Sunday, January 21, 2007

There is no Pal in Paypal

I'm no particular fan of Ebay. Their arbitrary rules are rediculous and they are not applied evenly. Even though Ebay has a lot of different catagorie that they're making a lot of money off of, they have absolutely zero SME's working there. SME's are Subject Matter Experts; the people that should be turned to to be an authority on whatever the particular topic is. Because Ebay cares more about raising fees and making money than they do about making their system run optimally and making money, users get screwed by Ebay all the time, in the form of cancelled auctions. That's not exactly news. "Ebay sucks" has been a common refrain sung by thousands, perhaps tens of thousands of members and former members. We can add Paypal to the inneptitude that is the Ebay Corporation.

Last year, I went to use my Paypal debit card at for a lower parts kit group buy I was doing for some friends. The transaction was declined, no reason given. I went to log into my Paypal account, and was met by a message saying that Paypal, in its myopic, finite wisdom, had limited my account access. And with Paypal's awesome customer service, I didn't get any kind of message from them regarding this new situation. I wasn't supposed to be able to take the money out of my account, but for whatever reason I was able to, and found another way to make the transactions happen.

The reason given for the restriction was that "some items on your website are in violation of Paypal's terms of use policy and must be removed". That wouldn't seem to be that big a deal, except that I haven't had a retail website online since 2001, which my partners and I shut down in 2002. At the time of the account restriction, I had no online commerce, in any form, anywhere on the Intarweb.

I tried sending e-mails to their alleged "customer service" department regarding the lack of a website with which I could violate their policies, which all went unanswered. After a while I went ahead and created another account. Being the high quality, high security organization that they are, the new account was created immediately and is still working.

I was finally able to track down a phone number for the alleged "customer service" department. That was no easy task. The number's on their site, but they're not putting it anywhere easy to find. After a couple of calls, because their business hours are only mildly convenient to those in the Pacific Time Zone, I was able to get through. All I could get out of them was that the account was restricted, the restriction couldn't (or wouldn't, which I think is more accurate) be lifted, and I had to wait at least six months before I could close the account. That was the best part: I had an account that I couldn't use and couldn't close, which had personal and financial information on it. I was thrilled with that. I told them how much they sucked, and waited the six months. I tried logging in to delete the account, but was still unable to. Eventually, Paypal got around to deleting the account and all the information therein, in their own sweet, retarded time. Again, no contact was ever forthcoming by Paypal.

I get more bogus messages from Paypal frauds than I ever do from Paypal, and I've been a customer for something like six years. They care so much about the people they make money off of that they have a track record of service second to...well, everyone else in customer service, in any field, anywhere, ever. I'm hoping that there's somebody out there that wants to take care of people for money that will step up and give a beat down to Ebay and Paypal. Its clear that neither of those companies gives a rat's a$$ about their customers.

Ebay and Paypal: you both SUCK.


josh said...

Mother bitches~!

While I loathe to use PayPal for most things, until a competitor comes around, they have me by the balls.

Haji said...

I'm at a point where I don't have use of their alleged services, so I'm motivated to find an alternative. The problem is that there aren't many other ways to get paid from Ebay. Without Painpal, getting paid gets sketchy. I may have to take the plunge and start using Gearpay.