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Amazon accessory seller sues Apple, Amazon after listings removed

updated 07:03 am EDT, Wed July 2, 2014

Deleted accessory listings, counterfeit accusations prompt Amazon seller lawsuit

An accessories retailer has filed a lawsuit against Amazon and Apple, over removed product listing requests and lost sales. Filed last week, Hard 2 Find Accessories claims Amazon took down product listings from its site and suspended its seller's account after a request by Apple, a move which is allegedly costing Hard 2 Find more than $180,000 a month in lost revenues.

The suit alleges Apple complained about the listings to Amazon because it believed the items being sold were counterfeit, reports CNET, with Hard 2 Find accusing the two companies "anti-competitive". The filing alleges that "Apple and Amazon have engaged in conspiratory and/or concerted action that involves Apple monitoring Amazon's sellers (like H2F) for selling items at an 'aggressive price point'," that Amazon withheld payments for long periods of time, and that Amazon failed to conduct a "thorough investigation" of Apple's complaint.

Hard 2 Find is asking for compensation covering "all injuries and damages" suffered by the company, "all damages allowed by law," attorney and expert fees, and costs. Hard 2 Find is also requesting for a trial by jury.

Apple did not pass comment on the lawsuit to the report, while an Amazon spokesperson advised the company does not talk about active litigation or individual sellers in public.

This is not the only time Amazon has had issues with companies selling products through its online store. In May, Amazon pulled access to its store from Mediabridge, after the networking company sued an Amazon reviewer for leaving negative comments for one of its products. The retailer also blocked pre-orders for movies in an attempt to improve its position in negotiations with Warner Bros., a tactic it is still employing against book publisher Hachette, while its sheer size and influence has led to accusations of bullying from independent publishers.

Hard 2 Find complaint by CNET News

By Electronista Staff
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  1. pottymouth

    Forum Regular

    Joined: 11-19-03

    Does not compute.

    If the items WERE counterfeit, there's no case.
    If the items were NOT counterfeit, why were they removed?

  1. prl99

    Mac Enthusiast

    Joined: 03-24-09 sells lots of accessories including a bunch of Apple power chargers and cords. They use Apple part numbers but I wonder where they got them. There's nothing on their website that talks about who they are, only an email. Bizapedia lists them as being a Suffern, NY company.

  1. Makosuke

    Forum Regular

    Joined: 08-06-01

    Whether these guys were counterfeit or not, this does illustrate the dangers of a retail monoculture (you can't quite call Amazon a full monopoly yet, but they're pretty close)--if that one retailer pulls your product, you might as well not be selling it, even if you can technically make it available elsewhere.

    Whether the loss of business is deserved in this specific case hinges on whether the genuine Apple or other branded stuff they're selling is, in fact, counterfeit or not, but the point proved is the same either way--even if these guys deserved it, it's just as easy for Amazon to shut down a seller who didn't if they felt like it.

  1. elroth

    Junior Member

    Joined: 07-05-06

    If they're selling fake Apple power chargers, they're endangering peoples' lives (several fires have been started by fake Apple chargers in Asia). I wonder if somebody bought one and complained to Apple that it was bogus.

  1. Flying Meat

    Dedicated MacNNer

    Joined: 01-25-07

    ...or tried to sue Apple for damages.

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