Apparently the bots have the only real authority at eBay!

pee on ebay

I have been an eBay hater for years.  Mostly to do with the way eBay and it’s sidekick Paypal treat sellers- with contempt.  As an occasional seller, I have run into some glaring faults in eBay’s consumer protection.  One case where a buyer refused delivery on the package and falsely claimed it was never delivered.  Despite the tracking clearly stating that the package was refused, eBay sided with the buyer and refunded the money.  I was now out my item and I had to pay shipping to get it back.  Fought and won, but a pain in my ass.  Mostly, I was selling my old iPhones.  The last i sold an iPhone It only sold after it was listed for the fifth time.  When the buyer actually paid for the item, before that, the buyer just blew me off.  Of course eBay now wants 5x completed auction fee.  More fighting with eBay.  It’s just not worth it.

Despite all this, I come back to my abuser to sell some routers.  I want to quickly list some items late afternoon Friday.  I got them listed, which took me some doing.  Apparently policy changes lead me needing to reword some of my boiler plate auction templates.  Money orders no longer accepted, certain search terms no longer in auction title, etc.  Even my auction software needed to be reauthorized.  All these steps completed without incident.  Finally my sonicwalls were listed.  I’m done.  I’ll list the rest later.

20 minutes later, i get an email from eBay that fraud was detected on my account and my auctions were canceled and and my account suspended pending password reset.  I was able to reset the password, so that is not a problem.  However, after nearly an hour on the phone with them (there is no chat or email support that i could find) no one could tell me (1) what triggered the fraud alert.  More surprisingly, (2) no one could re-list the items.  I got transferred from department to department and finally hung up and started drinking.

At this time should say that I have actually have the same IP as when i regularly sold on eBay.  As a buyer, i have never stopped for long (including Lupin III DVDs just last month).  I was using a relatively deduct selling software platform, but it still works, and I have been using with eBay for about a decade.

What would I like to see from eBay?  An explanation. If there was an error, I would like to see an effort to correct the problem and prevent other users from experiencing this frustration.  In general, I would like to see a greater effort to engage with both buyers and sellers to resolve issues. For example, why can’t I send a support email?  Why can a bot do something that actual customer service people cannot undo?

Dreamhost you made a fool of me.

Dreamhost Logo

I recommended Dreamhost highly for many years.  When Mac Enthusiasts asked me where they should host their email, I said Dreamhost without a pause.  We moved the MX record over the weekend from Media Temple to Dreamhost and waited as the DNS records propagated throughout the internet.  Monday morning I left everyone’s new credentials on a note so they could get to work.  Immediately, we noticed a problem.  The mail server was unresponsive.  By noon, I had a good understanding of the problem and I submitted a support request.  Dreamhost did not respond until after 9pm and this was all they said.

I’m terribly sorry for the issues with the mail service responding slowly today. It looks like there was an issue with our POP/IMAP machines causing the slowness with the accessing of your mailbox earlier today.  Our Admins were able to look into this matter and get the issue resolved.  This was a temporary issue with the mail load spiking, resulting in the slowness, but that’s all resolved now.

Oh good one might think.  Problem reported, problem solved.  Not so.  Of course now that buisness was done, I couldn’t verify their claim. Again I waited to see if their claim was true.  It was not.  It the light of Tuesday morning email was completely unusable from the office.  So once again, I carefully composed my support request.  They quickly responded with additional questions, I immediately answered.  They wanted the IP of the office and a traceroute to their mail server.  No response from Dreamhost until 1am.  This is what they said:

This should be resolved with the load balancing issues resolved. I just checked multiple email addresses from your domain, and was able to connect to them on multiple ports. I also checked and found that your office IP address is not currently banned. I am sorry it took so long to get back to you, your tickets were placed in my queue when I was out of
the office. Please let us know if the issues are continuing in the office, so we can continue to look at the office, and troubleshoot there.

Continue reading “Dreamhost you made a fool of me.”

And the lulz keep coming!

LulzSec is back at it.  Actually they never stopped, but this time they released 26,000 emails and passwords from a pile of porn sites.  Again we are reminded of the ills of password reuse as email, facebook, and twitter accounts fall.  This is going to reverberate across the net for a while as troublemakers make trouble for some poor porn subscribers.  I almost feel bad for them.  This is one way to educate the populous.  Facebook was quick to block the listed emails, but if email is also compromised, it doesn’t help for long.

Update 11-27-15 (now dead link):

Remember before dialup? BBS?

I found an old dot matrix printout from the local bbs of my youth. With their easy to remember phone number my 2400 baud modem transformed my computer into a portal to community resources to, amuse, educate, and entertain. it was where i received my first electronic mail. (a pain because they only had one phone line and it could take hours to get connected) i wish i had more printouts from then. I would love to see the main menu again. it might be cool to setup a mud like one of the old BBSes, or maybe a website. maybe just a retro setup for wordpress.

818-222-4444 | Wizardry Elite | CALABASAS, CA (1992-1994):

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 (818) 222-4444 - USRobotics 14.4 Baud HST Dual Standard - 230 Megs On-Line