What do I need to do to take part in the "FairCommerce" initiative?
As a participant of the initiative, you stand for fair trade and are protected from fee-based warnings from other participants.
Every member of the Händlerbund in the membership categories "Basic", "Premium", "Unlimited", and "Professional" can join the initiative. There are no costs for you.
How to recognize members of FairCommerce
Each participant of the initiative must display the following notice in the imprint of the respective online presence or, if not permitted in the imprint on sales platforms, at a suitable, easily visible position:
Wir sind seit [Datum des Beginns der Teilnahme] Mitglied der Initiative "FairCommerce". Nähere Informationen hierzu finden Sie unter: www.haendlerbund.de/faircommerce.
("We have been a member of the "FairCommerce" initiative since [start date of participation]. For more information, visit: www.haendlerbund.de/faircommerce.")
Each participant can use the "FairCommerce" logo for integration on their website and in business communication.
FAQ about the FairCommerce Initiative
Does the initiative mean that the Händlerbund is against warnings?
No, the initiative does not aim to abolish warnings. Warnings are market-regulating and an important tool to combat unfair competition or legal violations. However, the initiative aims to counteract the abuse of warnings, which are sometimes used solely to generate fees.
Are participants in the initiative no longer allowed to issue warnings?
No, renouncing warnings is not associated with the initiative. The initiative aims to ensure that competition, trademark and copyright infringements detected among participants are quickly and easily resolved without costs. However, if the contacted party does not respond within 7 days or if no agreement is reached during this time, the path of a fee-based warning and, subsequently, legal enforcement may be chosen.
Do I have to waive my claims for damages?
The initiative should allow participants to correct errors without fee-based warnings. All other claims are not affected. This means that the right to elimination and prohibition against the "opponent" exists, that they must, if demanded by you, submit to a penalty clause and all other claims, e.g. for copyright and trademark infringements, such as the right to information or compensation claims, can also be asserted.
Is there a template for a letter that I can send to my competitor?
No, we do not provide such a template. A formal letter in which you communicate the detected legal errors and your demands is sufficient.
Can I be warned by a participant in the initiative without prior notice?
Such a warning informs you about detected legal errors and demands of the warning party in the sense of the initiative. No costs arise from this warning and cannot be claimed by the warning party.
What happens if the contacted party does not respond?
If the contacted party does not respond within 7 days or if no agreement is reached during this time, the path of a fee-based warning and, subsequently, legal enforcement may be chosen.
Is the initiative associated with costs for me?
The initiative is not associated with any costs for you. On the contrary, it helps to avoid costs.
What do I gain by giving a competitor the opportunity to immediately correct legal errors without fee-based warning?
The initiative aims to ensure that detected competition, trademark and copyright infringements are quickly and easily resolved without costs. As a participant in the initiative, you can be sure that the other participants in the initiative will first be asked to correct errors that have crept into your online shop or on your website, free of charge. However, this does not involve waiving the right to prohibition or any financial damages incurred, such as in the case of trademark or copyright claims.
See what our supporters have to say
Matthias Dobrzynski, owner BioCornflakeBox
"This initiative is finally an example of how it should be done: fair to each other. After being warned twice, even by a former business partner, I realized that having the right and getting the right are two different things. Warnings are a frustrating procedure that costs a lot of time and money.
Personally, I think that trade in Germany should become fairer among each other in general. Unfortunately, the competitive thinking here in Germany is extreme. However, instead of working against each other, we should work more together. The rapidly growing affiliate marketing is an example of how we can make money together. I hope that through the initiative, the joint trade will come to the fore, and not the mutual destruction."
Stephan Grad, CEO A-COMMERCE
"Successful eCommerce companies operate internationally - and each country has its legal peculiarities and requirements. Of course, in our industry, there is intense competition, but it should be conducted in a reasonable and acceptable manner.
Unfortunately, warnings have become a sport in Germany, costing all parties involved a lot of time, energy, and nerves, and unfortunately hindering many innovations right from the start. It would be better if the industry agreed to work for the benefit of the customer and win their customers with the best possible customer service.
This way, all parties would win - that's why we support the FairCommerce initiative and are available as a contact person for Austria."
Markus Thies, owner Tischtennis pur
"For us as a retailer of table tennis equipment, a fair approach in online commerce is just as important as a fair game.
Of course, we also had the option of warning competitors, but we don't want to treat other online retailers that way. We are in favor of fair cooperation in eCommerce and support the "FairCommerce - against warning abuse" initiative. Because only together can we create fair competition!"
Ruben Alles, CEO BEKATEQ Ltd. & Co. KG Beschichtungssysteme
"Retailers who count every euro should not have to deal with warning lawyers. Each unjustified warning can mean ruin.
If someone believes they have found an error in a competitor that distorts competition, in my opinion, they should first contact them personally and try to resolve the issue on a human level. I believe that this is the right approach. That is why I support the FairCommerce initiative."
Robin Stein, CEO BABO Beverages UG
"The "FairCommerce - against warning abuse" initiative of the Händlerbund e.V. means a lot of support and fairness in eCommerce for our young and growing company."
Wiljo Krechting, press officer shopware AG
"As a shop system manufacturer, we have our ears close to our retailers and are acutely aware that warnings can not only be a nuisance but can also be a threat to their existence. That's why we are fully committed to supporting this initiative of the Händlerbund."
Twist & Schirm
"We are not a retailer, but rather a performance marketing agency for Google, Facebook, and Instagram ads, however, we work solely with online shops and are all too familiar with the vexing issue of warnings. We are therefore very happy to support the FairCommerce initiative. This is exactly how it should be! For a fair coexistence in e-commerce."
Cheryl Bennett, CEO ecoco.bio
"I am very grateful for the FairCommerce initiative and hope that it can continue to prevail. With the amount of data that needs to be managed when operating an online shop, it is simply unavoidable that people sometimes make mistakes or something goes wrong technically.
If it is apparent that a business owner is making an effort to comply with laws and regulations, then they also deserve a chance to rectify a mistake without having to dig deep into their pockets. That's why I support the FairCommerce initiative."
Gudrun Haug, RF design GmbH
"Legal warnings have their justification, but they are often used to profit from them. A fair competition among online retailers and a respectful coexistence is commendable. We are happy to support the FairCommerce initiative of the Händlerbund."
Thomas Keller, Foto Keller
"I want to support fair trade by participating in the FairCommerce initiative. Even though we don't operate an online business, we have often encountered apparent private sellers and have been annoyed by them."
Request information now
Do you want to become a member of the "FairCommerce" initiative? As part of the Händlerbund memberships, you can join the initiative. You can view the participation requirements here.
Do you need further information? Then contact us, we will get back to you as soon as possible. Write us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or use our Callback Service
Do you want to become a member of the "FairCommerce" initiative? As part of the Händlerbund memberships, you can join the initiative.