Affiliate Lawsuit Credit Card Lawsuit
It seems that there are some Amazon Affiliate members who have a problem with Amazon and their decision to charge affiliates money for an AdWords or other program. The problem with this is, there is nothing in the affiliate agreement that says the member must purchase anything through the member’s site. Therefore, one could argue that the fees Amazon charges their affiliates is a violation of their terms and conditions. You see, if you are a member, you agree to receive advertisements on your site and those advertisements must come from an approved Affiliate Network.
Amazon sued one of its members because they felt they were being used to run an AdWords campaign without the approval of Amazon.
What Amazon did was to terminate the account of this person because he was not following their terms and conditions. This caused the person to lose all his money. Now, I am sure you are saying, “But he had a credit card and he purchased something!” Wrong. He never had a credit card and he had to use money he earned working at his job as well as his money on an Amazon membership.
In this case, the Court did not find a breach of contract or any wrong doing by the member but instead focused on the fact that this individual had not used his credit card. We have all heard of people who have charged their credit cards on items they never wanted and then had to wait a long time for their credit card to be reimbursed. Amazon could have easily fined this individual because he used his credit card without authorization. Therefore, this one case was not about the Amazon Affiliates using their own credit cards but rather about whether or not he was using his own credit card and what exactly he was charging.
There are many things that we find interesting about this case.
For instance, Amazon may have been right in considering this but is it right in judging the amount an Affiliate owes an Amazon Company? Further, why would an Affiliate agree to accept an upfront fee for being an Affiliate? If you believe that Amazon has the right to ban anyone that does not follow their rules, then one must ask if Amazon has any rules about an Affiliate’s advertising. The bottom line is, no one knows what Amazon will or may have in the future.
We are also very interested in this case because an Affiliate tried to use the Amazon Consumer Services Division to sue Amazon in an effort to recoup monies that they claim they lost when they agreed to promote an affiliate program through this company. This is the exact opposite of what the Affiliates are attempting to do. The Affiliates’ claims are simply to recoup monies that they have invested in promoting an Amazon product. So, this whole lawsuit is simply a way for the Affiliate to collect a check from an already paid out situation. Are the judges correct in granting the motion? It would appear so based on the way the court attempted to handle the motion.
The Affiliate vs Amazon case is just one of many that the court has handled recently. In these cases it appears that the court will always find in favor of the Plaintiff’s position, which is based upon the ‘Dixon Rule’ of judicial review. This means that the court will uphold whatever decision the court group decides. However, the Amazon ruling could have an effect on future cases such as this and could change the rules for how a case is handled.