Amazon’s Participation Agreement for Amazon Storefronts states:
“You grant us a royalty-free, non-exclusive, worldwide, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use, reproduce, perform, display, distribute, adapt, modify, re-format, create derivative works of, and otherwise commercially or non-commercially exploit in any manner, any and all of Your Materials, and to sublicense the foregoing rights to our affiliates and operators of Amazon Associated Properties.”
Most small business owners gloss over this type of legalese in the online agreements they agree to—everyone’s guilty of this at some point or another. In cases with former Amazon Storefront businesses, however, this clause has caused their own products and empty storefronts to be used against them by Amazon and a recent article in The Daily Dot outlines exactly how Amazon does this. Through morally questionable (however, perfectly legal pursuant to the above clause) their methods drive consumers searching for items previously sold by the former seller to other sellers on Amazon, including to the behemoth itself.
Though, as a small business who’s signed-on with an Amazon storefront, you are legally bound (while granting certain perpetual and irrevocable rights to Amazon) to the Participation Agreement, one way to ensure Amazon cannot use your product images once you’ve left their network is to watermark each of them with your trademark, which can be as simple as your business name. Since Amazon “will comply with your removal requests as to specific uses of Your Trademarks,” you can demand that your trademarked images be removed from their site if you decide to leave.