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Selling DLC on eBay Question


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#1 geniusboy91

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 05:34 PM

I've got some relatively valuable DLC that I'm trying to sell on eBay. I've got Specialization Alpha, Venator Raptor Armor and hundreds of matches of Double XP for Halo 4. The problem is, my auctions keep getting taken down because of their BS copyright rules and "you can't sell downloadable virtual goods." I've had 2 taken down already and I previously had another account get banned for a year for trying to sell GoW Beta.

So do you guys have any ideas, tips, or tricks on how to prevent these auctions from getting deleted that consistently work for you? Do they get mass deleted at a certain time of day?

I don't even care so much about them getting deleted, but I can't deal with another ban. Also, selling elsewhere won't really solve my issue. Trust me, I would love nothing more than to abandon this PoS site for good, but I won't get $60 for Specialization Alpha anywhere else on the web. You'd think they'd treat their Top Rated PowerSellers a little better.

#2 Stoic Person Eater

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 05:39 PM

Write it on a piece of paper and put it as a physical item, not an intangible code. If it comes on a sheet, take a picture of the sheet, minus the code and sell that piece of paper. Ship the paper.

#3 Sharp Katana

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 05:53 PM

You can't sell beta keys/invites on ebay so no use in trying.

As for dlc, like stoic said, you need to have it physically printed or written on paper. As long as it's a tangible item you can sell it. Sending the code through email is risky, there's no proof that it was ever sent. Even if you have screen caps of the email, paypal will side with the buyer if you can't provide a tracking number.

auctions promising digital delivery are constantly removed, there isn't much you can do to get around it.

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#4 Blade

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 06:00 PM

Try what SPE said, but my advice is to be very careful with your listing description and who you let bid. I sold a code to a member who happened to regret his purchase after using it, and he harassed me for several months for a refund. Actually contacted his local police department and told them about it. Another member was a "reputable" user with lots of feedback, but he got pissy for no reason and claimed he never received my item. He bought it for $1. There was also another person who bought a $40 PSN game off me the week of its release, then tried to claim they never received it. Make sure you get delivery confirmation when you send it out, and keep everything well-documented.

I ended up closing my account on eBay with all those falsified strikes against me. Digital goods are high in demand, but it's also easy for people to claim you already used it, or they never received it. Easily falsified information like this makes eBay one of the worst places to sell digital goods. Hell, eBay is one of the worst places for sellers now anyway, ever since they removed the ability to leave feedback for buyers.
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We as a community feel that it would be best if you didn't trade on here anymore. Despite your 350 positive transactions, I'm deactivating your account on 99Gamers because you offend me. I'm unrelatable, give poor customer service, and am now taking away your invested time and money because I don't like you.

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#5 thedolphinsrule

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 07:43 PM

I'd skip Ebay as well. I recently had my account suspended for a year and I'd been selling DLC legitly with pictures and shipping the vouchers and it caused me a bunch of shit with my Paypal account as well so its not worth it.

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#6 geniusboy91

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Posted 06 December 2012 - 02:07 AM

Stoic, I actually tried that before and listings still got deleted. I talked to eBay customer support (which is a JOKE) and they said that's not allowed either, and linked me to the policy.

Somehow, I will beat them.

#7 SangesTheLurker

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Posted 06 December 2012 - 02:19 AM

I've never had a single problem over the years from the spare voucher I sell here and there sparingly. All I ever do is sell the voucher card with "Free Shipping" and add a line that if the winning bidder would like the voucher sent in the mail I will add an additional $2. Everyone always asks for the code to be sent via email--which I do through ebay Messages. I've never had an issue, like I said, but apparently it's all hit-or-miss from the sounds of the trouble everyone else has.

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#8 GBAstar

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Posted 06 December 2012 - 02:40 AM

I've never had a single problem over the years from the spare voucher I sell here and there sparingly. All I ever do is sell the voucher card with "Free Shipping" and add a line that if the winning bidder would like the voucher sent in the mail I will add an additional $2. Everyone always asks for the code to be sent via email--which I do through ebay Messages. I've never had an issue, like I said, but apparently it's all hit-or-miss from the sounds of the trouble everyone else has.


^ eBay has really gotten strict with selling digital goods. In fact it is forbidden regardless of how you deliver the goods (e-mail or mailing the voucher).

Read:

http://pages.ebay.co...wnloadable.html

OP if you play with fire then plan on getting burned. It sucks, I know, but it's eBay's playground and if you willingly violate the rules, especially after being warned, then you are going to get your account banned.

And listing violations are based on selling volume. If you only sell a few or even a hundred items a year just a few violations will cause your account to get shut down. If you sell thousands, which would be enough sales to pad a listing violation, then continue doing what you are doing and hope not to get caught.

From what I have gathered through talking to eBay CSR agents and inquiring on some of the forums eBay has automated software that looks for certain words... you can bet that DLC, Code, Download, Digital Copy, E-mail, are on that list. Depending on the category you sell in you are at a higher risk of getting flagged. Since most of the problems with digital goods tend to be in media categories (Games, movies, music) you had better believe that if you sell in those categories and have listings that contain words such as what I pointed out there is a good chance that your listings will get caught.

And as always you also run the risk of getting reported by competitors.

Hell I've even had DLC items get listing policy violations several days AFTER the sale had ended (retroactively) and this happened as recently as the Halo 4 release.

#9 greyzieoriental

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Posted 06 December 2012 - 07:17 AM

I recently have had both my auctions taken down for trying to sell DLC. It really sucks because some of them went for over $25 before getting taken down 4 hours before they ended. I know last year I had no problems with this.

#10 YoshiFan1

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Posted 06 December 2012 - 07:40 AM

I have sold DLC 3 times on EBay, I got it for free so I was willing to take the chance on the buyer opening a claim. I said in the listing I would not e-mail the codes and would only send the voucher through the mail and thankfully didn't have a problem. This was around 2 years ago so it sounds like it has changed.

#11 eLefAdEr

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Posted 06 December 2012 - 07:44 AM

I've auctioned off about a dozen codes on eBay successfully with zero issues for a few years and this November was the very first time I've had a listing removed (Halo 4 armor). I'm reading about more removals, increasing numbers of fraudulent bidders and starting to come to the conclusion that I won't waste any more time on eBay with DLC.

I suppose this is one thing I could use CAG for exclusively.

#12 Komentra

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 12:24 AM

You can't sell beta keys/invites on ebay so no use in trying.

As for dlc, like stoic said, you need to have it physically printed or written on paper. As long as it's a tangible item you can sell it. Sending the code through email is risky, there's no proof that it was ever sent. Even if you have screen caps of the email, paypal will side with the buyer if you can't provide a tracking number.

auctions promising digital delivery are constantly removed, there isn't much you can do to get around it.


Actually, you can. You're not supposed too but the majority of the time eBay doesn't do anything. Worse that's happened to me is having listings removed and banned for 7 days.

I've got nearly 550 100% Positive feedback and the majority of it is from selling codes.

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#13 GBAstar

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 12:46 AM

Actually, you can. You're not supposed too but the majority of the time eBay doesn't do anything. Worse that's happened to me is having listings removed and banned for 7 days.

I've got nearly 550 100% Positive feedback and the majority of it is from selling codes.


Listen. You can't do it anymore unless you put it in the classified section where you'll get zero visibility.

eBay has gotten very strict just in the last few months. I already linked their official policy and unless it is digital content you created and you are the sole owner you can't sell it. Period.

#14 Abeja

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 03:06 AM

Yeah I started selling on eBay because of DLC codes. It was the Dragon Age 2 preorder codes or whatever. Thing is tho, I dont say either way how it will be shipped. I just say shipped within 24 hours of Payment, they pay, i send the code via eBay message almost instantly. The only time I have had a problem is with eBay removing the listing cause I said "will messge or email code" in description. Havent had a problem with eBay when I just say "Code will be shipped". Last code I sold was the Halo 4 Best Buy armor

If they ever want the physical or ask if it will be shipped, then I send it by letter envelope with a stamp or 2. Some stuff is emailed like Best Buy preorder stuff.Most people dont have an issue with it and leave positive feedback.

#15 ShockandAww

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 03:18 AM

Listen. You can't do it anymore unless you put it in the classified section where you'll get zero visibility.

eBay has gotten very strict just in the last few months. I already linked their official policy and unless it is digital content you created and you are the sole owner you can't sell it. Period.


First, that isn't really true. It is against their policy and such but ignoring that, it's entirely possible to still do it. It's just not very wise (at all). Second, they're probably getting so strict about it because of people like you reporting the listings. Yes, I am still bitter ;)

#16 Komentra

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 03:41 AM

Listen. You can't do it anymore unless you put it in the classified section where you'll get zero visibility.

eBay has gotten very strict just in the last few months. I already linked their official policy and unless it is digital content you created and you are the sole owner you can't sell it. Period.


I don't even know about this classified section you're mentioning. I got some Farcry 3 uPlay Passports listed right now and none of them have been pulled and have sold 4 of the 9 I have thus far. I also got a bunch of Halo 4 dlc listed as well and have sold over $300 in DLC armor which funded my Vita purchase and most of my black friday purchases.

So yes, their policy says no but do they enforce it? Very very rarely and I am proof of that.

I can't stand people who report the listings. Am I breaking policies? Sure but am I cheating the buyer out of what they WANT TO PURCHASE? No.

Last year I was even considered a "Top-Rated Seller" until they made the changes to how it works so now I'm just a "Power Seller".

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#17 Gamer SDP

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 06:39 AM

I too got suspended recently for a year (called and complained but nothing).
Going try again to see but if nothing I won't pay fees for items that were removed. I had some non gaming stuff that sold to an international buy but had to refund as any decent would have jumped when they say I wasn't registered anymore.
Also got suspended a week for selling GoW3 beta back when that was hot.

The thing that pissed me off was I have pictures of the dlc voucher card with my name written beside it! I do use stock pics if the dlc didn't come on a card. Also don't mention emailing codes (I'd send a message and ask if they want it sent in message or shipped on paper) and that I would send the paper it came on.

AC3/Halo4 stuff got hit that suspended me.

My friend's account also got hit about a month prior. 2K13 dlc got him suspended. All madden dlc was taken down within days as well bag in Aug. He thinks it was other sellers reporting that had tekken/doa dlc as those got hit every time too.

#18 geniusboy91

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 08:21 AM

I'm not sure why, but I was also thinking they auto-delete based on search terms. It also seemed like when I was selling Mcdonalds Monopoly pieces, that all listings were always deleted at the same time of day. In my latest item removal it says the following:

"If the code was originally provided on a physical card by the manufacturer you may sell that card under specific conditions. The code must not already be redeemed, the actual original physical card must be shipped to the buyer, and there must be no indication in the listing that the item or code may be delivered by means other than physically mailing it. Using digital means (email, etc) to deliver the code is not allowed."

I think in my next listing I'll avoid the word "code", "dlc", etc, and explicitly say, "This is a physical card, bought in a store, and does not violate ebay policy" even if it isn't. Then, once buyer pays, I'll email and give quick explanation. If he doesn't care, I send the code. In the rare case they do, I'll refund him.

#19 TommyLove

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 08:26 AM

I sold over 28 codes through eBay and they have suspended me for 7 days for listing. The safest way I can think of is to send it them with delivery confirmation and have a rule where you only accept payments from people with over 20+ feedback. I had two buyers once with about 4-5 feedback and they both tried to scam me.
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#20 GBAstar

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 10:57 AM

You guys are missing this point.

The whole "tangible goods" vs. "non-tangible" goods is irrelevant.

In the past you were safe as long as you didn't mention that you were e-mailing codes. Now you can't list codes period. Did you not ignore the link?

http://pages.ebay.co...wnloadable.html


Examples of digitally delivered goods that can't be advertised on eBay:
- MP3 music copied from a CD you own or recorded at a concert
- eBooks you don't own the copyright to and aren't authorized to resell by the owner, the owner's authorized agent, or the law
- Songs you bought from iTunes
- Movies you copied from DVDs you own
- Video games you copied from the original CDs
- PDF files of product manuals or user guides that you don't own the copyright of or you aren't authorized to resell by the owner, the owner's authorized agent, or the law
- Online gaming accounts or artifacts such as characters, currency, or other items in any format

You can say "I never got caught" but that doesn't matter.... you will and it is still against their policy.

Mailing the physical code only protects you against an Item Not Received (INR) complaint. It doesn't mean your listing is no longer a violation and it provides no protection from a buyer filing a Significantly Not as Described (SNAD) dispute. Furthermore if your get a listing policy violation (MC999) for selling digital goods you will automatically lose a claim if one is opened through eBay after the sale.


MC999:

Your listing has been removed.


We don't let sellers list virtual products such as online game characters, accounts, currency, codes that can be redeemed for in-game items, or related software.
This helps protect the people who originally created the products and own the rights to reproduce and sell them.

Here's more information on our policy:
http://pages.ebay.co...wnloadable.html

You may need to take a tutorial. The next time you sell, you may be asked to take the tutorial, if it's required. Once you've completed the tutorial successfully, please review your account status for any other possible concerns. If there are no other issues, you should be able to sell again.

To take the intellectual property tutorial, please visit:
http://pages.ebay.co...rial/intro.html

Please be aware that any additional violations of this policy may result in the suspension of your account. eBay understands that you may be concerned about this situation.

For more information on why eBay may remove a listing, please visit:
http://pages.ebay.co...ting-ended.html

#21 F-Zero

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 11:37 AM

^ eBay has really gotten strict with selling digital goods. In fact it is forbidden regardless of how you deliver the goods (e-mail or mailing the voucher).
[cut]
And as always you also run the risk of getting reported by competitors.

Hell I've even had DLC items get listing policy violations several days AFTER the sale had ended (retroactively) and this happened as recently as the Halo 4 release.


That is freaking scary. I've had my share of experiences in horrible, stupid, idiot, scamming bastards on ebay. I think I've been fortunate to not have lost any valuable cases I couldn't just use a code for myself to protect loss or been banned at all for selling em yet. I would say its a damn mine field dealing with the questionable buyers, tactics of post-sale remorse and someone buying from you with creditcards they don't possess. Careful now..

#22 Gamer SDP

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Posted 09 December 2012 - 07:40 PM

In my experience of 200+ transactions, I've only had a few issues with buyers bidding/buying dlc.

One of my first sales, the guy thought it was for the game. I made sure the code wasn't used (accidentally redeemed it as it was a 3rd party dlc code) then refunded.

Another time a buyer asked for cancelation as it was not what they thought it was (despite my description describing it). I didn't send the code so it was fine. I tried to get final value fee back but that fucker refused when I tried to cancel transaction despite asking for me to cancel! I then saw a seller leave feedback for him buying that exact dlc a few weeks later!


The main issue IMO are other sellers - ESPECIALLY powersellers that have dozens of codes up at any given time.

Non US sellers are also bad too, likely have pirated codes. These people probably have dozens of ebay accounts and report competition.

#23 Yamato

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 08:07 AM

I just sold my Halo 4 Specialization code on eBay for $15. Then I realized that it was a new buyer and he was unverified or something.

Paypal said they have the money and to go ahead and send the code, but after reading this thread I don't want to risk

1) the buyer saying he never got the code and me automatically losing

2) getting banned from eBay

I have a laptop that I need to sell, so I can't afford getting banned or limited in some way. I ended up refunding him and cancelling the sale.

Now where am I going to sell this thing? No one on CAG is biting. God I hate eBay.

#24 Donut2922

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 12:17 AM

I sold a DLC item a couple of months ago and just received an unauthorized Paypal payment claim through Paypal even though it was also an ebay transaction. I emailed the code only and lost my $20. I know i was scammed because the asshole redeemed the code by the time the case was opened. I emailed him a couple of times about it and he ignored every single one of my pleas. There is the possibility it was somebody's kid that logged into their parents account and their mom or dad never approved the transaction in the first place as i've had buyers bitch to me that their kid didn't know that some CE items get parted out on eBay but i'm betting i got scammed. Fucker only had 1 feedback rating.

I have his address through eBay and Paypal. I'm going to sign him up for those spam contests everytime i come across a car giveaway in some mall or event. I am so pissed. It''s not so much the $20 i lost as the intention to scam off of me that has me so upset. The best i can do is fill up his mailbox with as much junk as possible.

#25 ShockandAww

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 12:27 AM

I sold a DLC item a couple of months ago and just received an unauthorized Paypal payment claim through Paypal even though it was also an ebay transaction. I emailed the code only and lost my $20. I know i was scammed because the asshole redeemed the code by the time the case was opened. I emailed him a couple of times about it and he ignored every single one of my pleas. There is the possibility it was somebody's kid that logged into their parents account and their mom or dad never approved the transaction in the first place as i've had buyers bitch to me that their kid didn't know that some CE items get parted out on eBay but i'm betting i got scammed. Fucker only had 1 feedback rating.

I have his address through eBay and Paypal. I'm going to sign him up for those spam contests everytime i come across a car giveaway in some mall or event. I am so pissed. It''s not so much the $20 i lost as the intention to scam off of me that has me so upset. The best i can do is fill up his mailbox with as much junk as possible.


Make sure to add the jackass to the blocked buyer list. What is the user name? I try to block as many people like this as I can.

#26 Donut2922

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 05:55 AM

one6ent12

I think we should have a DLC eBay discussion "go to" thread. This issue comes up a lot on CAG. Would be helpful to just have a general pool of advice from fellow CAGs regarding policies and buyer/seller experiences on top of helping keep the blocked users list up to date.

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#27 MySaturdaySelf

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 12:07 PM

same issue here. just got restricted. I really need to think about some strategy before trying again.

I have the fotus armor set , and at least ten others are selling. I was thinking if i posted as brand new game plus the code , and accept best offer for the code. maybe this way will help work around ebay. but noppe, got it removed and account restricted.

now the only thing I can do is maybe just say, the code is inside the game case. I was just advertising for the game. put best offer on and people will ask if they just want the code.

Is this ok for ebay? and please don't quote me here.. gonna delete the post in case some day they start tracking me down..

and the whole policy is really stupid.. A big company like this can't even think of a better way to do it.

#28 Rozz

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 05:00 PM

I only had an issue with DLC on eBay once. Some guy bought a brand new code for $5 and said it was used already. I called up Microsoft and they said that it was redeemed the day the guy said it was used. I didn't feel like risking a negative feedback over a $5 code (since I would lose more money on sales in the long run since I was at 100%) so I just gave in to the scamming asshole and refunded him. Soon after that he gives me a neutral feedback. Not only did he scam me, he also felt the need to slightly hurt my reputation.

Another incident was over some dumb foreign guy who bought a code that was specifically for the North American market so would only work on the North American PSN, and then got pissy when it didn't work on his European PSN. He was definitely a grade-A jerk, but I refunded him and at least he never used the code so I was able to quickly sell it someone else.

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#29 Ninja Twin

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Posted 13 December 2012 - 10:26 AM

same issue here. just got restricted. I really need to think about some strategy before trying again.

I have the fotus armor set , and at least ten others are selling. I was thinking if i posted as brand new game plus the code , and accept best offer for the code. maybe this way will help work around ebay. but noppe, got it removed and account restricted.

now the only thing I can do is maybe just say, the code is inside the game case. I was just advertising for the game. put best offer on and people will ask if they just want the code.

Is this ok for ebay? and please don't quote me here.. gonna delete the post in case some day they start tracking me down..

and the whole policy is really stupid.. A big company like this can't even think of a better way to do it.


Ebay is not stupid and soon they will ban your account and lock your Paypal. They did that to me for doing something similar to what you are doing. Its best not to bother with Ebay to avoid losing big time.

The other problem lately is people get their codes via PM and then report to Paypal that they never received them or the codes were bad. They also add that the seller emailed the codes and refused to ship. In this case Paypal/EBay immediately refund the buyer and lock the account. They did that to a budy of mine selling FOTUS armor lately. Apparently this method has been posted on many modding and hack forums so people are using this to get their DLC for free.

I recommend selling here on CAG and avoiding Paypal. I am pretty sure that if you continue ..the next post you make here is about your account getting banned.

Good Luck!

#30 Hemi

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Posted 28 December 2012 - 04:20 AM

Ebay is not stupid and soon they will ban your account and lock your Paypal. They did that to me for doing something similar to what you are doing. Its best not to bother with Ebay to avoid losing big time.



The other problem lately is people get their codes via PM and then report to Paypal that they never received them or the codes were bad. They also add that the seller emailed the codes and refused to ship. In this case Paypal/EBay immediately refund the buyer and lock the account. They did that to a budy of mine selling FOTUS armor lately. Apparently this method has been posted on many modding and hack forums so people are using this to get their DLC for free.



I recommend selling here on CAG and avoiding Paypal. I am pretty sure that if you continue ..the next post you make here is about your account getting banned.



Good Luck!




Funny u guys mention FOTUS i've been selling tons of the puppies, but the difference is I mail the actual DLC card with all the codes. I dont sell to ppl under 10 feedback and have had NO problems, prob sold 10 of these so far, Paid for my WiiU with the profits.