or examining my auction description or pictures more closely, or not contacting me before the auction closed. If you don't want the item, complete your responsibility to me and to eBay, and then resell the item. If you refuse to pay, I will initiate non-paying bidder procedures ASAP.

For more information on eBay's policies on bidding and canceling a bid, please see http://pages.ebay.com/help/buy/questions/retract-bid.html

Have a great day,

What do you think, sirs? Am I being too tough on Monsieur Deadbeat?



  1. It sounds to me like someone who has encountered sudden financial troubles and doesn't feel he/she can afford the purchase anymore. They could possibly be too embarrassed to say so or might believe that you would refuse a request to cancel for such a reason. Now, he/she might just be a total douchebag, too, in which case your letter is perfectly suitable!

  2. Sheesh, eBay, what a gigantic, visible-from-space tire fire of a marketplace that is.

    I don't think you owe him a thing, but good luck cashing the check.

    Sorry this one went sour. Most of the time I find it more profitable to throw my stuff in the street than to put it on eBay.

  3. I can quite understand your annoyance and wouldn't fault you for lodging a complaint. However, one thing I feel compelled to point out is that caps don't necessarily indicate someone is 'shouting' at you - it can merely be a way of emphasising an important aspect of a communication.

    Going by their message to you, I would guess that the person is probably just a teenager who got caught up in the heat of the moment and didn't read the details too clearly. It can happen. I once saw a Yogi Bear Christmas ornament for a couple of dollars on ebay, but failed to spot that postage was around £25 or $30. When I did, I asked if they could send it by a cheaper method, but the company were adamant that they wouldn't. I paid up, but couldn't help feeling ripped off.

    If more than one person bid, why not just let the second highest bidder purchase it - if the difference isn't too great?

    After all, it's Christmas.


I can never tell if two comments from "Anonymous" are really by the same person, so please, especially if I know you from other websites, leave a name or alias or something! Thanks!