AFP reports that Amnesty International had a short-lived viral campaign to use eBay listings to highlight the issue of human trafficking. The Swiss branch of the charity put more than 200 listings on the site, based on trademarks which could also be someone’s name: “Mercedes, 1986, excellent condition” read one auction for a young woman, not a car.
eBay removed all the listings. The spokeswoman for Amnesty International Switzerland said “we had imagined that eBay would close its eyes” to three day listings: I can just imagine the “eBay closes eyes to human trafficking” headlines now.
Sabine Schneider for eBay said that the company “has some sympathy for this operation, but it does not wish to be used as some kind of platform.” She went on to say that eBay have contacted Amnesty to propose a collaberation, in a form yet to be decided, around issues of human rights.