John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

L’Oréal Unable to Do It eBay

tammy_faye_bakker_closeup_2005-750_750jpgCosmetics giant L’Oréal is 0-5 in its legal cases against eBay over the counterfeit perfumes and face creams listed on the auction site. Today the High Court in London ruled that eBay was “not jointly liable” for trademark infringements committed by its users, though it could do more to prevent them.

“There is nothing in eBay’s systems and policies which favours or encourages the listing or sale of counterfeit goods,” the Court wrote. “On the contrary, eBay Europe take active steps to prevent or at least minimise such activities. The fact that eBay could take further steps does not affect this….The fact that it would be possible for eBay Europe to do more does not necessarily mean that it is legally obliged to do more, however.”

Another disappointment for L’Oréal, whose legal campaign against eBay (EBAY) has met with similar defeats in France and Belgium (cases in Germany and Spain are still pending). Though the cosmetics giant was able to take solace in the court’s suggestion that eBay could be a bit more proactive in its efforts to prevent the sale of counterfeit goods on its site.

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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work