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Facebook Marketplace: Timewasters, Trolls and Scammers.

Updated: Sep 26, 2023



I am going to share my personal experience about Facebook marketplace's time wasters, trolls and scams. Everyone knows that Facebook marketplace is the place to buy and sell second hand or new things. I have been using gumtree for a long time and it is also full of time wasters and scammers. I was told by my friend to use Facebook as its better than Gumtree but I was bit reluctant as I had an impression that Facebook is the social media website and how do they use it like gumtree. However after sometimes I gave it a try and I realized that it's even 10 times worst than Gumtree.


Imagine if you see a restaurant or nightclub which also sells lawnmower, plants, old shoes, used washing machine etc. Facebook has the same issue where people are there to socialize or waste their precious time in reading unnecessary posts and you are asking them to buy your items.



Timewasters

Facebook market place has about 95% timewasters. Yes! 95%. I received thousand of messages for my items listed on Facebook Marketplace and only 5% of them are genuine buyers. All timewasters will ask you lots of unnecessary questions even some funny questions about your items, they will waste your precious time and then they will disappear. They will ask you about item details and location etc. which is already provided in the description but they are lazy to read. They even ask for images which are already there in listings. They will book a time to pickup an item but won't show up and also many sellers won't respond or when you get there they won't answer your call. They will send lowball offers like you would never have imagined. I was selling a good watch with delivery for $20 and just today one guy offered me $2 !!!. One guy asked me does that watch come in pieces and do you have to assemble it? and with frustration I responded yes you need a special skill and screw driver to assemble it. Obviously I was pulling his legs, because who would sell a watch in pieces? Majority of timewasters will ask you question "is it still available?" and once you reply "yes it's still available" they will see your message and won't respond. I received thousands of messages like that and now even in sleep I am saying "Yes it's still available". It's because Facebook has placed readily available a strange button "is it still available?", which buyer clicks without reading or thinking. There is a feature where you can rate buyer and seller. So to make it a better place people need to start rating timewasters, bad buyers and sellers. I believe all those timewaster have picked up bad habits from Gumtree and Facebook has copied 80% of features from Gumtree to design Market place and we are going round in circles. So what option do you have now to sell your second hand or new items? May be eBay? But the problem is eBay has lots of scammers too, however most of them are sellers. Buyers can rate sellers as rating is a big deal on eBay if you want to sell your products. Buyers can claim refund if the item is not good, however eBay charges unfair expensive fees to sellers plus PayPal charges transaction fees, for example if you bought an iPhone for $1800 and if you are trying to selling it for $2000 then eBay will charge you 10% of total value which will be $200 so your profit goes to eBay and plus If receiving $2,000 via PayPal , the amount that will go to fees is $58.30 and the recipient will receive $1,941.70. That's 2.92% going to fees, effectively.





How to deal with online trolls?


Facebook trolls uses marketplace too, so when you list an item in marketplace group, trolls will post abusive comments. The trolls will give your item post a laughing reaction which may create doubts in buyer's mind and buyers won't buy your items. My Friend told me that when a troll gives his item posts laughing reaction then my friend gives laughing reactions to all item posts of trolls and then blocks him. However, the best solution is to ignore the trolls do not argue or reply to their comments and just block them. The trolls will claim in comments that you are a scammer and will give you certificate of scammer without any proofs. The solution is you should just turn off comments in your posts and no one would be able to comment on your items and you can block and report trolls to group admins. If everybody starts reporting and blocking trolls then it will bring a change. The good thing about Gumtree is the trolls can't comment on your advertisements. If you just list your item in Facebook Marketplace and not in Groups then you won't have to deal with trolls.






Facebook Marketplace Scammers.


There are huge numbers of Scams and scammers on Facebook Marketplace who regularly hijack and spam marketplace with posts offering schemes with how to make lots of money etc. There are also buyers and sellers on Facebook marketplace who tries to scam people. The popular scamming method is they send you a bank transfer receipt for buying a car or other items once they get your item they cancel the payment and disappear. One of my friend bought a sealed iPhone from some school kids for about $700 and when he went home and opened it he found pieces of rocks in the box. So just be careful when you buy from Gumtree or Facebook Marketplace as you cannot track sellers like you can chase them up on eBay. Many buyers scam sellers by offering pay after delivery and once the item arrives they never pay, many sellers scam buyers by asking to do bank transfer or cash deposit into their account and never delivers the item. The safer way to do transaction is by using paypal, however if seller asks you do select transaction as a gift then don’t do it, instead select goods and services so you are covered by paypal’s refund policy . If you do bank transfer then you can still charge back by calling your bank however it’s not guaranteed that you will get your money back. So avoid paying by bank transfer.


Please share your experiences and comments below.




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Guest
Sep 10, 2022

I couldn't agree more about the timewasters...what's the deal? Even the amount of people that ask if an item is available, you respond yes, and then they never even view your reply. Are these real people? Or a plot by FB to drive sellers crazy?!

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Guest
Jul 08, 2022

There are huge numbers of Scams and scammers on Facebook Marketplace who regularly hijack and spam marketplace with posts offering schemes with how to make lots of money etc. There are also buyers and sellers on Facebook marketplace who tries to scam people. The popular scamming method is they send you a bank transfer receipt for buying a car or other items once they get your item they cancel the payment and disappear. One of my friend bought a sealed iPhone from some school kids for about $700 and when he went home and opened it he found pieces of rocks in the box. So just be careful when you buy from Gumtree or Facebook Marketplace as you cannot trac…


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