Sigh. Every now and again, I look at various items of junk taking up space, in my house/garage, think about how I could use a bit of extra dough, and give in to the temptation to sell stuff on eBay.

The platform, for the most part, works, but some of the people are hard work.

I once likened it to writing open source software: you do it in your spare time for minimal reward and the thanks you get is a bunch of entitled twonks having a go at you.

I remember one person who I sold an old server to during the pandemic having an absolute hissy fit when I shipped it wrapped in a single layer of old cereal packets. “Not sure what you are trying to do here.” Eh? It had no disks in it, almost no moving parts, and he wasn’t claiming any physical damage or faults, yet I ended up having to eat the cost of him sending it back. Needless to say, it passed a long run of memtest and I sent it to the next buyer wrapped in the foam Mr Angry so kindly sent it back to me in.

On another occasion, the buyer of a TV tuner card messaged me repeatedly over the following year asking if I’d located the extra bracket which I never claimed it came with. Still no!

Then there was the time I accidentally shipped two items to the wrong people. One was perfectly understanding, the other, well, you’d think I’d accidentally shipped him a crate of snakes. “You’ve got 24 hours to give me a postage label for returning this or I’ll throw it away.”

Bottom line, the expectations of many buyers appear to be steak for the hamburger (if not offal) prices that they pay. The idea that it’s just someone making a few quid on the side and maybe your message will take 24 hours to get a reply just doesn’t seem to occur to these people.

It was very refreshing this week, though, to get an understanding reply back from a buyer when I explained I’d be a few days late shipping him his bargain mobile phone because I’d been on holiday. Well done sir, but even so I think this will be my last forray for a while.