Also there is no need to open a dispute immediately against the member unless you are nearing the 45 day limit and have not yet seen an item. You can inquire HERE about your items if you are concerned. This person has indeed swindled us, but not by stealing our money, and has proven themselves to ship items out on time. That is not the issue at hand here, so do not panic.
I hate it when it is time to make posts like this, luckily they are few and far in between... but sadly, here we go anyway.
A new way to exploit the community has been discovered and used against us, I am afraid. PLEASE, if you plan to run or are currently running any GA's, READ THIS POST.
BEWARE OF segamew.
This user has been adding up totals raised by GAs, and in the case of Y!J auctions, discovering what deputy was being used, and has been exploiting internal bidding to win the GA's and re-sell the plush for their own revenge against the community. This is not wild speculation or an angry accusation -- we have been sent the information proving it in segamew's own words.
DO NOT buy from this user, who has been selling through PM to avoid suspicion about having won multiple GA's from under the community, and has also been going so far as to "...put in a few bids so it looks less likely that I (segamew) am the one who will win the lot...". She has also been commenting on the lost GA's offering condolences.
Other reasons GA's have been "taken" from the community were because of personal grudges against users. As stated by segamew, "...I didn't like (member)'s attitude... so just because of that, I'm going to take this auction". Racist language was also used by her in the denouncing of the community and myself.
Also, she has implied that she would withhold items she is shipping to community members as a blackmail tactic. Whether this is true or just blowing smoke I cannot say, but if you are waiting for an item from segamew, be it from a GA or personal sales, IF YOU DO NOT SEE YOUR ITEM WITHIN THE PAYPAL DISPUTE TIME LIMIT, DISPUTE IT AND GET YOUR MONEY BACK.
EDIT: She has come to me and others about this situation. She tells me it was not a serious threat and she will take care of pending items waiting to be shipped. I still encourage you to be cautious, but unless your 45 days is almost at the end, I'd wait to see if your item arrives before opening a dispute immediately.
The reason I am divulging this information is to encourage you NOT to buy from this person, who will PM you offering you items you won in lost GA's. It is also so that those of you who think you have discovered ways to get around the community's rules or want to show us a thing or two because you disagree with the mods or because of some sense of justice -- YOU WILL BE CAUGHT EVENTUALLY.
If you disagree with the community's policies or something the mods did you thought was unfair, there are better ways to handle it than to teach us a lesson in your own vigilante way. This kind of behaviour will lead to an immediate ban!
NOTICES RESULTING FROM THIS SITUATION:
-If you have a GA currently running, BEWARE OF INTERNAL BIDDING. This is the loophole that has been exploited in at least two GA's we can prove (including the Pikachu Plush lot and the Bulbasaur Plush GA), and probably many more. Another GA that was lost to segamew was the 126 Plush GA. This GA was lost also because the bidder did not put the total raised in as the bid, assuming they would not be sniped -- ALWAYS put the total raised in as the bid, ALWAYS assume you may be sniped on Ebay!
-If you have, in the past or recently, won a GA out from under the community: DO NOT PANIC. It's perfectly legal to win a lot that you wanted, even if the community GAed it, especially if the claimed items were the ones you were hoping for. Even if you bought it simply to resell for profit, there is no rule against that because auctions are free game for all people. This community is NOT ANTI-PROFIT. We encourage you to profit from your hard work or your luck at finding rare items. It is simply not the purpose of a GA, although some people taken offense to this. Do NOT run a GA if you are looking for a profit. It is very simple :(
HOWEVER, if it is proven you are deliberately making it a hobby to take GA lots away from the community to the tune of THOUSANDS of dollars, deceiving the community with behavior like bidding on a few to "make it harder" to figure out who you are, and are deliberately adding up totals to exploit internal bidding MULTIPLE times, that is the point where it becomes NOT OKAY. If you bid against a GA it should NOT BE to get revenge on people, mods, or the community at large. There is competition, and then there's malice.
There are better ways to express your extreme displeasure with the community -- the best one being, do not participate here at all if you hate it that badly. When we make modposts with rules updates, please express your feelings there, even if they are a criticism of us or the rules. The community can never improve or grow if you are too afraid to speak up because you think you will be in trouble with me, or anybody. If you find me commenting to you often with problems, do not assume I have a grudge against you, or have it in for you, or are stalking you! As many people have discovered, we mods miss a LOT, as this community is huge, and we need more of us. A lot of the comments I make with concerns are other members speaking through me -- members who had legitimate reasons to feel nervous, or suspicious, and because we deal with real money here, please understand even if you did nothing wrong, why we have to MAKE SURE so everyone can feel comfortable.
You will never be banned for speaking your mind. It takes a truly reprehensible act to get banned from this community -- even then I usually dish out second and third chances before we make the final decision.
Please comment with any questions, problems, suggestions, what have you. Also, if you had a GA recently lost due to internal bidding, let me know about that, also.
So sorry for the sour news, guys.