probation period for newbies (trades)

duane456December 6, 2011

To eliminate people from scamming for seeds or plants, I think they should be on a probation period. This may sound harsh to some, but I think it is necessary.

suggested prerequisite- newbies send their end of the trade first --until 5 good rate and reviews have been posted from other traders.

What do you think?


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I don't think there's any way to stop people from taking advantage of others. As you know, an offender could make 5 legitimate trades and have 5 good reviews and then decide it's time to get something for nothing.
In my opinion people should utilize the Rate & Review Forum more, whether the trade is good or not so good, and post asap concerning rip-offs or even if their trade partner is acting suspiciously. (I hope that doesn't sound too dramatic.) Some kind of reminder to new members to visit that forum wouldn't hurt.
I'd like to know what goes through these people's minds while they're planning these scams. Insert descriptive & colorful swear word(s) of your choice here.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2011 at 5:39PM
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I have to agree with Janine on this one. There really isn't a way to stop the scammers from joining or rejoining under new names, for that matter, if they really want to do so.

Having been hear on GW and the seed exchange for over 8 years now, I've seen a lot of various types of scammers join and rejoin, over and over again.

Fortunately, there are far more "good, honest members" that really are here to be part of GW than there are scammers.

I do think there are some things that all members can do though, that would help to limit people from joining to scam for seeds/plants and all of us that are honest can follow these suggestions and help to keep them away.

Since the special instructions for the forum link at the top of the page has not worked in quite a few years, it is important to keep the thread that has been done on the first page for new members to see and hopefully read.
Don't be afraid to bump it up to keep it on the first page.

Newbies as well as oldies need to be reminded of the forum rules and by all members following the rules of the forum, it shows that members, good, honest members do follow the rules and are not afraid or above the fray to point out the rules to others and help to keep those forum rules followed.
By doing this and having this attitude, it does help to show those that are thinking about or joining to scam others that they are being watched and members will speak up about their antics

New members that post with what can be called "beggar posts", asking for seeds and offering to pay postage for them and have nothing to trade for those seeds need to be referred to the "special instructions for the seed exchange forum" thread and advised to read through the info on the thread, look for offers that are made by members that include such words as "free seeds, seeds for postage, BEAP seeds, SASBE,

Remember that no one on the forum is required to trade with another member just because and offer or request for a trade has been posted, asked for etc.
If one feels uncomfortable with the trade or something doesn't feel right about it, one can refuse to trade, ask another "oldie member" for some advise on the trade, or just say no to do the trade, or have the other member send their end of the trade first.

Always check the rate and review forum before setting up the trade or even responding to the member for the trade.

Always post to the rate and review forum after a trade, do so as soon as possible and post something good, bad, indifferent about the experience with that member.

If that member has NO review thread started then go ahead and start one for that member, regardless of how the experience is.

Also, if you were offering seeds for postage, etc and a member responded and all went well with that offer, then post a review about that member as well, even if it is a new member.
The fact that the member responded to your offer for the seeds, followed through with the required things to get the seeds, says a lot about the member that is good and should be known about the person.
Besides, being an oldie member that does a lot of free seeds for postage offers, you'd be surprised at how many members never follow through and send the necessary stuff for the seeds.

It's also important to remember that sometimes, things just do happen and there are some really legitimate reasons why there are problems with trades that appear to have "gone bad" and they really haven't.
Life does "get in the way" sometimes and it just can't be helped.

The problems are when the "real scammers" are here and causing the problems and that does and will always happen no matter how hard we try to prevent it.

That is why it is important to be aware of what goes on, read the rate and review forums, ask questions when needed, follow gut feelings when they occur and most of all remember, they are, in the end, just seeds, plants and postage and total hysteria over the scammers, which has happened with at least one member is not worth the headaches and grief that it causes one self.

Yes, I've been scammed a couple of times over the years here, but at the same time, I have also learned that there are far more important things in life to be concerned with than a total melt down over being scammed.

That's not to say it isn't upsetting and it doesn't get me angry, or angry to see the same members returning time and time again to rip off members, steal seeds and plants and just create total havoc on the forum.

We need to watch out for each other on this forum and any other forum that we are part of, warn others when we suspect that a member that has a history of scamming has returned under a new name or we are sure that a member is scamming on the forum.

But, setting up various "probation" type membership rules or something of that nature is just not something that is going to work and I doubt that GW would allow it anyways.

It took us a long time to get the rate and review forum added to the site. It needs to be used far more frequently than it is though, by all members.


    Bookmark   December 7, 2011 at 12:04AM
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Agreed! Being diligent about both leaving and checking feedback on the Rate and Review Forum is everyone's best defense. How many times have you read a negative review in which there is the inevitable post from a member who laments not checking there before trading? And too often you see a post complaining about someone on one of the threads, but nothing ever appears in the person's feedback. It is a vastly underused tool.
Having said that Duane, there is nothing wrong with asking someone with no history of posts or trade activity to send their end first.

    Bookmark   December 7, 2011 at 9:09AM
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I think that yes people should use the rate and review.. and if they have a negative review (for someone) that they should check out that persons rating of others, just to make sure that they aren't always posting negative reviews, i learned to do that when i was trading. Also, if you have enough good reviews, there is absolutely nothing wrong with you asking them to send first. i used to do that all the time, and i let them know that AFTER they send their end and its all good, i will post a good review. If your ever unsure if you can trust someone i used to always ask Chemocurl, and Fran if they knew if this person was trustworthy or not :') hope that helps ya any.. Medo

    Bookmark   December 8, 2011 at 5:22PM
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I have been a member for a couple months, and just completed my 25th trade and 1st RR. So far I have 2 reviews, and that is only after I specifically asked those members to please review me.

So a "probation" period is quite fruitless unless it becomes mandatory for people RO complete reviews. Problem is, once they get their seeds, that is pretty much the "end" of the trade for them.

    Bookmark   December 8, 2011 at 10:36PM
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It is hard to keep from being furious over someone abusing this great forum for exchanges we have but it helps me to keep in mind all of the generous trades I have experienced in just a year as a member. Also I focus on the most valuable commodity we get which is the information and friendships.
I think it might help some if there were a spot on every page that shortcuts right to the rate and review page.
It occurs to me just at this moment that we may be talking about mail fraud. Aren't there very stiff federal penalties for such things.There is a post right now requesting postage from newbies in exchange for seeds in the seed exchange forum by a member who is largely responsible for this collective anger. Seems like mail fraud to me. I will try to research this. Ric

    Bookmark   December 10, 2011 at 12:25AM
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clc70(8 Wa.)

I had been trading seed here for probably a year before someone pointed out the rate and review forum. Up until then I didn't know it existed. Perhaps we just need more info postd re this forum and how important it is to our reputations.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2011 at 8:35PM
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