Monday, October 16, 2006

Make Sure you have Permission to Sell that Product.

Recently, two large eBay sellers were suspended for 7 - 14 days for VeRO (Verified Rights Owner) violations. These suspensions could have a huge impact on their business even putting them out of business.

If you currently sell or plan to sell on eBay please take some time to review eBay's guidelines on VeRO so that you can take the appropriate steps to avoid the same fate. It is important for you to have permission to sell specific products, use images and product copy. Be Careful What You (Re)Sell On EBay


Frank Ross said...

A better question might be "does the supplier forbid or restrict selling on eBay"? There are very few suppliers that will say outright "Gee we would love to have you sell on eBay". It's more like you have to read the fineprint to determine if they have such restrictions. Most often those kinds of restrictions can be found in the Terms and Conditions documentation. Sometimes they will name eBay by name or othertimes they might just say something like "online auction sites". I have seen it where a supplier rep will say something verbally like "we don't allow selling on eBay" and then when I go to look for that policy, there is nothing documented in writing. In those cases I go ahead and put it on eBay anyway with the idea that an undocumented policy is not really enforceable. However, I'm sure I'd remove the listings if asked.

The copyright thing is pretty weak here, since it looks like she took her own photos. It's more likely she violated some T & C because this attorney makes reference to "distribution policies". I can't really imagine what the seller in this case can hope to gain by not removing the listing.

This really illustrates 3 points. 1st, before you sell something, read the T & C or whatever they call them, to determine if eBay selling is restricted. 2nd, have a legit business (it isn't clear whether this seller is a legit business). Only then will you have open lines of communication with your supplier or supplier rep and can get this stuff out of the way from the start. 3rd, have lots of product lines (it looks like she does) so you can ditch the line and move on to something else if something like this happens.

Randy Smythe said...

Frank, very nice post. You might consider submitting this to Associated Content. I would like to comment on some of your points in an article that I am doing. Email me when you get a chance.