Considering we just underwent a similar situation with Basecamp — when we raised prices to coincide with the release of a bunch of new features and adjusting for the year gone by — it's funny to read how others tackle it:
Irina: OK. Can we talk about the eBay members who are frustrated with the fees? The ones that were increased, not the ones that were decreased.
Durzy: I think most ebay users are evaluating the price changes to see how they will impact their businesses.
Irina: Um, OK. Um. [debating if I should follow up on that "answer"] How did eBay decide on the increase.
Durzy: We carefully valuate our pricing structure from time to time. We believe these price changes are the right thing to do for the vibrancy of the market place.
It's no wonder that spokespeople like Hani Durzy has such a bad reputation. When you can't even acknowledge that you're raising prices in a civil manner, there's obviously a disconnect with reality and reporters and customers smell that in a second. And it's not at all about the actual price raise. It's about not having the balls to stand up for it.
eBay would do well by replacing the archetypical PR drone with something resembling a human being.