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EcommerceBytes-NewsFlash, Number 1811 - June 13, 2008 - ISSN 1539-5065    0 of 5

eBay Challenges ACCC Ruling on PayPal-only Policy

By Ina Steiner
June 13, 2008

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eBay issued a statement to say it would challenge a government agency's intention to rule against its PayPal-only policy in Australia. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) issued a draft notice on Thursday stating it believed consumers were in the best position to determine whether PayPal offered the best features in terms of security, fraud protection, dispute resolution and insurance at the price offered.

eBay issued its statement on Friday titled, "eBay will continue to fight for safety benefits for consumers." eBay said it challenged the ACCC's draft notice and said it intends to work with the agency. eBay stated that it "hopes to achieve a final outcome which has the safety and security of eBay's members as its paramount objective."

eBay said it would delay its plans to implement its PayPal-only policy until July l5, 2008. The policy was originally scheduled to take effect next Tuesday, and eBay confirmed it still planned to increase PayPal buyer protection to $20,000 on eBay.com.au beginning June 17, 2008.

An Australian classified site called Trading Post (http://www.tradingpost.com.au) recently added online auction capability, and it issued a statement in response the recent developments. "The Trading Post is urging the large numbers of Australian buyers and sellers outraged by the recent actions of eBay to vote with their feet and support the growing number of local businesses providing competition and choice in the online marketplace." The company also called eBay's PayPal-only plan "anti-competitive" in nature, and Sensis Classifieds General Manager Stephen Hughes said that was why eBay was reluctant to introduce such a change in the US.

Meanwhile, Phil Leahy, who heads an organization of Australian eBay sellers called PESA, said the ACCC decision ws welcomed by all Australia eBay sellers. "It is a victory for common sense. We applaud the decision by the ACCC, effectively "leveling the playing field" for online payment methods." Leahy went on to say, "Australians buyers and sellers fully support the availability of all payment options to create a healthy and robust marketplace. This is in our national interest."

eBay told users on an Announcement Board post that it was in the process of changing messaging on its website to reflect the new date of the policy start date from June 17 to July 15, 2008, and would be complete within the coming days.


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About the author:

Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.

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