Three and a half years ago, famed jeweler Tiffany sued eBay
because people were selling counterfeit Tiffany goods on the auction site. As we noted at the time, it doesn't make any sense at all to sue eBay, since it's not eBay who's doing anything wrong. Tiffany's CEO has now basically admitted that, but doesn't seem to mind. At a hearing in the lawsuit, CEO Michael Kowalski admitted that the firm was suing eBay because it was hard to find the actual sellers
. That may make sense in the mind of a Tiffany exec, but the way laws work is that you don't get to sue the person or company who's easy
to find just because those actually responsible are hard to find. When a robber holds up a Tiffany store, does Kowalski sue the maker of the getaway car, because the robber can't be found? The company does admit that it sues the individuals when they can be found, but the CEO refers to them as "phantasms" and claimed it made more sense to just focus on eBay, saying that the real fault is "the distribution network, not the seller." Next thing you know, Kowalski will be suing the internet itself. After all, it's "the network, not the seller."