Mike, advertisers know they need to get publicity consents from every person they depict in their ad copy. The law is entirely clear about this. So if the facts are as alleged, Match.com is in deep trouble. Eric.
I'm pretty sure Google was paying Twitter for access to the real-time feed, so my guess is that Google wanted to reduce or eliminate its payments and Twitter would rather get paid. One other example to note is how Facebook routinely blocks j.mp links as "spammy." Eric.
When patents were tied to devices and information was otherwise hard to get, the patent marking requirement might have served some useful notice function. But now, no one knows how to provide notice on intangibles, and I would be shocked if any secondary users relied on the patent marking one way or another as opposed to doing patent searches, etc. Now, it is mostly a trap for the unwary who fail to remove expired patents from the patent notice. Combined with the potential for sky-high damages created by the Federal Circuit, I really think this is all antiquated infrastructure built for a different time, and it needs to be fixed. Eric.
A number of the trademark plaintiffs in the US have similarly had their hands caught in the cookie jar, i.e., they engaged in the exact same competitive advertising purchases that they were suing over. Eric.
Even though a website can try to control its description through various HTML commands, the ultimate decision about which information to present is Google's, not the individual website. http://ssrn.com/abstract=635803 So it would be ironic if a website would be liable for a description that it didn't actually create.