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eBay Automatic Bidding Class Action Lawsuit

By Sarah Pierce


eBayA federal class action lawsuit claims eBay’s Automatic Bidding process violates its responsibility to act as a neutral middleman by taking the side of bidders to ensure they pay less than what they’re willing to pay.

According to the eBay class action lawsuit, eBay’s User Agreement states it is “not involved in the actual transaction between buyers and sellers,” yet its Automatic Bidding process “intermeddles” with the relationship between buyers and sellers.

“Contrary to its User Agreement, eBay does not act neutrally in the transaction, but instead injects itself into the transaction by intercepting the bid amount before it is received by the seller,” the eBay Automatic Bidding class action lawsuit states. As a result, eBay “takes sides with the bidder to ensure that the bidder pays less for the item being sold.”

For example, if the bidder places a bid of $100 for a seller’s item, “meaning the bidder has committed himself to purchase the item for that price should he win the auction, [eBay] intercepts that bid before it reaches the seller and, instead of transmitting that bid accurately as $100, informs the seller that the bidder has bid some lesser amount, like $95, for the item,” the class action lawsuit states.

“[eBay] all the while keeps secret and hidden from the seller that the bidder’s actual bid was for $100. Thus, if the auction were to close at that time, the seller is shortchanged $5 solely as a result of [eBay’s] intermeddling.”

The eBay Automatic Bidding class action lawsuit is brought on behalf of anyone who sold items on eBay traditional auctions during the period from December 30, 2007 through the final decision on class certification. It is seeking compensation for Class Members for their damages and injuries, as well as restitution.

A copy of the eBay Automatic Bidding Class Action Lawsuit can be read here.

The case is Marshall Block v. eBay, Inc., Case No. 11-cv-06718, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California.


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Updated February 2nd, 2012


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1 Comment

  • Anonymous February 15, 2012

    How can I be apart to claim my hare? Ebay has scammed me out of thousands!!

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