Why Buying And Selling On Carousell Can Be Just Like Your Dating Life
STORY: Pearlyn Tham
21 June 2021
Some days, buying and selling on Carousell can make you feel like you are on Tinder.
Or being on a blind date with your aunty’s neighbour’s colleague’s nephew. Or tahan-ing your demanding/blur/temperamental spouse for yet another day.
You can’t trust the profile photo
If you had thought that Jennie of Blackpink or Jimin of BTS would really be doing a fast deal with you at Ang Mo Kio MRT station control at 3pm, you would have a greater chance of someone who’s more like your JC Econs teacher coming up to you and saying “Carousell hor?”.
Doesn’t pay attention to what you say
Just like a date who’s not that into you or a husband who takes in only 0.3142 per cent of what you tell him to do, Carousell buyers can be one distracted lot.
You can max out your remaining iPhone batt on crafting the wittiest and most detailed product captions which include details like the DD/MM/YY purchase date and its measurements in every dialect you know.
But there are buyers who don’t read, don’t pay attention and don’t care (and also don’t buy), and ask about everything that is already in your product description.
They blow hot blow cold
And then there are the buyers and sellers who sound all chummy and hyper one moment in their messages (cue a flurry of emojis and “hey, babe” greetings) but turn cold and even curt the next day.
One reason: there are family-run accounts on Carousell – yes, it’s a real thing because some families are tight like that and must sell things together under one handle – and so, the cheery teenage sister who replied yesterday has morphed into the moody elder brother today.
Just like online dating, you never really know who you are chatting with.
Don’t call me baby
Eh, I’m not so intimate with you so please don’t message me and call me babe, baby or sister. It’s gender harassment. And what made you think I’m a woman just because my handle is SexyPrincess421.
You will be ghosted
The Carousell equivalent of being blue-ticked is having a buyer get all enthu one day and not confirming your meet-up details the next. So you politely ask again and again if she still wants to make an offer on your item. And still no reply… five years later.
Also, the seller who accepts your offer – yay, finally you get your hands on the rare vintage Polly Pocket pencil case you have wanted since you were three – and then disappears mysteriously like the ex whom you are still humming sad Stef Sun songs for on taxi rides.
It’s not you, it’s me (or my husband or my wife or my parents)
Some buyers will blame everyone in their family tree but themselves when they fail to honour a transaction or when they want to haggle. For instance, their husband didn’t give them enough money for the purchase or their parents said no to their 625th pair of Nikes.
Sometimes, the other party likes the meetup a little too much and more than you do
True story. It can get freaky when the seller meets you, passes you the item, collects the money and doesn’t leave like every other Carouseller does. Instead he wants to have a tête-à-tête with you on your hobbies and on the reasons you are buying his item. Hello, bruh, are you lonely or kaypoh?
Gives too little, takes too much
Buyers who still want to push down the price of a $2 cup and also ask for free postage (“and make it tracked mail and put it in a nice box with bubblewrap.”), we are looking at you.
Possessive, demanding and obsessive
Just so you know, not all of us are on Carousell the whole time.
After all, there’s also Instagram, Telegram, Netflix, Facebook, TikTok, WeChat, Whatsapp and our hunky next-door neighbour’s window to keep us engaged and busy the rest of the time when we are not reading our Carousell messages.
And we aren’t only talking about kan cheong spider buyers (who probably totally get the earlier You will be ghosted point). Sellers who message you non-stop just because you liked their item (and by mistake too because #fatfingers) and try to offer you bargains, freebies and free drop-offs are scary like heartbroken stalkers. Or brow plucking salon touts.
Takes longer than expected to… come
When I’m the customer and I have to wait 10 minutes for you outside 7-Eleven during Covid-19 times, that’s long liao. Also, people who get paid but then take so long to post your purchase to you that even your online orders from Botswana reach you first.