Amazon can now be sued over third-party sales on its platform, a federal court ruled today, setting a potentially damaging precedent for the company.
We all know Amazon sells goods itself, and that it also allows vendors to sell their products through its Marketplace platform, whilst taking a percentage of the sales in the process.
In 2014, Heather Oberdorf bought dog collar from a Marketplace seller. It broke on a walk, causing the collar to go flying in the air, hitting her eye, and then sadly permanently blinding her in one eye. The seller has since vanished. Oberdorf sued Amazon, accusing the company of negligence.
A district court in Pennsylvania found that Amazon couldn’t be sued because it wasn’t a “seller” under the law, and because it is protected by Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, But Oberdorf appealed the ruling, and today, the appeals court largely found in her favour.
So this highlights a growing problem on the Amazon Marketplace. No controls. Have you seen how many companies are selling copy cat goods, cheap electrical goods and more. And often many product listings have fake reviews too. Amazon’s Marketplace has got so large, its needs some means of better quality control. Do you agree?