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02-09-2007 11:00 PM
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  1. ScaryHumor#WP's Avatar
    Long time reader, first time poster...


    I'm a power seller on Ebay. I've been using Ebay for over 9 years. I'm one of the most synical sob's you'll ever meet. So I thought I'd be the last to get scammed.
    I got the price down to $520, and bought this: http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...tem=5829956290


    Got it a few days later, and was new as advertised. Activated it, played with it for about a week, and discovered I didn't like it, and swapped back to my 650. It sat in the box for about a month, before I listed it back on Ebay, and got $500 for it. A $20 loss, not bad considering I'm month to month with Sprint (2 yr contract expired in 12/05), and didn't have to sign a new contract, and be locked in to a phone I didn't know if I'd like.


    Continuing on to the scam...
    I shipped the 6700 to the guy that won it from me. He tried to activate it, and was referred to the fraud department. They told him the phone was a paperweight, and it could never be activated. Of course now this guy thinks I ripped him off. I emailed him my number, spoke, and calmed him down. I explained to him, as my auction did, that I had paid full price for the phone. There was no contract, or balance due associated with it, AND I had it previously activated on my own account.


    3 phone calls with Sprint later...
    The guy I bought the phone from apparently had opened a commercial account with Sprint, with a stolen identity, and ordered about 20 6700's. Then resold them all on Ebay. It took a month or 2 before Sprint figured it out, and shut them off.
    To make matters worse, I accidently left him a positive feedback when leaving the fraud warning for other Ebayers, AND Paypal would not refund my $$$ because the auction was more than 45 days old.
    :mad:


    Ebay has since shut him down, but I am out my $520. I did of course refund the $$$ to the guy that bought it from me.


    Word to the wise...
    Good feedback, "PayPal Buyer Protection", and almost 2 years on Ebay do not a good seller make...
    01-30-2006 02:36 PM
  2. t2gungho's Avatar
    Man that totally sucks! If I would have ordered the phone and was able to activate it with sprint, I would have thought that there would have been no problems either.

    Question though, you paid $520 for the phone? For that price, I might have thought twice and just bought one from Sprint and taken it back within the 14 day period.

    Sorry though.
    01-30-2006 03:40 PM
  3. ScaryHumor#WP's Avatar
    Man that totally sucks! If I would have ordered the phone and was able to activate it with sprint, I would have thought that there would have been no problems either.

    Question though, you paid $520 for the phone? For that price, I might have thought twice and just bought one from Sprint and taken it back within the 14 day period.

    Sorry though.
    I didn't want the hastle of signing a new contract, yet.
    After deciding that I didn't like the 6700, I've since been holding my breath waiting for the Treo 700P.
    01-30-2006 04:16 PM
  4. t2gungho's Avatar
    Good luck holding your breath. I hope its everything you want it to be with all that you have already paid.

    I am kind of surprised that Sprint would leave you hanging for $500 when they were the one that activated it initially for you (where you then begun detrimentally 'relying' on their performance.)
    01-30-2006 04:57 PM
  5. trim81's Avatar
    WOW

    Thanks for the warning!
    01-30-2006 08:10 PM
  6. whatever7's Avatar
    Haha he will get banned anyway it doesn't matter what feedback you put in.

    Can you register on Verizon?

    ebay/Paypal is really not good for things that will go wrong 1 month down the road. That's why nowadays I want to use the Amex card to buy gadgets so I can get the extra warrenty.
    01-30-2006 08:33 PM
  7. slinky's Avatar
    Good luck holding your breath. I hope its everything you want it to be with all that you have already paid.

    I am kind of surprised that Sprint would leave you hanging for $500 when they were the one that activated it initially for you (where you then begun detrimentally 'relying' on their performance.)
    You wouldn't be a lawyer would you? ;-) In this instance, while a compelling thought, Sprint was not a party to the transaction that induced our friend here to buy the phone.
    01-30-2006 09:59 PM
  8. t2gungho's Avatar
    You wouldn't be a lawyer would you? ;-) In this instance, while a compelling thought, Sprint was not a party to the transaction that induced our friend here to buy the phone.
    You are probably right. I am no lawyer but I was thinking of something along these lines:

    1. Sprint activated this phone for the Op.
    2. The Op relied (to his detriment) that the phone was legitimate (because sprint activated it).
    3. But for sprint activating the phone and not learning that it was stolen-he would not have tried to sell it and then would not have had the negative transaction with the subsequent buyer. Had he learned earlier that the phone was stolen, he could have recovered through paypal.

    Arguably Sprint breached its duty of reasonable care (i.e. negligence) but maybe there is a contracts claim in there as well? ;-)
    01-31-2006 02:06 AM
  9. slinky's Avatar
    You are probably right. I am no lawyer but I was thinking of something along these lines:

    1. Sprint activated this phone for the Op.
    2. The Op relied (to his detriment) that the phone was legitimate (because sprint activated it).
    3. But for sprint activating the phone and not learning that it was stolen-he would not have tried to sell it and then would not have had the negative transaction with the subsequent buyer. Had he learned earlier that the phone was stolen, he could have recovered through paypal.

    Arguably Sprint breached its duty of reasonable care (i.e. negligence) but maybe there is a contracts claim in there as well? ;-)
    I've never met anyone who isn't a lawyer but can't stop speaking like one! "Detrimental reliance" and "but for" analyses, etc. LOL. We can hopefully help our friend talking the game to get Sprint to at least assist the poor victim who is also a customer (perhaps by buying back the phone at a reduced amount that makes it a worthwhile endeavor for both parties.)

    Regarding the common law theory of "detrimental reliance" (sometimes called equitable estoppel), my understanding is that it doesn't apply here because:

    (1) as I said, it is a theory that is typically applied when there is a relationship/agreement between two parties and Sprint wasn't a party here.

    (2) Unfortunately Scary didn't rely upon Sprint's representation to BUY the phone. He bought it and, much to his joy, he thought it was usable when Sprint turned it on. He was not induced to buy the phone as a result of the representation AND Sprint had no knowledge of any of his transactions.

    (3) Perhaps the negative feedback can be modified by the buyer of the phone. Either way, that would be the only thing that Sprint might be liable for and even then you couldn't really argue that they should be responsible. After all, it doesn't seem that (a) Sprint's decision to turn off the phone wasn't made on a timely basis, and moreso (b) it wasn't really foreseeable that Scary would sell the phone on ebay and suffer a negative feedback rating, much to his chagrin, simply because it may have taken them longer time to shut off a stolen phone which Sprint has incentive to shut off at the earliest time possible. Sprint had no knowledge that Scary was trying to sell his phone.

    Unfortunately Scary has no contractual claim against Sprint because they never had a contract. We've discussed the claim in "quasi-contract", to some extent, in #3 above and it is done to remedy cases where equity and justice can be done. The typical case is where A agrees to paint the house of B and mistakenly paints the house of C, with C's knowledge and lack of intervention to correct the error. A can collect from C even though there was no contract between them. If C did not know A was painting the house, then C could not collect as there was no "unjust enrichment."

    Stuff like this gets asked all the time on a site I'm involved with -- TheLaw.com -- and the ebay scam listings never end. It's rather incredible.

    It will be tough for Scary to get anything out of Sprint. They have no way of confirming that he's totally bona fide. I also don't know how they could manage the policy of dealing with the thousands who get scammed every week by unusable mobile phones over ebay.
    01-31-2006 07:35 AM
  10. ScaryHumor#WP's Avatar
    I've never met anyone who isn't a lawyer but can't stop speaking like one! "Detrimental reliance" and "but for" analyses, etc. LOL. We can hopefully help our friend talking the game to get Sprint to at least assist the poor victim who is also a customer (perhaps by buying back the phone at a reduced amount that makes it a worthwhile endeavor for both parties.)
    I have to ask, what's a "butt for"?

    "for pooping, silly,"
    Southpark: Bigger, Longer, and Uncut
    1999

    Sorry, couldn't resist.
    01-31-2006 08:04 AM
  11. Insertion's Avatar
    I have to ask, what's a "butt for"?

    "for pooping, silly,"
    Southpark: Bigger, Longer, and Uncut
    1999

    Sorry, couldn't resist.
    Hmmm...I thought it was for when Aunt Flo visits...
    01-31-2006 08:09 AM
  12. Iceman6's Avatar
    Long time reader, first time poster...


    I'm a power seller on Ebay. I've been using Ebay for over 9 years. I'm one of the most synical sob's you'll ever meet. So I thought I'd be the last to get scammed.
    I got the price down to $520, and bought this: http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...tem=5829956290


    Got it a few days later, and was new as advertised. Activated it, played with it for about a week, and discovered I didn't like it, and swapped back to my 650. It sat in the box for about a month, before I listed it back on Ebay, and got $500 for it. A $20 loss, not bad considering I'm month to month with Sprint (2 yr contract expired in 12/05), and didn't have to sign a new contract, and be locked in to a phone I didn't know if I'd like.


    Continuing on to the scam...
    I shipped the 6700 to the guy that won it from me. He tried to activate it, and was referred to the fraud department. They told him the phone was a paperweight, and it could never be activated. Of course now this guy thinks I ripped him off. I emailed him my number, spoke, and calmed him down. I explained to him, as my auction did, that I had paid full price for the phone. There was no contract, or balance due associated with it, AND I had it previously activated on my own account.


    3 phone calls with Sprint later...
    The guy I bought the phone from apparently had opened a commercial account with Sprint, with a stolen identity, and ordered about 20 6700's. Then resold them all on Ebay. It took a month or 2 before Sprint figured it out, and shut them off.
    To make matters worse, I accidently left him a positive feedback when leaving the fraud warning for other Ebayers, AND Paypal would not refund my $$$ because the auction was more than 45 days old.
    :mad:


    Ebay has since shut him down, but I am out my $520. I did of course refund the $$$ to the guy that bought it from me.


    Word to the wise...
    Good feedback, "PayPal Buyer Protection", and almost 2 years on Ebay do not a good seller make...

    I think you still have some recourse with Ebay. Ebay has a Fraud Protection process that takes a while, but you will eventually get at least some of your money back.
    01-31-2006 12:09 PM
  13. ScaryHumor#WP's Avatar
    I think you still have some recourse with Ebay. Ebay has a Fraud Protection process that takes a while, but you will eventually get at least some of your money back.
    No recourse other than legal. I tried to file a complaint with Ebay, but their automated system wouldn't allow it because 60 days had passed.
    01-31-2006 12:30 PM
  14. jmill72x#WP's Avatar
    I think you still have some recourse with Ebay. Ebay has a Fraud Protection process that takes a while, but you will eventually get at least some of your money back.
    EBay's (and Paypal's) fraud protection is weak to say the least. They're not really that concerned with your financial well being, just that the transaction went through without a problem on their part. Once the transaction has been completed, as far as eBay and Paypal are concerned, you're pretty much on your own. Search these forums and you'll see lots of these stories.

    You're better off purchasing something on eBay with a credit card that has these types of protection built into your account.
    01-31-2006 12:49 PM
  15. ScaryHumor#WP's Avatar
    Haha he will get banned anyway it doesn't matter what feedback you put in.

    Can you register on Verizon?

    ebay/Paypal is really not good for things that will go wrong 1 month down the road. That's why nowadays I want to use the Amex card to buy gadgets so I can get the extra warrenty.
    Ebay has already thrown him off.

    Verizon is not a viable option for me. My most called #'s are also Sprint, and I have that included in my plan. Thanks for the thought though...
    01-31-2006 12:52 PM
  16. 1337's Avatar
    @Scary-
    I feel for you, bud. About a month ago I got my 650 from a guy on ebay who advertised it as new and never activated. It cost $405 and he would only take money orders. Since my aging 600 (also an ebay purchase) was dropping calls all the time, I went for it. It took a couple of weeks, but I did get it. However, it had a big nick on the battery case and- It wouldn't activate because Sprint said it was registered to someone already. !!! I emailed him and sent it back. I figured I may as well start the fraud complaint process, but waited a day for the seller to respond. He did, but it was awful. He said the ESN was clear, it was a new phone and that I need to do an ESN swap, which is what I tried to do. I emailed him saying if he didn't satisfy the auction, I would report him. I did get his phone number from ebay and it was a wrong number. He emailed me ESN of the new phone (a GOOD one) which I did get a few days later. I lucked out on this. But NO more ebay for this stuff.
    01-31-2006 01:06 PM
  17. treoneo's Avatar
    Ebay OWNS Paypal so it is all BS. This fraud protection protects no one but Ebay. I had someone sell me some "fake" items & with all the red tape & paperwork I had to go through, my complaint with them did not go through. They create all these loopholes for them to get out of. It is a scam to say the least. Ebay is billionaires but don't care about the little man - the customers.
    01-31-2006 01:14 PM
  18. jmill72x#WP's Avatar
    This fraud protection protects no one but Ebay.
    Exactly right. You definitely need to look out for yourself when using eBay.
    01-31-2006 01:24 PM
  19. mutantblack's Avatar
    I am reading this thread and I found out about ESN you guys talking about. If these phones are GSM unlocked, you dont really need to worry about it's working or not right? Just put in tht Sim card and you know for sure they will work even if they have been registered or stolen or whatever it is. Correct me if I am wrong.
    01-31-2006 02:23 PM
  20. ScaryHumor#WP's Avatar
    I am reading this thread and I found out about ESN you guys talking about. If these phones are GSM unlocked, you dont really need to worry about it's working or not right? Just put in tht Sim card and you know for sure they will work even if they have been registered or stolen or whatever it is. Correct me if I am wrong.
    Sprint uses CDMA phones, which do not use SIM cards. Each phone has an ESN, which does several things, mostly in Sprint's favor.

    1. You can't take the phone with you to another carrier
    2. If the phone is lost / stolen, they can shut it off for ever
    3. They can offer Lockline for $6 a month, which insures your phone against loss (refer to #2)

    I love that last one. Best deal going if you own an expensive phone.
    My sister is one of those women that freaks when you don't put the seat down. I was over for dinner last Summer, and was putting the seat back down when my 650 fell out of my shirt pocket into the toilet (post flush). A quick opening of the battery compartment, a use of her hair dryer, I got it working, but the screen was screwed. Lockline replaced the phone for a $30 or $35 deductable.

    Long story short, I don't believe GSM carriers can offer this type of insurance because it's too easy to defraud them.
    Hell, even an honest person may report their $500 phone lost, get a new one, then sell the old one.
    01-31-2006 02:50 PM
  21. t2gungho's Avatar
    I've never met anyone who isn't a lawyer but can't stop speaking like one!
    You have never met a law 'student'? :)

    Good analysis btw...although I though privity of contract requirement was one away with in the MacPherson v. Buick case?
    02-01-2006 01:48 AM
  22. slinky's Avatar
    You have never met a law 'student'? :)

    Good analysis btw...although I though privity of contract requirement was one away with in the MacPherson v. Buick case?
    Very, very good. ;) MacPherson represents a type of case under *common law* of contracts where privity is not required -- a products liability case. This is because the actual defect in manufacturing can occur with any of the parties involved and not the party selling the product. To only make the seller liable would insulate all others from liability and wouldn't feel "right" in order to maintain our sense of economic equilibrium.

    In general you are correct but that is because much law has been codified. I'm not sure if our friend Scary has a legal code that he can point to which will give him a right of action.
    02-01-2006 07:51 AM
  23. HobbesIsReal#WP's Avatar
    Obviously, if you are able to get anything on his true Identity....even possibly an email account through his ISP (which would have his billing information that can usually be obtained by law enforcement), then law enforcement might be able to help. 20 phone x $600 = $12,000 fraud case against Sprint and then add an additional $400 x 20 = $8,000 for selling them on eBay. That is a $20,000 fraud case. The local publicity catching someone in a $20,000 eBay fraud case might be motivation enough for a police dept in that guy's local area to actually help you out.

    I have seen a several posts over the years where they got the bad guy's local cops to bust him over eBay scams.
    02-01-2006 09:30 PM
  24. ScaryHumor#WP's Avatar
    Obviously, if you are able to get anything on his true Identity....even possibly an email account through his ISP (which would have his billing information that can usually be obtained by law enforcement), then law enforcement might be able to help. 20 phone x $600 = $12,000 fraud case against Sprint and then add an additional $400 x 20 = $8,000 for selling them on eBay. That is a $20,000 fraud case. The local publicity catching someone in a $20,000 eBay fraud case might be motivation enough for a police dept in that guy's local area to actually help you out.

    I have seen a several posts over the years where they got the bad guy's local cops to bust him over eBay scams.
    When I was pleading (and crying) with Sprint about this, I asked specifically after they divulged the nature of the fraud if they were going to prosecute, I got a firm "no".
    I was speechless at that point.
    I've hooked up with another victim, and he has contacted others, and we're dealing with the FBI. I have no clue how effective this will be. I've gathered as much info on this guy as I could, including his disconnected contact number through Ebay.
    We shall see.
    Last edited by ScaryHumor; 02-02-2006 at 10:50 AM.
    02-02-2006 10:23 AM
  25. kimnish's Avatar
    Please report this to the California State Attorney. Ebay is the biggest fence in probably the world and their response is constantly that we can't do anything about it-we don't know anything about it! But if this happened in any other place, they would be shut down in a second.
    02-02-2006 10:29 AM
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