Ducati, eBay

Scandalous bidding activity on Forza Moto Ducati eBay auction

I recently bid on a pressure plate from eBay seller Forza-Moto who sells a load of Ducati stuff. Most of his stuff is buy it now but he occasionally puts stuff up for auction with a low start price and these pressure plates are one of the items he occasionally auctions. I’d tried a few times to win it but always got beaten. I was a bit suspicious about the bidding patterns but until now had nothing more than a feeling to go on.
The auction was due to end on 31st May and on the 26th I put a bid on of €93.51 which was the leading bid. The next highest bid was €60 so I was winning at €61. €61 continued to be the leading bid until 10 minutes before the auction end when a bidder, known only as N***t due to eBay’s privacy for bidders policy, placed a bid of €120. A bit strange as Forza-Moto has the plate up in a buy it now for only €115! Of course this bid beat me and obviously revealed my max bid. N***t then immediately retracted the €120 bid and rebid €92 euro, just under my max and so pushed my bid to €93 which is what the auction ended on.
I contacted the seller Forza Moto and pointed this out. I made it clear that I would not purchase at the final price due to the strange activity of N***t but would pay the €61 bid that I felt was the true winning price. He stated in reply that he had no knowledge of the bidder, that he had many bid cancellations on his items and that he cannot control the bid activity of buyers of his auctions!
I had a look at a few of his recent auctions. Turns out N***t has been a very busy boy and appears to own multiple different Ducati’s, all of which are in need of parts as he has bid on lots of parts, mostly for very high prices and at the very end of the auctions. He has 1 feedback and has only ever bid on Forza Moto auctions. There is of course nothing to link bidder N***t with Forza Moto other than the fact that the account only ever bids on Forza Moto auctions. If I was Forza Moto I would be very angry that this strange unknown person was deliberately bumping up my auctions!
At this stage I reported the auction to eBay. They gave me the usual ‘we take this seriously’ guff and also pointed out that if action is taken we cannot tell you what it was. Since this incident Forza Moto has posted another auction, the only change being to make it private. Private auctions completely hide the bidders name (bidders are given numbers instead of star’s in their name which makes it difficult/impossible to spot if they have bid on other auctions).
Forza Moto refused to sell me the item for €61, as is his right. It is my opinion that the correct thing to do in this case would have been to immediately cancel the auction and relist the part, this has yet to happen. Also banning bidder N***t from bidding on further items would be a good idea, I don’t know if that has happened but I know I myself have been banned by Forza Moto. I have also been contacted by e mail and threatened with ‘international legal action’ for defamation for writing this thread on a well known Ducati monster forum. As all I have done is posted the facts as they happened and provided screen grabs and links legal action is a hollow threat. Defamation requires something false to have been posted and I have simply posted what happened in auction #141677206071, checkable by anyone with a computer and the desire to follow a link. The admin of the forum have removed my thread posted there after similar hollow and groundless threats. My intent is not revenge nor is it financial. It is to warn fellow eBayer customers and my fellow club members, Ducati fans and buyers of Ducati parts, of the possible pitfalls of auctions. In this case it was a Forza Moto Ducati auction but of course it could happen on any item. A rogue bidder, completely unknown to the seller could bid a very high amount then retract and rebid just under the max bid of a genuine buyer. I’m sure that happens all the time! I would hope that forum admin would share my desire to inform potential victims but equally I can understand if they don’t want to stand up to bullys.
I love eBay, probably a bit too much, I’ve been on it since the beginning pre paypal when you would regularly send a cheque in the post with no guarantee that the seller was genuine even. It worked because people are mostly honest and play fair. As it got bigger obviously fraud became a bigger issue so protection was built in, sad but that’s life. I still like to think that most people play fair though and that if they don’t eBay will take action.
Due to the threat of legal action by Forza Moto I would like to make clear that as far as I am aware there is no link between Forza Moto and bidder N***t other than the fact the N***t has only ever bid on Forza Moto items, over 40 times in fact and only high bids. I am not claiming any other link between them as I have no evidence that points to that. Nor am I implying or in anyway suggesting there is such a link or that there has been any wrongdoing on the part of Forza Moto. I am merely stating the facts as they happened in auction #141677206071 which are currently a matter for public record at ebay and preserved within the screen shots posted below. Incidentally this web page would never have existed were it not for those threats!
Update 26/7/1025
It’s still happening, follow this link.
01 Item H Bid history H Bidder H item 01 item 02 item 03 item 04 item 05 item 06 item 07 item 08 item 09 item 10 item 11 item 12 item 13 item 14 item 15 item 16 item 17 item 18 item 19 item 20 item 21 item 22 item 23

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s