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keavin
06-27-2002, 05:08 PM
I know this has been discussed before so I thought I would post this. (Mod -If it's too off topic, sorry you can delete it.)

Finally some publishers with Deep pockets are going after companies like Gator.. Hopefully next they go after these adfilting makers.

"A group of Web publishers filed suit in federal
court this week against the scrappy Internet
ad network Gator Corp., charging that Gator
sells ads on their Web sites without authorization and pockets the proceeds.

"'Gator Corp. is essentially a parasite that free
rides on the hard work and investment' of the
publishers, said the lawsuit, filed Tuesday by a
dozen large publishers in U.S. District Court
in Alexandria."

Here is a link to the full article
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A52132-2002Jun26.html

lmergen
06-27-2002, 05:11 PM
This is really cool - since actually Gator uses URL's to target their advertisements for.

I paid Gator once for advertising at a competitor's URL - it worked out REALLY well (got a 75% conversion rate) , however, I do think that Gator uses the website('s success) to target their advertisements - which is clearly wrong.

But I don't know if I am so strong against it - I just think that it would be nice if Gator notified it if a competitor uses my URL to target their advertisements at, and that I can object, since they're basically stealing my visitors/members.

Scuba
06-27-2002, 06:45 PM
If people will start to BEHAVE like humans - Don't do to another what you don't like that will be doen for you - there will be no need of such law suits.

Gator and such are compleatly out of line in this matters and I agree that they are catching a ride one other publishers and murchents/advertisers/etc hard work and money invested.

Like the suits agenst Verisign not long ago,
I hope that more of this kind will come. Suits that are not what we got acustumed to stupid "patent" on link "Click" but things that actually protect the public.

suits like this is what restors my faith in the law system and the human nature. hopully they will win :smash:

qball0213
06-27-2002, 08:12 PM
Well Imergen, you can't have it both ways, you did it, but if someone did it to you you would like to be notified and be able to object, hehe, if they did that then they would not get any business. Gator and everyone like them is a thief, and you bought the stolen goods off of them, simple as that.

Czar
06-27-2002, 09:22 PM
Hopefully this action will demonstrate to certain ad networks (*ahem L90, ahem FocusIN *) that to support scumware like this is to write a death warrant for one's reputation in the larger publishing community.

Fortunately, ClickZ seems to have replaced Gator with Google as the sponsor of their media buying column. That brief lapse in ethics on behalf of the INT team still astonishes me. :rolleyes:

BTW, I'll leave this thread in the Make Money forum for now since it does relate directly to this part of the web publishing experience, but will have it archived in our StopScum (http://www.geekvillage.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?s=&forumid=56) forum once it's finished its run here.

Chief
06-27-2002, 10:56 PM
There is an interesting story on Yahoo about Gator.

http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/zd/20020627/tc_zd/940104&printer=1

<Admin says:: Thanks so much. I'm going to merge this post into our other thread on this issue>

lmergen
06-28-2002, 04:21 AM
Originally posted by qball0213
Well Imergen, you can't have it both ways, you did it, but if someone did it to you you would like to be notified and be able to object, hehe, if they did that then they would not get any business. Gator and everyone like them is a thief, and you bought the stolen goods off of them, simple as that.

True, I confess :)

But I wouldn't have mind if the publisher I was targetting at would have objected for the advertising proposal. All I am saying is that Gator didn't handle nice in this case... maybe they could even get some possible partnerships - for 75% of the revenue, Gator is allowed to advertise at my site :)

jnestor
06-28-2002, 09:01 AM
lmergen - you might want to read that article. Especially the part about how an advertiser who did exactly what you did (advertise through Gator on a competitor's site) was sued and fined $25K in a separate lawsuit. You might hope your competitor doesn't know you hijacked his traffic this way and that he doesn't find out.

Steve_S
06-28-2002, 11:43 AM
:bigclap:

A non attorney view:

Outstanding news. The plaintiffs are huge companys with very very "deep pockets" so they can spend large sums of money and have the staying power for a long time. Does a small company like Gator have these resources?

With a dozen or so of them, a settlement will be much more complex so this may mean a ruling that prohibits this theftware as opposed to some washed out "deal"

Gator is on the defensive and I love the 12 to 1 odds in this deal and the size of 12 companys verses a very small company.

Gator has no business model if they ask first before they hijack my traffic nor are we likely to see them offer to share revenue with me. Their current model precludes this. They sell first, cash the check, and then steal traffic.

Merchants should also be happy about this law suit :) and those Publishers which I still see delivering the Gator plug in download (saw 2 yesterday) would be smart to remove this stuff yesterday.

Just my 2 cents :)

cyrex
06-28-2002, 12:13 PM
Steve just a few things to note:

Gator is not a small company they have raised millions in venture capital. In the last round they got $44 million. They curently have millions of dollars coming in from advertisers, and as time goes on, more and more companies start using them. Some clients spend more then million per year with them. I spoke with a person who has some inside information on them and he told me they can spend couple of million dollars per year on legal fees without having much effect on bottom line. That means that most probably in court fight will go on and on and on forever. The only people who will benefit from this will be the law firms since they will be collecting money for the work. I don't really see web publishers getting much benefit from this, except maybe few big ones, but thats about it.





Originally posted by Steve_S
:bigclap:

A non attorney view:

Outstanding news. The plaintiffs are huge companys with very very "deep pockets" so they can spend large sums of money and have the staying power for a long time. Does a small company like Gator have these resources?

With a dozen or so of them, a settlement will be much more complex so this may mean a ruling that prohibits this theftware as opposed to some washed out "deal"

Gator is on the defensive and I love the 12 to 1 odds in this deal and the size of 12 companys verses a very small company.

Gator has no business model if they ask first before they hijack my traffic nor are we likely to see them offer to share revenue with me. Their current model precludes this. They sell first, cash the check, and then steal traffic.

Merchants should also be happy about this law suit :) and those Publishers which I still see delivering the Gator plug in download (saw 2 yesterday) would be smart to remove this stuff yesterday.

Just my 2 cents :)

Steve_S
06-28-2002, 02:09 PM
Only time will tell and yea, the attorneys will make a ton of money :)

Some additional facts for consideration:

Hello Gator! Meet your opposition.


From the article: "Terence Ross, the lawyer representing the publishers...."

One of the formost IP attorneys in the intire world and the law firm shoud ring a bell with some of you. This is a heavy heavy hitter. Did I say heavy :)


Terence Ross, a partner in the Washington, D.C., office of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher

interesting reading on Mr. Ross at:

http://www.fiosinc.com/wp-mccarthy.html

and:

http://www.gibsondunn.com/Attorneys/ShowOneAttorney.asp?ID=03575

Gator is privately held so resources are unknown. OK, assume they have millons to spend like you say and they can continue to recieve VC funding and have the resources to indure years of legal action.

From the article: "The irate publishers include The Washington Post Co., the New York Times Co., Dow Jones & Co., Tribune Interactive, Gannett Co., Knight Ridder Digital, Condenet and American City Business Journals Inc. "

These folks combined have significantly more money to spend and resources. They include some of THE largest media companies (in their space) in the entire world. Folks that have been to court a zillon times and are well versed in legal disputes. 2 mil for a suit is small potatoes for this gagle of heavy hitters. Think "Watergate" and "The Pentagon Pappers" :)

I'm going to try and get the transcripts. If any of you are near the court I would be happy to pay you for these transcripts and would be very gratefull :)

See: http://www.vaed.uscourts.gov/locations/ale.htm


BTW, where is the Gator PR responce to this action?

Steve_S
06-28-2002, 03:34 PM
No need for the transcripts.

Mr. Ross (Plaintiff counsel) was kind enough to provide the following links. I called him :) I will be speaking to him after I have digested this data and in the interest of fair play try and reach Gator for comments.

The second paragraph on the following page:

http://www.gibsondunn.com/AreasOfPractice/S1PG.asp?ID=105

The complaint:

http://www.gibsondunn.com/Media/WP_Complaint.pdf

Memorandum in Support of a Motion for Preliminary Injunction

http://www.gibsondunn.com/Media/WP_Motion.pdf

wsz
06-28-2002, 10:01 PM
Originally posted by Steve_S
and those Publishers which I still see delivering the Gator plug in download (saw 2 yesterday) would be smart to remove this stuff yesterday.



Ooops... Up until a minute ago, that included me. Honestly, I hadn't paid much attention to this issue until now, and I suppose that I may have been a bit neglectful about it.

But, upon further reading, it appears that the Gator "scumware" component is apparantly automatically included in their standard "Fill-Out-The-Forms" application (the "free" download.) Note that that is what they are pushing via their affiliate program at BeFree/Reporting.Net.

Based upon this information, I have just removed all banners and text links for the Gator affiliate program on my "freebie" site, and will no longer consider them as a sponsor. I have even decided to forfeit the money earned (I am under the payment threshold) from that program.

I encourage other publishers to do the same.


BTW, I would like to compile a list of "scumware" information sites (to list on the site in my .sig), so please anyone feel free to email me suggestions at webmaster@websponsorzone.com . Thanks...

WildComputer
06-28-2002, 11:23 PM
News report of Gator's reaction:
http://www.internetnews.com/IAR/article.php/1378401

Czar
06-28-2002, 11:38 PM
Originally posted by wsz
BTW, I would like to compile a list of "scumware" information sites (to list on the site in my .sig), so please anyone feel free to email me suggestions at webmaster@websponsorzone.com . Thanks... One such list already exists, but in case you'd like to build upon their's or simply research the issue further, see this page for a wealth of links to anti-scumware resources:
http://www.scumware.com/wm3.html

One notable exclusion from that list (don't ask ;)) is, of course, Geek/Talk's own StopScum forum, so that would be a notable addition to your collection.

funtoon
06-29-2002, 12:33 AM
Great Thread its time publishers fight back!

Now if only some big sites/publishers also put an effort to stop ad blockers companies it would be great, If only they knew they are losing around 15-20% revenue due to ad blockers they might wake up!

cyrex
06-29-2002, 12:02 PM
Where did you get that 15-20% number?



Originally posted by funtoon
Great Thread its time publishers fight back!

Now if only some big sites/publishers also put an effort to stop ad blockers companies it would be great, If only they knew they are losing around 15-20% revenue due to ad blockers they might wake up!

Steve_S
06-29-2002, 12:23 PM
wsz, outstanding stuff. The article that WC was kind enough to reference has a section in it that is not only innacurate but far to vague for my taste. The article said:

"...seeking remuneration in the form of all of Gator's profits." - NOT :)


Please see pages 36-39 of the Complaint for the complete text. A non lawyer translation. This is what the plaintiff wants:

Injunction - STOP
An accounting of Gator's books
Contructive Trust over Gator Corp
Restitution
Damages
3x the Damages
Money to conduct a corrective advertising campaign
Post corrective advertising on the Gator site
Punitive damages
---end---

Given this, the suit has the potential to effectively close them down. Please note, I said potential AND they (Plaintiff) must prevail.

HTH

qball0213
06-29-2002, 12:30 PM
I wonder if there is anything we can do to help them, any ideas?

keavin
06-29-2002, 08:50 PM
I loved Gator's response in that one article.

It's not about them selling advertising, it's about them STEALING advertising from the publishers who create the content they put their advertising on. Using their logic we could band together start an ad company and interupt the broadcasting of network television stations advertising by breaking in to their broadcast and playing our own? It's about the same thing, or if we put our own ads in magazines and newspapers without the publishers permission. I do think they are tilting at windmills with their business model and response to this lawsuit.

Thank you Steve for the links, it was quit informative. I hope they do prevail and it may be a warning to other scumware merchants that they can no longer steal from publishers!

cyrex
06-29-2002, 10:28 PM
While I do agree that gator actions are not acceptable, I am just scare that it will open new problems. For example does that mean that TIVO is illegal, I mean they do insert there own ads in to the programs, (they also cut out netowrk ads) that means because of them TV networks are loosing money, I can go on and on with simillar cases.






Originally posted by keavin
I loved Gator's response in that one article.

It's not about them selling advertising, it's about them STEALING advertising from the publishers who create the content they put their advertising on. Using their logic we could band together start an ad company and interupt the broadcasting of network television stations advertising by breaking in to their broadcast and playing our own? It's about the same thing, or if we put our own ads in magazines and newspapers without the publishers permission. I do think they are tilting at windmills with their business model and response to this lawsuit.

Thank you Steve for the links, it was quit informative. I hope they do prevail and it may be a warning to other scumware merchants that they can no longer steal from publishers!

Steve_S
06-30-2002, 01:36 PM
Unfortunetly, one of THE major problems with the Gator issue is the "clones".

A few days ago I recieved SPAM from the following site which effectively lowers the price of admission and this lower priced alternative (assuming it works) spells additional trouble for all merchants and publishers.

See: http://www.expressengineranking.com/extreme.htm

For a relatively small amount of money I can target any of "your" sites via a URL. and or a keyword in the string.

If any of you are still delivering the Gator plug-in download at 3 cents a pop, after you remove it :) go join the RoboForm program at:

http://www.roboform.com/affiliates.html

A moral and ethical solution for your traffic. Although I have never used their program they pay 5 cents a download and the app is Free.

Has anyone written a "Gator Sniffer". A site script that we could install which denies access to the pages or produces a polite educational notice to the visitor with a link back and logs the stats? For some, it would be a proactive procedure which has the potential to enhance relationships with your visitors.

Note: This is quite different than the "in house" solution which is in the sticky at the top of this forum.

Fromage
07-06-2002, 05:54 AM
I think was over a year ago when I still promoted Gator and I actually had Gator plug-in installed on my computer. Then I heard about better form filler, Robo Form and I started to use/promote it instead. I have actually promoted Robo Form my visitors for free for one year.

Robo Form's affiliate program is currently inactive. I tried to join there two times this spring, but I got no answer. After that I mailed to their support and they said that no-one can join their affiliate program right now.

I am just wondering why they keep this "Affiliates: Make Money Promoting Program That Saves Passwords and Fills Forms" -page on their website then?

funtoon
07-06-2002, 06:15 AM
Originally posted by Steve_S
Has anyone written a "Gator Sniffer". A site script that we could install which denies access to the pages or produces a polite educational notice to the visitor with a link back and logs the stats? For some, it would be a proactive procedure which has the potential to enhance relationships with your visitors.

Note: This is quite different than the "in house" solution which is in the sticky at the top of this forum.

Does any one know how much percentage of your traffic is getting affected by gator if its significant, then I will work on a anti-gator script and add it to antiadbuster.

Fromage
07-06-2002, 06:21 AM
Originally posted by funtoon


Does any one know how much percentage of your traffic is getting affected by gator if its significant, then I will work on a anti-gator script and add it to antiadbuster.

0% here. Gator never pops up on non-english pages.

darnell
07-12-2002, 03:10 PM
See this article (http://news.com.com/2100-1023-943515.html) . The judge granted the injunction that prevents Gator from showing ads over the sites that filed suit. This is a step in the right direction.

Gator can still do their "dirty work" on other sites though. But if Gator loses the case, of course it opens the door for others to go after them ;) .

Steve_S
07-12-2002, 04:05 PM
darnell is the member of the YEAR :) :) :) for that post. I'm naming my next born after YOU.

WOW

Thats a HUGE step in the right direction and in my humble non-lawyer view sends a VERY strong "judicial signal" that the case has merit based on the judges view and the argument presented by the heavyweight team which I mentioned and linked to produced results.

I did some very rough calculations based on the complaint. I might be wrong but the aggragate page views of the plaintiffs is someplace around 200 milion per month.

A rough exstrapaltaion from this and just a guess could mean that for every day the injunction stays in effect it "costs" Gator and their friends 3K per day. If the trial lasts 2 years that's lost revenue of millons untill a verdict is rendered in a jury trial.

If I'm an attorney for the plaintiff (non legal thoughts) I might prolong the trial to increase the effect of the injunction. If I'm on the Gator side (never) I want the case to move quickly as the quote inidicates.

Mine is a very rough calculation since I'm not privy to the data for the various Gator campaigns which formerly poped over the plaintiffs and my guesstimate does not include lost sales to the folks which run campaigns via Gator.

Where is the Gator counter suit?

darnell
07-12-2002, 04:21 PM
Originally posted by Steve_S
darnell is the member of the YEAR :) :) :) for that post. I'm naming my next born after YOU.


Darnell crying virtual tears of joy -> :crying: :D :cool:

Nintendo
07-12-2002, 09:33 PM
::: prevents Gator from showing ads over the sites that filed suit.

bah, why doesn't the judge ban them from showing ads on all sites, and not just on the 16 web sites that files suit. Gator can still show ads on all of our sites, and probably over 98.6% of the rest of the internet.

Aristotle
07-12-2002, 11:48 PM
Steve,

Right you are about the judge's feelings about the merits of the case.

These are very difficult to actually get granted for several reasons.

Some of the very tough aspects a plaintiff must prove in bringing an injunction proceeding are:

1) That the plaintiff(s) will suffer irreparable injury if the injunction is not granted

2) That there is no other adequate remedy at law. (Which really means that money damages don't cut it... so someone has to be forced to do, or not to do something via a specific action); and

3) That the plaintiff(s) have a likelyhood of success on the merits in the action as a whole.

So, indeed it is quite a victory in my legal opinion.

-Ari

qball0213
07-13-2002, 12:33 AM
Well I've only got two words:
WOO HOO!:D

maddeningcrowds
07-13-2002, 05:56 AM
With this injunction, and the earlier WeightWatchers.com vs DietWatch.com thing, presumably any publisher could get a similiar injunction against gator? And if a load of publishers filed suits and got similair injunctions pending trials, gator would stop making money.

I guess it could get scarily expensive for small publishers - but then, the biggest advertising contracts are with big companies, so i'm hoping that more big publishers will follow with their own suits/injunctions ASAP.

Czar
07-13-2002, 09:12 AM
Originally posted by maddeningcrowds
I guess it could get scarily expensive for small publishers...If NY Times et al. do succeed against Gator, and the company chooses to continue trading, the path could be open for a class action suit against them, which would enable smaller publishers to seek damages without incurring massive costs on an individual David & Goliath level.

Given the damage that would (rightfully, imho) be done to Gator's brand if they do lose such a high-profile case, though, it's relatively likely that a loss would result in them shutting down the business.

Let's face it, if they're unable to plaster ads across third-party sites without permission, they lose their core revenue base, and developing form-filling software just doesn't drum up the kinda cash that it used to. ;)

Steve_S
07-13-2002, 01:45 PM
Ari/Aristotle,

Thanks so much for your legal/attorney view. Members, you may want to read that post which appears at the bottom of page 2 of this thread. This helped me understand exactly what the Judge ruled on in:

Memorandum in Support of a Motion for Preliminary Injunction:

http://www.gibsondunn.com/Media/WP_Motion.pdf

Summarized in the Table of Contents and all the details in pages 17-28.


The problem with Mr. McFaddens/Gator statement in the last news article in this thread:

"Such a ruling would attack a consumer's right to use hundreds of popular software applications that automatically display separate windows while the consumer is surfing the Internet."

My non-lawyer view of this staement: It's not germaine to the case. Yes it may be a very minor issue in the defense but a carefull reading of the complaint will tell you that the Plaintiffs claims have for the most part nothing to do with a .."consumers right ..." and Gator would be ill advised to use this "consumer" defense. Plus the posibility that if and when a jury hears what the issues are and what Gator is doing to their computers and some of their favorite sites (all but one are free to read), this "consumer" defense could work to the benifit of the Plaintiffs.

So exactly what are the issues?

From the complaint:

http://www.gibsondunn.com/Media/WP_Complaint.pdf

Count I Trademark Infrigment
Count II Unfair Competition
Count III Trademark Dilution
Count IV Copyright Infringement
Count V Contributory Copyright Infringement
Count VI "Hot News" Missappropriation
Count VII Interferance With Prospective Economic Advantage
Count VIII Unjust Enrichment
Count IX Violation of Va. Business Conspiracy Act

HTH

maddeningcrowds
07-13-2002, 03:08 PM
Gator are going with the 'consumer' line because its the only way they can present themselves in a reasonable light. The argument is that surfers *choose* to download gator and agree to the terms and conditions when they install it and its accompanying programs. Of course, users don't really understand what the gator install will actually do, but they do agree to it nonetheless.

However the main crux of the law suit as I understand it is not about advertising really, but about the copyright holders right to dictate how their information is presented. So it doesn't really matter what consumers agree to. For example, a 'white label' remix of a pop tune is a copyright violation regardless of whather a consumer enjoys it or purchases it.

darnell
07-13-2002, 03:12 PM
Originally posted by Czar
If NY Times et al. do succeed against Gator, and the company chooses to continue trading, the path could be open for a class action suit against them, which would enable smaller publishers to seek damages without incurring massive costs on an individual David & Goliath level.

Given the damage that would (rightfully, imho) be done to Gator's brand if they do lose such a high-profile case, though, it's relatively likely that a loss would result in them shutting down the business.

Let's face it, if they're unable to plaster ads across third-party sites without permission, they lose their core revenue base, and developing form-filling software just doesn't drum up the kinda cash that it used to. ;)

Gator had better close down the business FAST if/when they lose this case. Because even if they stop plastering ads on everyone's sites publishers can still start a class-action suit for past deeds and damages.

I would love for one large publisher to get a class action filing going. Then force Gator go give up a list of EVERY SITE their software worked on (or should I say worked over) and then include every one of those publishers in the class-action suit. It would surely break them.

DIE GATOR DIE I SAY! :evil:

PaulT
07-14-2002, 01:40 PM
Just spotted a great story at News.com (http://news.com.com/2100-1023-943515.html?tag=fd_top)

A federal judge on Friday ordered software company Gator to temporarily stop displaying pop-up advertising over Web publishers' pages without their permission.

The order was issued in a lawsuit filed against Gator in June by The Washington Post, The New York Times, Dow Jones and seven other publishers, which allege the company's ads violate their copyrights and steal revenue.

On Friday, Judge Claude Hilton granted the motion, according to the clerk's office at the federal court in Alexandria, Va., where the suit was filed.

Gator CEO had this to say (total diatribe as usual)

"We are highly confident that once all the facts are presented in the upcoming trial, no court will issue a ruling eliminating a consumer's right to decide for themselves what is displayed on their own computer screens," Gator CEO Jeff McFadden said in the statement.

Things are looking up, dont you think?

<Admin says: Thanks. Merging this thread with our sticky thread.>

WildComputer
07-14-2002, 10:48 PM
I am not an attorney

I am not so sure that it follows that even if these publishers win, other sites can then go to a class action.

The reason I say this is...

These publishers have trademarks, and highly recognized ones at that. If it is decided that Gator infringes or dilutes their trademarks... it doesn't automatically follow that Gator is infringing/diluting other trademarks. Plus other sites may either not have trademarks, or have less (or more) valuable trademarks.

Similarly for the copyright. Even if it is decided that Gator is infringing copyrights of these publishers, then for other sites both the merits of the claim, and the values of the copyrighted material are likely to be different.

So, to summarize, I am not sure that the merits of cases, and the value of the damages, can be extended logically (or legally) to other sites where the circumstances are different.

My opinion of what might be more likely, is if these publishers win, it might establish a precedent making it easier for other publishers to win separate litigation.

As I said at the start - I am not an attorney - so I don't know the above for certain.

cyrex
07-15-2002, 03:34 PM
I have number of attorney friends and from what I am being told as of right now Gator is not loosing at all. It is a common practice in law to stop company activity till the case begins and judge can decide on the case. On the other hand Gator is getting tons of free publicity right now and if it wins the case every single fortune 1000 marketing executive will know about Gator, and chances are some will go ahead and open advertising accounts with Gator. Only time will show who will show who will benefit from current events!

maddeningcrowds
07-18-2002, 05:10 PM
Similarly for the copyright. Even if it is decided that Gator is infringing copyrights of these publishers, then for other sites both the merits of the claim, and the values of the copyrighted material are likely to be different.

But the claim isn't about the value of the copyrighted material, but the right of the copyright owner to choose the form in which his/her material is presented. Whilst certain forms of 'borrowing' copyright matreial - such as in satuire or parody - are considered 'fair use', this is not such a case.

To continue my previous example, a 'white label' remix of a pop tune is a copyright violation regardless of what the value of the original tune was, or how well the artist was known, or whether the band's name was a trademark.

Steve_S
07-18-2002, 05:31 PM
Originally posted by cyrex
I have number of attorney friends and from what I am being told as of right now Gator is not loosing at all. It is a common practice in law to stop company activity till the case begins and judge can decide on the case. On the other hand Gator is getting tons of free publicity right now and if it wins the case every single fortune 1000 marketing executive will know about Gator, and chances are some will go ahead and open advertising accounts with Gator. Only time will show who will show who will benefit from current events!


<Welcome again to GeekVillage Business School - Course 102> :)

How so? Gator is loosing $$$ and has been from the moment they removed the pops from the targeted sites (Plaintiffs) The only way Gator is NOT loosing is if they ran (past tense) those targeted campaigns at the Plaintiffs sites for free, which is rather unlikely :)

If you mean the offset between the "ink" they (Gator) are getting and the loss ad revenue from their customers who were (past tense please) targeting the Plaintiffs sites, then thats yet another issue which we can hammer out in another class, consistent with the Business School's rules :)

cyrex
07-19-2002, 12:18 AM
Steve one thing to remember is that Plaintiffs sites didn't represent big part of Gator's revenue, and until the judge decides the outcome of this case, Gator will still show ads on other sites. While I do belive that Gator biz model is not fair to webmasters, I am really scare that governement involment in the issues like this will go against the whole point of American market economy. I would rather see companies develop anti-gator software for webmasters to install then goverment getting involved in the whole thing.






Originally posted by Steve_S



<Welcome again to GeekVillage Business School - Course 102> :)

How so? Gator is loosing $$$ and has been from the moment they removed the pops from the targeted sites (Plaintiffs) The only way Gator is NOT loosing is if they ran (past tense) those targeted campaigns at the Plaintiffs sites for free, which is rather unlikely :)

If you mean the offset between the "ink" they (Gator) are getting and the loss ad revenue from their customers who were (past tense please) targeting the Plaintiffs sites, then thats yet another issue which we can hammer out in another class, consistent with the Business School's rules :)

Anion
07-19-2002, 03:35 AM
Originally posted by WildComputer
I am not an attorney

I am not so sure that it follows that even if these publishers win, other sites can then go to a class action.

The reason I say this is...

These publishers have trademarks, and highly recognized ones at that. If it is decided that Gator infringes or dilutes their trademarks... it doesn't automatically follow that Gator is infringing/diluting other trademarks. Plus other sites may either not have trademarks, or have less (or more) valuable trademarks.

Similarly for the copyright. Even if it is decided that Gator is infringing copyrights of these publishers, then for other sites both the merits of the claim, and the values of the copyrighted material are likely to be different.

So, to summarize, I am not sure that the merits of cases, and the value of the damages, can be extended logically (or legally) to other sites where the circumstances are different.

My opinion of what might be more likely, is if these publishers win, it might establish a precedent making it easier for other publishers to win separate litigation.

As I said at the start - I am not an attorney - so I don't know the above for certain.


Wildcomputer,
I didn't read the entire filing but I do not believe that Gator is being accused of trademark infringement. Rather, the platiffs are alleging that gator is engaging in unfair competition. Gator's business practices appear to contravene the Shermann act. So a class action suit could be sucessfully brought against gator and its advertisers.

Anion
07-19-2002, 03:40 AM
Originally posted by cyrex
I have number of attorney friends and from what I am being told as of right now Gator is not loosing at all. It is a common practice in law to stop company activity till the case begins and judge can decide on the case. On the other hand Gator is getting tons of free publicity right now and if it wins the case every single fortune 1000 marketing executive will know about Gator, and chances are some will go ahead and open advertising accounts with Gator. Only time will show who will show who will benefit from current events!


Officially, judges aren't allowed to reach conclusions until arguements end. However, the injuction against gator appears to be preliminary indication that the plaintiffs will prevail. My prediction is that Gator will attempt to settle by offering to permanently refrain from advertising upon the plaintiffs' sites.

darnell
07-19-2002, 10:19 AM
Originally posted by Anion



Officially, judges aren't allowed to reach conclusions until arguements end. However, the injuction against gator appears to be preliminary indication that the plaintiffs will prevail. My prediction is that Gator will attempt to settle by offering to permanently refrain from advertising upon the plaintiffs' sites.

You are on the right track. Judges only grant such injunctions when there is a presumtion that the plaintiffs have a case and allowing the defendent to continue will cause harm that can not be undone. They are not just given out on a regular basis. There is a true review done prior to deciding if an injunction should be put in place.

I think the case is a good thing.

DIE GATOR DIE I SAY!!! :evil:

WildComputer
07-19-2002, 11:27 AM
Answers to several


I didn't read the entire filing but I do not believe that Gator is being accused of trademark infringement.


Trademark issues are one of the items on the list that Steve posted. I didn't verify it myself


But the claim isn't about the value of the copyrighted material, but the right of the copyright owner to choose the form in which his/her material is presented. Whilst certain forms of 'borrowing' copyright matreial - such as in satuire or parody - are considered 'fair use', this is not such a case


That's why I say it might establish a precedent if these publishers win.

I think to be a class, (I am not an attorney, so this is uninformed opinion), everybody in the class is supposed to have some similarities, like the amount of damages they each can claim.


News story on the injunction, and sealing or not of proceedings

http://computerworld.com/news/2002/story/0,11280,72777,00.html

WildComputer
07-19-2002, 12:10 PM
Another news story

http://www.nytimes.com/2002/07/16/technology/16GATO.html?ex=1027829602&ei=1&en=d2219e99d28a5727

This expands on the reasons behind the judge's ruling, and the NY Times previously advertising on Gator.

Anion
07-19-2002, 02:17 PM
From the new york times:


Gator's lawyers have asserted that their client's service is similar to instant-messaging software, which users download with the understanding that messages will pop up over whatever page they may be viewing at the time.


The problem with Gator's defense is that it surreptitiously implants itself. Victims recieve the program when they install software like Kazaa or are confused into downloading the program by networks like Adtegrity.

If gator were smart it would settle with these publishers before the court rules. This way they can avoid Napster's fate.

Steve_S
07-20-2002, 01:02 PM
Thanks Wild for the link to that article. The quote from McFadden supports what member cyrex says in his last post so your point is taken :) Grade: A for you.

However, I have to wounder why Gator wants a fast trial as per the quotes, if in fact ? the economic impact of the injunction is not serious. ? :)

Matter of fact, if the lack of serious financial impact is true, then my own view is that Gator should strive for a jury trial and has no reason to sit down at the table and negotiate.

On the other hand, this quote may also be "speak" by Gator in rather subtle terms that they do wish to settle.

darnell
07-20-2002, 01:48 PM
From the article:
Gator's software permits users to fill out password and shipping information in an online form and use it as a shortcut when they visit different e-commerce Web sites.

Of course we knew that is what Gator does, but plenty of browsers like Mozilla (http://www.mozilla.org) can do it now too. So maybe users will find better alternatives without the ads :p .