Reply to ""eBay Seller Sues Coach Over VeRO""

Good for her! And not before time. I sincerely hope that more of these things are brought to bear.

I have been a business seller on eBay for well over 10 years. I have been a personal seller, selling my own second-hand items, since eBay's beginning.

I don't list anywhere near as much as I used to. I once kept thousands of items listed at all times in my business account; now I'm down to a couple hundred a week at most. I can't remember the list time I listed anything in my personal account.

I'm one of the growing number of sellers who stick it out grudgingly, strictly for the traffic that eBay generates.

Nowadays, I use eBay as a clearance outlet for end-of-season, liquidation, and overstock, again, for the traffic and because people seem to expect that eBay items shouldn't bring a fair price to a seller, and nobody wants to pay what an item is worth.

I have several lines of brand name items and use them to describe my product. That's how people find what they are looking for, after all, and eBay insists that I describe my items correctly, so I do. I have no channel limitation agreements saying where I can and can't sell my items, I take my own photographs, and the items are genuine.

Still, it never fails that someone comes along and says that I am using a brand name outside eBay's acceptable use. What??

All it takes is the 'trademark owner' to fill in a form, click click click and you are shut down. Your listings disappear, your listing fees disappear, and if it affects enough listings, your entire account disappears.

My last round of 'violations' was because my listings made 'unauthorized comparisons of an item to the trademark owner's brand'. There was no 'comparison' to it! It was brand XYZ, it was called brand XYZ, the photo showed the label of XYZ, and I have a standing open order account with the manufacturer as an authorized dealer! The listing title even said 100% Genuine XYZ...

I am convinced that these people do not actually look at listings or contact sellers. They simply do a global search for their brand name and click click click to shoot the listings down. And eBay simply takes their word for it, doesn't even look at the listings, and sends an insulting email telling you that if you think this is wrong, contact the rights owner directly, and oh, by the way, if this happens again, your account is in jeopardy. Never mind that you have 100% positive feedback on thousands of transactions over years and years of PowerSeller status.

The rights owner, as you might imagine, never responds, or does so with a cut and paste 'trademark infringement is a crime blahblahblah'. Well, so is restraint of trade.

If a person sells something as pre-owned, that item should be automatically excluded from a so-called rights owner's reach. But the bottom line is that eBay is doing all that it can to eliminate pre-owned items and non-business sellers, because these do not add to eBay's bottom line. Unless items by their nature are pre-owned, as in antiques or estate items, you are hard pressed to find an item sold by an individual.

eBay has long since given up on being an advocate of its sellers. They demonstrate overwhelmingly, in everything from their so-called Buyer Protection Plan, to their faulty resolution process, to their gag-order on seller's ability to leave feedback for problem buyers, that the buyer is the only valuable part of the sales transaction.

If the seller can't sell, then the buyer can't buy.

eBay has forgotten the statement they alway herald as the cornerstone of their philosophy: We believe that people are basically good.

Well, everybody but their sellers, that is, because anytime someone says something against a seller, it must certainly be true. At least that's what eBay seems to think. The truth isn't in their flowery philosophy, it is in their actions.

So-called rights owners ought to be ashamed of themselves, but no more so than eBay itself.
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