A class action suit has been filed against eBay Inc. charging that the online auction site did not deliver the full amount of auction time that sellers paid for and did not start auctions when listings were submitted. EBay argues that the suit is a rehash of one that was previously settled.
The newest lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in the Northern District of California. It charges eBay with "Unlawful, unfair, fraudulent and unconscionable tactics whereby eBay uniformly represents in its 'Online Auction Format' that customers can select an eBay auction to last for a specific period of time, and the auction will begin when submitted. In reality, the auctions do not begin when submitted and customers routinely receive less auction time than they select and pay to receive."
The suit further contends that eBay's auction practices violate various provisions of California statutes intended to protect consumers, as well as common law.
The online auction company countered by filing a motion to dismiss the suit. That motion cites the outcome of a previous settled case, which eBay asserts was essentially the same claim and therefore binding on the current suit.
The class action suit names Michael Ewert, an independent eBay seller based in Colorado, as the lead plaintiff. He "seeks to enjoin eBay's unlawful activities and recovers damages on behalf of himself and all persons who were harmed," according to Williams Kherkher Hart Boundas LLP, the Houston law firm that brought the class action suit, which reports that it has been contacted by others seeking to join the plaintiff.
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