eBay Loses Court Case To Louis Vuitton

    February 11, 2010

The Paris District Court ruled today that eBay is liable for harming the reputation of luxury goods maker Louis Vuitton through its use of trademarks, company name and domain name.

The Paris court has ordered eBay to stop using keywords which harm the reputation of the Louis Vuitton brand to promote its sites and will impose penalties of  $1,372 (1,000 euros) for future violations.

"Louis Vuitton welcomes this decision, which confirms established case law that aims to protect the consumer from the illicit use of company trademarks," said Nathalie Moull-Berteaux, Global Intellectual Property Director of Louis Vuitton.

The court also ordered eBay to pay $274,407 (200,000 euros) in damages to Louis Vuitton. eBay has also been ordered to pay $41,161 (30,000 euros) to reimburse the legal costs of Luis Vuitton.
"This case is about the use of Adwords to direct buyers’ listings for authentic goods from eBay sellers," said Yohan Ruso, director general of eBay France.

"This issue is being used by certain Rights Owners as an excuse to retain total control of what people can buy, where they can buy it from, and how much they have to pay. This is why 750,000 Europeans signed a petition to the European Parliament last year, protesting barriers to Internet trade."