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Subject: Marketplace Etiquette rss

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Del Turner
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I'm making my first sale on the Marketplace and I'm in a little bind. I have to buyers working about an hour apart.

One is geekmailing me and I'm talking with him about it. He gets his mails to me first, so I feel he got there first. He asks how much with shipping, conversion to US, etc.

The other guy is the same only his geek mails come in after the other guy. I told him the first guy has asked for an estimate with shipping and once I find out if he's made his decision, I'll let him know. If the first guy doesn't take it, the second guy is certainly welcome.

Now since this is all through geekmail, I have to take time to come back and reply, etc. During that time person #2 hits the official "Buy Now" button. Which person would you say has precedence in this situation? I feel obligated to #1 because of him being first, but #2 did use the proper channels (ernsuring BGG gets their piece) though he moved faster than I did.

Help?
 
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Mike Pranno
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The buyer who made the purchase from the Marketplace should get the game, unless you made some sort of explicit promise to hold the game for the other buyer. And if that was the case, you should have "Suspended" your listing in the Marketplace until the discussion with the first buyer was concluded.
 
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Pat T
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Given that the seller didn't use "suspend" and actually told the second buyer that he was in negotiations with and earlier (first) buyer, I think the first buyer should get it.
 
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Del Turner
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*sigh* One each way.
 
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Crypt Keeper
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Since you (presumably) already informed buyer #2 that you were in negotiations with buyer #1 BEFORE #2 hit the "buy now" button, buyer #1 should have priority.

Apologize to #2 for any inconvenience.
 
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(The Artist formerly known as) Arnest R
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yep, what he said

#2 should´ve waited if he was informed...
 
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my eye
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Shipping has always been a fly in the ointment for the Marketplace. I've seen several posts in the past complaining of buyers who click "Buy!" only to back out when they found out the shipping charges. Seems to me that buyer #1 did the right thing, since he asked shipping cost first, where buyer #2 appears (note that I wrote 'appears' as I don't have any insight to their thought process) to be a bit of a d**k since they knew the situation.

It'd be nice if there was some sort of calculator available to sellers like the one on ebay — possibly for a flat rate or % fee. Though I haven't sold (only bought), I would imagine checking and answering shipping questions would be time consuming and a general PITA.

Just my $.02.
 
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Mike Pranno
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Ah! I missed the part about buyer #2 being aware that the game was already under negotiation. But my original suggestion still stands. There was only one official transaction initiated, and it was initiated by buyer #2.

Quote:
...where buyer #2 appears (note that I wrote 'appears' as I don't have any insight to their thought process) to be a bit of a d**k since they knew the situation.

Dude, they both did the "right thing", though buyer #2's actions were a lot less ethical. I liken this to a physical store. Just because the first buyer wants to discuss the specs on an LCD monitor with the sales rep and is standing right in front of the last item in stock, that does not mean that the second buyer can't just walk up and take it off the shelf, walk to the register, and buy it.

Quote:
I've seen several posts in the past complaining of buyers who click "Buy!" only to back out when they found out the shipping charges.

And then you go and attribute something to buyer #2 that may or may not be the case. If fact, I would assume more likely NOT the case, because the buyer #2 was also contacting the seller via PM.
 
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Jeff Yeackle
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mcpranno wrote:
Dude, they both did the "right thing", though buyer #2's actions were a lot less ethical. I liken this to a physical store. Just because the first buyer wants to discuss the specs on an LCD monitor with the sales rep and is standing right in front of the last item in stock, that does not mean that the second buyer can't just walk up and take it off the shelf, walk to the register, and buy it.


Having worked retail for the last 14 years, this situation comes up a lot more than you think it shoulld (we sell iPods which run out quickly).

If we use your example, it would be like Buyer #2 coming up and the sales person informing them that the product is for Buyer #1, and they can either wait or be contacted later if Buyer #1 falls through or more stock comes in. Regardless of this information, Buyer #2 still takes the product and walks up to the registers. If this happened, we would politely refuse to sell the item to Buyer #2 (but give them the above options I mentioned) and upon leaving the store, they would be detained by security whom would then in turn take Buyer #2 to the back of the store and beat them senseless (ok, this last part is a joke -- I hope!).

However, if the sales person and Buyer #1 were talking about the product in another part of the store, and Buyer #2 was not aware of these negotiations and purchased the product, that's fine. Buyer #1 and the sales person should have removed the product from the shelf (or in this case, suspended the sale) to prevent an unknowing party from buying the product in question (this happens a lot too, we call it the Vanishing Effect).

A binding sales transaction involves all written and verbal communications and total agreement by both the seller and buyer. The fly in the ointment for Buyer #2 is that they were already informed in advance that essentially clicking the purchase button would have no effect until Buyer #1 was sorted out. While the mechanism is there for them to click, they've already been informed it will not net them the product. If Buyer #3 came along and clicked the button though, that's another story.

Maybe this should be in the Selling FAQ if it isn't already, if there is even a FAQ (sorry, never used the marketplace here)

Take care all!

jeff
 
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my eye
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Quote:
Dude, they both did the "right thing", though buyer #2's actions were a lot less ethical.

See, I find the "right thing" and less ethical to be in contradiction with each other. Just because you can do something legally doesn't make it right. Sorta like an attorney looking for the loophole in a law. Or the game player who tries to exploit a rule that's not clearly written, though the spirit of the rule is implied. But that's just my point of view. I'm sure a lot of lawyers would beg to differ.

Quote:
Just because the first buyer wants to discuss the specs on an LCD monitor with the sales rep and is standing right in front of the last item in stock, that does not mean that the second buyer can't just walk up and take it off the shelf, walk to the register, and buy it.

Except that when walking into a store, the cost is pretty much known. When you buy off of the marketplace, you don't know what shipping is, which can be significant. And if it was a store, the buyer asking the questions could simply pick up the monitor (used as an example) and hold on to it while he asked questions so that another buyer couldn't take it to the register and purchase it.

Quote:
And then you go and attribute something to buyer #2 that may or may not be the case. If fact, I would assume more likely NOT the case, because the buyer #2 was also contacting the seller via PM.

My intent was not to attribute that to this particular buyer. It was meant only to illustrate the complaints from previous sellers. Taken out of context and posted in a single line I can see how it could be taken otherwise. My only contention was that the second buyer chose to proceed with the buy even though he knew the circumstances.

 
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Eric Knauer
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In my opinion, the person who first clicks on "buy" should get the game regardless of private negotiations. Or else you should have suspended your ad and then reposted it. Granted, it was a bit slimy of the second buyer to click on buy after you told him about your negotiations, but the way the system is set up, you can't have people clicking on "buy", and then tell them, "well, actually, I can't sell you the game yet because I might have sold it to someone else." That would be too unreliable.
 
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Trenton
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I agree with Eric.

Buyer #2 may have been looking for that game for quite some time, and was willing to pay pretty much whatever shipping you were going to charge. He was obviously (I hope) fully ready to pay. Buyer #1 wasn't ready to buy yet.

I believe that, like on eBay, the person who clicks Buy-It-Now get's the item. There are many buyers perfectly willing to ask 20 questions then not buy. It happens.

But, in the future, inform your buyers in the following ways:
-List the shipping charges for several locations, if possible.
-List the size and weight of the packaged item and its starting destination. They may be able to find out on their own what shipping will be.
-Accurately describe the item and show pictures, if possible.

If you don't leave them any questions to ask, they won't have any to ask. They will only have to decide whether or not to click Buy-It-Now.
 
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Sean Heber
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I think the buyer who clicked the Buy button should get the product. He may have clicked the button after being told there was a negotiation under way in order to seal the deal. In other words he/she may have felt they were making your life easier by not negotiating and taking the item for the price you were asking for up front rather than trying to talk you down or whatever. In effect, the second buyer immediately agreed to your initial terms and now you want to punish him for it because he was faster and agreed to your publicly stated sale terms?

If you wanted to hold the item for buyer 1, you should have revoked/suspended your listing. If you were in a retail store (as someone else suggested) you would have told customer 2 that the last item was on hold for customer 1 - effectively suspending the product's sale-ability and removing it from the market. But online there's no parallel - you can't physically block the guy from taking the item off the shelf without suspending the listing.

If you really feel bad for what happened to buyer 1, you could always locate the same item from another seller, buy it, and then re-offer it to the first person and take any financial loss as a reminder of a lesson learned.
 
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Del Turner
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jyeackle wrote:

Maybe this should be in the Selling FAQ if it isn't already, if there is even a FAQ (sorry, never used the marketplace here)

Take care all!

jeff

There is a small faq in the market place, but it does not go into this situation. I did not know about "suspend" because it is not covered there.

I tend to agree with you. I said
Quote:
Hi,

Someone GeekMailed me about it before you did and I sent him an estimate a moment ago. If he chooses not to buy it after getting the estimate, I'll GeekMail you and you can have it. With shipping it would come to just over 50$US.

Thanks,
Del


To me that says "If he chooses not to buy it after getting the estimate, I'll GeekMail you and you can have it. P.S. I'll geekmail you. Then you can have it. After I geekmail you."

But, I posted this thread because I want to know how things are handled here on BGG. From what I can tell, the people who have a better working knowledge of Marketplace (and would assumingly use it) say otherwise. "Buy it" literally means press "Buy it."

*sigh* good thing I only have one game of value I'm willing to sell soblue I'm going to have to think about this some more.
 
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Leonardo Teixeira
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I guess I should express my opinion being the so-called "buyer 2". Well, here it goes:

I've been looking for this game for quite some time and being new to boardgamegeek, I was really excited about finding it, and believed that shipping charges were not to be outrageous considering the seller was shipping it out of Canada.

I contacted the seller and asked him a couple of question, like "is the game complete", "how much is shipping", etc. This went unanswered for a few days, and I didn't lose my sleep over it because I know that people have a life and does not necessarily stay online all the time.

Days later, the seller contacted me and told me someone had asked him a few questions about the game and was apparently interested in buying it and that this inquiry was made an hour or so prior to my first geekmail.

I sent him another email to let him know that I was really interested

Hours passed and later that same day I noticed that the item was still for sale. I thought about asking the seller AGAIN what was going on, but decided, based on my experience of 200+ purchases on ebay, that it might be just simplier, less complicated for the seller to simply buy-it-now and paypal him the amount.

Really, so many times I've lost great goodies on ebay because I asked some trivial questions about a great item, which due to timing, etc, did not get answered in time, only to find out that someone else bought it hours later.

My understanding is that the other potential buyer had his/hers questions but hesitated to buy it, just as I've hesitated and sometimes lost buy-it-now and auctions on ebay.

I think that legally I am entitled to purchase this item. Imagine you going to a store online or physical and then telling the seller you gotta do some thinking about a product. Someone later comes in, falls in love with the item, which is still available, waits HOURS for the other potential buyer to come back and then proceed through check out only to find out he can't pay for it because the other person is now finaaly ready to check out?


I don't know... it just doesn't seem right to me. It's like doing the buy-it-now from ebay and then find out you can't pay for it because someone was interested and sent the seller an email prior to you.

Leo
 
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Leonardo Teixeira
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Just a quick message for Del to let him know that I understand that although I have a strong opinion on this matter, I understand that ultimately the decision is his. No hard feelings.

Leo
 
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Chris
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leoesu wrote:
simply buy-it-now and paypal him the amount.


Absolutely, the "Buy It" button wins out over any and all negotiations. That's what "Buy It" means. Someone asking questions is just asking questions. Anything else here is just wrong. It's what the button text says, "Buy It". It doesn't say "I may be interested in buying your game item, but only if you answer some questions I may have". And even if it did, the asker didn't press that button, but instead went through behind-the-scenes channels. It's irrelevent that you let another potential buyer know that you were in "discussions" with someone else.

No offense intended, it's obvious you're trying to do the right thing, good luck with your decision. The right thing is to sell the game item to the person who confidently and firmly pressed "Buy It", as advertised, As Advertised, and not to sell this to the person who only merely discussed possibly buying it, But Did Not Commit, as this 2nd buyer Did Commit To Buy, by pressing the "Buy It" button, wholeheartedly believing he was then committing to and agreeing to buy this item from you. There was nothing in the contract (should put that in quotes, "contract", since it's apparently optional) that said you could turn him down.


(I had a lucky situation over the Summer wherein a game I wanted was available on the Geek, I hit "Buy It", and the Geek seller then informed me that he was talking with someone else! ...and would not sell it to me. The nerve! Within a day I lucked out at eBay on a slightly cheaper copy, which with shipping from Britain to the US ended up costing the same, and was in much better shape! [near mint, unpunched] I happen to be brilliantly happy with my outcome, and the British eBay seller could not have been nicer, he went out of his way to pack the thing to my specifications and I offered to pay more for that but he declined. Lucky for me but I know that doesn't help here. I haven't looked at the Geek marketplace since, where these kind of shennanigans are possible, even from otherwise well-meaning people, but instead have looked at alternate channels. Heck, if I had the game in question, after this, I'd offer it to the 2nd buyer! That's how strongly I feel about this.)

I wish everyone the best outcome possible.
 
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Del Turner
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I've decided to go with buyer 2.In my heart I say buyer 1, but I am selling on BGG and I must go with what's expected on BGG.

Many people here say that it's assumed open if the Buy It button is available regardless of negotiations. Since Marketplace operates everyday with these assumptions it's only fair - not only to buyer 2 - but everyone who uses the Marketplace to abide by their conventions.

Time to go write some apologies. soblue
 
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my eye
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Leonardo:
Quote:
where buyer #2 appears (note that I wrote 'appears' as I don't have any insight to their thought process) to be a bit of a d**k since they knew the situation.

Should have known there was more to the story and it appears you weren't a d**k after all. My humblest apologies and welcome to the geek!

 
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