Menu
EBay and Google in 'handbag' fight

EBay and Google in 'handbag' fight

A contrite and repentant Google. canceled a party that irked eBay and that a source said led eBay to remove all of its ads from Google's US network earlier this week.

On Monday, Google announced it would throw a party in Boston on Thursday evening (US time) designed to attract eBay merchants who would be in town to attend the eBay Live annual seller conference.

The purpose of the party: protesting eBay's decision to forbid merchants in its marketplace from using Google's Checkout online transaction system.

EBay found Google's move to be in bad taste and, at some point after the party was announced, eBay took the drastic measure of pulling all of its ads from Google's AdWords U.S. network.

A source familiar with the situation said that the decision to turn off the ads had come from eBay's top executives who were steaming over what they perceived as a low blow by Google designed to embarrass eBay in front of its top merchants.

It would be hard to disagree with eBay executives' assessment, considering the mocking tone of Google's party announcement , encouraging eBay merchants to gather at the Old South Meeting House, where in 1773 mass protest meetings were held, leading to the Boston Tea Party.

"We'll use the same spot where revolutionaries launched the Boston Tea Party to celebrate freedom with free food, free drinks, free live music -- even free massages," the official blog posting reads.

Then, on Wednesday afternoon, Google unexpectedly cancelled the party, after its officials apparently determined they had gone too far.

"eBay Live attendees have plenty of activities to keep them busy this week in Boston, and we did not want to detract from that activity. After speaking with officials at eBay, we at Google agreed that it was better for us not to feature this event during the eBay Live conference," reads a posting on that same blog.

EBay, which had earlier blasted Google for the planned party, said it was pleased with Google's decision. "It's reassuring to see that Google recognizes that their actions were inappropriate. We're pleased that our partner chose to do the right thing and cancel their event," eBay said in a statement.

However, eBay is keeping its ads off AdWords, eBay spokesman Hani Durzy said. EBay Live begins Thursday in Boston.

The spat is yet another sign of what many consider a significant deterioration of relations between the two Internet giants in recent years, as Google has become a partial competitor to eBay.

Earlier Wednesday, Durzy said the decision to pull out the ads wasn't related to the party and characterized it as an ordinary experiment by eBay, similar to others the company constantly does to determine the best allocation of its advertising and marketing budget.

But there is nothing ordinary about eBay and Google, and the pullout is likely to have significant repercussions for both companies while it lasts: EBay is the largest paid search advertiser in the U.S. and Google is the country's largest paid search ad network.

At the centre of this week's confrontation is Google's Checkout online transaction system, introduced about a year ago and so far banned from the eBay sites. EBay argues Checkout doesn't have enough of a track record yet, while Google charges eBay with trying to protect its own PayPal online payment system. In addition to Checkout, Google has been entering eBay territory with other products like its Base listings service.

In May of last year, eBay and Yahoo struck a wide-ranging partnership that, among other things, made Yahoo the exclusive provider of search and display ads within US eBay sites.

Although Google performs a similar function for eBay sites outside of the US, the eBay-Yahoo tie up was seen as a defensive move by eBay and Yahoo against Google.

Google hasn't replied to requests seeking comment.


Follow Us

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags GoogleebayYahoo

Featured

Slideshows

Looking back at the top 15 M&A deals in NZ during 2017

Looking back at the top 15 M&A deals in NZ during 2017

In 2017, merger and acquisitions fever reached new heights in New Zealand, with a host of big name deals dominating the headlines. Reseller News recaps the most important transactions of the Kiwi channel during the past 12 months.

Looking back at the top 15 M&A deals in NZ during 2017
Kiwi channel closes 2017 with After Hours

Kiwi channel closes 2017 with After Hours

The channel in New Zealand came together to celebrate the close of 2017, as the final After Hours played out in front of a bumper Auckland crowd.

Kiwi channel closes 2017 with After Hours
Meet the top performing HP partners in NZ

Meet the top performing HP partners in NZ

HP honoured leading partners across the channel at the Partner Awards 2017 in New Zealand, recognising excellence across the entire print and personal systems portfolio.

Meet the top performing HP partners in NZ
Show Comments