Legal Issues

by Mike Masnick

More State Laws Causing Problems For eBay Sellers

from the out-dated-laws dept

It seems you can't go a day without finding some sort of out-dated law that isn't quite ready for an internet-enabled world. Earlier this month, there was the story of a new law in Ohio that would force eBay sellers to get an auctioneer's license (which requires a one-year apprenticeship). However, it turns out that many states already have very similar laws, mostly targeted at traditional pawn and consignment shops. In some cases, these laws require anyone selling goods on consignment to file a daily report to police, including home info and fingerprints of those trying to sell items. Can you imagine going into a place like AuctionDrop and having them fingerprint you? Some (mainly existing pawn and consignment shops) are pushing for state officials to start enforcing those laws -- especially against all of those new eBay middleman shops like AuctionDrop. However, the laws are not really written in a way to separate out these shops from individual sellers, which could make it tricky. The reality of the situation is that these existing pawn and consignment shops are simply using this as a way to get at the online competition, when they should be more focused on why we have these laws in the first place. Of course, it might not matter all that much, as it appears many of these eBay middleman shops aren't doing particularly well -- but for the individual seller at home, it could be a potential regulatory nightmare.

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  • identicon
    Auction Guy, 8 Mar 2008 @ 10:23am

    Yea the would be crazy, how would that work anyway? If your selling your own items I don't see a need to go get a license to use an online auction, maybe if you were going to open a traditional brick and motor shop.

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