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Ebay fined 39 million euro in LVMH lawsuit over faked goods

post #1 of 33
Thread Starter 
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/01/te...01ebay.html?hp

Quote:
Originally Posted by nytimes.com

PARIS — A French court on Monday ordered the online auction giant eBay to pay 38.6 million euros, or $61 million, in damages to the French luxury goods company LVMH, in the latest round in a long-running legal battle over the sale of counterfeit goods on the Internet.

LVMH, a maker of high-end leather goods, perfumes and other fashion and luxury products, successfully challenged eBay for a second time in the French court, arguing that 90 percent of the Louis Vuitton bags and Dior perfumes sold on eBay are fakes.

The court ruled that eBay, which earns a commission on the sales, was not doing enough to stamp out counterfeit sales.

EBay vowed to appeal the ruling in a brief statement issued immediately after the decision was announced.

“When counterfeits appear on our site we take them down swiftly, and today’s ruling is not about our fight against counterfeiting,” eBay said in a statement from Paris. “It’s about an attempt by LMVH to protect uncompetitive commercial practices at the expense of consumer choice and the livelihood of law-abiding sellers that eBay empowers every day. We will fight this ruling on their behalf.”

EBay has faced several legal challenges in France, where luxury goods companies are fiercely protective of their brands. In another recent case, a court ordered eBay to pay 20,000 euros to Hermes International in Paris for not properly vetting the sale of handbags.

That court concluded that eBay was not doing enough to combat counterfeit sales and should be forcing sellers to post more product information to guarantee authenticity, like series numbers.

The issue has resonated outside France. The jeweler Tiffany & Company has sued eBay in the United States on similar grounds; a decision is pending in the case.

LVMH has pursued other Internet companies as well, saying they help counterfeiters by provided a marketplace for the items. The luxury goods company has won several rounds against Google in France in a quest to force the search engine to remove online advertising from counterfeiters whose spots appear when the names of LVMH brands are typed in.
post #2 of 33
lvmh fucking sucks.
post #3 of 33
Thread Starter 
Because of this or just in general?
post #4 of 33
ebay has a lot of nerve saying this

“When counterfeits appear on our site we take them down swiftly..."

That is just not true at all! I see fakes all the times on there. They make sure it takes a while before an auction appears listed if it is a item like LV. They say it's because they need to review the listing..well then how are all the fakes getting through?

So they should actually take the time to look at the listing to see if it's fake.

Good for LV for winning!! ebay needs a kick in the ass imo.
post #5 of 33
I wonder how many similar suits will follow?
post #6 of 33
damn if all the denim /fashion/electronic company do the same , ebay would be force to close only by paying fines . and ebay is probably the best auction website on the planet . i found so much things and save thousand $$$ by buying there .


fake goods are everywhere , every store in chinatown NY has their fake D&G , Gucci , ... and nobody does anything about it . they tried , but one store close and 10 open to take the place .


it may seems like a good news to you all , but to me its the worst thing thay can happen to ebay .
they cant control everything the million item listed everyday .

its should be buyers responsability to check what their buying . if they dont know how to spot counterfeiting , dont take chance and buy at the flagship or reputable store . thats it . Buyer responsability


now sennheiser , bose , grado , samsung , Fender , Gibson , Sony , levis , oakley and thousand more will all suit ebay for the fake goods that are sold there . basically 90 % of the major company have been fake .

the court should have go in the favor of ebay
hope that wont hurt ebay business . sorry not to be on the same side as you on that one BLM14 . Counterfeiting is not great as someone shouldnt use someone name to sell their goods , but the market is Out of control and ebay shouldnt be responsible for what listed .



and i still believe that these counterfeiter shouldnt put D&G and channel or brand company on their " counterfeiting " i have seen so many nice handbag and stuff that were fake and poeple not buying them cause their fake Gucci versace d&G . i think they should start a "no name" company and sell their handbag and they would probably sell more . like a similar or replica but without the company name . i think people would buy .

do people really buy something cause it has someone name on it ????? i dont think so .


eBay Guides - HOW TO IDENTIFY COUNTERFEIT GAME BOY GAMES

LOL


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
i.e :

i would buy 8 fruit of the loom shirt for 10 $ in times square ... if they were blank shirt and not print " i love new york " on it . who need 10 shirt "i love new york " ??? i asked every store in time square : do you have the same shirt but blank , and they all said no !!!!.... then you should try to get you shirt blank , people would buy them .

theres 34738943794837 shirt i love new york and i have search 3 hours and actually end up paying 5 $ for a blank fruit of the loom shirt i was lucky to find one .
i think the "blank , no name" has a market .. american apparel make million selling their stuff .



And i dont buy fake BTW and wouldnt by respect for the company name .

n-e way thank for posting BLM ... i will follow the case


ebay is still a great site .
post #7 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by blm14 View Post
Because of this or just in general?
in general...
post #8 of 33
Wouldnt more lawsuits force ebay to finally do something about all the fakes?
post #9 of 33
Usually in wins like this the $$ is never collected, it's more of a way to set precedent and used as leverage against anyone else contemplating the same. Not say that they won't try to collect, although the laws regarding the collections of the winnings may be different outside the US
post #10 of 33
Ben24 I think it's good this happened because ebay needs to take some responsibility for what is going on with their site. Sure they do say they police items being listed, but what does that mean? They cam look at one auction to be able to say that.

They make SO much money off not only legit sellers, but the tons of people selling fakes too. They make their share of selling fees, listing fees and all the other fees off these scammers.

I'm not trying to totally bash ebay as I buy and sell off ebay also. But you'd think they could run it a little better.

Yes, buyers should know what they are buying. But hey, some don't and it's not their fault and they should be taken for $$ just because they trust what a seller is offering is real. It seems like it's only after you've been taken on ebay that you learn how it really is on there.

As for your question in your post:

"do people really buy something cause it has someone name on it ????? i dont think so ."

Where do you live that people don't buy something because a name is on it? This isn't just about LV items either, I mean in general? People buy things ONLY because a name is on it. They don't care if it is well made or not. They want that name brand and they buy it, real or fake.

ebay can be a great place. But they need to get on the ball with these sellers who sell fakes and ebay seems to turn a blind eye for the $$ they get!
post #11 of 33
^

Agreed eBay doesn't care at all about authentic and non-authentic as long as nobody makes waves they can keep it hush hush and smooth it over. In their eye less fakes = less profit, they don't really differentiated between the two. They are making money and that is all that matters in the end.
post #12 of 33
*Cough cough* read the blog - I posted this about a week ago and there is a poll up about this topic too!
post #13 of 33
Nice, BTW your doing great over there keep it up!
post #14 of 33
As much as this would be fantastic..... How can they fine ebay? ebay is just a channel of distribution, not the distributor/seller. That would be like fining the truck drivers that carry the goods to the sellers.
post #15 of 33
Because eBay is making a profit and clearly don't police themselves. Since they are providing a service to the consumer they also need to ensure the safety, security and rights of the consumers.By not doing so they are knowingly exposing the consumer to a market saturated with fake merchandise.
post #16 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by jillybean View Post
As much as this would be fantastic..... How can they fine ebay? ebay is just a channel of distribution, not the distributor/seller. That would be like fining the truck drivers that carry the goods to the sellers.
I don't think eBay and others who gainfully benefit by providing a forum that enables the infringement of intellectual property will be able to argue the highway/truck metaphor much longer. It's clear to anybody who has tried to thwart counterfeiters on eBay via "community measures" that there's a dog & cat game going on whereby peddlers of counterfeit goods are given blanket amnesty so long as nobody raises a stink.

eBay has been playing chicken with this issue. They've held this stance long as they could, and soon they'll get the opportunity to appear like they're acting in good faith because litigation will force them to.

Eventually the playing field will be normalized through the courts and businesses such as eBay will be required to police themselves within reason. The current stance requires groups like LVMH and others to be on the constant lookout for fakes and to report each and every infraction - a totally unrealistic and unfeasible expectation for the custodians of intellectual property. Eventually eBay will have to shoulder the burden of staffing-up to meet the requirements of a reasonably controlled venue. Boo hoo.
post #17 of 33
Thread Starter 
well said.
post #18 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cez1029 View Post
Nice, BTW your doing great over there keep it up!
Thanks!

Actually I read too fast - we posted a similar story about Ebay getting fined but it was not quite for that much and it had to do with Hermes bags. Read it here.

I'm glad someone is finally cracking down on Ebay though. If they keep getting fined, they'll have to do something about it...I hope.
post #19 of 33
Meh... what will fining ebay really accomplish? They will just raise fees as a way to avoid loss and pass the cost to the consumers.
post #20 of 33
This just means we'll (ebay sellers) will be paying more in fees. Notice just recently they raised the final value fee from 5.25% to a whopping 8.75%...then you tack on paypal fees, 2.9% plus 30 cents every transaction...you're paying over 12% just to sell something (assuming you use paypal)...and that doesn't include the insertion fee and/or any other additional features you might use...
post #21 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by arriarri View Post
Meh... what will fining ebay really accomplish? They will just raise fees as a way to avoid loss and pass the cost to the consumers.
The exorbitant fees that eBay imposes upon sellers has nothing to do with overhead and everything to do market forces. eBay is no more inclined to pass on their losses than are to reduce their fees if they achieve higher efficiency.

eBay's Q1 revenues were something like 2 billion this year. They've known all along that eventually they'd be on the business end of a judgment and would have to clean house. They're big boys. They'll be just fine.

So what will the fines really accomplish? A better eBay experience for consumers and justice for the brand owners who have been wronged by eBay for years on end.
post #22 of 33
I don't know...

I think the argument is fairly weak. I really do not like that the Courts found in LVMH's favor. It seems more like sensationalism rather than a sound decision for the public.

I do not appreciate that buyers get scammed into buying counterfeit goods, but I am a capitalist at heart. I love a good free market. We have all taken it upon ourselves to learn the brands and determine authenticity. We generally do not suffer from the irritating fakes.

Ebay is a pain in many ways, but I do not think this lawsuit is justice served by any means.
post #23 of 33
If you're a capitalist at heart then you understand that free markets can't function properly if intellectual property rights don't have teeth.

The crux of the argument lies in eBay's motivations. Are they a neutral arbiter simply linking buyer with seller, or are they a willing participant in a transaction that comes at the expense of legitimate retailers? It doesn't take a stretch of the imagination to see how the latter could be proven, so I think this is just a preview of what's to come.
post #24 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Grondie View Post
Eventually the playing field will be normalized through the courts and businesses such as eBay will be required to police themselves within reason.
I REALLY hope this isn't the avenue by which eBay would undertake such initiatives.
post #25 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Grondie View Post
If you're a capitalist at heart then you understand that free markets can't function properly if intellectual property rights don't have teeth.

The crux of the argument lies in eBay's motivations. Are they a neutral arbiter simply linking buyer with seller, or are they a willing participant in a transaction that comes at the expense of legitimate retailers? It doesn't take a stretch of the imagination to see how the latter could be proven, so I think this is just a preview of what's to come.
I do believe in protection of intellectual property rights. But eBay isn't producing these items. EBay is merely the conduit for sales. I think it's unrealistic to expect them to monitor and know whether every auction is authentic or not. They rely on complaints from customers that their products are counterfeit.

That they claim they swiftly pull down counterfeit auctions is a bold face lie.

EBay is doing a pretty miserable job of controlling the counterfeits. They need a policy that once a seller is deemed a continuous counterfeit seller, that seller is banned. We all know that doesn't happen. I think they could inhibit the big sellers of fakes.

EBay's motivations are fairly clear - sell as many products as possible to make as much money as possible.

I question LVMH's motivations more. Are they more concerned that people out are buying nasty knock offs and diluting their brand status or are they concerned that eBay is a fantastic outlet of authentic products for lower prices than their distributors?

Either way - is eBay really at fault? If it's not eBay it would simply be another online consignment store or knock off store. I do not think fining eBay millions is an appropriate action. Loads of other brands will jump on the band wagon and make this even more ridiculous. Bottom line - it is not a sound judicial decision - to make this precedent. It has to be overturned.

Are these big brands chasing down the loads of online counterfeit stores?

Again - I do love a free market. And I like the fact I can get great stuff on eBay for cheap. Who knows? Maybe many of the eBay buyers are happy buying cheap "designer" stuff even if it is fake.

I like a free for all market more than a market controlled by big suppliers.
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