Did Amazon Headquarters Poach eBay’s Sellers?
eBay has officially thrown down the gauntlet after filing a lawsuit against Amazon (AMZN) alleging that they illegally sought to poach sellers from their site. This news comes after eBay had sent the tech giant a cease-and-desist letter earlier in October. eBay believes that over fifty Amazon representatives from across the globe were part of a coordinated scheme that has been taking place for years in which they sent out messages to some of eBay’s top sellers, soliciting them to take their sales to Amazon.
According to eBay, this wasn’t the work of a few discrete individuals but was actually coordinated from Amazon headquarters. The lawsuit claims that many of the accounts used to attempt to poach sellers were created using an Amazon IP address. The messages were sent using eBay’s direct messaging platform and many of them were quite similar or even identical. In particular, one person created three accounts and used them to send 120 offers to different sellers.
eBay’s direct messaging system’s user agreement directly forbids using the platform to negotiate sales that do not take place on the website or sharing outside information. If eBay’s accusations are true, then this would put the Amazon reps in serious violation of this agreement. Now that the lawsuit has been filed, all that remains is to wait for Amazon’s next move.
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