Margaret Vogel (shimmerfox) wrote in bad_service,
Margaret Vogel

Um, opps.

A over a month ago I bought a labtop there and, oh my dear, did it go wrong. Though not immediately.

At first the action feels very like an over excited vendor. When I win the action he is very excited and starts installing all sorts of software (not listed in the action) on the thing. This holds up the ship date by a couple days which isn't preferable. However I'm not going to hold someone trying to do me a favor against them. But, it does have the consequence of the laptop being shipped after the projected date of arrival. The late arrive is a problem as I'm leaving for out of state, and with the late arrival the laptop arrives after I leave.

As this laptop is not being purchased with the intent to share, I have my brother set it aside untouched for me to open upon my return in about two weeks. I also am dealing with a backlog of work upon return.

Unfortunately this leads me to be a bit slow in examining the laptop and a bit fast about doing so. Somethings off with the hinge but I'm doing really notice what. The next day when I a bit more leisure I examine it while starting the process of re-installing the drivers. They need to be updated and much to my annoyance the correct graphic driver appears not to be installed leaving the screen to not display at manufacturer's recommended setting. I conclude the vendor doesn't know computers, and didn't look that closely, and am moderately impressed that he had the determination to install anything (other then graphic drivers) at 800x600. I digress though truthfully I did that at the time as well. Regardless, when I looked the external casing for the hinge is broken, mainly cosmetic damage, but for this sale the vendor had made a great point of the computer being in flawless condition.

We're on the third week of the issue, but deciding that I should be a good buyer and rather then just leave a negative review I should give him chance to fix it, I send him this message:
On an item where such a deal of it being like new even by amazon's standards, I did not expect the hinge to be cracked. It's not in an visually obvious place but occasionally it does effect operation, plus it's worrying for the long term care of the unit. What can be done about this, in general I love the computer but I did expect to receive one that wasn't already part broken.

I also mark all the boxes for not wanting to return it. I did not have have a solution in mind, and am not really sure there was one. This might have made me a bad customer.

He responded rather overwhelmingly with three messages:

Ms. Vogel, It's very peculiar you've had the unit for a month, used it enough to have grown to "love it" and NOW noticed this hinge issue. You said, "occasionally it does effect operation." If so, why wasn't it disputed then? How convenient there's a unit at a lower price and now the hinge is cracked. I spoke with HP about this issue and the only way a crack could be as described is if YOU DAMAGED IT BY turning the screen counter-clockwise w/ modest force when using as a tablet. The unit worked perfectly and was extensively tested. No hinge issues whatsoever. I've earned 100% positive feedback w/280. I wouldn't jeopardize by misrepresenting an item. I HAVE sold a damaged unit before, an iPhone, and MADE THE APPROPRIATE DISCLOSURES - so I have a TRACK RECORD OF *ACCURATELY* DESCRIBING ITEMS. If the unit was broken, I'd disclose it - it was like new condition when sent. You used it enough to love it; per HP you broke it turning screen wrong way, and now you want me to pay for it.

I’m 100% positive of the excellent working condition of the tablet/PC when sent. Are you 100% positive you never accidentally turned the screen the wrong direction? Were you the only one to use it? Is it possible someone else may have done it? It’s an easy enough mistake to make; but to make me pay for it is **grossly**a unfair. Particularly since our agreement could've been sold broken the transaction after our agreement and sold everything (unit, docking station, two power adapters) for $795 on Craigslist. First, please re-read my prior emails to you. Do they sound like someone trying to dump a broken/flawed computer on an unsuspecting eBay customer? Can you see how eager I am to insure customers are pleased? I didn’t get to almost 300 transactions with 100% positive feedback by being anything other than completely honest with buyers and promptly paying sellers. Please reconsider this dispute. I’ll work with you to get the unit fixed in the most cost effective manner possible.

Earlier this evening I received notice that you are disputing the transaction. I am shocked and disappointed you didn’t bother to contact me before escalating the issue to a dispute at eBay. We’ve exchanged several emails and everything was quite cordial, from my perspective. Perhaps I could have rectified the issue without going through this bureaucracy. Nonetheless, by doing so PayPal summarily debited my account for $599, and froze it so I won’t receive a dime until it has a positive balance. You don’t understand, nor do you likely care, the implications of “going nuclear” on me and my family (wife, two daughters - 13 and 10) by taking this approach. I used that tablet/PC for about 10 days and not once had an issue with the hinge (or anything else). That unit was supposed to go to a former partner of mine – a co-founder of INVESCO - where I once worked. I would not give him a damaged tablet/PC (nor would I give you one) and I’m positive when shipped everything was not damaged and

I checked the order and this is the order posted. The first one paragraph about 5 hours after my message and the other two about 5 hours after that.

I've had the unit open for three days. While superficial the unit does catch occasionally on the broken hinge while rotating, making me worry about it worsening. Apparently he called HP in that five hours and got a more definitive answer from them then I've gotten for any out of warehouse problem, ever. I HAVE ONLY CONTACTED HIM THROUGH EBAY, NOTHING ELSE. How could I have contacted without contacting him? I'm sorry about his life, but my contacting a vendor is not going nuclear. And how did he use that laptop without installing drivers?

I do try to very polite in my response. Posted about 20 hours later.

I would like to start by apologizing for any inconvenience this has caused you--I was only trying to contact you as the sender rather than open a case, and never intended for your PayPal account to be frozen as a consequence. I did not want to "go nuclear" and never intended for this to be the consequence of my contact request. Nevertheless I am confident that this defect was present during unboxing; I was not able to open the package during arrival due to being out of state at the time. It was, however, not handled during this time and therefore two weeks passed before anyone could notice the problem or have photos sent to you regarding the issue. Please rest assured that I suspected no malign intent on your part. I assure you I was unaware of the other listing until you mentioned it and am not interested in pursuing it; my contact represented an effort to determine the best way to proceed while still operating under the auspices of Ebay for record-keeping purposes.

I also decide to let his calm down. So hold off any father options until I get a response.

9 days later I get an offer to return the item for a full refund. Again this wasn't what I wanted and had I not gotten these messages in my mail box at the same time, I likely would have content enough to withdraw any case, I've looked at the crack more closely and it is just superficial and so I figure I might as well withdraw gracefully:

I would appreciate a picture of the crack on the hinge that is allegedly present. Since you are clearly unhappy with the tablet PC, I've provided information for its return and I will make the appropriate refund. You are aware that by opening a dispute PayPal seized the amount paid on my account. The sooner I receive the tablet PC the quicker I can refund your money. As mentioned, I have a buyer who is concerned about the crack. Please send the photo and return the items purchased as soon as possible. Thank you, John

We've surpassed the TWO(2) WEEK milestone since you opened a case and, because of your actions, had my money wrongfully seized. Furthermore, you're LEASING MY TABLET PC *without* PAYMENT for OVER A MONTH NOW! You've aware of expenses I've incurred as a result of your actions. You stated I misrepresented the tablet PC as in "like new" condition when, according to you, it arrived with a crack on the hinge. It seems logical that when filing the case you'd submit this picture - yet it hasn't appeared. Furthermore, by opening this case with eBay, you made it clear you didn't want this "part broken" unit and wanted to return it. After learning of your intentions to return it and opening this case, I found another buyer. This buyer is paying considerably more than you did. I encourage you to look up legal concept of Promissory Estoppel. Should you fail to promptly return the unit in condition received, law affords me right to collect my incurred expenses *plus* lost profit from this sale.

Now in case this isn't clear, I paid for the computer before this shipped. At no point have I received a refund. Having actually been in his position before I know for a fact that it should still be in his account. He hasn't actually had expenses over this. Also the first line in my complaint is a photo of the damage. I can't figure out how he could be have determined anything about the hinge from HP without that picture, so he can't have missed it. As to the timing. It's been two (just a bit over one week actually) weeks waiting on a response to my message.

I freeze. I have no idea how to respond to this, I also entertain the idea of returning the item rather provoke him farther. I'm not happy, as what I want at this point is to be given a way out of this conversation without defacto agreeing that I'm a thief.

Two days later I get these messages:

The eBay photo upload feature not working so I used to host pics showing unit *before* Ms. Vogel apparently broke the item:
205039462724%20-%20Alleged%20Crack%20on%20Hinge Perhaps Ms. Vogel filed a bogus case so she could return it and buy the same Tablet PC on eBay then offered at a lower price? Though she claims "unaware of other listing," the veracity of her statements are in question when claims "the hinge [is] cracked," it's "part broken," "worrying," and then REFUSES to return unit for refund. Maybe Ms. Vogel was unsuccessful buying other unit at a lower price and changed her mind? Regardless, I reasonably relied on her statements expressing intent to return the unit and I sold it to someone else at a higher price. I'll assert my rights in Court if Tablet PC not returned in condition mailed. Willing to settle at $150 for damages incurred and neither party leaves feedback. She then keeps unit

Ms. Vogel, I would appreciate the courtesy of a response, particularly if you have no intention of returning the tablet PC, expansion port/DVD docking station, and two power adapters. I believe it's fair and reasonable for me to expect a timely reply, particularly because your actions prompted PayPal to withhold my funds. You've clearly expressed dissatisfaction with the transaction and your desire to return it (with the hope of an exchange). I'm not a dealer so I don't have an any other laptops to exchange and so I offered a refund. Furthermore, I've found an increasingly impatient buyer for the laptop, expansion base and two power adapters. HE HAS PAID FOR THE TABLET/PC and I am awaiting its return so I can give it to him. If you've decided this "crack" and "part broken" unit that occasionally affects "operation" is now satisfactory, please close this case, send me $150 for damages via PayPal, and keep the unit. Thank you, John

WTF? I should pay him an extra $150 to keep an item I've already paid for? And not leave feedback, and a vendor he doesn't get real feedback to start with.
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