Actually a lot with Ebay's new buyer protection program.
1. There is no way to currently protect yourself as an honest seller on Ebay due to their new buyer protection policy.
This includes the vast majority of sellers who have not sold more than 100 items on their system.
The restrictions now apply to any seller without a perfect feedback rating.
The restrictions now apply to any account less than 6 months old.
2. What are these restrictions?
It's simple, they hold payment on the item until the winning bidder/buyer has received the merchandise, likes it, and decides they want to keep it.
So what? Well those of you familiar with how many flaky liars exist amongst us in the general population can quickly see where this will go wrong. I'll paint the picture with what just happened to us.
The buyer receives the laptop and keeps it for two days before "reporting" it as delivered, (another verification step ebay imposes under the new "Buyer Protection Plan.") Then she creates a dispute with ebay saying that the laptop doesn't match the description we posted on ebay. When that didn't get the desired effect of getting herself a refund, she claims that the laptop is damaged and has pixels out on the screen.
PayPal freezes the transaction.
We escalate the paypal dispute to be "investigated."
We also call UPS to start an investigation of the damage as we properly insured the item.
Paypal immediately sides with the buyer (literally within the same day that we escalate the issue disputing the invalid claim that the item didn't match the description,) and orders the buyer to ship the unit back to us.
The buyer (to avoid being caught in their lies,) ships the laptop back VIA FEDEX... Now UPS can't investigate the damage claim because another carrier has been used to deliver the laptop back to us.
I call Paypal to discuss this "investigation." They subsequently explain that due to the advent of Photoshop, they are unable to evaluate ANY EVIDENCE to verify a buyer's claim of product damage. So in short, if a buyer decides they don't want the item that they agreed to purchase, they can simply lie to get a refund.
We receive the laptop literally two weeks after we initially shipped it.
There was no damage and the unit functioned exactly as we described. No missing pixels, no problems whatsoever. We are lucky.
We are out of HOURS spent on the phone trying to get PayPal to show even a sliver of decency and fairness in this process.
We are out of our Shipping fees as the entire amount of the transaction is refunded to the dishonest buyer.
Now the implication here is clear. Once a buyer is in possession of YOUR property (as they have not actually paid for it at the point that they receive it,) they are free to do with it as they will. For Workstations and other compentized hardware, this could mean theft of internal compenents. This could mean damage to the product (whether intentional or not.) This could mean that you never get the product back and Ebay/PayPal will side with they buyer in a systematic fashion. Ebay and PayPal also play this pointing game where they blame the other for the injustice in the process, claiming their independence as mutually exclusive corporate entities.
IN SHORT, IF A BUYER DOESN'T WANT TO HONOR THEIR DECISION TO BUY, EBAY/PAYPAL WILL SCREW THE SELLER TO RESOLVE THE ISSUE.
The rule to follow here is NOT TO USE PAYPAL and ONLY EXCEPT DIRECT PAYMENT BEFORE YOU SHIP YOUR PRODUCT. Ebay's system is now functionally flawed and they defend it with a passion.
OR do as we will from here on and NEVER SELL ON EBAY AGAIN. Ebay you lost an honest seller/buyer.