Located in Domain Marketplace Reviews, started by Nick V, Jul 15, 2019
Hopefully @Joe Styler can take a look at this and clarify what happened.
Assuming there is no spoof or social engineering going on, how does the transaction go from, "we have successfully verified the payment" to "we couldn't verify the buyer had the funds?"
That's what really gets me, TBH.
So, I'm looking and I see you can't even buy the name directly on GoDaddy itself, which tells me it was done through Afternic. Afternic doesn't even allow payments over $2500 via credit card or PayPal, which means it must have been a bank transfer - which further adds to the mystery.
I took a look at my most recent "Sold - Authorization Code Required" email from Afternic and the header also shows salesforce.com. In fact, the last several did.
Terrible behavior by Afternic or their own Authorized partners. Domain sales and transfers have become a nightmare since all these agent tie-ins began.
Ever since Sedo asked me to take responsibility for some Sale funds being 'Genuine' from a buyer in Tunisia (how the bloody hell I'm supposed to know if the payment is genuine - is beyond me) I no longer react to any Sale pending (or confirmed) email for at least 48 hours. They are all too bloody quick to want to add another sale to their stats for my liking.
At least the domain is still in an American controlled space, could've been in China by now. The first thing I'd be doing is making sure Godaddy have it locked down. Doubt you'll get anything more than some 'Glitch' explanation from Afternic
Why on Earth does Afternic require a bank transfer for payments higher than $2500...it's 2019, at this point they are just creating more friction between buyers and sellers by not having up to date payment processing. You should be able to use your CC or a high limit visa debit card for at least $25k and anything higher should be accepted with additional KYC i.e national ID, passport, drivers license etc.
Well, as a seller, I appreciate it because there's less of a chance for fraud.
For anyone wondering where I got that info from:
Add Full KYC with goverment issue ID and there shouldn't be a problem, combined with a 2FA for accepting all incoming/outgoing transactions and you've got even more security. Fraud should be minimized with more advanced security and AML/KYC procedures not antiquated payment processes.
The point I'm trying to make is that these limits...need to be updated and so does whatever payment verification protocol they are using. Almost every online buy/seller marketplace is more up to date in comparison to Afternic. I mean honestly, the parent company GD has integrated log-in with Amazon, yet you still can't spend more than $5000 on your CC for a domain name...imagine the customer experience of someone who doesn't understand domain names but logged into their account through that portal is trying to buy a domain name for their business at $6000 and has to now initiate a wire via Escrow.com, rather than simply using a CC/Debit visa of their choice, preferably the card already listed as their primary card on Amazon. This is what I mean by friction. Complicated/Outdated payment processes will negatively effect your ability to generate new business. Again it's 2019.....the technology is already available...whats the wait?
FWIW, today ended with me getting this from Afternic:
So, I emailed the buyer and he just responded:
Am happy issues sorted out
Issues as far as buyer victim getting their money back and them eventually getting my name back - yes.
Issues are far as a shitty way to run a marketplace, no. The funds were not actually verified when Afternic sent me the notification. That was a false statement - a complete lie.
If Afternic wants to treat GoDaddy like a partner, instead of the same company, and this domain was purchased through GoDaddy, then GoDaddy should be held to the same standards of being legally bound to contractual obligations as any regular Joe who makes a purchase through Afternic.
If Afternic wants to say they're the same company as GoDaddy, then they should be playing by their own rules of not accepting payments over $2500 via credit card or PayPal and ACTUALLY verifying the transactions before wasting the seller's time.
I'm not agreeing to a 17.5% commission to have my time wasted. I'm agreeing to it for simplicity and peace of mind - neither of which were provided.
It's a breach of everything...damn thugs! 🤬
even though you got your domain back, this is still worrying and should not happen. they should actually verify the payment before sending you an email.
So the buyer is saying someone used his account to buy a domain from you right?
Your first email states 10k transaction. He's talking about 35k.
They used his account to buy an additional 25k worth of domains from other people?
The domain you sold for 10k, is it a liquid domain?
The question why the payment was verified and transfer initiated is still unanswered. Buyers pay Afternic, so they would be the party to answer, I think.
I am not a lawyer so I am not going to interpret any of the agreements or comment on contracts etc. We do verify payments but sometimes more information comes to light or the issuing bank contacts us etc. We hold payments for 7 days to investigate in most high dollar transactions.
The Afternic terms of service state this in the sales section:
C. Afternic Payment Terms; Fraud Notices
Afternic will remit payment of the purchase price for a Sold Domain to the seller after the expiration of seven (7) days of the purchase of the Sold Domain, net of the twenty applicable commission according to the fee schedule available at http://www.AFTERNIC.COM/fees.php, except where Afternic has received a Fraud Notice from its reseller partner.
In the case where a Fraud Notice has been issued, within seven (7) days, Afternic or its Reseller Partners shall cancel the sale transaction and make reasonable commercial efforts to return the Listed Domain back to the Transferring Registrar and under seller's control.
Fraud is rare, especially after the initial check, but it does happen.
Again I apologize for the fact that this sale was not successful.
Let me preface this with one thing, Joe. This isn't, at all, personal. When you and I met in Vegas at the Trop, I enjoyed our conversation outside by the pool during whatever evening-event was going on. You were a very nice guy and I respect you. I appreciate you replying to my PM, as well.
You have to see where I am coming from, though. Having my time wasted is aggravating. I believe Afternic's definition of "verifying" payments differs vastly from most anyone else. At the very least, a "verification" would have included getting in touch with the account owner initiating the payment. Instead, he let me know that his account was compromised - meaning he didn't acknowledge any verification. Furthermore, he told me that his on-file credit card was used, which goes against Afternic's own policy of maximum transaction amount. This should have all been handled and verified before an email gets dispatched to the seller, instructing them to transfer their domain.
So, for such a mature marketplace owned by the top domain registrar in the world, it seems there is great room for improvement.
You hold the funds for 7 days to investigate but you instruct the seller to transfer the domain well before that. Where is the logic here?
Following your procedures, you should probably wait for 7 days until the funds are secured prior to letting the seller transfer the domain. IMO
I understand where you are coming from and that is why I apologized. I'd be upset if it were my domain as well.
There's a few clowns going around who enjoy buying 10k names and then get the transaction cancelled.
I had exactly the same thing happen about two years ago, the domain contained the word "Money". In my case the domain was actually transferred to Google Domains.
Then I got the eMail "sorry, funds were returned and we have to cancel the transaction" or words to that effect.
Unfortunately it's not a sale until the money is in the bank. That is the rule every platform, every marketplace. It's not the platform's fault. BrandBucket also, you have to wait a good few days to be sure the sale is final after the initial eMail.
This is the domain business and it's cash only.
C'est la vie!
This just happened to me as well. I sold a domain for $1995 on July 12th. It was sold via Fast Transfer and the transfer completed on July 12th as well. Now 30 minutes ago I receive an email stating:
Our partner had an issue with their buyer and we will have to cancel this transaction. Here is the auth code to return the domain to you:
We apologize for any inconvenience.
Very disappointed in Afternic. They didn't send me any more explanation than that which I find ridiculous. I guess it might be part of the same situation with fraud, perhaps even the same buyer that said his account was hacked (although this one was transferred from GoDaddy to Network Solutions), but it's very frustrating when the transfer was completed 6 days ago and I have been expecting to receive my funds any moment now. I have made a few recent purchases as well that I wouldn't have made if I didn't have these funds coming in and didn't think this transaction was a done deal with the payment verified and the transfer complete a long time ago.
I didn't think it was possible for the transaction to not go through anymore, the payment was verified. I also have to pay a renewal fee to transfer the domain back to my GoDaddy account, that cost is negligible but just an extra step that makes this experience very frustrating.
Hello @Joe Styler
I suggest the initial emails not contain the verbiage "verified."
Based on the definition, in these particular circumstances, it is not accurate to use the term "verified."
Hoping there can be an amicable solution to this issue.
past tense: verified; past participle: verified
make sure or demonstrate that (something) is true, accurate, or justified.
"his conclusions have been verified by later experiments"
swear to or support (a statement) by affidavit.
Automatic email verification (click button) could have been sent to buyer's primary mail to avoid fraud.
Or some expensive labor intensive phone call, as it's a $10.000 purchase on a 20% commission..
Afternic is a riot. From 1999.
Imagine a bot getting control of the domain through an automatic push, and funds getting released instantly.
Sale is final, whatever transfer delay that has to happen next is between bot and buyer.
Separate names with a comma.