BOSTON: Two online titans were locked in battle earlier this week after Google tried to lure guests from one of eBay's biggest customer events to a party promoting Google Checkout, a rival to the online auctioneer's electronic payment system Paypal.

Sellers attending the annual eBay Live! conference in Boston received invitations from Google to a party marking "a celebration of user choice" at the "same spot where revolutionaries launched the Boston tea party to celebrate freedom".

Mountain View's finest was apparently then forced to abandon its event after eBay cut its advertising spend on Google's search site.

Tom Oliveri, a Google product marketing manager, took a conciliatory tone on one of the company's blogs: "eBay Live attendees have plenty of activities to keep them busy this week in Boston, and we did not want to detract from that activity."

Data sourced from Financial Times online; additional content by WARC staff