North Carolina Journal of Law & Technology


Modern-day consumers often expect instant gratification. Instead of shopping via printed catalogues and retail stores, consumers flock to the convenience of online shopping platforms, like Amazon. On these platforms, consumers have instant access to items they need, anytime, and anywhere. The popularity of these platforms to both consumers and sellers of items has also ushered in a wave of counterfeit products to these platforms. Technology giant Amazon has a pervasive counterfeit problem that has been harming the legitimacy of its retail operation for some time. Amazon had previously employed a hands-off approach to counterfeits and left sellers to resolve disputes amongst themselves. Only recently has Amazon employed various programs aimed at removing infringing and counterfeit listings. In April 2019, Amazon launched a new anti-counterfeit enforcement protocol called the Utility Patent Neutral Evaluation Procedure. Amazon’s program aims to combat utility patent infringement on the Amazon Marketplace. This Recent Development will evaluate the new protocol as an alternative to traditional patent litigation pathways, examine Amazon’s previous attempts at curbing infringement, and will offer solutions to improve the efficacy of this program.

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