January 29, 2013
At issue was whether eBay could be held liable under different state-law theories for suspending the plaintiffs’ user account after eBay received third-party reports that the plaintiffs were misrepresenting goods offered for sale on eBay’s site. The trial court held that plaintiffs, sellers of vintage textiles and fabrics, failed to state any cognizable claims against eBay and, in doing so, ruled that the eBay User Agreement provided eBay the legal right to suspend the plaintiffs’ account. The trial court also rejected the plaintiffs’ allegation that eBay violated California antitrust laws by prohibiting the plaintiffs from continuing to do business on eBay.
On appeal, the Court of Appeal held that the plaintiffs failed to state any legally cognizable claim against eBay for intentional interference with prospective economic advantage and specifically rejected plaintiffs’ allegations that eBay engaged in anticompetitive conduct that resulted in any tortious acts of interference.
This news appeared in the following outlets (may require registration/subscription):
- Courthouse News Service: Ousted EBay Seller Loses Antitrust Claims (February 4, 2013)
- San Jose Mercury News: eBay antitrust victory a warning to scheming customers (February 6, 2013)
- Bloomberg Businessweek: eBay antitrust victory a warning to scheming customers [San Jose Mercury News] (February 6, 2013)
- Equities.com: eBay antitrust victory a warning to scheming customers [San Jose Mercury News] (February 6, 2013)
- Carlsbad Current-Argus: eBay antitrust victory a warning to scheming customers (February 6, 2013)
- The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel: Weil Grows Its New York Office; Wins Appellate Victory For Client (February 14, 2013)
- EcommerceBytes.com: Antitrust Victory Affirms eBay's Right to Pull Sellers' Accounts (February 21, 2013)