Burts AIS, osCommerce & More Blog
New URL: www.osworld.biz

Thursday, October 06, 2005

eBay's VeRO Program from a VeRO owners POV

The VeRO program run by eBay is a way for copyright holders of a product to stop other people from illegally selling the product. You can read more at the eBay VeRO pages - no point in repeating all the gumpf here. Anyway, I am a member of the VeRO program for my osCommerce eBooks and Templates - menaing that when I see an infringement I can report it and eBay will remove the listing as appropriate. Here is a typical timeline: Tuesday 4th @ 9am approx - I find a listing on eBay for someone selling my Designing osCommerce eBook. Tuesday 4th @ 9.38am - I send in a VeRO "Notice of Claimed Infringement" via email. I hear nothing in response, not even an automated "thank you, we have received your VeRO email". This would be a good addition to the process I think! Tuesday 4th @ 5.25pm - I send another email to the VeRO department asking how long a VeRO claim should take. Again, no automated response. Thursday 6th @ 10.30am - the listing is still live! I'm starting to get annoyed about this as it's been over 48 hours with no action taken and no response from eBay! Whilst looking at my site logs (the eBay listing had even hotlinked one of my images!) I found this rather strange entry:

193.28.178.62 - - [06/Oct/2005:10:09:03 +0100] "GET /images/transform.gif HTTP/1.1" 200 35485 "http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&vwpending=1 &item=*******&userid=*******%5C&pass=*******@ebay.com" "Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; Windows NT 5.2; .NET CLR 1.1.4322)"
Please note that I have *******'d out the info that is not needed for this blog! So, you can see that at 10:09 the listing was visited by an eBay member of staff! But the listing was not removed! The "pass" at the end is actually a live eBay Email Address (obviously as mentioned I have *****'d out the employees name as I don't want them being inundated with email)... The IP Address 193.28.178.62 refers to Ebay in Dublin:
inetnum: 193.28.178.0 - 193.28.178.255 netname: EBAY-DUBLIN-NET descr: ebay Inc. descr: San Jose, California 95125 country: GB
Thursday 6th @1:12pm - The item in question has been removed! At last! I still have had no email to let me know this. Thursday 6th @ 1:23pm - I get an answer to my second email! Basically stating that all being well, most VeRO claims are dealt with within 48 hours. OK, so this is fine, but what happens if the illegal item has less than 48 hours to the end of the auction? I may email back and ask the question... eBay can be a real PITA sometimes - I believe that a 48 hour turnaround is not good enough. It should be a maximum of 6 working hours in my opinion. I'm also a bit concerned that it took 3 hours between being first visited by eBay and being removed - surely all they need to do is press a button and *bang* - the item is gone? Oh well. At least the item is no longer illegally available on eBay.

New URL: www.osworld.biz - thanks!

10 Comments:

At 10/07/2005 03:35:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Burt,
I agree with you totally.
Feepay should address all things within hours not a 48 hour timeframe, especially as they have 24 hour auctions available. Theyre hardly short of a few quid.

Not that Id recommend it or anything but one "option" to you is to register another ebay account and buy your own items frin the seller, of course you dont pay for them and then leave negative feedback immediately. Perhaps they would think twice about using someone elses work then you see ;)
Ps the above is only a hypothetical theory and all that and not endorsed by this writer... much ;)

Keep blogging Burt,
Cheers Jamez

 
At 10/07/2005 07:38:00 AM, Blogger Gary B. said...

Good idea Jamez.

I still have not heard anything back from their VeRO Department about my original complaint email :(

 
At 10/10/2005 08:43:00 AM, Blogger Gary B. said...

Friday 7th @ 11:12am - I sent a reply to the person who answered my second email:

Hi {name removed} - many thanks for the reply.

I'm a bit concerned that I have not yet heard anything back from my original VeRO query - even just a "case rseolved" email or somesuch. The offending item has been removed from eBay, so I know that some action has been taken at your end. The only reference I have for you is the offending item number which is xxxxxxxxxx - I have received zero response from eBay about this at
all.

I was also wondering about the 48 hour (or more!) response time when times are busy - particularly as eBay does have 24 hour auctions - in effect if times are busy at your end, then sellers can get away with murder!

I'd appreciate your views on this, and any other info you can give about my original VeRO claim.


I'm still waiting for a reply to this. As well as a reply from my original VeRO claim!

 
At 10/10/2005 02:45:00 PM, Anonymous Kim said...

I've had very similar experiences with vero, but my experience shows ebay are generally slow in dealing with anything.

We over came the lack of ebay response to vero problems by creating a new account and buying all the offending items (100's!!) from the seller but not paying. Then letting the ebay "non paying buyer" dispute system deal with it. In the end the buyer realised they were in the poop and pulled all the listings themselves.

 
At 10/10/2005 02:50:00 PM, Blogger Gary B. said...

Cheers Kim. Maybe I should do that! Can you have more than 1 eBay ID - I guess you must be able to as you did it!

I just had a thought - the seller hotlinked one of my images...what I should have done was left the listing alone, but change the image to something a little less savoury (or perhaps a copyright notice with my URL) or somesuch...

 
At 10/10/2005 05:05:00 PM, Anonymous LongLiveAnon said...

I have been boycotting Feebay since last February when they raised their seller's fees by 68%. In addition, their customer service sucks, and they think they have the market cornered so they don't care. I wouldn't waste your time emailing them. The idea about the hotlinked image is a good one.

 
At 10/11/2005 07:25:00 AM, Blogger Gary B. said...

Monday 10th @ 6:21pm - an email received!!

Hello Gary,

We have received your email and apologise for the delay in our response to your inquiry. I will be happy to address your concerns at this time.

This item (xxxxxxxxxx) was ended on the 6th of October and the seller
was informed that the item was ended at the request of osC Books.

Please be assured that we do all that is practicable to ensure that
Notices of Claimed Infringement are processed in an expiditious fashion.
We understand your concerns about occasional slow response times and are constantly fighting to ensure every report is dealt with as quickly as possible. We do find that even if an auction has been ended, that buyers usually refuse to complete the transaction once we remove a listing from the site in this matter.

I appreciate your patience and understanding regarding this matter.

Regards,

xxxxxx xxxxxxxx
eBay VeRO Team


A nice non-answer there!

I assume that I'm never going to get a response to my VeRO claim - other than the item being removed. When I've used this service in the past I always got an email to let me know what's going on.

Of course it may be that their email has slipped through the cracks and wasn't received at my end, but it's highly unlikely.

So, from this blog, we can see that it takes around 50 hours for a VeRO claim to be looked at, and then the listing removed.

Not good enough, eBay people!

 
At 10/11/2005 01:16:00 PM, Anonymous Kim said...

Finally you got a response - it seems to be just some standard stock response like normal.

Good idea changing the hotlink image ;o)

And it is possible to have multiple accounts. We use one for buying and one for selling.

 
At 10/12/2005 01:40:00 PM, Blogger Gary B. said...

1 final update! The closure to my original VeRO claim!!!

Tuesday 11th @ 11:29am - following email received:

Hello,

Thank you for sending us this Notice of Claimed Infringement.

We are pleased to inform you that the listing you reported has been removed by eBay. We have notified the seller and all participating bidders that the listing was removed due to your request.

If you should have any other questions or concerns regarding this matter, please do not hesitate to contact us again.

Regards,

Xxxxxx Xxxxxxx
eBay VeRO Team


So, at last this is the end of the matter. From the time I originally raised the VeRO claim, to the time it was fully closed (by writing to inform me) was:

{drum roll}

7 days, 1 hour, 51 minutes.

!!!

 
At 11/02/2005 08:36:00 AM, Blogger Gary B. said...

Follow Up

I found someone else selling my Book on eBay, and did another VeRO claim. This was fully removed and the case was closed within about 5 hours.

Props to eBay on this one - maybe my last VeRO experience was a one-off aberration.

 

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