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Are Poshmark Sellers CHEATING When They Use Bots? Are Virtual Assistants Legal?

Are Poshmark Sellers CHEATING When They Use Bots? Are Virtual Assistants Legal?

Posted by Big Brand Wholesale.com on 31st Jul 2020

I kept seeing this topic come up over and over again on my social media feeds. Some sellers scream that others are “Cheating” by utilizing bots, then the other sellers fight back and say “Being smart isn’t cheating!”. It seems nobody can agree, so let me throw in my two cents.

First off, NO, a bot isn’t “illegal”. The police aren’t going to kick in your door and raid your house then haul you away in cuffs like you’re El Chapo because you’re using a friggin poshmark bot to share your closet.  Come on now.

BUT Poshmark appears to have a long hair up their collective asses about it. In fact, their Community Guidelines even say “Nope. Not today, not here” (but in more lawerly wording):

If you can't read the above image it says “Do not use programs or other forms of automation to participate on Poshmark. This includes, but is not limited to liking, sharing, following, and unfollowing.”

However, I (surprisingly) love to read legal content (weird, eh?), so I read ALL of the actual Poshmark TOS (Terms of Service). Here’s the highlights for you (I will post a screenshot of the actual terms then explain it to you in “easy to understand, normal-people speak”)

THIRD PARTY SERVICES

What this says is you CAN use “third party services”. A bot would be considered a “Third Party Service”, and Poshmark does not limit WHICH “third party services” you can use. So this is a big win for bots!

AND, what’s most shocking, is that in PoshMarks actual Terms of Service (7.28.20) there is absolutely no mention of automation or bots whatsoever!! Being that it isn’t even mentioned once in the Terms of Service, it really doesn’t appear to be THAT big of a concern.

TERMINATION

BUT, there is the disclaimer that Poshmark can terminate you for any reason.

This is common. All marketplaces and social media sites have this exact same Term.

So then I went on a research mission to find real people who got bot-busted… and it didn’t take long for me to come across “Share Jail is Real” on Poshmark (posted by https://poshmark.com/closet/luvjojos_closet):

So I quickly scrolled down to read the comments to see if I could find anything juicy.

I then kept reading and reading, researching and researching and I have come to the following couple conclusions:

1. There's a large amount of people on Poshmark who are essentially haters. They are the same as the eBay haters, Facebook haters and the Instagram haters. I bet they all kick their dogs, hate rainbows and have miserable lives because instead of spending their time working hard, they spend their time flagging other peoples stuff. Here in Michigan, we call these special types of people “assholes”. Anyways, these a-holes are on an absolute mission to get Poshmark sellers banned. If these people even remotely suspect you are using a bot, they rush to be upstanding citizens and report you.

2. With that being said, and this is also important, Poshmark has put limitations on how much can be shared per hour / day. So whether you share crap using your own finger… click, click, click, click, click or whether you have a bot do it for you, who cares? (I mean, clearly, the haters very much care).

3. Ok, so let’s say the haters do what they do best; report you. They report and report and report (click, click, click …. They could instead be sharing their stuff but they prefer to report you… click, click), IF poshmark determines you are botting around, there’s 3 things that could happen:

  • A scolding
  • A Temporary Sharing Suspension (1 day)
  • Account Termination (although nothing in the Terms mentions automations, but the Community Guidelines do).

4. BUT, MOST IMPORTANTLY, I can’t seem to find anyone who has been banned from PoshMark for using bots. Like, I literally can not find one person who was ONLY BANNED for sharing / following and no other reason at all. So clearly, this really isn’t the issue people are making it.  And if it was a huge issue, it would be in the Poshmark Terms of Service. I mean, it IS in the Community Guidelines, so it's kind of an issue.  I guess it's like a "white lie"... it's still a lie, but it's not really *that* bad, right?

Sooooo… in closing… 

CAN you use bots?  Yes.

WILL haters hate? Yes. 

CAN you get in trouble? Sure.

CAN you get in really, really serious trouble? NO.

SHOULD you use PoshMark bots?  My answer would be: it’s the same as doing 45 miles per hour in a 40mph zone.