eBay Feedback
September 13, 2004 2:53 PM   Subscribe

AAAA+A+++++++ GrEAT SELLER, BUY WITH CONfIDENSE, WOULD DO BUSINESS AGAIN!+!!! It seems this is pretty much the de facto standard for positive feedback on eBay, although I find it difficult to believe that most satisfied customers are nearly crapping their pants with joy for something as trivial as successfully receiving a purchase. If I go and buck the trend by posting something simple like "Fast shipping, product was as described," will my relative lack of enthusiasm make this feedback look almost negative? Would I need to worry about the seller writing me nasty emails for leaving crappy feedback?

Or what if I offered only a single "A+"? Is that a failing grade on the eBay scale?
posted by Galvatron to Computers & Internet (21 answers total)
I write "normal" feedback, and I've never gotten any flack over it. In fact I'd say not sounding like you're hyperventilating would tend to give your feedback a healthy dose of credibility. The appearance of sanity is always a plus.
posted by Khalad at 2:59 PM on September 13, 2004

"Fast shipping, product was as described" is pretty much exactly what I usually write (when applicable, of course). Haven't had any complaints.
posted by Acetylene at 3:02 PM on September 13, 2004

I agree with Khalad. I've only bid on a couple of items, but my feedback has always been rational, concise, and highly specific.

...maybe that's because I find that sort of advice more believable, however. I tend to view the A++++++++ reports as possible reputation-spam.
posted by aramaic at 3:02 PM on September 13, 2004

I don't think people care much as long as it's positive. In fact, when I look through the feedback these days I tend to see more straightforward comments than I do ones with the "A+++"s and all the exclamation points.

I would just say simply and directly what you mean and not use A+s or exclamation points at all. I don't think anyone has any consistent way of interpreting what such-and-such many +s means anyway.
posted by mcguirk at 3:03 PM on September 13, 2004

I go the simple route myself. I typically leave something along the lines of "Fast shipping, good communication, product as described," (assuming that's all true), no bizarre letter grades (of any sort), if I'm satisfied with a transaction. If something was especially good--above and beyond what the average good seller would do--I'll mention that, and perhaps use one (1) exclamation point. Never had any complaints about the feedback I've left. Admittedly, I only buy off of eBay 2 or 3 times a year, so I'm hardly a power user.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 3:03 PM on September 13, 2004

I usually put pretty whimsical things on feedback, and as long as it's positive overall, they don't care.
posted by angry modem at 3:04 PM on September 13, 2004

I'm pretty much "Good communication, fast delivery, product as described." No horses heads yet...
posted by benzo8 at 3:14 PM on September 13, 2004

I think there's just not enough space to be descriptive if you really are pleased -- 80 characters is the max, isn't it? So instead of any kind of detailed explanation, people just fill the space with +++++.

eBay has a bit of a feedback inflation problem, though. People get seriously upset if their perfect records are tarnished. I've seen comments like "took two weeks to arrive, not as described, thoroughly unhappy" left as neutral, because negative feedback is apparently seen as such a slight on someone. With Power Sellers especially, you can get them to do near enough anything to avoid The Dreaded Negative Feedback. It's really strange.
posted by reklaw at 3:14 PM on September 13, 2004

Depends on how funky I'm feeling, but I usually leave boring "Item received as described" type feedback. Sometimes I'll do "A+++++++++++++++++++++++ G0od CELLARS!!!!111!1 TnX" for the hell of it. :-D
posted by shepd at 3:30 PM on September 13, 2004

I tend to leave comments regarding shipping speed, the goods being as described, and my overall satisfaction, without resorting to hyperbole.

Along with the A+++++++++++++++++++++ ratings which you have to take with a grain of salt, you have the people who never leave a negative rating for fear of getting a negative rating in retaliation. Too many people take the attitude, and it is hard to blame them, that the potential of getting a retaliatory negative rating outweighs the good they are doing for the next purchaser by informing the ebay world what a schmuck some seller was.
posted by caddis at 3:34 PM on September 13, 2004

Another vote for, "Good communication, rapid shipment, everything as described. Would buy again." I use it (or a similar variant if I'm a seller), and have never had any complaints.

Plus, you don't look like a spastic, mouth-breathing moron.
posted by jammer at 3:36 PM on September 13, 2004

I'll take "Fast shipping, product was as described" as better feedback than the obligitory A+++++++. Better as in more worthwhile and better as in more trustable.
posted by seanyboy at 3:42 PM on September 13, 2004

As a seller, my favorite bit of feedback was "Norm is a class act", which I thought was rather nice of the buyer. The ones that leave all the A+++!!!11!!!! garbage don't excite me much. As a buyer, I tend to leave short honest comments. No-one cares as long as it adds to the +ve score.
posted by normy at 3:44 PM on September 13, 2004

Just put OMG JUST WET MYSELF and you should be good to go.
posted by xmutex at 3:45 PM on September 13, 2004

Exactly--all people really care about is the overall rating, and whether you helped keep it up.
posted by LairBob at 3:46 PM on September 13, 2004

I've bought a few things on eBay over the years (by which I mean, like, three), and I've been amazed by the feedback process. I bid on something, I get an e-mailed invoice, I send the money, I get a product. And then I get some totally over the top "A+++++++ GREAT BUYER!!" rating. Totally incongruous. I've left feedback like "I got the thing that I bought" and nobody's complained.
posted by waldo at 3:49 PM on September 13, 2004

I like it when people get creative.
posted by Tubes at 4:42 PM on September 13, 2004

I go the totally uninteresting "Book as described, shipped promptly, thanks" route, although I'll also say something along the lines of "great service as always" if it's a seller I do business with on a regular basis. Hyper-excited feedback always strikes me as a tad odd--it's not as though it takes any great effort to hit the PayPal link.
posted by thomas j wise at 5:48 PM on September 13, 2004

If there's something appropriate and funny, I'll do that. But, as long as the comment is positive, most people will overlook it. I will do everything possible to avoid negative feedback though.
posted by drezdn at 8:10 PM on September 13, 2004

Response by poster: WOW! GREAT ANSWERS, WOULD ASK MEFI AGAIN!!!!1! AAAA++++++

Er, that is, thanks everyone. It's good to know that I don't need to worry about trampling all over the unwritten rules of eBay etiquette. And that I have avoided looking like a "spastic, mouth-breathing moron."
posted by Galvatron at 12:44 AM on September 14, 2004

I've never understood ebay feedback... why bother if everyone gets orgasmic about it. I leave normal informative feedback, but I'm sure no-one ever reads it. Hohum.

I love checking a seller and looking at the feedback they have given. All too often it's the same thing given to every buyer. Kind of destroys the point, doesn't it?
posted by twine42 at 7:34 AM on September 14, 2004

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