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What happened to the 'steadiness' and honour of people on online marketplaces?

What happened to the 'steadiness' and honour of people on online marketplaces?



All you forum dwellers probably remember the times before Carousell was founded, and how we all bought and sold stuff on forums. Many forums also have a reputation system, which was an indicator of the 'lao jiao' forum-ers - those that tend to be steady and trusted to deal with.

I remember there were some unspoken rules when it came to buying and selling stuff online:

1. As the buyer wants the item, the responsibility lies with him to make his way to meet at the seller's convenience by default.

2. A good seller will honour a deal he has made, i.e. a better offer made after a deal has been set will be rejected (even though the seller stands to lose out).

3. You don't 'aeroplane' people. 'Aeroplaning' - which is sort of translated from '放飞机' in Chinese - is tantamount to what we know as 'ghosting' today, when you stop replying someone out of the blue.

4. 'Lowballers' (those who offer a price significantly below what has been listed), 'aeroplane pilots' and other unsavoury types of behaviours are often called out, shamed and frowned upon.

2.thumb.jpg.b50c429f1890b33d13a12ca472350949.jpgThese days, I find I am increasingly encountering all kinds of ridiculous people on Carousell, which I use quite a bit to sell my barangs.

In fact, I don't remember it being so bad back when the app was first introduced... It might be due to the anonymity, or the fact that creating new accounts is so easy. There are plenty of 'lowballers' who have the cheek to offer half of the asking price. Then, there are people who do not honour a deal that has been made. Or stop replying flat out when in the midst of a deal - and worst yet, after you have made your way to their location...

While there's nothing much I can do, it just makes me wonder what has changed.

In my opinion, the online buying and selling experience has deteriorated so much that I often find myself devoid of energy to deal with it, sometimes it seems like tossing the item in the bin would be a better option than to try to recoup some money by selling it online.

So, what about you? Do you have a set of rules that you live by when dealing online?

- Zhi Xuan


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