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"Suit over poor Google ranking may go forward"
Company sues google over drop in search rankings
markbaa

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 11:46 pm on Jul 3, 2006 (gmt 0)

"A federal judge in California hinted that a parenting Web site that's suing Google over a poor ranking in the search giant's massive index would be able to proceed with its lawsuit."

[news.zdnet.com...]

This could open a can of worms :)

 

simonmc

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 5:55 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

People should stop crying over spilt milk. Google is not the search engine it used to be and the sooner their manopoly is broken by the people the better it will be for webmasters.

Move on...pay for advertising...just don't expect to get anything for free.

Remember, Google does no evil.

colin_h



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 6:00 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

I named Google on my reason for getting a tax rebate this year.

All the Best

Col :-)

shortbus1662

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 6:02 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

they have no right to be in Google's index.

I was out of it altogether for just over a year.

Filing a lawsuit never entered my mind.

This is akin to the lawsuits against KFC because their food is fattening.

GIVE ME A FREAKIN' BREAK!

Just don't eat there!

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 6:05 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

Sounds like a pretty weak case, if it's based on a claim that Google violated antitrust laws by "removing a competitor from its top search pages in order to maintain its dominance in the search market." Google can easily demonstrate that it lists competitors on its top search pages all the time. And let's not forget the federal court's ruling in the SearchKing case, where the judge refused to grant SearchKing an injunction because Google's "PageRanks" were "opinions" protected by the First Amendment.

soapystar

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 6:29 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

maybe i should have taken longer to read this over but...

how is kinderstart a competitor of googles?

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 7:03 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

how is kinderstart a competitor of googles?

Kinderstart calls itself the "Kinderstart search engine," although it's really a directory.

The suit may also be suggesting that Google is competing with Kinderstart for AdWords/AdSense revenues (since a user who isn't diverted from a Google SERP to Kinderstart may click on AdWords instead of Kinderstart's AdSense ads).

vik_c

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 7:11 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

Just think of the publicity Kinderstart will get from this, the number of people who, right this moment will be typing that url into their browers. I'm not even beginning to think of all the respectable web sites which will link to their web site. Even if they get nothing out of this suit which is very likely, it should be more than worth their while.

jrs_66

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 7:52 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

This site really sucks. No value whatsoever...

engine

WebmasterWorld Administrator engine us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month Best Post Of The Month



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 7:58 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

Just because a lawsuit is proceeding, it doesn't mean it'll succeed. It may be proceeding to make it a test case.

The outcome Google's way closes the door on most everyone else taking this stance. The outcome the other way will open the can.

Phil_Payne

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 8:03 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

Google is a little (or perhaps a lot) disingenuous in that it implies its results are definitive. They most certainly are not - there is a lot of bias in there, some of it for good reasons.

However - where I personally think there may in future be successful action is in the matter of notice periods.

Wherever you have any kind of commercial arrangement - even where no "consideration" is involved - it is absolutely normal to define a notice period to give one partner notice of another partner's actions.

This is ESSENTIAL in business - I can think of no other sphere of activity in which one partner can completely drop another overnight with no warning or explanation. My own cashflow is not directly linked to my SERPs position, but there are people who've got into that position and losing traffic overnight is a tough thing to explain to a bank manager when you can't service a loan from one day to the next.

The search engine industry is the largest unregulated human activity. Either the search engines start self-regulation - like doctors and lawyers using "Codes of Practice" or they will be legislated into control. It's only a matter of time.

mack

WebmasterWorld Administrator mack us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 8:07 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

Surely search traffic is no more than a bi-product of Googles business model? No-one is entitled to free traffic, there is no agreement between Google and a site owner.

For every looser there is a winner. There will always be winners and losers that's how search works.

Mack.

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 8:08 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

Wherever you have any kind of commercial arrangement - even where no "consideration" is involved - it is absolutely normal to define a notice period to give one partner notice of another partner's actions.

Google's organic search results don't involve a "commercial arrangement," and listed sites aren't partners.

What's more, in the U.S., Google's search results are protected by the First Amendment (at least according to the one federal court that's ruled on the issue so far).

BigDave

WebmasterWorld Senior Member bigdave us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 8:33 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

What's more, in the U.S., Google's search results are protected by the First Amendment (at least according to the one federal court that's ruled on the issue so far).

Actually, I think there are a couple more cases where that has been a part of the ruling. They just haven't made much news because they go away pretty quick.

There is a mighty big hurdle for a law in the US Code to overcome an amendment to the constitution that says that "congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom of speech". That is one hell of an affirmitive defense.

Yeah, Kinderstart will get to try pleading it, but expect to see the case disappear at the summary judgement stage. And I'd still like to find out what happened with the anti-SLAPP counterclaim. If Google wins that, Kinderstart will have a mighty big legal bill to pay for Google.

Phil_Payne

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 8:44 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

> No-one is entitled to free traffic, there is no agreement between Google and a site owner.

Actually, there probably is - at least in English law. A contract exists - even if you don't know about it, much less sign anything - if one party performs a service for a consideration by another.

What do I (or we, all of us) do for Google? Simple - we relax our copyright. Google exploits this relaxation to build a proprietary database from which it earns money.

Hundreds of thousands of sites have copyright statements on them. Mine too - a very restrictive one. But we voluntarily relax this restriction to allow Google to build its indices and its cache. That's our "consideration" - and it's a reason there is - actually - a contract between Google and every webmaster on the planet.

(Actually, it gets worse. Google has at length documented how to keep the Googlebot out and allow other bots in. By not implementing this, webmasters are implicitly allowing Google to exploit their copyright.)

LeoXIV

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 8:51 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

this is just laughable, they are suing google and using adsense.

Rugles

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 8:51 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

Did we not have somebody post the legal documents about this case a few months ago?

If so, I have no idea how they can proceed based on what I read. Why people think they are entitled to high rankings is beyond me.

soapystar

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 9:09 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

as has been said....the publicty is huge and may be the only motivation needed...

walkman



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 9:17 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

> No-one is entitled to free traffic, there is no agreement between Google and a site owner.

not really a good argument. Suppose MSFT makes it so when you try to go to Google.com (using windows and or IE) an error message appears, or you have to click 4-5 different things to reach it? What would you say then?

Draconian

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 9:29 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

KinderStart alleges that its parenting search engine site suffered an approximate 70 percent drop in monthly traffic in March last year after Google buried its visibility in search results. KinderStart, which claims to have originally been in the first 10 results when Web users scoured the Internet for KinderStart, also saw an 80 percent drop in AdSense revenue.

... Anyone notice the round numbers? I'm willing to bet 70% represents 7 visitors and 80% represents 8. :)

It's sad when a search/directory site has to leech off another search site. I think I'm going to enjoy watching them walk away with lighter pockets.

KinderStart is hardly the first company to face a fall in its Google ranking. Maintaining a high Google page rank is a common topic of discussion among Webmasters.

You don't say...

Another plaintiff abandoned his lawsuit against Google earlier this month.

Good move. Jump ship!

Raymond

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 9:48 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

Well, whatever the outcome. They sure get all the attention they need to jumpstart their website now.

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 9:52 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

I wonder how much the publicity will be worth to them, though? The average person (never mind the average parent) probably won't even be aware of the lawsuit.

mack

WebmasterWorld Administrator mack us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 9:58 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

Suppose MSFT makes it so when you try to go to Google.com (using windows and or IE) an error message appears, or you have to click 4-5 different things to reach it? What would you say then?

A very different situation. With MS you are using a tool that is designed to allow you to a access websites.. You do not make any agreement with Google to deliver traffic.

> No-one is entitled to free traffic, there is no agreement between Google and a site owner.
Actually, there probably is - at least in English law. A contract exists - even if you don't know about it, much less sign anything - if one party performs a service for a consideration by another.

That's like demanding a link partner does not remove your link. It amounts to pretty much the same thing.

Mack.

henry0

WebmasterWorld Senior Member henry0 us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 10:20 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

Let's move one step further

If Google is acting on Kinderstart
then if a ref to your site is to be found in Kinderstarrt ... Be ready to go down!

jomaxx

WebmasterWorld Senior Member jomaxx us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 10:35 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

Their Alexa chart is highly amusing. Looks like they got reindexed in March and had a spike in traffic that lasted for all of a week or so. So sad to have to go back to the middle of the pack after tasting the #1 position.

NickCoons

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 10:37 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

Suppose MSFT makes it so when you try to go to Google.com (using windows and or IE) an error message appears, or you have to click 4-5 different things to reach it? What would you say then?

This really is something that the free market can decide. Microsoft should be able to implement this into their software. If this bothers people, they can switch to something less restrictive. If losing market share bothers Microsoft, they can decide not to be so restrictive.

If Kinderstart doesn't like the way Google is treating them, then they can demand that Google give them their money back for everything they paid Google for the rendered services. Oh, wait... Kinderstart isn't a Google SERP client. They paid Google nothing to be indexed, and this (nothing) is what they are entitled to if they don't like the service they're receiving.

malachite

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 10:39 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

Sounds like nothing more than a big PR stunt, which may just come back and bite them on the bum ;)

BigDave

WebmasterWorld Senior Member bigdave us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 10:54 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

Hundreds of thousands of sites have copyright statements on them. Mine too - a very restrictive one. But we voluntarily relax this restriction to allow Google to build its indices and its cache. That's our "consideration" - and it's a reason there is - actually - a contract between Google and every webmaster on the planet.

And that restrictive statement of your means . . . nothing.

You cannot claim any more rights than copyright law grants to you.

There are also rights that are granted to everyone, and your copyright does not give you the power to remove those rights. In the united States it is called Fair Use, in the UK and most commonwealth countries I believe it is call Fair Dealings.

If what Google is doing falls under Fair Dealings, then you are not voluntarily relaxing anything. If it does not fall under Fair Dealings, then it is copyright infringement and Google better change to an opt-in method for there to be voluntary anything. That's up to the courts to decide (in the US they have almost laways sided with Google so far)

Lorel

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 11:46 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

Anybody look at the source code on that site--right out of the dark ages. Not even a description tag--which anyone who knows about ranking in google would know you need one. A lot of their links don't work and they capture everyone they link to in a frame too.

Noting but wasted space on the internet.

walkman



 
Msg#: 35060 posted 11:55 pm on Jul 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

>> This really is something that the free market can decide. Microsoft should be able to implement this into their software.

The thing is that they can't, even if they wanted to in order to promote MSN. They would be sued by GOOG in a heartbeat for violating anti-trust laws. Personally, I don't think Kinderstart has a chance of winning, but you can't dismiss their claim with "Google doesn't owe them anything;" it's a lot more complicated than that.

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