Thursday, July 30, 2009

eBay update for our customers plus 25% off coupon

Special eBay Announcement

Dear eBay customers of Flashing Panda,

Many of you have been wondering what happened to us on eBay, and how come we no longer have auction listings for any of our products. This announcement will explain what has been happening, will give you an idea of what may come, and may be an eye opener for you in regards to eBay and their ethics and business practices.

Our Apologies

First off, we would like to begin by expressing our sincerest apologies for all the troubles that our former trading partner, eBay Inc, has been causing over the past few months, and for any inconvenience and losses that you may have suffered as a result of the numerous canceled listings, (with live bids,) and the loss of ability to bid on additional items.

What is Happening?

eBay's staff have been harassing our company for months with their unethical and predatory practices, and hundreds of our active auctions have been terminated by eBay, causing many of you to lose your bids. On June 28th, they took it to the extreme and completely removed our entire eBay seller account, and Flashing Pandas eBay store, for a period of thirty days, for, (you'll never believe it,) having a paragraph containing the words flashing panda dot com, which eBay considers a serious violation of their "no links" policy, (even though there are no actual links,) along with previously having a statement that "this flashing cup may be ideal for the Burning Man festival", (where Burning Man is a link,) in some of our listings, (which eBay states may be damaging to their company and their community,) and so forth. They have been harassing our company with such "complaints" for many weeks now, ending hundreds of live listings, despite our desperate attempts to keep up with and comply with their demands. Every time they would "locate" a new "violation" in the listings which have been live on eBay, with no complaints from eBay, for many years, intentionally doing this one at a time, to build an opportunity for causing the most damage to their community and to us.

As an eBay power seller, as someone paying significant fees to eBay, as a supposed "valued customer", as someone who is supposed to have priority support with eBay, including phone support, we would expect eBay to contact us as any issues may arise, and attempt to reach a resolution in a non-hostile and damaging manner. Instead, eBay continuously chooses to employ predatory tactics, and refuses all attempts to work with them to come to an amicable resolution, despite our continually going out of our way in attempts to comply with their never ending predatory demands. Before, we considered eBay our trading partner. Now we know better.

All I want to say is that, they don't really care about us!

What Now?

Prior to this fiasco, our eBay sales volume was on track to quadruple in 2009. The liability that being on eBay creates for our company is simply not something we can ignore. We have to put the strength, integrity and safety of our business ahead of the extra exposure or sales volume that the eBay platform offers.

Doing some very limited research, we came to a scary realization that our case is not unique. eBay has destroyed many businesses from small to large, with no regard or second thought. eBay maintains that their user agreement, (that everyone has to agree to with without any say,) allows then to terminate any listing or auction for any reason, or no reason what so ever, and to suspend any account for any reason or no reason what so ever.

As this eBay account suspension occurred, we immediately started to look at how we can further widen our sales channels. We made a few changes. One big one was that we got onto Amazon in a big hurry, (less then two weeks!) Reading up on what other victims of eBay have been doing, going to Amazon seems to be the general rule.

We were lucky not to get ruined by this evil. Hundreds, if not thousands, of others were not so lucky, as their entire business depended on the eBay platform.

While we realize that eBay is a monopoly, and the only platform of it's kind, and can offer great value to our business, we must first concern ourselves with mitigating the liability. We will probably begin limited sales on eBay in the near future, but it will certainly not be what it has been, nor on it's way of becoming.

All I want to say is that, they don't really care about us!

How You Can Help

At this time, we would like to encourage all of our customers, especially during these times made difficult by eBay, to shop at our online store,, to support us through this period. Use the discount code ... (for newsletter subscribers only) ... after you add items to your cart and get a 25% discount* off your entire retail order as our appreciation of your support. This is the biggest discount that we have ever offered. But hurry, offer ends on the 15th of August.

* Applies to retail purchases only. Not good for Wholesale Lots / bulk purchases.

In Summary

  1. Yes, we are still registered on eBay.
  2. At this time, we are not offering any products for sale on eBay.
  3. You can still purchase from us, you just need to do it directly from our store, instead of through eBay.
  4. We would like to strongly encourage you to support all sellers, and not support this criminal entity, eBay, by contacting the seller to see if you can purchase directly from them.

We sincerely appreciate your loyalty and support and are committed to continuing to serve you for years to come. Please do not hesitate to respond with your thoughts, concerns or questions.