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Thread: A new eBay low (with an accomplice)

  1. #1

    A new eBay low (with an accomplice)

    So I listed some silly Christmas ornaments that I found in storage, have no use for them. I used two images, one of the actual item the other the stock photo I found on Google. The auction closed Friday, seller pays, I ship Monday (yesterday). Today I get an email from eBay canceling the auction due to a copyright violation claim by Williams Sonoma. Unreal that they would bother, the items are long out of stock and no longer in any catalogs or in the store. I am waiting for eBay to refund the buyer from my paypal account without my permission. The auction is completely removed from the site, no feedback, etc. Very odd they would do this for a closed auction. Has anyone had this happen to them?

  2. #2
    I believe I had something like that a couple years ago, but I don't think that they ever pulled a refund out of my account.
    When someone hands you a flyer, it's like they're saying here you throw this away. -Mitch Hedburg

  3. #3
    Overkill. I'm glad Hasbro doesn't pull that crap!

  4. #4
    whoa, I have used stock photos a lot - not to mention seen that practice by thousands of people.
    Mojo Turbo
    "I used to own one of those, I don't know what happened to it. My Mom probably threw it away."

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by MojoTurbo View Post
    whoa, I have used stock photos a lot - not to mention seen that practice by thousands of people.
    Maybe so, but it's still not allowed. While the item you are selling may belong to you, the promotional material & catalog photos the company produced for the item still belong to them (not calling you out, I can understand the reasoning behind using one). Companies do monitor the sales of their merchandise by 3rd party sellers and they typically hate it. They see it as money out of their pocket. The fact that you're using their own work to do it grinds their gears even more, and it gives them a perfect excuse to prevent your sale.

    Aside from that, using a stock photo leaves you wide open for a buyer dispute for an item "not as pictured". If you find yourself in a position where Ebay has to make a judgement call, they'll rule against you almost by default.

    In short, it's always a good idea to take and use photos only of the actual item you plan on shipping to the winner.

  6. #6
    I have to agree with ebay on this one- It makes total sense to delete the auction, even though it is already closed, because you used copyrighted material without permission. They don't want that lingering around on their site. The photos belong to Williams-Sonoma, not to you. If they are not public domain, you have no right to use them as "stock photos". It's someone else's intellectual property.

    Aside from that, why do you need the stock photo if you posted your own photo of the item you would be shipping?

  7. #7
    If you sell an item with a UPC code like a video game, it uses a stock photo by design. I never understand why THAT is allowed , but in this case its not. Im reselling a product fron Nintendo, they wont make a dime, but its ok to use their stock images but its not for a christmas bulb they no longer sell? Fun...
    "ok...ill sign an autograph..." -Mark Hamill

  8. #8
    I had this happen to me for posting stock and actual photos of a certain very popular skateboard/streetwear brand
    Big L Rest In Peace!
    my feedback :Feedback for Snake_Eyes_82
    Other Stuff I collect

  9. #9
    I never heard of ebay doing that before.
    My feedback thread

    Operation Crackdown: Getting rid of corrupt people one day at a time.

  10. #10
    Photo and text policy: Images and text policy

    Intellectual property (VERO) policy: How eBay protects intellectual property (VeRO)

    Early on in my vintage clothing sales (several years ago at this point), I got hit with two VeRO violations through Ebay, about a year apart from each other. One was for a pair of vintage Nike shoes, the other was for a Versace scarf. Neither listing used stock photos. Both items were removed with the VeRO agent claiming them as an improper use of a company's trademarks. I could never figure out why, as both items struck me as completely genuine and I've since sold countless Nike (and a few Versace) items with no issue. My impression of the whole back & forth with Ebay over this was that the trademark holder is *always* right. Once flagged, you have very little recourse to argue the point, except with the companys' lawyers. Nike, Versace and countless other companies are registered with Ebay as trademark holders through the VeRO program. If one of their registered agents should flag your item (through the use of stock photos or by identifying it as counterfeit), Ebay will remove it immediately and you'll get a strongly worded note about it. Of course, multiple violations will get you banned.

    Vintage bootleg items tend to get around this issue because nobody out there is working on a defunct company's behalf to register and flag fake items. I think that if Kenner were still a company and they cared enough to fight bootleggers on Ebay there would only be a fraction of the fakes that you see proliferating now.
    Last edited by bodhi_tree777; 12-20-2012 at 03:40 PM.

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