Click Fraud to be Tested in Court

3 comments
Source Title:
Click Fraud Update: Class Action Filed In Arkansas
Story Text:

We knew it would come, and now it has. A consortium of advertisers have filed a class action suit in Arkansas, against a total of eleven Search engines including Yahoo! and Google over alleged click fraud...

The companies, led by Lane's Collectibles filed a class action suit against Yahoo, Google and 9 other engines in February, accusing the Search companies of over pricing ads and colluding to keep those ad prices high.

John says he's not sure if it's important, and frankly, i don't have a sodding clue as to whether it will actually get anywhere, but it's a potentially damaging bit of publicity i'm sure the Search marketing industry would rather do without....

full press release here

Comments

We need it

We need clarification on liability. As it is now we have to, together with clients, prove fraud. I would like it to be the other way around - that engines have to prove validity. They can get a third party to audit or something. I just don't like it the way it is now. So, I welcome the case. Sometimes it has to hurt to get better.

can someone clarify..

What exactly are they suing for? The linked press released states:

"a Texarkana, Ark., retailer, allege that the Internet companies knowingly overcharged for advertisements they sold and conspired with each other to continue doing so."

and then it goes on to talk about click fraud in general, and then:

"alleges that the search companies improperly charged the plaintiffs for such fraudulent clicks"

To clarify the reasoning behind my question, in the UK it is against the law to abuse your market position to collude with your competitors to keep prices artificially high.

clarification

The same is also true in both North American jurisdictions.

Old case in point, Continental Grain, et al.

In my opinion it would be a good thing(tm) for online businesses to be less remote and more realistic about business policies. Picking up the phone once in a while would be a good start. If it takes a class action lawsuit or two with substantial penalties to wake them up, then so be it. In the last two days we have this lawsuit and the lawsuit filed against Yahoo Japan.

The guiding principle for online businesses ought to be: how would I treat a customer standing right in front of me?

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