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I personally would say Google is being nice to them, if they did some work on the site I am sure they would do better?
IMO - the lawyer should be sanctioned for filing a frivilous suit, the Judge should be sanctioned for trying to get his 15 minutes of fame allowing this junk to move forward, and Google should ban KinderStarts AdSense account for violating the T&C's in "Section 5: Prohibited Uses ... engage in any action or practice that reflects poorly on Google or otherwise disparages or devalues Googleís reputation or goodwill"I couldn't agree more, incrediBILL.
From KinderStart's add url page -
Note: Premium Listings get as much as 1000 times the traffic of a regular listing; they are placed in front on of all "free" Listings in the Index and have "priority" in all searches. The cost of Premium Listings is \$5.00 per month for the 1st Category, with additional categories only \$1.67 per month.Funny, they understand the value of paid traffic when they make a profit. I wonder how that would look in court if they weren't willing to participate in AdWords?
The top 10 seem to be hand coded in. having checked backlinks etc etc , domain age etc... some do not make any sense on being there, only thing i can come up with is their monthly adwords expendetures, these are some big players who pay big $$$ every month to them for adwords.....
I rank in the top 10 (in some cases, the top 1) for some terms that are a lot more competitive than Grand Canyon tours, and I don't spend a nickel on AdWords. As far as I know, the other guys don't, either.
There may well be an explanation for why you aren't ranking where you'd like to be, but "Because I don't buy AdWords" isn't likely to be it.
What I found interesting in the complaint was that, while KinderStart is careful to describe what it did not do to get banned, so far neither it nor Google appear to have described what it did to get banned. Google presumably knows, and I'll bet KinderStart also knows. Check out that traffic spike in Alexa....
Re KinderStart: Any evidence they are really either banned or penalized at all? I can find them in some searches, although not high.
Regrettably not. We got pretty close to it in the libel case back in 1999 but it never made trial - Demon folded post-discovery when the judge knocked out one of the pillars of their defence.
I just canít see the benefit to internet users.
Please help me see this web sites contributionÖ
Their complaint indicates that their pagerank was dropped to zero. (They made a defamation claim on the basis of that drop.)
Sure looks like a PR7 to me so maybe they checked on one of those days Google's PR wasn't showing which has happened from time to time.
I think they should name their grocer in the suit as well because these are some seriously sour grapes.
The Google cache is a semi-permanent archive of mostly copyrighted material, it is not a cache.
If a webmaster could prove that a significant loss resulted from the existence of the Google cache, he/she would be in a strong position to sue Google. However, I am unable to imagine a scenario in which a significant loss could be proven.
The pleadings indicate that the site was penalized by Google for alleged misconduct, but that the alleged misconduct was not described in Google's Quality guidelines and thus shouldn't have been held against them.
Google's quality guidelines do say "design sites for users, not for search engines." That should have been warning enough. :-)
Check out that traffic spike in Alexa....
The origins of this particular story made front page on a few sites around March time.
I suspect the 'spike' had something to do with that. No doubt a similar spike may be shown this week too. The spike is in the middle of the month which corresponds to the original story being published / discussed.
See earlier stories in March 2006 ...
It's crybaby syndrome pure and simple.
Thatís all youíre dealing with and the lawyers representing these guys should know better. Spend some time looking at this site and it probably ranks just about where it should. It may well be penalized but thatís another matter. I donít mean to be critical of someoneís site, but these guys asked for it with this law suit.
Run a site command on this thing and itís a mess.
Right off the bat the home page is indexed in both http and https, resulting in the exact same page indexed twice. They have all kinds of directory pages indexed, that have gone supplemental, they have hundreds of dead 404 pages lying around just to name a few of the problems.
I have had sites dropped for reasons that were beyond me and been a bit upset but you cannot honestly think you can go before the man with this site and prove it should rank well.
Who knows, maybe someday someone could make some sort of case about penalties and ranking but its not going to be this one. And if someone were to bring a suit about penalized sites Yahoo would provide much more fertile ground on this issue than Google. In Yahoo you get the death penalty, at least in Google they rank for some terms.
So with this information, why does KinderStart think they're special?
Did Google drop all of these sites causing their demise?
You certainly won't hear Yahooligans or AJKids complaining that Google shot them down as they would have to admit defeat by admitting that Google was driving THEIR traffic.
Last but not least, maybe people just stopped using Alexa's toolbar ;)
This lawsuit is baseless garbage ....
Nobody has the RIGHT to be in Google, or in the top 10, Period.
I totally agree. In any case Google hasn't removed this site from it's database it has re-positioned it according to a it's algo's ranking criteria. Google does what all search engines do; that is to rank results in accordance with IT'S own ranking criteria. To suggest that all listed site owners bind Google into an implied contract because they have relaxed 'copyright' and thus provided 'consideration' to Google sounds like a very weak arguement indeed.
For one particular site owner to argue the above and then go further by claiming that the "consideration" it returns to Google obliges Google to retain it in #1-10 position sound like nonsense.
I know some people are going with the consideration argument, but even if accurate, that consideration is just so you can be crawled and potentially guaranteed to be in the index. No way you can prove your consideration in potentially lessening your copyright in regards to google entitles you to top rankings... So you can't really argue that road to any kind of fruitful end.
I disagree with the argument that webmasters provide legal 'consideration' to Google. Consideration is akin to the old phrase 'my end' or 'your end of the bargin' Just because we are allowing small snippits of info from our site to be listed on Google, it doesn't actually consitute payment (or consideration) for services rendered by Google. I would be more of the opinion that this probably be a totally unrealated issue regarding 'fair use'
In any case I am of the opinion that if it was deemed by a court that we do relax our our 'copyrights' to allow Google in, it is in the hope of being spidered and ranked, not as a condition that binds Google into a contract with us.
Even if you were to accept the contractual argument who gets to sue Google next? Firstly, is it a site owner like kinder.com who believes that their enjoyment of a top ranking position should be maintained for all eternity? Maybe, Google should be sued by the multitude website owners who rank badly but believe that they have been also entered into a contract and received the bad end of the deal because their sites actually deserve to be in #1 position.
Thatís all youíre dealing with and the lawyers representing these guys should know better.
Well, that's sort of entertaining bit about KinderStart's Lawyer. Dig around a little on Gregory Yu, kinderstart's attorney. The firm he founded has "global" in the name so it must be huge! Hmm, not much else about his giant firm in any news, but he must know a lot about IP law, his sales blurb says so.
Then search on his firm's telephone number and address and you find that it is shared with his family's technology company or something like that. He also operates as a CPA.
I seem to recall spotting some sort of other relationship with kinderstart, but I can't recall what it was.
My guess is that kinderstart could not find any reputable IP lawyer to even look at the case so they had to call their friend's cousin's neighbor who was desperate for some work to help them out.
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.
From the Google TOS:
Google disclaims any and all responsibility or liability for the accuracy, content, completeness, legality, reliability, or operability or availability of information or material displayed in the GOOGLE SERVICES results. Google disclaims any responsibility for the deletion, failure to store, misdelivery, or untimely delivery of any information or material. Google disclaims any responsibility for any harm resulting from downloading or accessing any information or material on the Internet through the GOOGLE SERVICES.
In other words, if their algorithms and/or implementations of same don't work correctly, they cannot be held (legally) responsible for damages. KinderStart has no case here.
Anyone can put in their own TOS that G has to rank them #1 on their SE for keyword1, keyword2, or keyword3 or be in violation of their website TOS and public domain law section X.XX.
See what I mean?
A good atty. with the right arguments could put a serious dent in G's inablities as an algo to properly rank websites (Freedom of speech or not)
Obviously this "neighbor's cousin's friend" was savvy enough to convince the judge to hear their amended complaints.
Those are the documents I'd like to read...
Google should publically and clearly let everyone know that there will not be consistency in the way it ranks web pages.
Actually, they already did (in their TOS). If anything, the public at large should take less stock in what Google reps say in public, and more stock in the realities of how software works.