2H 2016 Quick Links, Part 10 (Marketing, Uber, Airbnb, Taxes & More)

Marketing/Advertising * Danny Sullivan: Facebook’s racial targeting isn’t new, bad or always illegal despite renewed attention * In re Sling Media Slingbox Advertising Litigation (SDNY Aug. 12, 2016). Sling isn’t liable to consumers for adding its own ads to recorded…

Top 10 Internet Law Developments of 2016

Donald Trump’s election as president pretty much dominated our thoughts about 2016 (though Brexit was pretty significant too). So I decided to break up my annual top 10 list into two separate top 5 lists, one election-related, one not. Top…

More Evidence Why Keyword Advertising Litigation Is Waning

A venerable and classic Internet Law question: when a consumer uses a trademark as a search term, what are they looking for? If they are seeking the trademark owner–and only the trademark owner–then competitive keyword advertisers may encroach on the…

Court Rejects Effort to De-Index Search Results–Manchanda v. Google

Rahul Manchanda, an attorney, claims he was defamed in Ripoff Reports and elsewhere. In 2013, he obtained a restraining order against some of the authors in New York state court. Manchanda then sought to expand that order to restrain Ripoff…

Court Dumps Crappy Trademark & Keyword Ad Case--ONEPul v. BagSpot

Court Dumps Crappy Trademark & Keyword Ad Case–ONEPul v. BagSpot

It’s a highlight of my day to read an opinion that starts out: the litigants “are competitors in the dog waste disposal industry.” Blogging can be a crappy gig, but someone’s gotta do it. The litigants have competing offerings that…

AdWords Buys Using Geographic Terms Support Personal Jurisdiction–Rilley v. MoneyMutual

This is a personal jurisdiction case, so I’ll get right to the point. If an AdWords advertiser buys keywords that contain geographic terms, the advertiser might face a greater risk of personal jurisdiction in those geographies. It’s likely that buying…

FTC Sues 1-800 Contacts For Restricting Competitive Keyword Advertising

FTC Sues 1-800 Contacts For Restricting Competitive Keyword Advertising

For over a decade, I’ve blogged about 1-800 Contacts’ campaign to suppress competitive keyword advertising, including its legislative games (e.g., those times when 1-800 Contacts asked the Utah legislature to ban competitive keyword advertising) and at least 15 lawsuits against…

Repeat Plaintiff Can't Sue Search Engines Because Employers Won't Hire Him--Despot v. Baltimore Life Insurance

Repeat Plaintiff Can’t Sue Search Engines Because Employers Won’t Hire Him–Despot v. Baltimore Life Insurance

The plaintiff, David Despot, has “filed many cases in various courts over the years.” Apparently there is some disagreement about the exact number: “Casetext indicates that its own website reveals 10 lawsuits, BLIC refers specifically to 5, Google states that…

Competitive Keyword Advertising Lawsuit Will Go To A Jury--Edible Arrangements v. Provide Commerce

Competitive Keyword Advertising Lawsuit Will Go To A Jury–Edible Arrangements v. Provide Commerce

The parties compete in the “chocolate and fruit-based gift packages” market. Provide bought competitive keywords that used the plaintiff’s trademark, including the keywords “edible arrangements,” “edible arrangements locations,” “edible arrangements coupons,” “edible arrangements promotional code,” “edible arrangements bouquet,” “edible arrangements…

Texas Ethics Opinion Approves Competitive Keyword Ads By Lawyers

The Texas State Bar’s Professional Ethics Committee has issued Ethics Opinion #661 approving lawyers’ use of competitive keyword advertising. The opinion concludes: A lawyer does not violate the Texas Disciplinary Rules of Professional Conduct by simply using the name of…