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  1. #1
    Benjamin*
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    Default FBI Fragrance? Basenotes Investigators

    There has to be some organized way to take these eBay scammers off the market past just posting their names and links to their negative feedback.

    Yes, I have a bone, just getting burned. Only after a unsigned snipe at me, did I wonder about the buyer. With 2000+ positives, how's it possible to wade through all that to find the 35 accusations of fakes? In basenotes, I find a reference to this buyer and I blanche. Too late, but at least I had a hunch that I might actually be getting a counterfeit, and not get the bottle and oooh wow this is beautiful. The clincher for me and I am so thankful for it, was the link to toolhaus.org, where you put in the seller's id and with a click, all the negatives.

    There are a lot of good points made about the Creed G.I.T. scam, with great pictures and detailed things for us to look for. My SMW fit the descriptions perfectly. Packaging cheap with misspellings every side, and the bottle'd been tampered, very obvious change in the nozzle, and the cap with a fake crest!

    But Really, everyone, I'm trying to go beyond poor-little-ole-me. It's a lesson I appreciate, and a cheap lesson, only $50. Both eBay and Paypal are making this very difficult. They simply tell me to return it to seller for a refund. Simple as that! But they aren't planning on doing an investigation, or are they? How can that happen if I return the counterfeit? With that attitude, it doesn't seem as if they really care about a clean market, do they?

    Stop for comments.

  2. #2
    Cognoscento's Avatar
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    Default Re: FBI Fragrance? Basenotes Investigators

    Benjamin,
    Welcome to the forum. I see that you've read the Ebay posts, and most importantly, found toolhaus.org, which is the easiest way to cut to the chase. As to stopping someone by outing their name and links, we've seen that they simply open up under a new ID.

    Does Ebay or Paypal investigate? Well, somewhat, but not much. My impression is that they try to mediate (Paypal less than Ebay - they seem to have very little customer service), but what they do really doesn't have teeth. For that to happen, there would have to be things like lawsuits or reports to credit agencies, and I don't see them doing that - they don't have enough staff, and I'm nearly sure they would deem it too much expense and time.

    If someone generated an egregious number of complaints to Paypal, maybe they'd do one of their notorious account freezings, but that's only a guess, and that wouldn't get you your money back anyway, I think.

    Unfortunately, feedback and good communication are your best defenses. I have a couple little tricks I like to use that may help some, and I've already given details of those in the Ebay complaint section.

    Sorry to be a downer,
    Good luck!

  3. #3
    rach2jlc's Avatar
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    Default Re: FBI Fragrance? Basenotes Investigators

    I hate to be a downer, too, but your problem with ebay has been repeated literally thousands of times in nearly every market. Fake fragrances? Ebay is rampant with them. Fake electronics, fake handbags, fake clothes... ebay has become the single largest purveyor of fake goods in the world.

    Do they care? Not really. They "say" they are doing their best, but that is only because many of the companies (Louis Vuitton is a major one) have tons of lawsuits and such trying to make a dent in the fake markets. BUT, at the end of the day, ebay makes its listing fees and final value fees whether the item is real or not, and they can always TRY to avoid responsibility by saying, "Our policies state no fakes! If someone is selling a fake, it's not our fault." I would guess that ebay makes millions of dollars a month off of fake goods. They're as greedy a company as you'll find anywhere, so until they are MADE to stop doing it, they won't.

    Examples? I've been on ebay and internet forums for six or seven years (including several fashion forums that fight the proliferation of fake goods), and the stories of ebays suspicious policy enforcement are a dime a dozen. I've heard dozens of stories of 5-year power sellers of only authentic merchandise having their lower priced auctions pulled for "search manipulation" (where you say in a listing something harmless like "Please see my other auctions, too!), but fly-by-night sellers out of China selling blatantly fake Gucci bags listed for $5000 aren't pulled, even after twenty or more forum members complained about it. What was the difference? Ebay stood to make 3% of that $5000 item if it sold, whereas the authentic item that was "manipulating searches" would only yield them 3% of $150.

    SO, in short, the best thing to do is stop using ebay. I've been TRYING over the past few months to avoid using them, whether by posting items I want to sell in respective forums (here for fragrances, clothing forums for clothing items, etc.) or just holding on to them until I find an auction site that doesn't screw over its members who have paid thousands of dollars in ebay fees since 1998 or however long they've been going.

    The only way ebay is going to learn is if people stop using them and they start to get some competition. If you talk to longtime sellers on ebay, I don't think you'll find ANY who have nice things to say about their policies, fees, or customer service. They use it because it is convenient and it is the only one there (there are a few other auction sites, but the traffic is probably 1/1,000,000 that of ebay, so small time sellers are basically stuck. Anyway, I always joke with my friends that I'm now on "'baycot." I encourage others to go 'baycotting as well.
    Last edited by rach2jlc; 15th January 2007 at 06:33 PM.
    Is there any point in saying everything? -Basho

  4. #4

    narcus's Avatar
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    Default Re: FBI Fragrance? Basenotes Investigators

    Oh boy, and I bid for - gues what: SMW and GIT! (Won SMV). The pix seemed good, but on second look, and trying to compare, they are just perfectly out of focus. No details sufficiently legible. I thought I would be safe on this site which isn't Ebay. But now I read: shipped directly from USA, expect ten days.

    I pray someone else will outbid me on GIT. SMW only - I can write that off!
    'Il mondo dei profumi č un universo senza limiti: una fraganza puo rievocare sensazioni, luoghi, persone o ancora condurre in uno spazio di nuove dimensioni emozionali' L. V.

  5. #5
    rach2jlc's Avatar
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    Default Re: FBI Fragrance? Basenotes Investigators

    With really popular items like that, you have to be so careful. Just like bags from LV, Gucci, Prada, etc. It's almost not worth the risk to buy outside of a registered or a KNOWN reputable seller. For lesser known fragrances (even Creed ones like baie de genievre or something) you are probably okay, since counterfeiters usually only create items they are very well known and will sell quickly. This is one reason that Louis Vuitton is faked very often, but Valextra or Schedoni are not, despite making a superior product. Everybody's heard of the former, almost nobody the latter. Same with fragrances.

    Caveat Emptor!
    Is there any point in saying everything? -Basho

  6. #6
    Cognoscento's Avatar
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    Default Re: FBI Fragrance? Basenotes Investigators

    Quote Originally Posted by rach2jlc
    With really popular items like that, you have to be so careful. Just like bags from LV, Gucci, Prada, etc. It's almost not worth the risk to buy outside of a registered or a KNOWN reputable seller. For lesser known fragrances (even Creed ones like baie de genievre or something) you are probably okay, since counterfeiters usually only create items they are very well known and will sell quickly. This is one reason that Louis Vuitton is faked very often, but Valextra or Schedoni are not, despite making a superior product. Everybody's heard of the former, almost nobody the latter. Same with fragrances.
    John's right - the most popular items are going to have plenty of fakes. I totally understand that Ebay is tempting. After all, I'm frugal. OK, downright cheap.

    Ironically, the fact that I buy cheaper stuff has defended me, to an extent. It's not worth it to a counterfeiter to duplicate cheap stuff. If I were looking to buy Creed or better, why not go to scentiments.com or someone like that instead of Ebay? You get quite good prices (though not rock-bottom), and you get a merchant who has a good reputation and cares about customers.

    It may go down easier if you view the extra cost as insurance, which it really is, in a way.

    Or get Creed and other decants from BN'ers, some of whom have done loads of great transactions!

  7. #7
    zztopp's Avatar
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    Default Re: FBI Fragrance? Basenotes Investigators

    Although I hate scammers, can we discuss and call out Ebay scammers here ?

    If I recall correctly, it was against the rules or something (or was "off topic").
    -

  8. #8

    Default Re: FBI Fragrance? Basenotes Investigators

    Quote Originally Posted by Benjamin*
    With 2000+ positives, how's it possible to wade through all that to find the 35 accusations of fakes?
    Benjamin, check out www.toolhaus.org. It allows you to view the negative/neutral feedback for any ebay seller.

  9. #9
    Benjamin*
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    Default Re: FBI Fragrance? Basenotes Investigators

    I rather don't believe the developments since I first wrote, but PayPal has looked at my claim and given me directions on how to proceed with my allegation. That's something I guess.

    The other part was getting a response to my email and phone call with Creed USA and/or Int'l Cosmetics and Perfumes, the Creed distributor for USA. They wanted to know exactly all the details of the transaction.

    Another scammed person and new friend, and I have been contacting the winners of some of these latests wins. Some have responded in horror and ended their bidding. Others are concerned about what to do. Well, the seller offered to refund immediately on my accusation of fraud. These new winners need but ask one simple question: is the Creed with a "CE PRODUCT" or with a "CE PRODUIT"? if the former, then cancel my order. It's a fake. If it's a Green Frich Tweed, cancel my order. It's a fake. Save yourself the shipping.

    Unfortunately, I'm only able to notify 5 persons through eBay messaging in a 24 hour period.

  10. #10
    rach2jlc's Avatar
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    Default Re: FBI Fragrance? Basenotes Investigators

    Benjamin,

    Your attempts are definitely admirable and that's really excellent how you're looking out for fellow fragrance lovers. Unfortunately, the system works against you. Many of those fake sellers have four or five different accounts and as soon as one gets shut down, another will pop up. It's a veritable Fake-Hydra. Counterfeiters have been at this a LONG time and they make SO much money at it that they're a LOT better equipped than we are.

    My advice to you would be simply "live and learn." You'll be that much more informed next time. BUT, if you spend much time on this, you'll see that attempting to remedy ebays inherent problems and loopholes could literally occupy a full time job for yourself and fifty of your nearest friends. As I said, it's admirable what you are attempting, but I think the best way to put a dent in it is simply to stop using ebay.

    Also, it's good to let Creed know what's going on in terms of hoping they'll try and make Ebay stop the proliferation of fakes... but I doubt they'll do anything to help YOU personally on this matter. Remember, they want you to buy retail from THEM, not any discount sellers, so I doubt they'll do a whole lot to help you out either (it's the same with LV, Gucci, Prada... etc. it's NEVER a good idea to tell them, "Hey, I got this on ebay!" if you want them to be helpful.)

    (I say all this from experience; as a six year plus ebay member, I've fought them and fought counterfeit sellers until I'm literally just worn out. Don't get burned out like me and just become ambivalent to the whole thing. Run away while there's still time!!! (haha, j/k))

    btw, I always mean to mention this and forget... I love the Rothko in your avatar.
    Last edited by rach2jlc; 15th January 2007 at 08:59 PM.
    Is there any point in saying everything? -Basho

  11. #11
    Benjamin*
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    Default Re: FBI Fragrance? Basenotes Investigators

    I think Creed got involved because I apologized and said I took full responsibilty for being duped.

    I also said I'd purchased a 75ml Creed Millésime Impérial full price $200 to just to feel better about myself. Went to a Von Maur, their legit dealer here in Iowa. Said I really wanted to do the principled thing but it was a fantasy to believe anything positive coming out of all this for either me or Creed.

    And, I have no illusions that he or his business partner will simply set up shop again. No illusions that eBay and/or Paypal will push this to court. A few disaffected buyers, who cares? 99% are happy customers.

    I'll not have the problem again with an eBay seller of anything. eBay has lost me forever. Really. I'm a 100% "baycotter."

    ===

    Got the Rothko avatar doing a google-image search on 'orange'. ;-)

  12. #12
    rach2jlc's Avatar
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    Default Re: FBI Fragrance? Basenotes Investigators

    Yep, we'll 'baycot together!
    Is there any point in saying everything? -Basho

  13. #13
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    Default Re: FBI Fragrance? Basenotes Investigators

    I've never bought anything, fragrances or otherwise, off of eBay. But my dad is an eBay-aholic, and both I and my mom really want him to stop.

    Recently, he bought some Motorola Bluetooth headsets off of eBay. The headsets were genuine, but the charger was counterfeit... when I plugged the charger into my Motorola RAZR cell phone that has an identical charging port like the headset, the RAZR said that it was an "unauthorized charger". And just recently, the plastic started falling off the headset hinge, which made me wonder if it was a MOTOREJECT.

    Thanks to this experience, I will never buy anything from eBay. End of story.
    I am not afraid to keep on living - I am not afraid to walk this world alone.

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