Pirated software on eBay - has the end game started?

I was pleasantly surprised to see the Software & Information Industry Association (www.siaa.net) announce this week that it has filed three

key lawsuits over allegedly pirated software bought through eBay, the online auction Web site.

The move comes after months of posturing and squirming for the media on both sides of the Atlantic by eBay, which has always argued that it

does more than enough to stamp out sales of allegedly pirated software on its site.

This is one of the first serious attempts to bring eBay and its sellers to task over its apparent allowance of sales of allegedly pirated software on its site.

The lawsuits in US District Court, Central District of California, are the first to be filed under the SIIA's new Auction Litigation Program, which aims to monitor sites like eBay, and take action against sales of pirated software.

The Association says that its Auction Litigation Program was designed because current strategies, such as taking down auctions through eBay's `Verified Rights Owner' program, "have not adequately remedied the problem," and adds that lawsuits are just the beginning.

eBay's procrastinations about allegedly pirated software and its take-down policy are laughable in the extreme. A quick search for Adobe

software on eBay.co.uk will reveal how widespread the sale of allegedly pirated software really is.

I wonder how long it will take for eBay to wake up and smell the coffee?