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Old 11-20-2004, 11:07 PM   #1
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Outstanding!

But why is this action kinda a secret given the fact that the case was filed on 11/15/04.

For your reading pleasure direct from the Superior Court records:

http://www.sccaseinfo.org/pa5.asp?fu...1-04-CV-030560

THe following defendents are of course innocent untill proven guilty and will have thier day in court.

Against: Auction Expert International L.L.C. / DEF
Against: Sergio Morfin / DEF
Against: Alexei Leonov / DEF

Take a gander at their site:

http://www.auctionsexpert.com/

I wounder if all their advertisers and other affiliate networks are aware of this action which is yet to be resolved?




Last edited by Steve_S; 11-20-2004 at 11:08 PM.
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Old 11-23-2004, 02:02 AM   #2
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Hi larwee,

Welcome to the "village" Great to have you FINALLY appear!


G already PAID this affiliate. The check was cashed. The demand for return of the funds was made. Thats a very critical issue which seems to be somewhat diluted by some of the PR spin. You are supposed to catch them BEFORE the check clears.

You normally DON'T sue unless this occurs since you generally have no damage incurred.

For example, you catch a cheater before the check is cut and cashed/cleared, terminate the fraudster and credit back funds to the advertiser. Sometimes you issue a stop order on the check. Iv'e never seen a Superior Court action under these circumstances.

Natch, I'm not an attorney but this should be self evident!

Edit: Try this link for the article:

http://asia.cnet.com/news/personalte...9202285,00.htm

Last edited by Steve_S; 11-23-2004 at 02:48 AM.
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Old 07-05-2005, 08:32 PM   #3
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Yes, my beloved GEEKS its an old thread but JUDGEMENT has been granted in this case to G for 75 K :

Against: Auction Expert International L.L.C. / DEF
Against: Sergio Morfin / DEF
Against: Alexei Leonov / DEF

Dated: 05/17/2005

See:

http://www.sccaseinfo.org/pa5.asp?fu...1-04-CV-030560

Current News:

http://publications.mediapost.com/in...=14209&p=15470

Thoughts: G needs to sue dozens more. Just do it and send loud signals accross the planet. Why keep this so quiet G. Leak the news to the press back in May. Next, a debtors exam and actually attempt to collect the Judgement. Hire a PI, follow the money trail, continue to feed the press with "leaks" and get your "INK"

HTH

Last edited by Steve_S; 07-05-2005 at 08:36 PM.
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Old 11-18-2004, 11:15 PM   #4
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Good. There seems to have been a little uptick in fraudulent activity lately. Our AdWords account was credited for $13.xx in illegitimate clicks last week; this being the first time in many months that I've seen a refund come through our account.

While AdSense remains one of the most promising tools in Google's media arsenal given that they are certain to lose market share as a stand-alone search destination next year, it's also arguably the avenue faced with the greatest risks as pertains to fraud.
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Old 11-21-2004, 08:46 AM   #5
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As per the snipped post above, please find following the remainder of the article posted in relation to this story:
Quote:
Pay-per-click fraud has been a hot topic recently for Google over the past year.

In March, 32-year-old Michael Bradley was arrested by the FBI after he developed a piece of software called “Google Clique” that roamed the Internet, clicking on AdSense advertisements.

Bradley first tried to sell his software to the search company for $100,000, and then, when Google failed to respond, threatened to release the program to the “top 100 spammers.”

Google also mentioned the subject in its April IPO filing with the SEC as a potential threat to its stock viability.

“We have regularly paid refunds related to fraudulent clicks and expect to do so in the future,” said Google. “If we are unable to stop this fraudulent activity, these refunds may increase.”

Calls to Google attorney David H. Kramer, with Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati in Palo Alto, were not returned as of this posting.

The case is Google Inc. Vs. Auction Expert International L.L.C., et al., CV030560.
Thanks to long-time lurker larwee for this contribution.
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Old 11-23-2004, 02:52 AM   #6
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It's 1999 all over again.

Click and impression fraud used to be the hottest issue in online advertising, with operators of 'get-paid-to-surf' programs and early CPC-based ad networks virtually crippled by simplistic devices and methods in the late 90s and into 2000-2001. The issue appeared to fall from the radar of mainstream online advertising for a couple of years after that as online ad spending began to dry up and advertisers moved to support CPM-based networks that placed an explicit emphasis on fraud prevention.

Many in the industry (including a huge number of Geek/Talkers) have long feared that this issue would inevitably arise to challenge AdSense extraordinarily. While it's easy to guard against the more simplistic software-based methods and proxy exploits, AdSense's supreme roster of advertisers and their high rates of pay serve as irresistable carrots dangling in front of hungry click fraudsters.

What worries me is not only a rise in the use of devices that have been developed explusively for use in exploiting AdSense, but the presence of requests on programmer BBs and freelance marketplaces for people to click on ads a given number of times a day in exchange for a share in the revenues. These worrying trends, along with exploitation by orchestrated criminal networks, are threats not only to AdWords advertisers but to the viability of AdSense itself.

We've already seen a number of publishers expelled from the network this month who claim to have done nothnig in breach of Google's terms. This could very well be the case, as it was when high rates of 'innocent' publishers were expelled from networks in the late 90s due to poor validation systems employed by networks at the time. If Google can't discriminate between genuine fraud and either anti-competitive clicking or normal human/bot activity, much more collateral damage may be suffered before fraud is diminished as a major issue for the network.

This is a worrying trend and while I wouldn't like to be in Google's shoes right now, I have my fingers crossed that other Geek/Talkers are spared from having their accounts deactivated due to hostile or genuinely irregular click activity.
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Old 07-07-2005, 07:26 PM   #7
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It is intriguing that Google didn't have a field day with this judgement. Perhaps back in May the company felt that its best course of action would be to avoid issuing any release that deals with click fraud in an effort to keep the concept out of the headlines. This date also corresponds fairly closely with the network's debut of the CPM-based site targetting feature, which was a proactive gesture aimed at subtly sending a message to the market that click fraud could be battled through evasion (whether the message made sense or not is another matter).

The only other factor that seems to have possibly had a bearing is the fact that Google certainly realises that even a quiet judgement will be heard by the underground elements that the network is trying to target. While small operators who click on a few of their own AdSense ads from the comfort of their bedroom may not have heard of the $75K fine, it's almost certain that organised, commercial operators would have felt the ripples within days of the announcement. Perhaps Google felt that this was a safe medium between serving as a moderate deterrent and keeping the issue out of the public eye for a few weeks.

Since G has suffered from a number of click fraud related articles during the past two months, however, perhaps they'd take a different strategic approach if the judgement had been presented in July rather than May. Nowadays, they'd surely see that a release that discusses click fraud is not necessarily going to do the company harm, as long as the release puts a positive spin on the topic by making G seem either inpenetrable (which it isn't) or determined enough to mean business in protecting its advertisers' accounts from fraud (which it hopefully is).

At least we heard about the outcome, thanks to the savvy PI work of Steve.
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Old 11-22-2004, 11:24 PM   #8
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larwee - thanks for contributing and welcome to geek/talk!
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Old 11-24-2004, 09:52 AM   #9
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PageUp, please refrain from targetting a certain country in regards to abuse. It is rife everywhere and may be more obvious from certain countries because of the sheer population of such.

Thanks for your future co-operation in advance
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Old 11-20-2004, 05:47 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by Anat
This should be one interesting lawsuit. How can they prove the fraud in court - i.e. beyond a reasonable doubt - when it seems that clicks can be so easily manipulated by competitors.
This isn’t a criminal case, the publisher isn’t going to jail, they are being sued for fraud and thus the burden is to have a preponderance of the evidence which is far less then beyond a reasonable doubt. I would imagine that Google picked this publisher because they had a LOT of fraudulent traffic easily tracked and shown to be what it was (i.e. thousands of clicks from a script/bot originating from the same IP address). The publisher may try and say the clicks came from competitors but I would imagine there is a lot more to it then just a few false clicks.
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Old 11-19-2004, 12:42 AM   #11
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Let's hope we see more of this sort of thing; I'm sure fraud is one of the big reasons why many of our AdSense earnings have been slowly declining ... Google has to pay out less to cover the fraud
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Old 11-20-2004, 07:08 PM   #12
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Agreed; I'm sure there's plenty of attempted AdSense fraud going on, and Google would have carefully picked this case because they knew there was persuasive evidence ... ex, the clicks are all coming from the same IPs, and the IPs all seem to be from the same geographic location as the company ... hmmmmmmm
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Old 11-18-2004, 08:47 PM   #13
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Default Google sues Adsense affiliate for click fraud

They are suing a company in Houston for inflating their Adsense click throughs.

Sorry I fdon't have a link for you...I suppose it'll be in the news tomorrow.
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Old 11-20-2004, 09:05 PM   #14
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Here is a snippet of the article sent to me.

>>>>>>
MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. — Internet search giant Google Inc. filed a lawsuit against one of its AdSense Online clients this week, claiming the company defrauded the search company by clicking on its own ads multiple times.
The case, filed in Santa Clara County Court, also alleges that Houston, Texas-based Auctions Expert International were in breach of their contract with Google for intentionally manipulating the advertising program.

AdSense allows for “unobtrusive and context-sensitive advertising,” according to Google, by linking a web user’s queries with similar advertising.

“The advertiser pays Google for the user’s click and Google, in turn, pays the majority of the money it receives back to the website author,” Google said in its legal filing.

The AdSense agreements, though, expressly bar any company from clicking on its own sites in order to create ad revenue or to pay other people to click on the company’s sites.

“[Auctions Expert] flagrantly abused the AdSense Online service by artificially and/or fraudulently generating ad clicks,” the complaint stated. “These clicks were worthless to advertisers because they generated significant and unjust revenue for the defendants, who were paid by Google as if the clicks were legitimate.”
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Old 11-22-2004, 11:22 PM   #15
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>>>>
"We have sophisticated technology that detects and eliminates fraud,"
>>>>

Says the Google spokesman as he comments on Google suing a company for commiting fraud.

Does anyone else see the irony in this?



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