April 09, 2007 | 09:21AM PST/PT
Hello...I'm Rob Chesnut, eBay's Senior Vice President in charge of Global Trust & Safety. As you may know, over the last several months we've been working on a number of initiatives that comprise a new, more proactive approach to securing the safety of the marketplace. For instance, last fall we implemented listing restrictions to help reduce counterfeits on the site. In January, we changed our buyer protection plan to encourage the use of safe, insured payments through PayPal. We've been protecting bidders on high-end items through the Safeguarding Members ID project, and we're testing Detailed Seller Ratings to help buyers choose sellers who offer the best customer experience through feedback 2.0, the next generation of our feedback system.
Early results from these and other behind-the-scenes efforts show we're moving in the right direction. We're seeing a significant reduction in fake Second Chance offers, for instance, and fewer reports of potential counterfeit listings in the categories most favored by scammers. Of course, as we make changes, the scammers also adapt their methods. While I'm pleased with our direction and progress, I also want to help the Community understand this is an ongoing effort that requires an aggressive long-term approach.
Some of these actions have caused some legitimate concerns in the Community, and we've worked hard to address them with education and communication. With Safeguarding Member IDs specifically, we're working to improve the user interface we know this is the right policy, but we also know we can improve the user experience, and we're working on it.
We've launched feedback 2.0 on eight eBay international sites, and the initial reaction so far has been encouraging. We're closely watching how this improved feedback system works, and listening to feedback from eBay members in these markets.
Proactive Fraud Reduction
Today I want to let buyers and sellers know about another security measure we're taking. For safety reasons, items reportedly most favored by fraudsters may not be viewable for several hours before the listings are indexed into Search results. These new listings are still viewable on the site through My eBay or if you search for the specific item number; however, they are not immediately visible through a keyword search or Browse.
To maximize exposure for these listings and ensure that buyers who browse by category see these items, we've made an important change. Any listings impacted by this review process will appear in the "Newly Listed" sort based on when they are made visible in Search (as opposed to when they are listed.) This ensures they will appear at the top of default Browse results - as well as within the "Newly Listed" sort option for Search - where they belong.
What kinds of listings will be impacted?
Unfortunately, it's not possible for us to give you criteria, because that information could be used by scammers to work around our Trust and Safety efforts. Overall, however, we expect this security measure to impact only a fraction of listings.
Let me say that I understand that this has some impact for our sellers, but with the change to how we sort listings, and the fact that most bidding occurs in the final 12 hours of a listing, we believe it's the right step to take. I know we share the same goal to keep eBay a welcoming, safe marketplace for both our buyers and our sellers.
To learn more about these changes, please read our Frequently Asked Questions.
Join me at the next Town Hall
Trust & Safety will be the focus of Bill Cobb's next monthly Town Hall on April 30 at 2 p.m. Pacific time. I hope youll join me, Matt Halprin, and a number of other eBay leaders as we talk to Bill about Trust & Safety and answer member questions.
Again, I appreciate your support working together, our efforts are helping keep the marketplace a safe place to buy and sell.
Senior Vice President, Global Trust & Safety