Been talking to several sellers in the highly competitive unique goods/collectible markets that still stupidly sell on ebay and they all seem to confirm the current form of attack from their competitors seems to be the return hit. Also the obvious DSR attack
Even though they are still getting the occasional irrational negative feedback, and all the other rubbish ebay have set up for the scum but now the increase of direct to ebay return requests seems to have risen to the extreme for most, if not all of them. These could be down to a change in customer but it does seem to correlate to a drop in the older attack methods and they all seem to go along the same lines, as if a format were being used.
What I have been told is that these hits seem more preferred due to the long term damage, as even if the account of the attacker gets closed down the damage of the return request is still effective and often greater than a negative feedback. Also unlike with negative feedback, there is no stain on the account, so you can use it to attack more sellers.
Now the way this system is supposed to work is that it is supposed to be the last port of call for the buyer that feels the seller is taking liberties. But as always with ebay there is nothing to stop the buyer going direct to the return request without contacting the buyer. Too many of these and the odd negative feedback and the smaller accounts will be limited and then eventually closed down with continued attack.for none performance.
The return demand can also be used instead of the NPB when you are selling the same item and the sellers is obviously going to get more money than you, as they are better than you. Instantly hike up the bid with two accounts, removing the got to have it buyers that tend to start bidding at a lower price.
These returns also have the added benefit of hiding your own feedback cleaning and over bids on your shills, as they also have to relist it after a sale and are often too afraid to mention what the problems were with the sale. So relisted goods become common place on ebay and make it easier for you to hide your own activities.
If they are stupid enough to mention your involvement in the previous sale, then use the other "ebay tool" (I'm not talking about Donahoe) and say to ebay that the item is counterfeit. It does not matter that it is real ebay will remove it without looking.
There is also a clever little scam using, "seller=bad", "buyer=good" ebay idiot mentality, the ebay return what you like system and the ebay combined purchase system.
Where the buyer buys more than one item, then goes direct to ebay to demand return, and no matter what the seller has in their terms of sale you can use any reason you want for return. I don't assume ebay would mind if you wrote "competitive attack on another seller" but more likely you will say "changed my mind." But what you do here is put the claim in for both items.
The buyer will have no choice but to refund you and will more often than not use the combined payment as the return on paypal for both items. Now this will clear one of the items but not the second. So once you have been paid the full amount for both items you demand payment for the second item.
The seller will refuse, and try to explain to ebay that they have paid due to the combined payment for both items, which the ebay employee will obviously have no understanding of what the seller is talking about, using the ebay ethos "seller always bad", "buyer always good" and will hit the pay button for the second item. So ebay pay back the buyer for the second item and then demand that money from the seller. This demand, as always is final so you keep the money and the seller looses their money, which most buyers on ebay seem happy about, obviously if ebay is aiding the theft of the money, why wouldn't they. This is not some small company, this is the "massive ebay" that look after them, so this must be the right thing to do.
The defense, other than moving your sales to ebid.net and saving yourself the stress of selling on ebay, is to pay back the items individually as partial refunds. There is no defense against the return I am afraid other than sell more, so that it does not damage you.
This really should show you how little you are thought of by ebay, as this is not a complex thing to see happening, or to fix but I assume they really do think that a buyer can't be bad. But you could also be correct in thinking what do they care, as it is not their money they are giving away and even a bad buyer that is only out to scam the seller is better than none at all. They will definitely tell all their friends about it who will also come to use the ebay system. Isn't that great?????