Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Japonica- A Cautionary Tale

PLEASE NOTE! I understand I may sound a bit bitter in today's post, but that is not my intention. My aim is to just make people aware of this situation so that anybody reading this can make a more informed choice. I know that some of my readers have taken an interest in my shopping experiences, I have even had messages from some of you, so hopefully you will find this information useful!

Some of you will already be familiar with the information in this post so bear with me while I explain what is going on to those who don't know!

This story starts a few weeks ago when, to my delight, I found an auction for a series I wanted to get (picture very related). So as usual, I used my normal shopping service- Japonica Market. Everything was good and Japonica put the bid on for me.

Japonica used an ID which I had seen before. They had bidded under the name Mecha, which is the ID they have always used for my orders. Then a few days before the item ended, I noticed a new bid had been put on. The ID was HelloWorld. It is an ID that I had come across before and I immediately came to the conclusion that it had to be another shopping service. As it was an ID I had come across many times, I figured the service must be popular and so I Googled the ID to find out what this popular service was. I was directed to a page on EGL, and that is when I found out...

HelloWorld is ALSO Japonica. So Japonica had put 2 bids on the same item using different IDs. At first, I was confused. Could they do that? Well, apparently they can.

What surprised me, is that this other bid matched my maximum bid. It was also placed after mine, which meant I was winning the auction. This meant that unless the other bidder asked Japonica to raise their max bid, they had no chance of winning the auction. And Japonica KNEW this. My question is, did Japonica warn the other bidder about this? Apparently, Japonica did use to warn people about this situation but I heard nothing, and I am assuming the other bidder didn't hear anything either.

So why did they put the bid on if they knew I would still be winning? Of course, Japonica is not allowed to disclose information about other bids. So whilst they could have warned the other bidder that they were going to lose the auction, they would not be able to tell them how high my bid was. Otherwise, that would have been unfair to me.

At the end of the day, Japonica is only there to place bids for you. All they can do is place the bids that they receive, regardless of whether they have already bidded on the item. If this had been an English auction where no shopping services were needed by either bidder, then both bids would have been put on the item anyway. And this is basically the same situation, just with a Japanese shopping service involved as the middle person.

Eventually, I won the auction (hooray!) but I have to be honest, this has made me feel uncomfortable using Japonica. It is important to mention that Japonica have NOT done anything illegal. But it turns out that there are other shopping services out there which have some policies in place to stop this situation. This means that once they have placed a bid on for one person, they will not bid on the same item for another person. And this sounds very appealing to me. It means I wont get caught in another Japonica vs. Japonica bidding war and I think I will feel more valued as a customer. Once I try out these different shopping services, I will review them on this blog!

P.S- If the other bidder on my item is reading this, I hope you are able to find the item you want soon!


  1. Wow...sketchy! Well at least congrats on your win ^^; Looking forward to the review! The set is uber cute ♥

    ~ Kieli ~

    1. Thank you! I am so glad I got it in the end, but it was such a stressful experience! Luckily some of my Facebook friends have given me some shopping services to try out.

    2. Awesome! I hope you could share with your readers on here. I have been working on my wardrobe and would love to try places that hopefully have more sizing options? xD; I was on Rakuten and managed to find a few things but a lot were a little on the small side by just a few cm Dx

      ~ Kieli ~

    3. For shopping services I was told to try From Japan or

      Obviously I have not tried them myself yet, but I know chibi-tenshi is very popular.

      I don't actually know of a good Rakuten shopping service :( I know there is something called Tenso, but it looked confusing so I gave in and used Japonica that time. I have not checked to see if the 2 services I mentioned do Rakuten orders.


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