Grading disputes are tough. It can be upsetting to finally receive an item that’s in worse condition than you had expected.
As Discogs staff does not have physical access to items, both before and after the transaction, we are unable to mediate in the event of a grading dispute. That said, we would like to provide the following guidelines to our buyers when they feel the item they have received doesn’t match their expectations.
Take a moment to review our grading standards
Discogs uses the Goldmine Standard for grading the condition of items listed in the Marketplace. You can review our grading guidelines here.
Does the item you’ve received match the condition as described on the Discogs listing? Even a rating of Very Good is expected to have surface noise or some scratches. Before contacting the seller, it’s important to understand if your item’s description matches that of the Goldmine Standard.
Reach out to the seller to come to an agreement
If you have reviewed our grading guidelines and feel the item was incorrectly graded, the next step is to reach out to the seller. This should be done via a message on the order page, and not via the feedback system. Feedback that is left before the seller has a chance to resolve the situation is likely to be removed when reported to us.
At this point, there is no need for hard language or accusations - a courteous message to inform the seller of the situation will suffice. In most cases, a seller will work with the buyer to resolve the issue, either via a return or partial refund. As with all orders on Discogs, it’s also expected that buyers have reviewed the seller’s Seller Terms and understand the return policies associated with this user.
Should your seller not respond after 4 days, we’d encourage you to start the Seller Not Responding procedure (more information here).
If unable to come to an agreement, contact your payment provider
This option should be reserved for when communication with the seller hasn’t worked, but it can be an important step in protecting yourself as a buyer. Payment providers such as credit card companies and PayPal have policies in place to help protect you in these instances, and potentially get you your money back as well. Provide them with as much detail as you can regarding the issue, so they can help resolve the case as soon as they can.
Leave appropriate feedback
Once the situation is no longer an ongoing one, it’s time to leave feedback summarising the situation.
Our general policy is that honest and polite feedback should be left whenever there is a grading dispute. That is the best way to help us track whether a specific seller has an issue with their grading. We do not remove feedback for grading issues, as long as the feedback meets our guidelines. Stick to the facts, avoid name calling or vulgar language, and focus on the order, not the person.
For more information, review our guidelines on How To Leave Feedback.