Hilarious (but painful) Paypal story - TRUE STORY

17 replies
So I have been selling a product that is prohibited by most payment processors like Paypal.

As such, I do not use Paypal to collect any payments for the sales of these items as I know paypal is very diligent in shutting merchants down for selling the products I sell and holding their money for 90-180 days.

In fact, I have not used Paypal to collect any payments for anything for about 3 years now, I just use it to buy stuff anymore.

But, I WOULD not mind being able to offer paypal as another payment option of I could.

So I went to Paypal's AUP page and found out that, lo and behold, my products are not prohibited but rather restricted and require pre-approval in order to collect payment for such products.

So, I shot their AUP department an email asking them what exactly are the requirements to getting approved for such products. Plain and simple. Nothing more, nothing less. In fact, those are the exact words I used.

NOW GET A LOAD OF THIS RESPONSE...

We appreciate the fact that you chose PayPal to send and receive payments for your transactions.

A recent review of your account indicates that you may be in violation of PayPal's Acceptable Use Policy.

Under PayPal's Acceptable Use Policy, PayPal may not be used for the sale of (product removed), including (product removed), without pre-approval. Unfortunately, we are unable to offer pre-approval for you at this time; this is due to complex legal and payment industry requirements related to (product removed).

The complete Acceptable Use Policy can be found at the following URL:
https://cms.paypal.com/us/cgi-bin/?c...locale.x=en_US

To learn more about the Acceptable Use Policy, please refer to our Help Center page here:
https://www.paypal.com/us/cgi-bin/helpweb?cmd=_help

You can find additional information and tips about buying and selling safely on our Business Resource Center at https://www.paypal-businesscenter.co...-your-business.

We appreciate your cooperation in this matter and ask that your continued use of PayPal be in accordance with the User Agreement and the Acceptable Use Policy. If you have any questions, please contact the PayPal Brand Risk Management Department at aup@paypal.com.

Sincerely,
(name removed)
PayPal, Brand Risk Management
PayPal
So basically, not only did they not read my email, but this "review" that they supposedly did on my account is bogus since, had they actually reviewed my account, they would have seen that I have not collected any payments for ANYTHING, let alone restricted or prohibited products.

And now it sounds possible they may be on a war path to possibly even shut my account down...over LITERALLY nothing at all, given the first few sentences of his response.

What a joke. What a cryin' shame.

But I learned my lesson. I should have approached them anonymously. Next time I will, but I doubt I will approach them at all, ever again, if I get out of this alive...lol.

This is what you get when a company gets so large, (and working on thin margins..the ol' "race to the bottom" syndrome), that they can even read/respond to correspondence properly.

I replied telling him that I am clean (my history proves it) and was merely asking a "HOW TO" question. I will let you know what his half-witted response is when I get it.
#hilarious #painful #paypal #story #true
  • Profile picture of the author NomadLifestyle
    Paypal is seriously the worst.

    I saw their commercial during the super bowl and spat my nachos all over the floor.

    Hate them...

    ... but I have to use them because I haven't found anything that even comes close.
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    • Profile picture of the author Kay King
      A form letter - but it answers your questionl

      we are unable to offer pre-approval for you at this time; this is due to complex legal and payment industry requirements related to (product removed).
      Sounds like the reason may have more to do with the product and regional laws about such products than with your paypal acct.

      Obviously, the person did not "review" your acct but could it be your location was a determining factor that made a review redundant?

      Without that second line - the letter would have more sense!
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    • Profile picture of the author Sid Hale
      Hey Nomad,

      I don't understand...

      Originally Posted by NomadLifestyle View Post

      Paypal is seriously the worst.

      <snip>

      ... but I have to use them because I haven't found anything that even comes close.

      HUH????
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  • Profile picture of the author Aussie_Al
    You need to push to speak to a manager or some one higher up

    this feels like a reply sent out from someone on their first day at the office
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  • Profile picture of the author MSutton
    LOL. I think everyone at Paypal and like businesses are perpetually "first day in the office" workers.

    That one line that states I am in violation in AUP is what bothers me.Like Kay said, if that was removed from the email, I would not have even posted this.

    Even though I do not currently use Paypal to collect any payments, both as a business owner and a buyer, I don't want to lose my Paypal account.

    I'm not going to speak to anyone at paypal. Not even a so called manager. That probably IS a manager that sent me that email response. lol.

    As I said before, I have learned my lesson. The best way to deal with paypal is to not have contact with them or to contact them "anonymously" if you need some general info. Otherwise, this might go sour as *might* be the case with me. I'll just hope for the best for now.

    Lesson learned.
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    • Profile picture of the author MikeAmbrosio
      Originally Posted by MSutton View Post

      LOL. I think everyone at Paypal and like businesses are perpetually "first day in the office" workers.

      That one line that states I am in violation in AUP is what bothers me.Like Kay said, if that was removed from the email, I would not have even posted this.

      Even though I do not currently use Paypal to collect any payments, both as a business owner and a buyer, I don't want to lose my Paypal account.

      I'm not going to speak to anyone at paypal. Not even a so called manager. That probably IS a manager that sent me that email response. lol.

      As I said before, I have learned my lesson. The best way to deal with paypal is to not have contact with them or to contact them "anonymously" if you need some general info. Otherwise, this might go sour as *might* be the case with me. I'll just hope for the best for now.

      Lesson learned.
      Try to imagine the number of emails they get from their customers/clients, etc. on any given day. You can pretty much guarantee that you got a form letter, period. It's the same thing Adwords does.

      Calling them will most likely yield you a VERY different response. You may still not be able to sell your product, but you might actually find out why.

      Give them a call.
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  • Profile picture of the author agmccall
    Instead of posting here, why don't ypu just log into your paypal account, click the contact link, get your pin number and call them. I have never waited on hold for longer than a few minutes and have always had good responses from the representatives.

    Some of the biggest issues people have could be easily resolved if they went to the source instead of the warrior forum

    al
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    • Profile picture of the author MSutton
      Originally Posted by agmccall View Post

      Instead of posting here, why don't ypu just log into your paypal account, click the contact link, get your pin number and call them. I have never waited on hold for longer than a few minutes and have always had good responses from the representatives.

      Some of the biggest issues people have could be easily resolved if they went to the source instead of the warrior forum

      al

      This is not a complaint thread. I posted this to share a story.

      I know how to contact paypal, obviously....it's a gamble as to what will be the outcome and could be detrimental to you account 9which is the moral of the story

      Whatever happened to sharing stories on a forum. Is that no longer allowed by the global internet police?
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  • Profile picture of the author Brent Stangel
    Without that second line - the letter would have more sense!
    It's the standard rejection form. If you attempted to set up a buy button for a restricted product or market or a normal account review. Simply a time saver.

    Paypal is seriously the worst.

    I haven't found anything that even comes close.
    You seem confused.

    Paypal has had it's issues just like all the rest of us. It's made vast improvements and is hands down the best payment processor.

    If you are really serious about business, call them. Discuss your business and goals and they will work with you so you won't be in fear for your account or wondering if you are doing something wrong.
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      My guess is that your response wasn't even sent by a human. It was likely sent for a combo of location and whatever (product removed) was, which flagged an automated response.
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      • Profile picture of the author Steve B
        A hilarious story? I must have lost my sense of humor, because honestly, I didn't get any laughs out of this thread at all.

        I have to agree with Al ...

        Rather than saying disparaging things about the company and its employees, you might try resolving the support issues you're having directly with them rather than posting here. There's really nothing in your thread to discuss about IM (that's what we're here for).

        It's easy to see that you got an auto-response message that didn't exactly fit your situation. So what? It happens all the time with large businesses that try to offer automatic support first before engaging their call center employees.

        Nothing personal against you . . . we just all get tired of support threads and questions in this forum that is supposed to be for discussion about making money online.

        I hope you are able to get your problem resolved.

        Steve
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  • Profile picture of the author MSutton
    I was not asking/looking for...

    ♣ support
    ♣ suggestions
    ♣ sympathy or
    ♣ anything else, really.

    Just a thread about a funny yet sad dealing with a larger-than-life company.

    Nothing more, nothing less.

    If anything, it was a good illustration of how NOT to treat customers. If you're too big to provide even basic customer service, it's time to rethink strategies. The "race-to-the-bottom" strategy eventually explodes and leaves people out on the street.
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    • Profile picture of the author MikeAmbrosio
      Originally Posted by MSutton View Post

      If anything, it was a good illustration of how NOT to treat customers. If you're too big to provide even basic customer service, it's time to rethink strategies. The "race-to-the-bottom" strategy eventually explodes and leaves people out on the street.
      Easy to say when you don't have a company that deals with probably thousands of questions/emails/phone calls/etc. per week.

      I always get a kick out of the "There's no excuse..." type comments. It is IMPOSSIBLE to provide flawless support in a company with so many customers (and their varying expectations of flawless support) - hence the form emails. Which, by the way, IS basic support. That's why if you want BETTER support, you call them. They DO answer. I have been in your shoes.

      Sometimes the customer has to take the extra steps.
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  • Profile picture of the author MSutton
    I think what he means is even though there are many other 3rd party payment processors out there, Paypal has the lion's share of the market. Because of that, not having a paypal account theses days can actually cost you a significant amount in sales.

    This is the reason why many other 3rd party payment processors like 2Checkout and many others all offer paypal as a payment option themselves.

    Paypal is the King of 3rd party payment processors just as ebay is the king of auctions sites, Amazon is the king of retail sites and order fulfillment, Google is the king of search engines, etc, etc, etc.

    Even if you have your own merchant account to collect credit card payments, you are still foolish not to offer paypal as an option because there are many folks out there that will only use paypal when dealing with smaller retailers. Amazon can get away with it only because they are Amazon.

    15 years ago, it was a different story. Nowadays, not taking paypal (either directly or through a 3rd party processor) is a mistake in most cases and losing or not having a Paypal account can be kinda devastating to many merchants.
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  • Profile picture of the author Paleruby
    I wish Google (besides wallet) would come up with something to challenge Paypal. I think you would see a much different attitude.
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  • Profile picture of the author MSutton
    Doubt it. Paypals terrible operation comes from the size of it's business and the increasing constraints banks are putting on service like Paypal.

    Google would be different. The banks would make them suck and the size of the company would exacerbate their suckiness.

    There are no saviors, especially in large corporations.
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  • Profile picture of the author Oziboomer
    When I've approached Paypal for support their service has been excellent.

    If I was going to ask Paypal about accepting payments for a product that may be risky and require approval I would ensure I had a track record of using their service first.

    It may also help to have gone throughout the verification hoops and be operating a registered company.

    You say you haven't used Paypal for much for anything in three years.

    It's a bit like when I get an enquiry from someone wanting something in a hurry who tells me they are going to do a ton of business with my company and they want fast service and a cheap price.

    They get a standard response...somewhat more empathetic than the form letter you received.

    If you do discuss what the product you want to sell is with them perhaps you can provide them proof of how much you are selling through another payment processor. That might help your case if it is something that might be considered borderline.
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