With the Super Bowl a few days away, many of us fans are wondering how we would ever pay for Super Bowl tickets. I’m a Colts fan so obviously going to see the Super Bowl in Indianapolis would have been nice, even without those Colts being part of the game. Do you think you could never afford or never want to pay that much for a Super Bowl ticket? How about going for free? Unfortunately, today’s post is not a happy story, it’s the story from the other end of the table. A friend of mine is a big hockey fan and lives in Montreal. He had bought some Montreal Canadiens tickets at the start of the year under both his name and his wife’s name (there is a limit per person). Unfortunately, for one of those games, he was unable to attend. What to do?
He decided to put those 2 tickets up for sale on eBay, great idea right?
A few days later, some guy bought the tickets for more or less the cost
The buyer then sent the money using Paypal to the seller who then sent away the electronic tickets
The buyer received the tickets and was surprised to see another name on the tickets. The seller confirmed they were right, gave his phone number in case something went wrong (he was going to be near the stadium on that evening)
The game night came and went, without any issues
Then, one week later or so, the buyer contacted the seller saying he had never been able to get in with the tickets, had been refused entry and wanted to a refund. The seller inquired why he did not contact him earlier or why he did not call… The buyer said he had lost the phone number and he had tried to contact him earlier but never gave any proof or explained how it was done.
The seller offered to go with the buyer to the stadium to get some kind of solution (if the ticket had been refused, that was certainly an error)..but the buyer was not interested, he simply wanted his refund
There are probably 2 possible explanations:
#1-The buyer forgot to go to the game and wanted to get a refund
#2-The buyer simply wanted to see a free game
You might think that there is no way that eBay/Paypal would rule in favor of the buyer here right? Wrong.. Since the buyer paid by Credit Card and complained to his credit card issuer, he ended up winning despite proofs of emails sent. Crazy right? It certainly makes me think twice about dealing with eBay again from the seller point of view. What could have been done differently? A few things I guess… But one thing is for sure, my friend ended up losing both his tickets and the money he had made selling the
Investment Opportunities?I think this is actually another case for Facebook. In an online, virtual world, there are very few ways to verify the identity of someone. Sure, eBay has an online “reputation” score (the buyer had 2) but I think that Facebook will be able to deliver a more “trustable” environment for ecommerce than what currently exists. I still believe in eBay to some extent but I can only imagine that stories like that happen very often and it must be very costly for eBay & Paypal to deal with such issues. That is probably one more reason why eBay’s auction business has taken a back seat in the whole picture.
Disclosure: No current positions on eBay (NASDAQ:EBAY)