Groundless threats and the Internet

David Bainbridge*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Operators of 'auction' type websites have little direct control over goods and services listed on those sites and some, such as eBay, operate a play-safe policy of removing or disabling access to material alleged to infringe an intellectual property right. In the case of eBay, it operates a Verified Rights Owner's Programme (VeRO). If a person reports something listed on eBay as infringing his or her intellectual property right, using the formal reporting procedure for doing this, eBay will remove the listing. It is of course, impossible for eBay and other similar organisations to make a judgment as to whether the allegation of infringement is justified. It seems that notifying organisations such as eBay that a listing infringes an intellectual property right may give rise to a groundless threats action where the right in question is one of those for which groundless threats actions are available.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)282-284
Number of pages3
JournalComputer Law and Security Report
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 22 May 2007


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