How to Complete a Bad Trader Report

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How to Complete a Bad Trader Report

Postby MagickalMemories » Tue Jan 19, 2010 9:59 pm

This article was written a while back.
Initially, it was intended to be placed in the new "Discussion" forums. Seeing as that project is on indefinite hiatus, I wanted to post it here.
Especially with the many issues arising around BTR's lately, this article carries a wealth of knowledge.
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How to Complete a Bad Trader Report*

Before reading this posting, you should have previously read the Bad Trader Reporting Rules initially posted by Linrandir on 04/01/2005. Despite the posting date, they are NOT a joke. Failure to follow them can cause troubles for you, aside from having been potentially scammed or cheated. Ignorance of the rules for posting a Bad Trader Report isn’t a valid excuse; it’s a reason to be suspended for a month or more. Although I may make reference to the rules in this post, I will NOT rehash them in their entirety. This is meant to be an enhancement to the rules, NOT a replacement.

http://www.bartertown.com/trading/viewtopic.php?t=71


[Edit 6/16/2010 by MagickalMemories]
Although it is not a rule, we strongly suggest that, before going through the effort/trouble of filing a negative reference and/or BTR on someone, regardless of the reason, you contact them first & give them a reasonable amount of time to respond to you. Most issues can be cleared up by some simple, honest communication.
A reasonable amount of time would be 3 to 7 days.
Most traders will gladly work with you to get a problem resolved, rather than have you mar their record for what is often an honest mistake.



Invariably, Bartertown members make their way to the Bad Trader Forum. Some of us read all of the reports, so that we are kept aware of the names of those accused and so that we can keep abreast of any new “tricks” we haven’t seen or thought of already. Some of us utilize it as a database to see if a potential trader is listed there. An unfortunate few of us have had or will have to complete a Bad Trader Report (BTR from here on) of our own. Those people are for whom this article was written.

Having seen a large number of BTRs, I’ve discovered that there are a great number of different ways that individuals compile them. While this is not necessarily a bad thing, not all BTRs are of similar quality. All too often they are missing valuable –sometimes vital- information. Many are improperly posted. Sometimes, they are just a train wreck that is nearly impossible to decipher.

Remember that Bartertown is a community in its’ own right. We do a lot of self-policing. Many of us have knowledge or skills in areas that can be of valuable service to someone completing a BTR. Your average Bartertown “regular” is more than happy to help another member in any way he can. The more lucid and comprehendible your post is, the more likely we are to pitch in and offer our services, help and/or information. If it’s “work” to understand your post, you can almost assuredly count on a low number of responses and an even lower number of Bartertowners pitching in to help.

With this article, I intend to offer advice on the best ways to construct a BTR and the best ways to present your evidence. Hopefully, you will find it informative and comprehensive. While I wrote the first and final drafts, I can’t take complete credit; the entire Moderating staff (Admins, Mods and Watchmen) had the opportunity to look this document over and suggest revisions. A few actually did. LOL Hopefully, our thoroughness will show through. If, however, you have any advice or information you’d like to add, please PM it to me (not email) and we’ll look it over. If we find that it adds sufficient value, we’ll add the information.

*This is intended to be used as advice for those contemplating the creation of a BTR. It is not intended to be a definitive guide. Your decisions in posting BTRs are your own. While this post is endorsed by the Bartertown Moderating staff, it is not presented as an official document.

--------------------------------
This document is made up of the following sections:

1) Introduction
2) Proof**
3) Supporting information
4) Follow through


Please, note that I am not suggesting that you label each section of your BTR. I am simply using these terms to denote a particular order in which I suggest you present your BTR information. If you do choose to use the labels, however, it would probably not be poorly received.

**Note that the examples presented in this thread are a fictitious trade between Linrandir and myself. Any resemblance to existing trades or BTRs is probably intentional. :)

--------------------------------

Section 1: Introduction

At this point, you should state a brief synopsis of the trade details. You should include a general idea of the items being traded, any terms of the trade, the results thus far and your follow through.

On May first I PMed Linrandir about some WH40K Space Marines he had. We agreed that I would pay him $100 and he would ship them to me with delivery confirmation and $100 insurance. I sent him $100 via PayPal on May 6th. On the 7th, he acknowledged receiving the funds, but I haven’t received my items yet. I’ve sent him PMs asking where the minis are, and I see that he’s read them, but I have not received any responses yet.


That is a good start.

While it’s not necessary to include this “Introduction” piece, it is definitely helpful, as those reading the rest of your post will know what to look for in the PM/email exchanges.

At this point, you might also find it valuable to mention any suspicions you had. It will give those trying to help you yet another thing to look for while reading.
--------------------------------

Section 2: Proof
(From here on, I will use “PM” as a general term for electronic communication [PM, Email, Chat log])

I suggest that you ALWAYS START WITH YOUR PM EXCHANGE. Give the “deal” first priority.
If you have a link to the initial post that started the transaction, it should be included for posterity.
Please, for Heaven’s sake, heed the following suggestions:

- Post the PMs in chronological order (from OLDEST to NEWEST). Few things are more annoying than having to scroll to the bottom of a post and read backwards.

- Post the COMPLETE PMs. Simply stating what was in them, omitting anything (aside from YOUR contact information), or not posting one because you felt it was “unnecessary” causes headaches and can be considered a posting violation if you accidentally forget to include certain information… Especially information that reflects poorly on you. The only “unnecessary” PMs are those that contain ABSOLUTELY NO information about the trade at hand. If there is even the SLIGHTEST mention of the trade, then post the entire PM for the sake of completeness.

- Separate your PMs by some obvious border. Empty space isn’t really enough. Something that takes up physical space is better... something like the line of dashes I’m using to separate the sections of this post. Personally, however, I prefer putting each individual PM in its own quote box.

Example of a poorly executed PM string:

Awesome. Let me know when they ship?

Eric


--- Lin Randir wrote:

>I got the money. I will get these things packed up and shipped off.
>
>
>
>
>
> Eric W
> wrote:
>
>
> Hey Lin,
> I sent the money. You should have it by now.
> The address that you got with the PayPal email is correct. It is:
>
> Eric W
(removed for privacy)
>
>
>
> Thanks,
> Eric
>
>
> --- Lin Randir wrote:
>
> > That is fine
> >You can send the money to Linrandir@GilligansIsland.com.
> >
> >
> > Eric W
> > wrote:
> > Sounds reasonable, if you take PayPal.
> > Send me your PayPal address and I can pay immediately.
> >
> > If you want a different kind of payment, I wouldn’t be willing to pay first.
>
> > Sound reasonable??
> >
> >
> > Eric
> >
> > --- Lin Randir wrote:
> >
> > > I can ship as soon as I get the money.
>
> > > Usually the next day. Mail is slow here on Gilligan’s Island, though.
> > >
> > >
> > > Eric W
> > > wrote: Hi Lin,
> > >
> > > That sounds good.
> > > When can you ship?
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > --- Lin Randir wrote:
> > >
> > > > I still have the Space Marines,
> > and
> > > I
> > > > will let the lot go for $100.
> > > >
> > > > Lin
> > > > Linrandir@GilligansIsland.com


See how annoying that was?
Now, here is the information presented in 2, FAR BETTER formats. Note that I am removing most of the back & forth for the sake of making this monstrous post a little shorter. What I’ve included below should be enough to give you the idea.

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
--- Lin Randir wrote:

I still have the Space Marines,
and I will let the lot go for $100.
I'm on Gilligan’s island, by the way.
Linrandir@GilligansIsland.com

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Eric W wrote:

Hi Lin,
That sounds good.
When can you ship?

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
--- Lin Randir wrote:

I can ship as soon as I get the money.
Usually the next day. Mail is slow here on Gilligan’s Island, though.

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

OR

--- Lin Randir wrote:

I still have the Space Marines,
and I will let the lot go for $100.
I'm on Gilligan’s island, by the way.
Linrandir@bartertown.com

Eric W wrote:

Hi Lin,

That sounds good.
When can you ship?


If you were observant, you noticed that I didn’t include a list ANYWHERE above what was being traded. All I said was “Space Marines,” without clarifying the specifics.

Also note that I didn’t include any proof of PMs sent to him asking where my stuff was. These, too, should be included. When you are creating a BTR, it is NOT important that you be brief or try to “save Bartertown’s resources” What is important is that you include ALL of the information necessary, regardless of length.

Lastly, notice that I did not include the Time & Date information and/or headers from the PM. All these are required information, per Bartertown rules.

This was an illustration of how even a well created post can go wrong. In a BTR, you MUST declare the specifics of the items in the trade (X Space marine models, Y Tanks of Z type, etc), all PM proof and all Time/date information (headers, etc).

--------------------------------

Section 3: Supporting Information
This is where the non-communication specifics should go.
Items for inclusion are:

- Delivery Confirmation numbers (both sides of the trade, if appropriate).

- Email from PayPal showing that the payment went through (any information that puts your account security at risk should be deleted and replaced with some notification that you removed it).

- Any follow up information you discovered on your trade partner, once you believed you were ripped off.

-Any information that you cannot decide where it should go.

- Existing threads on him in the BTR forum.

- His email address and physical address if known (and not already listed in the PM string).

Example:

After waiting 3 weeks and not getting responses to the 3 PMs and 2 emails I sent him, I did a little research. It turns out that he has a history of illegal activity in “real life” and on the internet:

He has complaints about him here:
http://www.animalpr0nswap.com
Where he received DVDs in trade from someone and never sent the DVDs he promised in return.

Here:
http://www.LinrandirLikesToSellPiratedTeletubbieDVDs.com
This shows his arrest record for selling pirated Teletubbie DVDs at his local Flea Market, there on Gilligan’s Island.

Here:
http://www.LinrandirAssaultsHimselfLikeTheGuyInFightClub.com
This shows that he was arrested for assaulting himself in a parking lot. Apparently, he blamed it on a guy named Tyler but refuses to talk about it any further. There was a mention of a “project,” but he wouldn’t discuss that, either.


Yes. It’s all made up. Get the idea, though? If you think you’re ripped off, do a little research and post what you find in your BTR.

--------------------------------

Section 4: Follow Through

Close out your BTR by stating what you’ve done to get your money or items back.
Did you file a police report? Did you try to get your money back from PayPal? Did you contact the USPS or FBI over it? What were the results?

Don’t come on here expecting someone else to do all the work for you. Do as much work as you are capable of (and everyone reading this is capable of, at least, a basic internet search via Google or Yahoo), and others will fill in any details or assistance where they can.

If you decide to leave a negative reference for your trade partner, wait until AFTER you post your BTR. In the negative reference, post the hyperlink to the BTR so that potential traders can access it more easily.

It would be a good idea to follow that up with a "reply" post to your PM that included a link to his now-current reference list.

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If anyone has any specific input for this article, feel free to PM me. I will consider it and, if I think it fits, I will include it and give you full credit.

Remember, though... this article is ONLY about HOW to complete one. it is not intended to cover "when" or "under what circumstances" it should be completed.

Thanks.

Eric
Lower rating? You ship first.

Give me a sense of humor Lord. Give me the grace to see a joke.
To get some humor out of life and pass it on to other folk.


I think what this situation needs is some imagination.

"...I'm a nerd, and I'm here tonight to stand up for the rights of other nerds.” – Gilbert Lowell

Want my help with a BTR or backout? All messages sent/posted should be in CHRONOLOGICAL order. Otherwise, I just won't read it.
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Re: How to Complete a Bad Trader Report

Postby Linrandir » Wed Jan 20, 2010 1:19 am

:lol: :lol: :roll:

That Lin...what a jerk. I should watch out for him.
New to Bartertown?
Read These Now!
Got ripped off?
Read This First!

Administrative Transparency: Anything you write me can and will be made public should I deem it necessary. Anything I write to you? Same deal. Fair is fair.

My Official Admin Messages have the :rulez: icon in front.
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Re: How to Complete a Bad Trader Report

Postby MagickalMemories » Wed Jun 16, 2010 4:52 pm

Original message edited.
Current "new" addition is in bold, red letters.

Eric
Lower rating? You ship first.

Give me a sense of humor Lord. Give me the grace to see a joke.
To get some humor out of life and pass it on to other folk.


I think what this situation needs is some imagination.

"...I'm a nerd, and I'm here tonight to stand up for the rights of other nerds.” – Gilbert Lowell

Want my help with a BTR or backout? All messages sent/posted should be in CHRONOLOGICAL order. Otherwise, I just won't read it.
User avatar
MagickalMemories ( 650 )
In it for $$, Fame, and Poultry!
 
Posts: 13735
Joined: Thu Sep 04, 2003 11:38 pm
Location: St. Louis, MO - USA


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