It is extremely annoying when you spend time on Trademe, find an item you are interested in and add it to your watch list only to discover that the member selling provides their phone number via the questions and answers. You go back to check and the item has been sold to that member who requested the phone number.
This happened to me today and at first the listing said it had sold to another member, then later that it had been withdrawn. So I sent text to number listed and asked if it was sold or not. They replied and said yes it had been sold.
So it is blatantly obvious that both the buyer and seller had deliberately broken the Trademe terms and conditions and prevented me and all the other members who were interested in this auction.
I contacted Trademe by email to advise them of this situation. I was pleased to receive a reply very promptly saying, "Thanks for getting in touch with us about this. We appreciate you alerting us to this member's behavior. I have looked into this situation and have decided to pass your email over to our site security team to review as they are more equipped to deal with this sort of stuff."
I was happy with that and replied thanking them for the prompt response and asked if I could be informed of the outcome. Then I got this response, "However, please keep in mind that due to our obligations to our members' privacy, I won't be able to fill you in on the exact details but again, we really appreciate you giving us a heads up about this."
So I then asked for further clarification, i.e does that mean that members who breach conditions have there privacy protected whilst no one can place feedback on them either? If so that does not seem fair. It fails to protect the majority of members who operate within the terms and conditions. Surely in such a blatant case like this it would be entirely appropriate to demand the seller realist the item and let the auction be completed correctly. If they refuse to comply they should be banned from site, simple!
What investigation is required? It is plainly obvious what has happened. They say they will look into it but cant inform me of any action they take. No one can place feedback on seller because there was no trade. They say feedback system has nothing to do with this. I completely disagree, but they also go on to say, " If the behavior continues, will take further action but we do like to give people the benefit of the doubt to begin with"
What a joke! If members are not able to post to alert other users when a member makes a breach and Trademe fail to alert members then they are in my opinion enabling unfair use of the site and withholding information when they know members are breaching conditions and most definitely not acting in good faith.
Very disappointing and weak response from Trademe, but what can you do?
Is there any point in perusing this further?