The auction, which opened Tuesday after the company announced it had begun production of its first commercial panels, had reached a price of $13,100 by Friday afternoon (see Nanosolar Begins Production, Greentech Week: Green Rules Around the World).
The company had been planning to donate the proceeds to charitable causes.
And that's where it went wrong, according to Roscheisen.
According to a screen shot of the purported eBay notice on the blog, eBay requires sellers listing items on behalf of charities to obtain written consent on the charity's letterhead and to include a scanned copy of the letter in the listing. It also requires charities to be registered as 501(c)(3) of 501(c)(4) charitable organizations.
Nanosolar suspects the regulations are geared toward sellers who are charities, rather than businesses that plan to donate the money to charity, Roscheisen wrote, adding that the company's legal director tried to get the auction reinstated -- to no avail.
"With this reaching the attention of the highest-level execs at eBay, they ended up having a customer-service rep e-mail me a form letter explaining their charity policy in bureaucratic terms," Roscheisen told Greentech Media on Monday. "Sadly, eBay appears to care more about their own bureaucracy than their users."
eBay media representatives didn't immediately return calls and e-mails Monday.
The auction previously could be found at this page.