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Topic: The Paypal Battle  (Read 826 times)
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artsy_pants
« on: March 02, 2006 03:08:08 PM »

Hey all, I've been having this problem with Paypal for quite some time (a few years now) and I've finally become frustrated enough to actually say something.

The problem is that Paypal seems to discriminate. I'm from Trinidad (in the Caribbean) and I can't create an account in order to purchase goods online through paypal simply because of my geographical location. If you look at the drop down bar which lists all the countries which are allowed to sign up, Trinidad and Tobago simply isn't there. It's as though we, as well as many other countries, simply don't exist.

Yes, I know there's the option to pay through paypal without actually having an account. Believe me, I've tried that, but all in vain- this option, when I last checked, is only available for American residents.

I love the whole diy/indie culture that seems to be growing stronger and spreading faster everyday. I love being part of a community that rejects commercialisn and superficiality and tries to make something better out of the world. I love creating, and I love supporting others who create by purchasing their goods. The community of people who create is diverse, as well as global, and shouldn't be restricted to a particular area.

I'm not saying that it's paypal's fault. I have tried, however, to contact them by sending them messages in order to address the problem, and they haven't responded. I'm aware that in order for this to happen, paypal has to come to some agreements with the banks or the governments of the countries who currently can't utilize their facilities.

What I am saying is that it is a great inconvenience for people like me who wish to purchase crafted goods but cannot because of these policies. We're forced to either go through the tedious process of sending a money order. Which is not so bad, considering the fact that many online stores do not have this payment option at all, so we have no other choice but not to purchase the particular item.

If more countries were allowed to join paypal, or even if online/craft stores used more alternatives to the paypal shopping cart, there would be so many advantages. The wide population of potential purchasers would finally be able to actually purchase! Overall sales would definitely increase, and more people would be allowed to share and participate in the diy/indie community.

Because, after all, aren't we supposed to be a community? Because of paypal's discrimination, it sure doesn't feel like it.

I'd really appreciate any comments,suggestions or criticisms. Has anyone else had this problem? Are there any ways that we can overcome it? Do you think my whole argument is justified, or are there any disadvantages to paypal actually accepting more international orders? Any suggestions on how I can actually make a change?

Thanks for listening.

Check out
http://www.knowprose.com/node/10281
http://www.knowprose.com/node/10210
for another person's take on the issue. 
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« Reply #1 on: March 02, 2006 03:40:08 PM »

I'm sure if it was practical, Trinidad & Tobago and the rest of the world for that matter would all be using PayPal. There has to be practical reasons behind it. PayPal isn't in business to turn down business, but there are, I'm sure, many details to be worked out in order to do business outside the U.S., and some regulations are less practical than others.

I don't sell outside the U.S. simply because the shipping is expensive and service would be questionable. Technically I discriminate.
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« Reply #2 on: March 02, 2006 03:56:16 PM »

I think that it's unfortunate so many people feel they need to rely on paypal, it's an issue I'm always interested in.

I currently accept  Paypal via cleared funds, UK personal cheque, UK postal order, cash(sterling) or International Money Order (Canada only).

But I'm looking to work out if I can be more international friendly (though I still cant afford to accept credit cards). I understand many europeans especially germans like to use bank transfers but when I asked my bank for help they were worse than useless!

I blame the banking/finance industry for our problems!  Undecided
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« Reply #3 on: March 02, 2006 10:14:09 PM »

I think that it's unfortunate so many people feel they need to rely on paypal, it's an issue I'm always interested in.

I currently accept  Paypal via cleared funds, UK personal cheque, UK postal order, cash(sterling) or International Money Order (Canada only).

But I'm looking to work out if I can be more international friendly (though I still cant afford to accept credit cards). I understand many europeans especially germans like to use bank transfers but when I asked my bank for help they were worse than useless!

I blame the banking/finance industry for our problems!  Undecided

Question, why not take CC if you use paypal? I know paypal takes a cut, but it's very small (my hubby and I have a buisness and take all forms of payment, including cash USD if someone is willing to risk the Postal Orifice. . . )

There are alternatives to paypal out there, I just don't remember what they are ATM. . . mainly because I've never used them.
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« Reply #4 on: March 03, 2006 01:45:25 PM »

Quote
We're forced to either go through the tedious process of sending a money order. Which is not so bad, considering the fact that many online stores do not have this payment option at all, so we have no other choice but not to purchase the particular item.

I understand the frustration you must have over this whole situation, but it may not be as bad as you think.  As you mentioned above, you ARE able to pay by money order (even if it is a tedious process), but it isn't an option at most stores.  Have you considered emailing the stores and asking if they would accept a money order?  At my store, we will take money orders, or even checks (American of course), if a customer requests, but it isn't actually listed as an option.  Keep in mind, the person who owns the shop wants to sell their products as much as you want to buy them!
Just a thought.
meghan
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« Reply #5 on: March 03, 2006 03:04:08 PM »

There are alternatives to paypal out there, I just don't remember what they are ATM. . . mainly because I've never used them.

My boyfriend uses Neteller for his online poker winnings and transactions and everything has run smoothly so far. He says he likes it better than PayPal.

I have my own PayPal account but dont have it linked to a CC or bank account at the moment... trying to decide if i want to use PayPal or Neteller now.
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« Reply #6 on: March 03, 2006 03:16:04 PM »

Question, why not take CC if you use paypal? I know paypal takes a cut, but it's very small (my hubby and I have a buisness and take all forms of payment, including cash USD if someone is willing to risk the Postal Orifice. . . )

There are alternatives to paypal out there, I just don't remember what they are ATM. . . mainly because I've never used them.
[/quote]

I don't currently have any income (therefore no spare cash at all), and with part (and in the case of some of my items all) the proceeds going to charity I can't afford for anything to go to a processing agent (i.e. paypal). But I'd still rather offer paypal for cleared funds than not offer it at all.  Smiley
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artsy_pants
« Reply #7 on: March 03, 2006 03:37:44 PM »

I'm sure if it was practical, Trinidad & Tobago and the rest of the world for that matter would all be using PayPal. There has to be practical reasons behind it. PayPal isn't in business to turn down business, but there are, I'm sure, many details to be worked out in order to do business outside the U.S., and some regulations are less practical than others.

I don't sell outside the U.S. simply because the shipping is expensive and service would be questionable. Technically I discriminate.

I totally understand. The postal service in some areas is questionable. Yet, there are a great number of stores who use shopping carts who do ship to areas outside the US as well as areas which aren't allowed to use Paypal, e.g Neteller, Greenzaphttp://www.greenzap.com and scores of others. Hella Goods uses monstercommerce http://www.monstercommerce.com, and I've received their shipments on time and intact. Amazon ships internationally, including to Trinidad, and I've always received their shipments in good time.

It just doesn't make sense to me that other shopping carts are able to provide international service when paypal is not. It also baffles me that Paypal provides service to Jamaica (which has branches of the same banks found in Trinidad and Tobago), and Venezuela (which is quite close) and yet Trinidad and other Caribbean countries are excluded.

  Have you considered emailing the stores and asking if they would accept a money order?  At my store, we will take money orders, or even checks (American of course), if a customer requests, but it isn't actually listed as an option.  Keep in mind, the person who owns the shop wants to sell their products as much as you want to buy them!


Honestly, I have only asked few stores whether they would be willing to accept a method of payment (money orders) not stated. They've for the most part declined.

Yes, money orders are tedious, but yes, I will resort to them if I must. I just simply see no reason why Paypal ought to be discriminatory, and think that other countries should be afforded the same ease in order to purchase goods that currently only some experience.

Has anyone had any success in using alternatives to Paypal? What about using methods of working with Paypal, like using a virtual online credit card in order to purchase goods through Paypal?

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