eBay being sued over patent infringement

From: Doc Shipley <doc_at_mdrconsult.com>
Date: Wed Apr 23 21:59:00 2003

On Wednesday, April 23, 2003, at 08:40 PM, Mail List wrote:

> That's right here in the next town over. If it's an open courtroom I
> could
> go over there and check it out.
> I don't know about eBay and patent infringement, but I think eBay
> has a monopoly on the online auction market for private individuals
> which might warrant anti-trust action. I don't think a private
> individual

   The fact that an entity may be the only viable player on a given
field doesn't "warrant anti-trust action." If eBay is actively doing
anything to hinder their competition, other than doing what they do
VERY well, and marketing it well, *that* might warrant action.

> would be able to sell many types of items anymore through a classified
> ad, and if they tried to use another online auction service, would do
> so
> poorly, that if they would like to do the best they can, just about
> have no

   I sell goods all the time on the austin.forsale newsgroup. As far as
I'm concerned, eBay is an *asset* to that, not a detraction. eBay is
the de facto Blue Book for used/surplus goods, allowing me to decide if
my property is salable, whether it's worth more in cash than as a
possession, and how to price it. It also shortstops lowballing by
prospective customers. Naturally, it isn't the only resource I use,
but it a very convenient and extremely well-organized asset for any
seller, and for any buyer of either local or online goods.

> choice but to list on eBay. Also, eBay has such power in this arena
> these days, i.e. no other online auction service for the private
> individual
> seems to be able to compete very well with them, that they got the
> sellers by the "nads". They don't seem to be very interested in the
> performance of their customers, i.e. the sellers. That's why I don't
> offer
> anything for sale on eBay anymore. I only buy on eBay these days.

   As far as I can tell, and I haven't heard even a rumor of eBay
leveraging their weight against the competition, the only reason the
other online auction services aren't getting action is that they suck.

Received on Wed Apr 23 2003 - 21:59:00 BST

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