Lead Plaintiff In Click Fraud Google Suit Recognizes Conflict Of Interest

from the oh,-look-at-that... dept

Earlier this year we wrote about one firm that was suing Google over click fraud, claiming that Google could prevent click fraud if it only tried — a pretty surprising claim. However, as part of that lawsuit (which they wanted turned into a class action suit), the company, Click Defense, also claimed that Google should be forced to open up their AdWords log files so that independent auditors could go through them and look for click fraud. It was an interesting claim, but someone realized that part of Click Defense’s business is in selling click fraud detection services, where it would obviously help them to have access to the log files. While it’s never really stopped most companies before, Click Defense claims that “conflict of interest” means they’re dropping out as lead plaintiff in the case, and handing it over to another company. They still plan to be involved in the case, just not as lead. Seems like a strange move — and it makes you wonder if there was more (like, say, money) behind the move. However, as we said when the case first came out, no one forced these companies to advertise on Google. If they don’t like the terms of the contract or the way Google is treating them, shouldn’t they just go elsewhere? There are other advertising platforms these days. If so many advertisers feel they’re being cheated, then by leaving they’ll send Google a message that it needs to change it’s practices.

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Comments on “Lead Plaintiff In Click Fraud Google Suit Recognizes Conflict Of Interest”

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no name says:

ads and click fraud

hmm that seems interesting i will go click on a bunch of google ads around techdirt while pondering the idea…

yes people dont always care about the service when they click, but your right google defends as best it can and if your not seeing good returns from advertising on google stop advertising on google. Now i will search click fraud on google and click all the ads.

Rick says:

I always click

I always click ads on pages with good articles, regardless if I want to see the site or not. It’s my way of ‘rewarding’ sites for good content. Some may consider it click fraud, but I’m not doing it to make myself more money – I’m doing it because its the only way sites like Techdirt are going to be rewarded for good content nowadays. Big deal.

Brent (user link) says:

Google Click Fraud

Of course Google should allow auditors to look over their log files. Do you think they would have to pay anyone money back if their wasn’t fraud? No! Google should be scanning their log files themselves and refunding money back when someone is committing click fraud. But, you see, that would be a conflict of interest with Google. I did advertise with Google, but did get hammered on several occasions with extremely high click-thru rates and unusually low conversions. I have since moved all of my advertising to Yahoo and ceased to advertise with Google. I didn’t particularly like having to stop since Google commands around 60% (it may be more, who knows) of the search market. It’s kind of naive to just say that everyone who doesn’t like Google should just go somewhere else. That’s like saying to all home PC users that if they don’t like the problems with the Windows OS they should just use another one. Easier said than done. I feel, if Google leaves a lot of this click fraud unchecked, it will catch up with them and some judge will force them to reveal their logs. Who knows, if the judge sees that they have known about click fraud and didn’t do anything about it he may force Google to go back in the past and backpay all the people that have been scammed. And that will be the day the Google bull will fall out the window and become a stock market bear. Why don’t they just do the right thing and police themselves like Ebay. I have a relative who’s husband got booted off Ebay as a seller the other day because him and a few friends had shown a pattern of bidding up each others items. Of course this kind of activity makes more money for Ebay, and most other bidders probably wouldn’t ever catch on to what they are doing. The point is Ebay is doing the right thing for the long-term sake of their customers, shareholders, and employees instead of being greedy like Google and seizing all the money they can at the risk of their company, including customers, shareholders, and employees. They may wake up one day and find themselves as another Enron.

Mike (profile) says:

Re: Google Click Fraud

Do you think they would have to pay anyone money back if their wasn’t fraud? No! Google should be scanning their log files themselves and refunding money back when someone is committing click fraud.

Actually, the already do this. Many advertisers have received refunds when Google has spotted click fraud on their account.

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