EcommerceBytes-NewsFlash, Number 1542 - May 21, 2007     1 of 4

You Blog It, eBay Owns It (too), Says New User Agreement

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eBay has updated its User Agreement and Privacy Policy, including the section that gives eBay rights to user content and the section it calls "Abusing eBay."

eBay has always claimed rights to auction descriptions, and in fact, it grants its affiliates permission to republish them. Now, in addition to content areas such as seller listings, feedback comments, "About Me" profile pages and discussion boards, eBay has numerous Web 2.0 content areas, allowing buyers and sellers to write reviews and guides and publish blogs and wikis. Not to mention videos embedded in eBay listings.

By being a member of eBay, users now grant eBay a content license that reads, "When you give us content, you grant us a non-exclusive, worldwide, perpetual, irrevocable, royalty-free, sublicensable (through multiple tiers) right to exercise the copyright, publicity, and database rights (but no other rights) you have in the content, in any media known now or in the future."

Somewhat ironically, eBay users are not allowed to export their feedback to other sites or marketplaces, and in 2004, eBay banned users from storing their eBay listings with a service called ( The new user agreement takes effect immediately for users registering as of May 16, 2007, and on July 9, 2007, for current users.

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

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