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Suing Google and Winning  (View post)

Roger Browne [PersonRank 10]

Friday, March 6, 2009
12 years ago4,155 views

It's an interesting story, even though it only tells one side of the story. But this bit didn't make sense:

> By signing up with Sedo, I could once again use AdSense, but
> with one small catch. Since Sedo was the middleman, my effective
> rate of payment per click was somewhere between 1/5,000th
> and 1/10,000th of what it had been previously.

I can't believe there's any advertising middleman who skims off 99.99% of the income.

Yakov Shafranovich [PersonRank 0]

12 years ago #

I had a similar run in with Google just a few days ago with Google Checkout merchant account. They lost my funds and only complaining to my state's Commissioner of Financial Regulation actually got the money released: ...

Someone Who Knows [PersonRank 1]

12 years ago #

Aaron's story is most probably a correct account of how things unfolded.

At the time, Google was disabling more than a few AdSense accounts. They did so on "false pretext" in A'arons case, and there is reason to believe they did so in several other cases too. Or in other words – there were accounts disabled and funds held when there was nothing in the terms that allowed Google to do so.

Google did pay and reinstated accounts where the publisher had either more funds at stake or was better at arguing their case. But it is reasonable to assume that there is a "class" of publishers out there who are still in the dark about what happened to their money....

This could have been much more serious had it gone to a "real case" not a small claims court. Google should know by now – "with great power there must also come great responsibility."

Relevant links from that time: ... ... ... ...

dave [PersonRank 0]

12 years ago #

it doesn't take more than a few cases like this before all good will starts draining away from google's brand. they should be more careful.

cormac [PersonRank 3]

12 years ago #

The issue isn't Google's right to disable people's accounts, it's their complete inaccountability that is the problem. For such a behemoth company there is no way of discussing an issue with someone. It borders on hubris. If your livelihood is at stake it's a very real and serious problem.

Veky [PersonRank 10]

12 years ago #

OMG. This is really troubling.

This guy clearly knew the terms of AdSense for Content, agreed to them when opening his account, intentionally disregarded them, tried to continue using AdSense on an effectively empty site, and then sued a company that closed his account? And won, of course, because "lawyers are not permitted in small claims court", and most hillarously, judge thinks "there might be money in Google's treasury for that".

Since when whether we are guilty or not is determined by how much money we have??

I'm not sorry for Google, of course – they should have organized themselves better ("should" is meant in a moral sense... whether they should economically, or is $700 here and there a much smaller cost globally, is left as an excercise:). But I'm sorry for the legal system in which a man intentionally breaks the rules of the contract, and then gets some money because other side effectively terminates the contract.

Marc Dávid Várdai [PersonRank 0]

12 years ago #

First of all, we don't and can't know the exact background of all of this. The only legal statement we have is Aaron's, who claims that the judge has ruled in his favor.

As long as the ruling isn't remanded, that is the only thing that counts.

There still is a difference between to get one's rights and to get what is one's by right.

Ianf [PersonRank 10]

12 years ago #

[put at-character here]Veky » won... because... judge thinks "there might be money in Google's treasury for that".«

This is the American version of that hated, largely-European, dehumanizing system of collectively redistributive socialism: court-mandated redirection of wealth to token individuals. Deal with it.

Harvey Mechanic [PersonRank 0]

12 years ago #

That author was fortunate, as he lived in the same county as Google's headquarters. For the rule for California courts is that a corporation or association may be sued only in the county where the principal place of business of such corporation is situated (some exceptions apply)
---End of Excerpt-- ...

Further, the Google agreement for services for Adsense probably indicated that any action needed to be in Santa Clara County.

Harvey Mechanic
Attorney at Law
Member of New York Bar

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