Craigslist's Response To eBay: We Had To Do It!

from the well,-that's-one-way-to-think-about-it dept

After eBay sued Craigslist, Craigslist's initial responses were rather weak. eBay made a pretty strong case arguing that Craigslist's board had unilaterally diluted eBay's shares -- which seems pretty questionable. Craigslist initially shot back by accusing eBay of doing the same things eBay was accusing Craigslist of doing -- but that was somewhat misleading. eBay wasn't complaining about the specific actions Craigslist was taking -- but the fact that they had done so unilaterally, despite eBay's ownership stake and board position. Then, Craigslist countersued eBay with a laundry list of charges that effectively amounted to "we don't like them being on our board." Both of these responses were a bit disappointing. While I like Craigslist, and respect Craig and Jim, they still hadn't explained why it was legal for them to unilaterally dilute eBay's shares.

The company has now, finally, filed a response to the lawsuit, which effectively seems to say "we had no choice, since eBay being on our board was such a problem." Basically, the argument is that, as board members, they needed to do what was in the best interests of the company -- and that meant getting eBay off the board through any means possible. Unfortunately, that's still just not convincing. It's an "ends justify the means" argument, which seems very un-Craigslist-like. As much as it may be true that eBay being on the board was a problem, that still doesn't allow existing shareholders to unilaterally change the ownership structure of the company. Maybe there's more to this, but so far, it's hard to see how Craigslist wins this in court.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    some old guy, May 19th, 2008 @ 3:39am

    Sacrifice

    In other words, they would rather go down in flames than let ebay consume and corrupt them.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    identicon
    Tim Bobbitybim, May 19th, 2008 @ 4:00am

    Re: Sacrifice

    Much as it pains me to take the side of eBay, Craigslist have already begun their descent if they're resorting to what is in effect stealing from (some of) the owners.

    There's nothing noble in this. They led themselves down the path to being consumed when they sold partial ownership to eBay.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 19th, 2008 @ 4:57am

    Never though I would read the world unilateral so many times in one story.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
    identicon
    Thundercracker, May 19th, 2008 @ 6:05am

    Ebay has got them

    Based on what I have seen, Ebay has got them by the short and curlys.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 19th, 2008 @ 6:22am

    This reminds me of the Citrix vs Microsoft debacle.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6.  
    identicon
    Nate, May 19th, 2008 @ 6:43am

    Craigslist is going to go the way of the dodo, if they don't do something to improve themselves. I think this is what Ebay wants, though. Craigslist is grasping at straws here. http://www.custompcmax.com

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
    icon
    Jim (profile), May 19th, 2008 @ 6:45am

    Who really started this?

    I have no idea if it matters but did eBay not create a Craigslist clone after getting its stock ownership of Craigslist. That seems not very cool to me. What can a public company do about that?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
    identicon
    sage, May 19th, 2008 @ 8:38am

    Craigslist did not sell shares to Ebay. Ebay got them from an ex employee.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
    identicon
    Overcast, May 19th, 2008 @ 11:06am

    Who cares? Maybe it's good and will give the newspapers a reason to exist. I'll use craigslist while it's out there, but E-bay with Pay-Pal = hassle.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10.  
    identicon
    Jeremy, May 19th, 2008 @ 1:38pm

    Companies are not democracies it is survival of the fit.

    Craig should have fought off ebay from the beginning. Why would you want the people who see you as competition on your board? If craiglist was not around think of how a sad lot sellers would be not having this great free resource and how much more ebay could charge.

    What did Craig think ebay would do on their board? Was he thinking they would be twiddling there thumbs while they watched all the potential ebay sellers list on Craig's portal for free! Come on, who didn't see this coming?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 19th, 2008 @ 1:52pm

    ebay is the walmart of the internet...

    employing ruthless business practices in order to ensure world domination can continue.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12.  
    identicon
    Rahulbajaj, May 27th, 2008 @ 3:29am

    Fight can harm both

    The fight between Craigslist and ebay(kijiji) is certainly affecting their brand value in the market. These website are well reputed and have a huge pool of users. I myself use these classified to buy or sell nearly anthing. Also i use clickindia.com and sometime thisismyindia.com.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
    identicon
    Hank Freid, May 29th, 2008 @ 11:30pm

    Craigslist's Response

    Rahulbajaj has rightly said that their fight is affecting the products.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14.  
    identicon
    indyaz, Sep 6th, 2009 @ 7:08am

    Fight is bad Result

    Both are(ebay, Craigslist) respected company if they fight each other then affecting their brand value in the market.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15.  
    identicon
    Free ads, Jan 10th, 2010 @ 9:52pm

    Top india classified site

    Much as it pains me to take the side of eBay, Craigslist have already begun their descent if they're resorting to what is in effect stealing from (some of) the owners.

    There's nothing noble in this. They led themselves down the path to being consumed when they sold partial ownership to eBay.

    Top india classified site
    Adsglobe.com

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  16.  
    icon
    sunshine (profile), Oct 26th, 2010 @ 4:32am

    New classifieds site

    jeejuads.com is a newly launched indian classifieds site. check out :)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here
Get Techdirt’s Daily Email
Save me a cookie
  • Note: A CRLF will be replaced by a break tag (<br>), all other allowable HTML will remain intact
  • Allowed HTML Tags: <b> <i> <a> <em> <br> <strong> <blockquote> <hr> <tt>
Follow Techdirt
A word from our sponsors...
Essential Reading
Techdirt Reading List
Techdirt Insider Chat
A word from our sponsors...
Recent Stories
A word from our sponsors...

Close

Email This