by Mike Masnick
Mon, Nov 30th 2009 4:45pm
While more and more courts seem to be understanding that eBay shouldn't be responsible for what users are selling on its site, it appears that French courts are a bit confused. Last year, a French court fined eBay $63 million because counterfeit LVMH products were being sold on the site. Of course, eBay has no way of knowing what's legit and what's not, but the French court didn't seem to care. A similar case, also involving LVMH, but concerning Google ads, was also ruled in LVMH's favor, but it was appealed to the European Court of Justice, and a judge there has already indicated that it makes little sense to blame the company. But that isn't stopping the French courts. eBay has now been fined yet again, because of a French ban on selling even legally purchased brands of LVMH perfumes if you're not an authorized distributor. eBay is appealing the ruling, saying that banning the resale of legally purchased goods doesn't make sense and harms consumers. However, a much bigger question is why eBay should be liable at all. It's not eBay doing the selling, but users on the site.
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