Friday, June 06, 2008

eBay asked to cease ALL sales of ivory products

As reported on SlashDot:

"eBay is being pressured by an animal welfare group to ban sales of ivory and animal tooth products on its site. Although eBay is in compliance with the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species when it warns users that such postings may be inviolation of national and international law, the International Fund for Animal Welfare is demanding they the go a step further to search for and delete any posting of ivory products."


Why is this important to people who don't even use eBay? This would be an unprecedented restriction on freedom. Ivory is not an illegal substance to OWN in the US or any place in the world I know of. It has no illegal uses and not all ivory is obtained by poachers.

I recently had an estate that I liquidated at the flea market and on eBay with some ivory rings and figurines - I have no idea how the ivory was obtained (long long ago) ... all I know is that my family who owned it and certainly not I contributed to anything illegal (even if creating a demand for it). I do know that MY SELLING IT placed old (already harvested) ivory back onto the market and prevented NEW ivory from coming onto the market.

I've noticed that my local flea market is essentially following all the bans from eBay and that newspapers have already banned a significant number of items for sale in the classifieds ... yard sales will be next.

If eBay really wanted to stop death, fraud, and destruction in the world they would ban sales of diamonds - a business with a much sinister and evil group; slave trading and mistreating mine workers.


Anonymous said...

I 100% agree with everything in the post. Any efforts to stop ivory harvesting in the world needs to focus on new products and the existing poaching problem. What is the sense of banning the sale of older merchandise that has value to people and doesn't contribute to further ivory harvesting? The argument that it creates or promotes the market is just silly.

The diamond trade is definitely a much more compelling issue as it deals with human rights violations and corruption at all levels. If you give me a choice between protesting the abuse of elephants/walruses/etc and the abuse of human beings I won't have to think too hard about which way I'm going on that.

These trunk-huggers are just looking for yet another way to promote and publicize their cause and this is not the way to do it. Ebay needs to stop being a political entity and function as it is supposed to. Its about buying and selling merchanise not promoting causes.

Anonymous said...

When I started reading this, I immediately disagreed with your position.

But as I continued to read your position I now fully agree. eBay banning all sales of ivory isn't going to solve anything and could quite possibly make it a worse situation. Without an easy way for people to purchase very old already harvested ivory they may very well end up buying new, illegally poached ivory.

I don't agree with much of what eBay does these days.