Finally: a policy announcement on counterfeits


eBay have at last made an announcement on the new policies to reduce counterfeits implemented two weeks ago.

The new rules begin with an impassioned statement that fakes are not just an eBay problem, but that they undermine the entire marketplace. As we’ve seen, Paypal verification, the restriction of one and three day listings (commonly used by scammers in the hope of evading detection by selling quickly), and being an established eBay member are all parts of the strategy.

Then comes the shocker:

Sellers registered in the UK, U.S., and Germany may post these items worldwide.

Sellers in English-speaking markets – UK, U.S., Australia, and Canada – will be able to list and post these items freely across these sites. For example, a UK registered seller will be able to list an item on the US site.

Sellers in Germany, Switzerland and Austria will be able to list and post these items freely across these sites, with the exception that Austrian sellers won’t be able to post to Switzerland.

Sellers in France and Belgium will be able to list and post these items freely between these sites, with the exception that French sellers won’t be able to post to Belgium

Sellers in all other countries will only be able to list and ship these items domestically.

eBay’s restricting trade within the EU? I assume the legal team have checked this out, but it seems unnecessarily harsh.

Perhaps most annoying for sellers, though understandable from eBay’s point of view, is that eBay are do not state to which items the restrictions will apply. Sellers of legitimate goods have, over the last fortnight, found themselves unable to sell their stock until they have completed a “review” whose process has not been made clear to them, and with no kind of public timeline. No remedy for this situation seems forthcoming. There is apparently no way for sellers to check, before purchasing stock, whether it is likely to trigger a “review” or not: once more, sellers are left at the mercy of eBay’s whims, and that can’t be good for anybody’s business.

[At the time of posting, I’m unable to find any version of this page on the US site. However, I’ll keep looking: I’d expect it to be updated later today.]



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