Caveat Emptor… for Sellers, Too

Caveat:
Noun

Warning, caution, admonition, proviso, condition, stipulation, provision, clause, rider, qualification… A warning or proviso of specific stipulations, conditions, or limitations.
Origin: mid 16th century: from Latin, literally ‘let a person beware.’

Ceveat Emptor:
Noun

the principle that the buyer alone is responsible for checking the quality and suitability of goods before a purchase is made.
Origin: early 16th century: literally ‘let the buyer beware.’

So we all know the ‘buyer beware’ rule. And it’s especially true in Second Life.

However, it’s also true for the *seller*.

We are all buyers. Even the sellers are buyers.
For example, in SL – all sellers need a place to sell from. That’s not usually an issue. You throw your stuff up on SL Exchange or OnRez.com and away you go. Though most will either buy land to set up shop or rent space in a mall or island.

So, even when shopping for a place to sell , buyer beware.

Don’t you just hate when the mall owners just start dropping notecards on people for no reason at all – advertising their malls in the hope you will be anything other than annoyed? Perhaps enough to even consider considering it?

It just so happens I received one of these. It also just so happens I was already in the process of considering vendor space in a few malls, even though I already own my own sim and 1/4 of it is dedicated to my own showroom.

Of course it had the usual over dramatic, overstated hoopla. I won’t mention the sim, the mall or the owner who spammed me… but even his exaggerated claims were lackluster at best. “the sim had more than 10,000 traffic last week.” Okaaaaaay. My 1/4 sim fluctuates between 8,000 and 13,000 every day. So whats so special about a whole sim doing that?

And we don’t use camping chairs or dancepads. (Full disclosure – since all this has happened, we did add a sim camper – but it’s an object camper that give prizes – and you aren’t tied to one spot.)

He told me “no campers”. I said “sell me – why should I rent space from you?”

He didn’t do a very good job. No compelling reason at all to even go look. But, I’m short on time and don’t want to make the effort of shopping, so I agreed to look around. When I landed, I was immediately unimpressed.

The ‘sim’ was packed. I wondered if there were any available vendor spaces at all. But I saw camping dance pads immediately. And it was a forced landing point. So, my first thought was which vendor booth can I see from the landing point.

Nothing.
So he shows me a booth. There’s one right next to a very prominent, high profile retailer. I take this booth. I pay the rent (first month is free, so it was immediately refunded). It takes me a couple days to set up my temp-rez vendor (Zodiac House sells furnishings) before I can set anything out.

So I return in three days.

My booth is full of someone else’s stuff.
The rental box still has my name on it with 27 days to go.
On top of that – I check the parcel to learn that the mall owner only ‘owns’ about a 1.4 of the sim – and there’s only about 6 prims left. That with about six or seven empty vendor booths left – and no doubt, spam notecards still being distributed.

So, in a rage I Instant Message the owner – and in a someone friendlier tone, the owner of the vendors that are in my booth. To make a long story short – the mall owner had the vendor as a tenant… right where she was. Then he rearranged a bunch of booths (adding more, no doubt) – and returned all her stuff.

Before she could return her things, the owner sold me that booth. But, since I didn’t have time to place a sales box yet, the original renter returned, unknowing of my own purchased of that booth. So then I am offered to pick another empty booth and my rental box will be.  On top of that, the whole parcel has a whopping sic prims available for me. I should have gotten a clue when the owner said my booth was good for “25 or 30 prims”.

Well, I just let that one pass… I left the group and such is (Second) life.
The ironic thing is that I’ve been in SL since spring 2006 (in a previous account) and have run successful businesses in the past. never had any issues with vendor space and malls, …until now.

So, even as an ‘olbie’ – I’m still learning.

Caveat emptor.

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