engine - 3:11 pm on Mar 16, 2011 (gmt 0)
Court Finds SEO Firm Responsible For Online Sales of Counterfeit Goods [internetretailer.com]
A federal court has ruled that a firm that provided marketing and web hosting services was financially responsible for the sale of counterfeit golf clubs by a client e-retailer.
A federal judge in South Carolina entered a judgment against Bright Builders Inc. on counts of contributory trademark infringement and unfair trade practices for allegedly assisting in the construction and hosting of the e-commerce site CopyCatClubs.com. Judge Margaret B. Seymour of the U.S. District Court for South Carolina ordered Bright Builders to pay $770,750 in statutory damages and Christopher Prince, owner of the web site, $28,250, according to lawyers for the plaintiff, Cleveland Golf Company Inc.
“For Internet Intermediaries like SEOs and web hosts, this should be a cautionary warning," says Christopher Finnerty, one of the lawyers for Cleveland Golf. “The jury found that web hosts and SEO's cannot rely solely on third parties to police their web sites and provide actual notice of counterfeit sales from the brand owners. Even prior to notification from a third party, Internet intermediaries must be proactive to stop infringing sales when they knew or should have known that these illegal sales were occurring through one of the web sites they host."
I find this is quite scary.
Do you know what your clients are selling? Is it couterfeit, or is it the real deal? I know i've never even asked that question.