Earlier this month, we reported that eBay had accused Amazon of foul play. Now, eBay has made its frustrations official by filing a complaint with the California Superior Court.
On Wednesday, eBay filed a complaint with a Californian court claiming Amazon “perpetuated a scheme to infiltrate and exploit eBay’s internal member email system”. According to the filing, eBay is demanding a trial by jury after Amazon tried to “recruit high-value eBay sellers” to its own marketplace.
In the complaint, the online marketplace claims Amazon has been utilising dirty tactics since 2015 and the “breadth and scope of Amazon’s conduct is startling.” eBay was reportedly made aware of the tactic when a seller notified the company of Amazon’s conduct.
News of Amazon’s misconduct first broke at the start of October, when The Wall Street Journal reported that eBay sent Amazon a cease and desist letter, alleging Amazon’s misconduct on its internal seller’s email system.
In the letter, eBay demanded its competitor stop poaching its merchants immediately. Further investigation into the matter revealed that approximately 50 Amazon employees have sent more than 1,000 messages to eBay sellers over a three-year period. In the messages, the employees have reportedly been telling sellers to leave the platform in favour of its own marketplace.
If proven, Amazon’s actions could prove damaging to the business, as the alleged poaching contravenes eBay’s user agreements and could be regarded as foul play under Californian law.
Amazon is yet to comment on the allegations.