DropCatch.com Giving Some Auction Refunds | DomainInvesting.com
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DropCatch.com Giving Some Auction Refunds

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A friend of mine told me about an email he received from DropCatch.com yesterday informing him of a refund that he is being given because of “bidding activity from users that were later suspended for non-payment might have affected the final price.

There is an active thread on NamePros about the topic of non-paying bidders on DropCatch.com. The founders of DropCatch, Andrew Reberry and Jeff Reberry of TurnCommerce, addressed members’ concerns about non-paying bidders and the alleged irregular bidding activity in the NamePros thread. Andrew and Jeff also promised to investigate this issue, and it looks like they are taking action based on their findings. The objective was to identify what went wrong, make bidders whole, and improve the platform for the future to restore trust.

In the email sent to my friend, DropCatch referenced a blog post the company published in conjunction with the email. The blog post has additional information about the situation, what the company is doing to remedy it, and a go-forward plan to reduce the problem of non-paying bidders on the platform.

Here’s what the company said about the number of affected auctions and how bidders will be made whole:

“We have conducted an internal audit on every auction since we launched DropCatch.com. We have identified 297 auctions where the second highest bidder was later suspended for non-payment. As it could be argued these users might have not intended to successfully win (even though in most situations these users were valid paying customers), we want to presume the worst and treat every one of these situations as people having been “bid up”.

We believe the right thing to do is to make our auction winners whole. We are going above and beyond by reviewing every auction that has occurred in DropCatch since the beginning of time and accounting for the difference in the end price of auctions by subtracting non-paying users bids from the auction.”

I think it is commendable that Andrew and Jeff are taking the proactive measure of giving refunds to ensure that bidders who may have been impacted are reimbursed. If bidders are concerned their auctions may have been impacted but did not receive an email from the auction platform, they should contact DropCatch support to submit a ticket.


About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of DomainInvesting.com. Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has sold seven figures worth of domain names in the last five years. Please read the DomainInvesting.com Terms of Use page for additional information about the publisher, website comment policy, disclosures, and conflicts of interest.


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Comments (15)

    UKnowledge

    I have been credited $156 from an auction I won at $181 after the said bidder didnt win.I am so proud of them for doing this and reassuring my confidence in using dropcatch.

    I don’t see Namejet doing this..
    Kudos to the Reberry Brothers who have acted with their conscience.

    December 8th, 2017 at 10:11 am

    AbdulBasit Makrani

    Thanks for sharing Elliot.
    I have contacted DC support in this regard.

    December 8th, 2017 at 10:33 am

    CaseyL

    Proactive? It took 5 weeks, and hundreds of messages, and instances. It was also discovered that certain bidders get special payment considerations, so all it tells us is you have to be very careful.

    This was the result of a namepros thread, that pointed out bidding abnormalities; and non paid auctions where the bidders kept bidding stupid amounts.

    There was nothing proactive about this, it took tooth, and nail to execute this refund.

    December 8th, 2017 at 10:45 am

      Elliot Silver

      5 weeks doesn’t seem long considering what likely took quite a bit of engineering. I would have rather them taken a longer time to be thorough than rush something that is incomplete.

      I think we might be getting into semantics here with proactive / reactive. You may be right about the wording, but I think they did the right thing here. They probably could have done absolutely nothing, and unless they were sued (which seems very unlikely given the industry’s history and what probably is not a very large amount of $), they could have simply carried on and not given refunds.

      I think it is important to note that I am an infrequent bidder here, and I did not receive any refund notice.

      December 8th, 2017 at 11:15 am

      CaseyL

      Respectfully your article does not give precedence to actually what happend here.

      There was a series of events including one of their largest bidders out of Korea not making payments, and his username being erased from past bid history.

      Then there was the issue of a person called wittynut, Jason H from CA who bid on 69 auctions, and did not pay over the course of several months. Somehow he was not required to pay, and they did not realize tens of thousands of dollars of bids had not been paid for, in the meantime he kept upping proxy bids, and taking out regular customers, and still didnt pay.

      Then there was the issue of severa bidders who had not made payment for a month or so, but kept on bidding, dropcatxh finally copped that they had a special payment deadline, unconventional to their 4th day payment due rule.

      So these guys reallly did some serious work, and to the result of that these 290 or so bidders were affected, and given refunds for the bids they were run up on by people who should not have been bidding in the first.

      So someone posted a small sample of wittynuts reauctoions, what previous sold for $23k under his bids, closed at around $8k the second go around, put that into context.

      In reply to Elliot Silver | December 8th, 2017 at 11:45 am

      Elliot Silver

      Thanks for sharing.

      I am not fully up to speed nor have I been following this closely.

      In reply to CaseyL | December 8th, 2017 at 11:47 am

    Richard

    Kudos

    Why isn’t Namejet doing this? People got fleeced on their platform.

    December 8th, 2017 at 11:03 am

    JZ

    Glad to see them doing this. I only got a couple hundred bucks as the one auction I had effected, someone else did one bid and ran inbetween me and the other guy bidding, so it only went back to that.ha..if not for him i would of gotten like 1500.

    December 8th, 2017 at 12:37 pm

    ModernDomains

    Bidders beware! Shill bidding has been going on for years at Namejet, Snap and now DropCatch. Its bad enough they compete with their customers, dropcatch really needs to clean it up because there is a conflict of interest in almost every aspect of their dropcatching operation. Catching domains for Hugedomains on the same system as their customers is a joke. There is no transparency when one of your bids is pre-empted by Hugedomains. In my experience of trying many discount bids, Dropcatch cherry picks them for Hugedomains. Anything worthy that you add to the discount list will be scooped up for HD. Shady shady shady

    December 8th, 2017 at 2:31 pm

    Andrea Paladini

    NameJet is plagued by shill bidding, DropCatch is even worse if possible, with additional conflicts of interest and auctions open to everybody, not only to people who backorder a name.
    Those “refunds” are just a masquerade, a joke … truth is they are starting to be afraid that people dig deeper and sue them.
    New can of worms are going to come out soon … stay tuned … 🙂

    December 8th, 2017 at 5:34 pm

      CaseyL

      I would be interested to know where such worms are coming from? That is a good statement without proof.

      In reply to Andrea Paladini | December 9th, 2017 at 5:57 am

      Andrea Paladini

      Proof will be delivered to authorities in due time, don’t worry.

      In reply to CaseyL | December 10th, 2017 at 3:43 pm

    J.R.

    At least DropCatch are doing the right thing by making reimbursements. Thanks to the domain name blogospehere, the shill bidding plague in domaining is being exposed.

    December 8th, 2017 at 6:26 pm

    Andrea Paladini

    The domain industry is very similar to the financial industry, where I’ve been working since the 90s.
    Self-regulation does not work, there are too many conflicts of interest and collusion.
    The only way to restore trust is setting up stringent rules to protect all clients, removing conflicts of interest and establishing heavy penalties, including jail time and money seizures.
    Deregulation without client/consumer protection opens the door to rampant fraud and abuses of all kind.

    December 10th, 2017 at 5:44 pm

    West Coast

    I just realized that I have probably lost tons of money via Dropcatch from bid run ups.

    Going forward, I will be much more selective of what I bid on with strict upper limit amounts.

    Don’t know what’s going on, but sense something is not on the up and up over there.

    Too bad really. I did catch quite a few good fishies. But time to reel in the hook lest I get caught hook line and sinker.

    December 11th, 2017 at 12:25 am

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