I have always loved, loved, loved PayPal. In my compulsive eBay spending days, I used it without fail. When we were planning our high school reunion, we collected payment via PayPal (except for Glen B. who sent a personal check because he hated PayPal). When I cleaned out my house and sold stuff on eBay, my profits came through PayPal. When I was using a small vendor I didn’t know, I used PayPal to make the purchase. And last year’s BlogHer roommie paid me for her share of the room through… PayPal.
So imagine my chagrin when I returned home from vacation and found on my checking account a Friday, the 13th, $743 transfer to PayPal. I wracked my brain trying to remember any big purchases, but the only one had been the timing belt on the Honda, and I used American Express for that. When I logged into PayPal, I saw that some 10 days later PayPal had reversed the charge. Still, I was disturbed and wrote an email asking what had happened and how PayPal was going to insure that it didn’t happen again.
Surprisingly, PayPal did not answer.
A few days later, the reversed charges still were not showing up in the ol’ checking account.
Beans need their money, especially this Bean. I fortified myself with a glass of wine and resorted to drastic measures… phone tree hell. When I finally got a CSR on the phone, he was blasé about my predicament. Someone had obviously hacked into my account, PayPal had detected it, and now I needed to transfer the money from my PayPal account back into my checking account.
There were no apologies, consoling tones or courtesies extended. These things just happen. And if the vendor continues this sort of behavior, PayPal will eventually suspend his/her/its privileges.
I hung up wondering if I shouldn’t just cancel my PayPal account, but then I thought I would just be cutting off my nose to spite convenient spending. I decided to give them another chance, and I waited for the money to be transferred back to my account.
Several days later—yesterday—I checked, and NO MONEY. Then I logged back into PayPal. The $743 was still sitting in the PayPal account…. I’m not sure what happened. Maybe I didn’t check the little box that says I agree to terms, maybe I didn’t click okay, maybe I dreamed that I transferred the money, maybe there was a cyber-glitch….
I transferred the money back into my account for the SECOND time and then braced myself for phone tree hell again. I got the Philippines. At least I think it was the Philippines. I couldn’t understand her. She couldn’t understand me. She was obviously wearing a headset and I was getting the ECHO. (I loathe the echo.) I asked for a supervisor and the call was disconnected.
I called again. I got the Philippines again. She didn’t understand me. I didn’t understand her. I asked for a supervisor and she put me on hold. FOR AN HOUR.
I put PayPal on speaker phone and commenced to editing some manuscripts, and for an hour, I listened to the PayPal party line, and then, gentle reader, I was unceremoniously disconnected.
I’d like to tell you that Sarah, the virtual agent, who is not a real person, was helpful, but, alas, Sarah didn’t know how to answer my questions. I’d like to tell you that my $743 has been returned, but it has not. And I’d like to tell you that PayPal has called, profusely apologizing for their boorish behavior and the inconvenience and offered me and the little Beans a complimentary trip to Europe, but, [sigh], no, they have not.