Germany says ebay has to take returns...
I'm sure that eBay will push this back onto sellers, but this is the first instance I'm aware of someone chipping away at eBay's argument that they are "just a venue". We'll see if the trend continues and works it's way across the salty atlantic.
Full article is here and here are the highlights:
Nov. 3 (Bloomberg) -- EBay Inc., the world's largest Internet auctioneer, isn't exempt from consumer protection rules that allow customers to return goods without a reason, Germany's highest civil court ruled.
The Federal Court of Justice in Karlsruhe said EBay doesn't meet the definition of an auction under German law, meaning that buyers of goods from professional sellers on the system don't have to have a reason in order to get a refund. German law excludes auctions from some rules on reversing purchases.
``The purpose of a right to return goods was created in the interest of consumer protection'' and should be limited to only a few cases, the court said in an e-mailed statement. ``The consumer who buys a product in an Internet auction is exposed to the same risks as in other forms of distant selling.''
San Jose, California-based EBay made more than a third of its $2.17 billion in revenue outside of the U.S. last year.
The case centers on an unidentified jeweler who sold a diamond bracelet on the service and never received any money because the buyer wasn't happy with the purchase.