My Tale of a Holiday Etsy Scammer

I am sharing what happened to me, so that others might be spared this particular scam. Before I get into what happened, I want to make sure it’s clear that Etsy was not at fault, and they ensured I got a refund immediately. Just by filing a dispute, it was enough to scare the scammer into refunding the money in full.

So, my story.

I asked my sister-in-law, what to get her (and my brother’s) 3 amazing kids, for Christmas this year. They grow so fast, their interests change, and sometimes my sister-in-law would prefer I get something functional over fun, or not reward recent bad behavior (that happened one year. Story for another time, on another blog).

This year, the 14 year old is in to calligraphy, the 11 year old is in to (among other things) Pokemon, and the 10 year old is all about astronomy. I looked on Etsy, for something special, and not just a toy they would use for a couple of weeks and then forget about.

For the 14 year old, I wanted to find a nice calligraphy set, and a sketchbook. I compared a few different sets, and settled on this one. Handcrafted Calligraphy Kit Pen Set Feather Quill Writing Antique Dip With 5 Nibs, Ink, Luxury Case For Beginners 

It looked so nice.

It had a feather calligraphy pen, tips, an ink well and some other stuff. I thought it would be special, and it was reasonably priced ($34).

Well, it was supposed to be delivered by Tuesday, December 18th. Since it’s the holiday season, I gave a couple of extra days, but got nervous, by Thursday, December 20th. I looked in the original Etsy order email which said it was “Shipped with AMZL, With the following message:

As you can see, they say there is a tracking number, but there isn’t one. So, I went to the order, on Etsy, and contacted the seller “Ali” A.K.A.    7bayhmaj

Below is the conversation, between me and “7bayhmaj”:

Please give me a tracking number:

 

No tracking number, claims it was delivered:

A pic of what looks like a tracking history with some sort of tracking ID

Here is a close up of that:

Now, I’m getting a bit annoyed. I really want the freaking tracking number. Why won’t they give it to me?

Little known fact. If you google “tracking number” Google will pop up a tracking input. You can put any type of tracking number. It determines the carrier, by the format (amount of and sequence of letters and numbers).

when I put in  “TBA542868879000” (what was in the image) no carrier was found. It’s not a valid tracking number for any carrier.  IT’S A FAKE TRACKING NUMBER!!!

 

This douche nozzle has the audacity to try to blame the many delivery PEOPLE (not just men, you asshat), for the problem, and porch thieves.  Thanks “Ali”, we know who the thief is.

More bullshit, including some crap about using a “different logistics service”.

I again re-iterate that they have yet to tell me which carrier they used, and a legitimate tracking number.

They claim they can refund, but since I opened a dispute their hands are totally tied. It’s now my fault, for want this shit dealt with.

I’m done. Give me the damn tracking number you horrible garbage human.

You offered to get me off your back. You play the odds, that I’m the 10% that won’t let you scam them. How many others have you scammed? How many did you convince the item was delivered, and got them to just let you keep their hard earned money? (They sell other stuff. I don’t think there’s a massive market for calligraphy sets).

Now I lost my composure, and swore. I’m not fucking proud of it, but they really pissed me off. A senior citizen might not think to verify the fake tracking number. They might believe what they are told.

WHY WON’T YOU GIVE ME A TRACKING NUMBER, YOU HORRIBLE SCAMMER????

 

Now, they are insisting on their purity. They are magnanimous, and I dared to be an unpleasant person, to a scammer. I’m the horrible garbage human, but they are so wonderful, they apologize, paid their 10% gambling loss back to me, and wish me the best of holidays. Oh, and the item was totally delivered to my place of work.

Side note, I’ve been at my job 14 years. I only sent the package here, instead of home, because of the ink well. I didn’t want it to get ruined in the cold weather. I have never had a package delivered to my work, and had it “mysteriously” not get to me. This was just getting pathetic.

 

 

Last message, I promise. I acknowledged that I lost my cool with the swearing but took one last opportunity to point out that if they weren’t a scammer, then they should “show me the [tracking number].” They have not responded, since this last message.

 

It’s not about the gift. My niece is not a materialistic kid. She’s awesome and would be happy with 100 hugs. It’s about the principle of the thing. It’s taking advantage of someone spending the money they earned, and instead of earning it by selling a legitimate good or service, this person is scamming people.  I would love for this person to get caught an prosecuted, but I’m not holding my breath.

I’d like the uzystore on Etsy to get shut down too. But mostly, I want to warn other shoppers.

I love sites like Etsy. My sister-in-law has a shop CathyCreatesStuff, and she’s not a scammer. I am guessing most are not. From my experience, most are like her. Talented, thoughtful people, who create something beautiful and share it with people who might appreciate a handmade gift.

But this asshat is not cool, and I’m just not ok with them gambling on the 10% demanding a refund and keeping 90% of the money, from people they convinced, that the package was delivered, and “oh well”.

When you buy, from any site like Etsy, it’s important to be skeptical. I should have paid more attention to not just the store’s rating (4 1/2 stars!) but how many people rated it. There are only 28 ratings, which could be from all bogus accounts. When there are more like 200 or 2,000, you are likely to get a real sense of the store’s legitimate rating.

When you order from a vendor, on Etsy, Ebay, Facebook Marketplace, always insist on getting a tracking number, once the item has shipped. Test it out in the Google tracking number input, and make sure it’s a valid tracking number, particularly if they claim it was delivered.  Don’t let them blame the hard working delivery people, who work for FedEx, UPS, DHL, and USPS. The problem is rarely on their end.

And, don’t give in to spending money, without getting what you paid for. If they can’t get it to you, get your full amount refunded, and find a better seller. If they won’t fix the problem in a timely manner, open a ticket, on the order in question, with the site. When I opened a ticket on this order, with Etsy, Etsy didn’t even have to do anything. The seller got notified, and it scared them into refunding the money. Let the site handle a bad seller, if they are giving you the run around, and don’t let them spin their wheels. Give them a time limit, and if they claim it’s not enough, tell them you will ask the site (ie Etsy) to handle it if they won’t.

Good luck an safe shopping!

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go hit a brick and mortar store to get some cool ass calligraphy pens, for my amazing niece.

Sleeping Dogs Don’t Lie

I read the first chapter of The Art of Racing in the Rain, last night.  It was a short chapter, and it is in the narrative of a dog.  This perspective has helped me to realize a truth that has been one of the hardest for me to fully realize and accept in my life.  People spend so much time assuming what other people want, that they make their decisions based on what they think another person wants or needs.

I see it all the time when people complain that their life is spent doing things for other people.  Or that because they spent so much time doing for others, they suffered.  Now it’s too late for them.  There is no time for me.  Well the perspective of this dog will teach those who are willing to learn.  You need a very specific, and not so easy to come by, mix of presentation and interpretation for your actions and behaviors, your intentions to come through to in the manner you believe they will or want them to.

What would happen if we just focused on what we wanted for ourselves?  How selfish that would be!  To not consider others.  To only think of ourselves.  But what if we were honest and up front about what we want for ourselves, and let those around us react and tell us if that works for them.  We might find that being independent in our actions, and choosing for ourselves will allow others to be independent and choose for themselves.

Even if we think we know what others want or need, why are we so sure that we are right?  Do we think that others know better what we need or want, better than ourselves?  I doubt it.  I hate when people think they know what I need or should want.  Especially when it is different from what I know I need or want.

My dad and I have discussed this on some different levels.  The idea being that way you address someone, or convey something isn’t necessarily going to be how they will receive it.  So what is more important?  How you intended your message to come across or how it was received?  My dad has argued that the intention of the sender is what matters, while I disagree.  I understand his point.  If I intend to help you, that should mean the world.  If you intended to help someone, that means huge difference to to if you intended to hurt that person.  The flip side is the actual effect you ended up having.  Regardless of anyone’s good or bad intent, if the result is that the recipient did not receive the message well, the intentions are lost anyway.  And a more important effect might be that the receipt of the message could have been interpreted in a damaging hurtful way.

This all makes me firmly believe that we cannot afford to make our presentations, our messages to others, based on what we think they want or need.  I theorize that if we instead focus on what we want and need, make that our message, we would then free the recipients of our messages to respond with their own independently formed wants and needs about themselves.  We might both be free to express and gain what we need for ourselves and from each other without inhibiting the other person.  It’s ironic that the inhibition we might cause can come out of an intention to care for another.

So that is just the first chapter of the book.  We shall see how the rest of this goes…

Full Cup A Brewin’

[Spoiler alert warning –  this post contains a spoiler for the movie Crazy Stupid Love]

Stats for today are definitely low: Jillian Micheal’s Shred It Kettle bell workout.  29 min – 215 cal.

It’s a great workout, but I slept in, so I don’t have time to go for a run or to do some yard work.  It was a new thing to try, which was good.

My mom is in for the weekend, so that we can celebrate our birthdays together.  Her’s is on 3/21 and mine is on 4/4.  Exactly 2 weeks apart.  When I was growing up, we always went to the Ichiban Japanese Steak House, in Syracuse, NY for every persons’ birthday.  That would be my mom, dad, brother and myself.  It was a tradition.  After my parents divorced, my mom and I kept up our tradition.  Since our birthdays are so close, we go in the weekend in between.

After I finished college, we started meeting at Turning Stone.  We would get a free room, play bingo, play some slots, and go to Syracuse for Ichiban. Their salad dressing is so yummy!

Last year, I took her to Vegas, for her 65th.  Not exactly Ichiban, but we had a good time. I took her to a Japanese steak house, at MGM.  It ended up to be really foo-foo but the sushi appetizer was great.  We also saw Whoopi Goldberg, which was bucket list worthy.

This year, we met at Turning Stone.  Alas, we did not come back with gobs of money, but we had a good time.  In way of WW notes, they have a fantastic greek salad in their food court.  I added grilled chicken. Said “Woah!” to the lady about to put a cup of feta on the salad (not kidding), and told her to use less.  Got the dressing on the side.

While playing slots I stuck to diet soda and decaf coffee.  Totally could have chosen water a bit more!  Went to their diner in the morning and got an egg white omelet, no butter on the grill, packed with veggies, turkey and some swiss.  Didn’t finish it.  I love not finishing food.

Came back to Rochester and ordered takeout from Sinbad’s for dinner.  Awesome Mediterranean in the area, and probably one of my favorite cuisines.  We watched Crazy Stupid Love.  My mom said she thought it was deeper than she had expected it to be from the previews.  I enjoyed the twist that Hannah was his daughter.  I hated Ryan Gosling’s accent.  It wasn’t consistent and it wasn’t necessary.  I would have liked more development of Juliane Moore’s character.  I also thought that the antics of their son were a bit far fetched.  No way a kid goes up in front of classmates and parents, and says to his babysitter, sorry you walked in on me yanking it.  I mean, come on.  I know people want to think their families are that interesting and colorful, but let’s not encourage stupidity.  Even if it is in the title.

So today we are going to hit the public market.  Rochester has an awesome one.  Tonight we are going with friends to Magnolia’s, which is another fantastic place to eat in Rochester.  They have incredible paninis, wraps, and a to die for tomato artichoke soup.  Oh I will be getting it!

Then we are going to the Geva theater to see Angels in America.  I saw the mini series on HBO and it was incredible.  About a month ago, I was in a Starbucks, getting my lean protein post-workout skinny latte reward.  I looked over at the bulletin board and saw a poster for the show.  In about 2 seconds I was sending a pic to my friend, telling her “I know what I want to do for my birthday!”

In other news, my mom got me a heating pad, the dvd of the Help and of All That Jazz.  So cool! (and warm as the heating pad goes lol)  I got her a $50 gift card to the Michael Spa Salon in her home town.  She was excited, because she can use it for a deep tissue massage.

Well, that’s all for now! I gotta go make the coffee and breakfast for mom and me.  My cup runneth over.