Am I Being Unreasonable

In The past 6 months I have had 4 occasions where the seller has sent me something different to the items identified in the winning sale.
The most recent was today, where i had won 8 x blocks of 4 that i specifically wanted for a blocks collection.
Sellers has no idea what she has done with the originals, but is sending me other stuff which has a higher value.
As an Australian collecting Australian PreDec, i have dozens of all stamps MNH and used, i don't require other material even if it is more valuable, I probably already have it.

In another auction for an Australia-Victorian(SC162) with a barred numeral post mark #849. The seller sent me a SC162, with a common cancel of #10. No ifs, buts, or thank you, and no refund or real apology. Just "You got a SC162".

Another had an early Barred Numeral #1 of Melbourne, which i did not have,but again it didn't get supplied.
The sellers response was " keep the stamp. With over 100,000 listing us mere humans do make a few. errors. I am sending you a partial refund of $1.If you are not happy I am sorry. You can always order elsewhere."
The stamp did not look anything like what was offered for sale in the image.

I thought if you placed a photo of an item up for auction, this photo would become part of the items description.
I am thinking of reporting to HIP stamps if they have moderators or similar
Am I being unreasonable ?
I thought if you provided an image for an auction, then you should receive the item you bid for being displayed.


  • 11 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • Harry, open a ticket by scrolling to the bottom of this page and click on Contact Us. Let the staff know what is going on. They need to know to take further steps.
  • That has happened to me several times in the past few years. Low value items, so I shrugged and just wrote it off. I used to think it was a cultural gap, or lack of seller experience that led to these errors...but its a bit more, I think some of these "sellers" just do not care. They really should be reported. That's how HpSt detects patterns of behavior.
  • When you have an item up for auction you should get what is listed including what is in the photo. If the seller was a member of the APS they would be suspended and/or kicked out . This is another item that should be reported to HipStamp and any other authorities as it puts a black mark on the whole stamp business and philately in general.
  • So is this 4 different sellers with 4 different problems?
  • You should get what you purchased (WYSIWYG)! If the seller is unable to find the exact item, he/she should refund your purchase amount and apologize, period. It should be easy.
  • All my items include the statemen: "The item you see in the scan is the one you will receive" which is as it should be.
    If you paid with PayPal, open a dispute (directions are on the web page).
  • How about if the seller just makes a simple mistake when listing an item? I am a seller and I recently had a sale for a 1930's German stamp in Mint-Never-Hinged condition (Scott #450). Everything in the description was for the Scott #450, such as Scott number, Scott price for Mint-Never-Hinged condition, etc., but I slipped up and inadvertently pictured a Scott #451 that I also had for sale. The Scott #451 was listed separately as a separate item.

    As a buyer, do you had have any obligation to ask the seller if he made a mistake in the listing since the picture and description don't match? The item described has a Scott listed price of $21, while the stamp pictured has a Scott listed price of $70. Even at my usual 30% of Scott pricing, that makes for quite a difference in listed price between the two stamps.

    A buyer purchased the Scott #450 (with the pictured #451) as well as another stamp. Due to the way I stock my items, the described stamp and not the pictured stamp were mailed to the seller. When he received his order, he responded in an extremely irate manner, accusing me of being a fraud. After I figured out what happened, I sent him the pictured stamp (the #451) and included a SASE so he could return the described (but not pictured) stamp back to me.

    I know I screwed up and I paid the price. But in a case like this, does the buyer have any obligation to just ask first if the listing is messed up before placing an order?
  • The buyer has no obligation to cross check picture and Scott number.He may be looking at his album page and sees the picture matches a missing stamp. He may be looking only at his want list. He may collect Germany using Michel (I collect Scandinavia using Facit).

    When I make that mistake it is usually because I misread my handwritten number on the 102 card - just take care of the problem and forget it - EVERYONE makes a mistake once in awhile
  • How true Carol. I finally made one on Oct 30th. I was hoping to go through two years without flubbing. No soup for me.
  • As Carol stated anyone can make a mistake and most people do not check the Scott number and others do not even know what the Scott number is but are only looking at the picture. It is up to the seller to make sure everything is right and if it isn't make sure the buyer is compensated otherwise you will loose a buyer. We are the professionals and should know what we are doing.
  • Thanks for your comments, Carol. I made many of the same assumptions that you did after thinking about it for a bit. When I was buying, I always spent a bit of time going through every tab on the item's posting, checking the "Details" page, making sure about their shipping details, checking to see their feedback, etc. My mistake is making the assumption that others do the same thing before making a purchase.

    A case in point is that I repeatedly get asked by potential customers why my shipping charge is $5.00 when they go to purchase a short list of items from my store. My shipping charge is normally $1.25, but when I sell larger items (souvenir sheets, miniatures sheets, etc.) that won't fit into a #6 3/4 envelope, I mail the order instead in a larger photo-mailer to ensure that those items don't get bent or folded. That requires shipment using the First Class Package rate with a $4.00 - $4.75 postage charge depending upon destination. I give a detailed description on both the "Details" and "Shipping" tabs, but no one apparently ever checks past the front page of the listing. So I end up typing up a couple of paragraphs politely describing why my postage rate for their order is that high and usually end up completing the sale.

    I guess always being polite with the customer and taking time to answer their questions is the key to both making sales and also handling any issues when one makes a mistake.
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