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eBay PowerSellers
According to eBay Power Sellers are 'the pillars of our community'. How come such honest eBay members steal our copyright images?

The PowerSeller Programme
As the pillars of our community, PowerSellers are committed to upholding and embracing the core community values that are the very foundation of eBay. They are exemplary members who are held to the highest standards of professionalism, having achieved and maintained a 98% positive feedback rating and an excellent sales performance record.

New - Changes to the PowerSeller Programme are coming!
On 20th February 2008, we will be making some significant and exciting changes to the UK and Ireland PowerSeller Programme. For the first time the PowerSeller Programme will offer sellers the opportunity for discounts on selling fees as well as some additional changes to the current qualification criteria. For full details on the changes and how they might affect you please visit the 2008 plans page.

Our New Symbol of Recognition
Look for the PowerSeller icon next to the member's user ID: that is our symbol of recognition for qualified PowerSellers. You can feel assured that your transaction will go smoothly and that you are dealing with a seller who has consistently met the requirements established by eBay.

Programme for UK and Ireland PowerSellers
Members have five tiers to aspire to - Bronze, Silver, Gold, Platinum and Titanium - each enjoying the PowerSeller Benefits reserved just for them. From fast track customer service and exclusive PowerSeller Programmes to 'best practice' discussion boards, our PowerSeller Programme is designed to help you grow your e-commerce business and increase profits on eBay. (should that read of eBay?)

Pillars or Pillocks?
All too often, we find that eBay members stealing our copyright images are not just first-timers, but apparently well-established eBay sellers, with enough feedback to qualify them as PowerSellers.
If these "pillars of the community" are dishonest enough to steal images, then it doesn't offer much hope for the rest of the eBay membership!

Other eBay PowerSellers or High Rollers

  • EstateJewelry66 Twin City Gold of Biddeford, Maine, United States
    PowerSeller with over 17,000 feedback stealing our images!

  • 2007 Gold Britannia Proof Set - au_coins
    An eBay PowerSeller who used our Gold Proof Set images.
    Feedback 663 Positive 100%

  • gardengamesandleisure
    Feedback 4093 Positive 99.4%
    We believe this member was previously a PowerSeller.

  • alwaysandrews
    Feedback 845 Positive 98.8%
    We believe this member may have previously been a PowerSeller.

  • hughcompscan2
    Feedback 501 Positive 98.6%
    We believe this member may have previously been a PowerSeller.

  • baytrader23
    Feedback 106 Positive 100%

  • treasureminx
    Feedback 122 Positive 98.4%
    Not a registered user

  • superiorcoinsuk
    An eBay PowerSeller, and UK dealer, who used one of our gold proof coin images.
    Feedback 2172Positive 98.1%

  • stuff565
    Feedback 617 Positive 99.6%

  • carrconnection
    Feedback 3,968 Positive 99.6%
    Stole our 1780 Maria Theresa Thaler Image

  • Specialty Outlets
    Feedback 11,288 Positive 100%
    Stole Images of 3 of Our Coins - 6 Images

  • Ingram Liberman A.K.A. The London Coin Company Limited
    Feedback 1,950 Positive 100%
    Stole Images of 3 of Our Coins - 6 Images

  • m-j-hughes-investments-2006
    Feedback 332 Positive 100%
    Stole Images of 2 of Our Proof Coins or Sets - 7 Listings £36,278

  • alma_banuelos - USA
    Feedback 4,522 Positive 99.7%
    Used an altered composite of one of our £20,000 kilo gold bars.

    An eBay PowerSeller who used our Gold Proof Set images. As we have given notice to this party of imminent legal action, we have temporarily disabled this link on legal advice. Watch this space.

  • Les.Chats.Noirs - Great Britain Moneta oro gold coin 50 pences 1994 Proof
    Yet another eBay seller, this one from Italy, stealing our gold proof fifty pence images.

    PowerSeller with 4423 feedback stealing our images.

    PowerSeller with 2186 feedback, now no longer a registered user.

  • Sportswarehouse222ct Gold Half Sovereign Elizabeth 11 1982 Coin Bullion
    Feedback of over 26,000!

The list above is only partial. We have included PowerSellers, and others with a high enough feedback to qualify. All the above have a positive feedback rating of over 98%. All have dishonestly used our high quality copyright coin images. None have apologised or offered us any compensation. All their feedback look sufficiently good to reassure most other eBay members, yet all have been demonstrated to be dishonest.
Our conclusion is that the eBay feedback system is a very poor and unreliable method of measuring the honesty and integrity of a member. We also conclude that eBay secretly condone copyright theft unless or until it is pointed out strongly to them under threat of legal action. Even then, in our experience, they are often slow, and appear reluctant to act firmly and promptly against dishonest members. eBay also profit from copyright theft unless Intellectual Property Rights Owners are vigilant enough to police and enforce their rights.

Who is eligible to become a PowerSeller?
Every month, eBay looks at member sales data and identifies those who are eligible to be invited to the PowerSeller programme. To qualify, members must:
  • * Uphold the eBay community values, including honesty, timeliness and mutual respect
  • * From 20th February 2008, be registered as a business on eBay
  • * Average a minimum of £750 (or the Euro exchange rate equivalent) in sales or 100 sold items per month, for three consecutive months
  • * Achieve an overall Feedback rating of 100, of which 98% or more is positive
  • * Have been an active member for 90 days
  • * Have an account in good financial standing
  • * Maintain a minimum of 4 average monthly listings for the past 3 months
  • * Comply with all eBay listing and marketplace policies

How do I maintain my current PowerSeller status?
PowerSeller programme eligibility is reviewed every month. To remain PowerSellers, members must:

  • * Uphold eBay community values, including honesty, timeliness, and mutual respect
  • * Maintain the minimum average monthly sales amount for your PowerSeller level
  • * Maintain a 98% positive total feedback rating
  • * Maintain an account in good financial standing
  • * Comply with all eBay listing and marketplace policies

Failure to comply with these requirements may result in the removal of a member's PowerSeller status.

Only may?
Why not will?
If eBay are so proud of their PowerSellers as "pillars of the community", why not state clearly that "Failure to comply with these requirements will result in the removal of a member's PowerSeller status.", rather than a rather soft and nebulous "may result"?
Of course, we could start to guess at a few reasons why not:
  • eBay might be making plenty of money from a particular member.
  • Not enough people may have complained.
  • The right people (police, consumer protection agencies, the media, etc.) may not have complained.

In the two eBay lists above, "Comply with all eBay listing and marketplace policies" is mentioned 8th out of 8, and 5th out of 5. Is this an indication these points are the lowest of eBay's priorities, and almost added as an afterthought? Actually, even you get round to reading the "listing and marketplace policies", most of them seem aimed at protecting eBay itself, and its income, rather than providing protection for the rest of the world community.
When we looked, this is what we found:

How do I comply with all eBay listing and marketplace policies?
To comply, you must not breach the Shill Bidding policy. In addition, breaches of any eBay policies may result in the loss of PowerSeller status. The following limits apply:

* Bronze 4 breaches in a 60-day period
* Silver/Gold 5 breaches in a 60-day period
* Platinum 6 breaches in a 60-day period
* Titanium 7 breaches in a 60-day period
(So the more money eBay make out of you, the more breaches you are permitted)

Severe policies: * Shill Bidding
* Excessive P&P Charge
* Misrepresentation of Identity
* Site Interference
* Transaction Interference
* User Agreement breaches that are not List Practices

Examples of other policies:
* Keyword Spamming
* Links Policy
* Choice Listings
* Misleading Titles
* Payment Surcharges
* Spam
* Categorisation of Listings

No Mention of Copyright?
What, no mention of copyright?
What about selling stolen goods?
It seems that these basic ethical points are so low on eBay's priority list, that they can't even be bothered to mention them. We think this points clearly to eBay's actual, but unspoken attitude towards ethics and legality - do whatever you can get away with, but don't get caught. If you do get caught, please don't implicate us, if you do we will disown you.

Other Copyright Abuse
Of course, it's not just eBay PowerSellers who steal our images.

Copyright Notice
Please see our "Copyright" page for further information.

Copyright Infringements Remedies
Our suggested draft remedies for copyright abusers dependent on category - competitors, bloggers, pseudo-expert & advice sites acting as eBay & Google portals, eBay & other auction site sellers.

Other Copyright Abuse

eBay PowerSeller Logo
eBay PowerSeller Logo

Modified 1974 Krugerrand Image As Used by Treasureminx
Modified 1974 Krugerrand Image As Used by eBay Ex-Member Treasureminx


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