eBay seller sues overly zealous verification company

eBay on keyboardAn eBay seller is suing a third party company used by the online auction site which keeps reporting its items as counterfeit – even though they are genuine.

Paul Ticen of the firm McFadden Ticen & Beam has brought the lawsuit to the District of Arizona against Dutch company React, for actions it took against it through the eBay VeRO programme, which verifies that goods sold on the site are the real deal.

McFadden Ticen & Beam says it sells goods on behalf of Factory Effex and LRG under a distributor agreement. The company manufactures, advertises and sells motocross graphics, apparel and accessories pursuant to different licensing agreements with several iconic brands in the motocross industry, such as Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki and Kawasaki.

But despite the firm explaining this deal to React the lawsuit alleges that the firm has continued to ignore its pleas and has now restricted the company's eBay account, therefore damaging the company's ability to do business and prompting the lawsuit.

React's members include well-known American brands such as Apple, Harley-Davidson, Jack Daniel's Properties and the European subsidiaries of Japanese automotive giants Kawasaki, Honda and Yamaha.

The company is part of eBay's VeRO (Verified Rights Owner) Programme, which is designed to protect brand owners and consumers from the sale and purchase of counterfeit goods and/or goods that otherwise infringe upon the intellectual property rights of brand owners.

eBay's VeRO programme enables brand owners, or those acting on their behalf like SNB-React, to proactively identify counterfeit and/or infringing listings and for eBay to expeditiously remove same.
This is an important process for eBay to assure its users that the products purchased on the site are genuine.

But Ticen alleges that in his case, this has gone too far, and the firm has been unwilling to amend its decision to restrict its eBay account, and has also had the effect of damaging his company's reputation.

Both LRG and McFadden Ticen & Beam are seeking out damages from React, although this may prove tricky given that it is using an Arizona court to sue a Dutch firm.

In 2013, React says it undertook 34,144 cases, seized 13,726,987 goods, closed 588,057 online auctions and took down 8,524 websites.

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