eBay - Why Doesn't Fairtrading or ACCC Stop Misleading Product Descriptions from Australian sellers?

I went to buy a leather phone case on eBay for my elderly mother and most of the "Real Leather" phone cases were either vinyl or PU leather. I was only looking at items sold in Australia (not China). I eventually chose an Australian seller who guaranteed it was genuine leather. Even then, I'm still cynical. I'll see when it arrives. Why doesn't the ACCC or Fair Trading crack down on Australian eBay sellers for leading and deceptive advertising?

As an aside, I bought an ULTRASONIC dog whistle from an Australian eBay retailer last month. It was not ultrasonic, it was just an ordinary whistle that was well within normal hearing range. I ask for a refund and got it 24 hours later.

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Comments

  • ACCC or Fair Trading prolly dont know about it
    i recommend that you go through all ebay listing, purchase them, and where it doesnt match the listing, provide them with the details!

    This is the most blatant case of false advertising since my suit against the movie The Neverending Story.

  • You think they have tike to charge up all Thai silly stuff? Don't buy cheap rubbish from eBay if you want something quality.

  • +4 votes

    plot twist, hes actually selling misleading shit on ebay & is trying to sniff out if the accc is on to him
    i see you wang xi zen chi wau wau meng bengbeng po po

  • Genuine leather usually means it is the lowest of the lowest quality of leather.

    • Yep "Genuine Leather" can be a heat pressed composite of leather scraps with a painted surface and printed pattern on it.

  • I eventually chose an Australian seller who guaranteed it was genuine leather. Even then, I'm still cynical. I'll see when it arrives.

    The obvious question is… why would you still buy it?

    Why doesn't the ACCC or Fair Trading crack down on Australian eBay sellers for leading and deceptive advertising?

    Each department has a limited budget. It doesn't make sense to spend tens (or even hundreds) of thousands of dollars building a case over a $10 transaction. Unless there's stacks of people who are complaining about one individual/company, then they may look into it. There's literally tens of thousands of sellers on eBay and they can't police the whole marketplace.

  • Why doesn't the ACCC or Fair Trading crack down on Australian eBay sellers for leading and deceptive advertising?

    Because, when you want to be really frank about it, no one gives a monkey's about backyard sellers flogging phone cases (or any other low value item) on eBay. The impact this has on the economy at large is effectively zero.

    In any event, it's effectively the free market in action … those who want to pay less and take a punt on quality will go to eBay … those who want to make sure they're getting the genuine article will go to a reputable outfit and pay more the certainty of outcome.

    • Then why should the accc or fair trading crack down on any business?

      • Because it wants to ensure that where the vast majority of business is done (both in terms of total value, but also with respect the value of individual transactions) that consumers have confidence that they are "getting what they're paying for". Without this confidence, economic activity slows and we all know how that story ends.

        The activities of backyard operators on eBay and other equivalent platforms just don't register on the above scale. The fact that an overwhelmingly small percentage of transactions are "dodgy" is not ideal, but is also inevitable. It's also simply not worth investing the resources to deal with it.

        Wherever there is commercial activity, someone will be trying to mislead. The key is not to "eliminate" it, but absolutely keep it to the fringes.

      • They don't crack down on a lot businesses because of the difficulty in building their cases. They would only do it if they think there's a good chance of winning in court. Otherwise, they'll just be throwing their reputation (whatever's left of it!) and taxpayers money down the drain. Losing a lot of court cases will ruin their standing.

        Having said that, the mere existence of these so-called watchdogs is enough to make most business owners think twice about pulling a shifty.

  • I wish you could leave feedback for al transactions on eBay, even if they’re cancelled or whatever

    Bought a tap from eBay, seller listed the dimensions incorrectly so it didn’t fit. They refunded me the money, but reposted the item using the same description

  • Lately, it seems like ozbargain's favourite word to throw around is ACCC without really knowing what they actually do.

    If you feel that they've misrepresented the product they've sold to you, then take it up with the seller, paypal/ebay or take them to court over it. Because the ACCC isn't there to police every business transactions out there

    • People don't seem to realise that certain things come at a minimum certain price. When the amount they pay is way under that price, there's a pretty big risk that something's got to give - whether it's customer service, fake products, slow delivery or perhaps even not receiving anything at all! Yet, people pay less and still expect the whole world.

      And, of course, if they don't get the world right now, they jump up and down and tell anyone who they think cares. Picking up the phone to call someone to give them an opportunity to resolve the issue would work in a lot of cases. But that now seems to be a lost art.

      PS: This isn't directed at OP. It's just something I see way too often nowadays and it causes so many issues.

    • Not to mention for a lot of issues they should be contacting Fair Trading in their state as ACCC do not investigate individual claims.

  • Fairtrading or ACCC

    Pardon my ignorance.

    Wouldn't chasing "small time" sellers on ebay, like chasing down gumtree items? it just too big of a marketplace to police, they'll want to catch the big fish so to speak?

  • Ebay is a marketplace.
    Sellers are ordinary people (mostly). Even if they say "so and so business" it's a $10-$20 item.
    ACCC has no interest in private sales.
    Fair Trading has no interest in private sales.
    And just for completeness, ACL does not apply to private sales.
    If you want a genuine leather product maybe look at otterbox or cygnet type cases.