Last year, a
consortium of advertisers
(led by Lane's Collectibles)has filed a class action suit in
Arkansas against Yahoo, Google and 9
other search engines, accusing the search companies of knowingly charging
for fraudulent clicks.
In March, Google agreed to pay
up to $90 million in legal fees and compensation in the form of credits for
further advertising to companies who believe they have been affected by click
fraud, to settle its part of the lawsuit. If approved by the judge in the
case, the agreement will cover all advertisers who claim to have been charged
but not compensated for invalid clicks as far back as 2002 when the pay per
click programme was introduced.
A spokeswoman for Yahoo said her
company was prepared to continue to defend itself against the legal action.
March 9, 2006:
Google Settles Suit Over Ad Referrals, New York Times:
"Google has agreed to pay $90 million to settle a lawsuit contending it
overcharged thousands of advertisers who paid for bogus sales referrals
generated through a ruse known as click fraud."
March 9, 2006,
Putting a price on click fraud, CNet:
"Google is prepared to pay $90 million to settle a lawsuit over click fraud,
the company said Wednesday."