I hate PayPal

John Avis by | April 15, 2008 | eBay and PayPal Computers & Internet

Found an interesting contradition while paying for a purchase through PayPal today.

If you read my previous post about how PayPal/eBay effectively forced me to upgrade to a fee-paying due to their requirement for all sellers to accept credit cards, even on the limited free account.

For the payments I made tonight I see now that PayPal are trying to "guide" people towards making payments by bank transfer rather than credit card. They do this by defaulting to make the payment by bank transfer, making it difficult to change to credit card (by making the confirmation button almost look greyed out so you could easily accidently click the wrong button), and by various warnings about why you shouldn't pay by credit card.

My guess is that bank transfers are more profitable than credit card transactions and that credit cards are not so secure for PayPal -- people can easily cancel purchases through their credit card issuer which creates extra work for PayPal and could result in losses.

Anyway, I was a little angered to see the following message when I was "warned" against paying by credit card:

"Note: Sellers with Personal accounts cannot receive credit card payments. Any PayPal user can receive bank account payments."

Does this seem like the practices of an honest company?

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