Industry Updates

Brand Protection Program: How to Enforce Your IP Rights at Mercado Libre

Published: August 9, 2021

Mercado Libre, Inc. (MELI) operates the most widely used e-commerce and fintech technological platforms in Latin America. Individuals and companies buy, sell, offer, send, and pay for goods and services through MELI’s various platforms: Mercado Libre, Mercado Shops, Mercado Pago, and Mercado Envios.

Intellectual property (IP) rights have been a fundamental building block at MELI since its inception. The company provides IP owners that operate throughout Latin America with the tools they need to protect their rights, regardless of whether they are sellers in the MELI platforms.

MELI launched its Brand Protection Program (BPP) more than 20 years ago, in early 2000. Members (IP owners who enrolled their IP rights—directly or through a proxy—in the BPP) can report any listing that allegedly infringe their IP rights. Available in English, Portuguese, and Spanish, the BPP reporting tool is provided at no cost to members and allows them to protect their entire IP portfolio across all MELI platforms.

Using the BPP tool, members can:

  • Use a single account to monitor and report allegedly infringing listings in all countries in which the member has rights enrolled
  • Create unique profiles under the same account to facilitate teamwork; users can set each profile to a difference language and can save searches
  • Monitor efficiently with a real-time search engine, applying different filters
  • Differentiate trustworthy and suspicious sellers with the “sellers audit” feature
  • Track the progress of cases in one place, including communications from sellers through the case management section (counter-notice process)
  • Submit notices individually or in bulk

All reports are followed by a takedown notice and a counter-notice process. Once the member submits a report, the listing is paused (and is no longer available in the platform) until the end of the process.

The seller has four calendar days to submit their counter-notice. If they fail to respond before the deadline, the listing is removed. If the seller replies within those four calendar days, the member has four calendar days to analyze the response and either (1) confirm its claim or (2) request the reinstatement of the listing.

When the member confirms its claim, the listing is permanently removed from the marketplace and MELI reevaluates the seller to determine if its account should be sanctioned. This can take the form of a warning notice and temporary suspension of the account. If the seller becomes a repeat offender, the account will be permanently shut down.

Moreover, with the help of machine learning technologies that combine multiple variables, MELI learns from the reports, to take proactive measures.

The BPP can be accessed online. From this dedicated webspace, IP owners will find all relevant information concerning the benefits of the program and the enforcement tool, how to enroll in the program, Terms and Conditions, an FAQ, and a direct link to the reporting tool.

MELI strongly encourages all IP owners to enroll in the BPP to monitor and enforce their IP rights and ensure the removal of any allegedly infringing listings within MELI’s marketplaces.

Although every effort has been made to verify the accuracy of this article, readers are urged to check independently on matters of specific concern or interest.

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