Craigslist, ecommerce, Silicon Valley, Web/Tech

Not a Fight eBay Wants to Pick

More has come to light of the weird eBay-Craigslist spat. Cnet has a nice breakdown.  In short, Craigslist felt eBay's classified site Kijiji breached some arrangement about eBay competing with Craigslist, so they diluted their share a few points. eBay now can't have a director on Craigslist's board.

I'm not attorney, but it's unclear to me why eBay would have legal rights here. It's a minority shareholder. Aren't there always provisions to allow companies to dilute shareholders, should they suddenly be perceived as a threat? If any attorneys are reading please let me know.

More to the point-- is this really a fight eBay wants to pick?

What exactly is the end game? So they lose a few percentages of Craigslist. Newmark insists the company isn't selling or going public, so then it's all about control. Why is eBay so intent on controlling Craigslist if not for anti-competitive reasons?

What eBay will gain is a PR black eye. People adore Craigslist. And eBay is increasingly vilified by users for playing games with fees. That and it has gone from charming flea market to sprawling, hard to navigate Wal-Mart of the web, where there's more BUT IT NOW! deals on socks than cool, kitschy collectibles. Not saying the mass market isn't a better business, just saying they're not the beloved brand they once were.

There's more to this story than what's in the filings. Anyone with insight leave it in the comments or email me.


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

The comments to this entry are closed.

"Brilliant, Crazy, Cocky" puts a well-deserved spotlight on the fascinating entrepreneurs working in some of the most overlooked places on Earth. This book reminds us that when entrepreneurial opportunity is enabled and embraced locally, the economic and social benefits have the power to transform us all.
Brilliant. Crazy. Cocky.

New Book

An unforgettable portrait of the emerging world's entrepreneurial dynamos Brilliant, Crazy, Cocky is the story about that top 1% of people who do more to change their worlds through greed and ambition than politicians, NGOs and nonprofits ever can. This new breed of self-starter is taking local turmoil and turning it into opportunities, making millions, creating thousands of jobs and changing the face of modern entrepreneurship at the same time. To tell this story, Lacy spent forty weeks traveling through Asia, South America and Africa hunting down the most impressive up-and-comers the developed world has never heard of....yet.

Excerpt »

Buy it from these sellers

Srah Lacy

Sarah Lacy is an award-winning reporter who has covered high-growth entrepreneurship for more than fifteen years. She is the founder, CEO and Editor-in-Chief of, the site-of-record for the startup ecosystem. She lives in San Francisco.

Learn more »


Get updates delivered directly to your inbox. Just enter your email address and click Subscribe: