EBay promises compensation after website crash

EBay looks set to face a massive compensation bill after its website crashed over the weekend.

The site was down for several hours on Saturday, causing vendors to lose sales, and raising the possibility that items may have been sold for lower bids than necessary.

The company says it’s confident that it’s now fixed the software problem, and says it won’t happen again. But providing compensation is likely to cost it dear.

“To minimize the impact, we’re working to ensure that sellers and buyers whose transactions were affected by the disruptions will be made as whole as possible,” said president Lorrie Norrington.

“This includes listing fee refunds and protection against negative or neutral buyer feedback as well as detailed seller ratings (DSRs) lower than five stars for impacted sellers, and coupons for buyers of items that were impacted by the disruption.”

The problems were caused by a surge in activity as customers hunt for holiday bargains. EBay says it currently has more than 200 million live listings – a third more than this time last year.