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Online marketplace turns to a safer environment
Online marketplace turns to a safer environment

Online marketplace turns to a safer environment

A popular online retailer Wildberries plans to introduce a new service that will allow the trademark owners and holders of other intellectual property rights to check authenticity of goods offered on the website. This new service is the company’s way to address concerns for selling counterfeit goods, raised earlier by the Russian Ministry of Industry and Trade.

The new service will be called “Digital arbitration”. According to Wildberries, in this way, the right holders will be protected from unfair competition while consumers can avoid buying knock-off goods.

How will this service work? If the genuine producer suspects that its intellectual property rights have been infringed by another company, a formal inquiry can be made directly to the alleged infringer. The right holder will then be able to check documentation provided in the response. This way, potential infringements may be handled within several days, without long and arduous back-and-forth communication between the parties.

If the check-up reveals that the seller does not have any right to sell the goods, these items will be hidden from the consumers. Wildberries assures that in case of continuous or large scale violations, the seller may be blocked from using the e-commerce website entirely.

Apart from this, the right holder is still entitled to seek compensation for infringement in court, and will be able to submit a record of communications through the new “Digital arbitration” service as evidence in support of the claim.

According to the new Government Decree* signed on July 29, 2022 and coming in force on March 1, 2023, all e-commerce websites will be required to mark the offered goods within the “Honest mark” system as a means to prevent counterfeit, and can face court charges alongside actual sellers of bootlegs.

In these circumstances, the new service introduced by Wildberries may be a forerunner for turning e-commerce practice into a safer environment for right holders and making it much easier for them to swiftly deal with any infringers.


* Government Decree No.1351 of July 29, 2022 “On amending Government Decree No. 1956 of December 31, 2019 and annulling certain legislative acts of the Russian Federation”