Boston Marathon memorabilia on eBay stirs controversy

Photo credit: eBay
Photo credit: eBay

Just days after the tragic bombing at the Boston Marathon, various items have already surfaced for sale on eBay. From pins to medals, and even newspapers and magazines with the day’s image etched on the covers, some are questioning whether sellers are looking to profit from the gruesome event.

A video circulating earlier in the week purported to show looters taking jackets from a marathon kiosk after the bombings. It is unknown whether any of these items have been listed on eBay.

While some listings note that proceeds will benefit charities, such as the American Red Cross, others make no reference to fundraising. Items from previous year’s marathons are also listed, however a backlash has arisen on Twitter over this year’s items, according to ABC News.

Boston Marathon medal on eBay
Photo credit: ABC News

But one seller is defending the sale of his finisher’s medal, which has 14 bids and a current price listed at $380. He explains, “Just want to add that I am only selling my medal to recoup some cost I incurred from the tragic events that happened. Hotels are not cheap and I am not rich. Sorry if the auction offends anyone, that is not the intent.”

ABC News received a statement via email from eBay.

We are deeply saddened by the Boston tragedy and our thoughts and prayers go out to those affected. Out of respect for victims, eBay does not allow listings that graphically portray, glorify or attempt to profit from human tragedy or suffering. eBay’s teams are monitoring related listings to ensure they comply with our policies and also taking into account reports from our community members. When a listing is brought to our attention that may go against our guidelines, we carefully consider the context and all of the details, and decisions to remove items are made on a case-by-case basis. Anyone can report an item to eBay for review by clicking the ‘Report Item’ link on the listing.

The Department of Homeland Security has issued a warning the public to beware of scammers and fake fundraisers.

(H/T: Mediaite)


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