Going once, going twice … sold! Court addresses eBay’s liability for contributory infringement
Abstract: The popularity of Internet auction services such as eBay has proven to be a boon for sellers of counterfeit goods. In frustration, some trademark owners have fought back by going after not only the sellers for direct infringement, but also the service providers for contributory infringement. In one recent case, the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals looked at eBay’s “generalized knowledge” of counterfeiting on its site and considered whether it should impose liability for contributory infringement. A sidebar discusses how, even though the court found for eBay, it remanded the plaintiff’s false advertising claim for further consideration.