Craigslist Sues Maker of Auto-Posting Software in Federal Court

Slav Kandyba
SAN FRANCISCO — Online classifieds provider Craigslist is suing a New York man and 25 unnamed parties, claiming they made and sold auto-posting software that violates copyright and is both fraudulent and illegal.

In the claim filed at U.S. District Court in San Francisco Nov. 5, the San Francisco company seeks a preliminary and permanent injunction against Zheng Peng and his company,

The lawsuit also seeks unspecified damages to be awarded via jury trial and the return of all profits obtained by Peng and the unnamed individuals.

The auto-posting software “undermines Craigslist’s systems, organization and operation,” according to the lawsuit. It enables users to repetitiously post ads across the website’s many categories and geographical areas, and in the process the software circumvents “craigslist security measures,” the lawsuit stated.

Craigslist’s attorneys, Brian Hennessy and Elizabeth L. McDougall of Perkins Coie LLP, ground the charges against Peng in both federal and state laws regulating businesses. They run from copyright infringement and violation of the Digital Millenium Copyright Act to breach of contact, violation of California penal code, fraud and intentional interference with contractual relations.