Craigslist: we were warned about eBay’s “Evil Meg”

Craigslist’s chief executive claims he was warned by an eBay executive to improve relations with former eBay chief executive Meg Whitman, or else she would turn into a “monster”.

Craigslist: we were warned about eBay's

Craigslist’s Jim Buckmaster testified that eBay deal maker, Garrett Price, cautioned in an email that Craigslist was driving Whitman “to distraction” seven months after the auction company became a shareholder.

“He said he needed to tell me there were two Meg Whitmans,” testified Buckmaster. “We had met and reached an agreement with Good Meg. There was another Meg, an Evil Meg. We would be best served to know that Meg could be a monster when she got angry and frustrated.”

Price denied the allegations. “Today’s testimony by Jim Buckmaster concerning comments I allegedly made about Meg Whitman was false and malicious,” he said.

We had met and reached an agreement with Good Meg. There was another Meg, an Evil Meg

EBay is suing to restore its stake in the classifieds site – which Craigslist diluted to 24.85% from 28.4% – to regain its board seat in the company of which it became a shareholder in 2004.

In a week’s worth of testimony in Delaware Chancery Court, executives from two of the most prominent Internet companies testified to a series of missteps and betrayals that led to the unraveling of their relationship.

A ruling on the case may come as early as January.

EBay claims that after it launched the Kijiji online classified business in 2007, Craigslist hatched a “coercive plan” to dilute eBay’s stake and eliminate its board seat.

Craigslist, meanwhile, has sued eBay in San Francisco, saying the larger rival used its board seat to glean confidential information about the classified ad business.

Whitman, who is now running for Governor of California, testified last week that she had considered Craigslist her company’s “play” in classifieds, an area she expected to grow rapidly.

In an email Whitman described Craigslist as a “rocket ship” that was “doing fantastic,” in March 2005. However, in the same email a meeting with Buckmaster was described as “quite an experience” and Craigslist’s staff described as “definitely from another planet.”

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