Ripoff Report Is Back In Yahoo Australia’s Search Results, But Not Completely

ripoff-report-yahoo-au After what we think was about a week of being de-indexed, the controversial Ripoff Report website is showing up again in search results on Yahoo's Australian website. But a company spokesperson tells us that some URLs are still blocked. Late Wednesday night (May 21), we noticed that a search on Yahoo7 -- the Australian version of Yahoo -- was once again showing URLs. That was a week after we first reported that the entire domain had been dropped due to defamation complaints. A Yahoo7 spokesperson confirmed then that the site had been removed after "significant [...]

Yahoo7 Australia Drops Ripoff Report From Search Results After Defamation Complaints

yahoo7-ror-missing-600 Yahoo7, the Australian version of Yahoo, has de-indexed Ripoff Report after receiving "significant complaints" about defamatory content showing in its search results. As you see above, a on Yahoo7 produces no results. A Yahoo7 spokesperson gave us this statement on the decision to de-index that entire domain: Yahoo7 has received significant complaints in regards to defamatory content in our search results which have been generated from links on the website Under Australian law Yahoo7 has an obligation to remove defamatory content from our search [...]

Yahoo Wins $2.75 Billion Appeal In Yellow Pages Case

Yahoo legal Yahoo announced yesterday that it had prevailed in an appeal of a $2.75 judgment in Mexico obtained by former joint venture partners. Those former partners, Worldwide Directories and Ideas Interactivas, sued Yahoo for breach of contract and damages. The case arose from the termination of a contract between Yahoo de Mexico and Ideas Interactivas. In roughly 2002, the companies agreed to jointly produce online and print directories: "Yahoo! Paginas Utiles." The project was initially successful and the parties sought to expand the deal to other countries and regions, including Central America, [...]

Under Threat Of Being Blocked Google, Facebook Comply With India’s New Internet Censorship Rules

After China and the US, India is the third largest internet market in the world. But India has philosophically aligned itself more with China in pursuing a policy of censorship toward publication of content deemed "offensive" or "objectionable" by individuals, groups or the government. A recently enacted law seeks to remove all such content from the internet in India. Facebook, Google, Yahoo and Microsoft were sued under the law and had been arguing in Indian court that it was all but impossible for them to comply as a practical matter. The law makes online publishers potentially liable for [...]

Feds Shut Down Mortgage Scammers on Bing/Yahoo

Screen shot 2011-11-18 at 11.28.20 AM The online advertising mortgage scam investigation announced last week by the Treasury Department involves Bing and Yahoo, as well as Google. the agency has revealed. The Office of the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (SIGTARP) says 125 scams in all have been shut down, as Bing has ceased relationship with more than 400 advertisers and agencies identified by the agency. Ads placed through Microsoft's adCenter are distributed on Yahoo, as well as on The mortgage scams under investigation by SIGTARP involve bad actors who lured in unsuspecting troubled [...]

Yahoo Search Data Retention Goes From 90 Days To 18 Months

As the privacy screws tighten in the US and Europe, Yahoo is doing something surprising: extending the time it holds on to personal search records. In 2008 Yahoo decided to retain search records for only three months. Yahoo thus became the most "progressive" of the major search sites with its compressed data-retention policy. Now Yahoo is reversing itself. The Europeans had been demanding search/IP data retention of less than six months. And last January Microsoft agreed to comply with that standard. Google, however, refused to retain search records for less than 18 months. The company c [...]

Italians Issue Another Dubious Anti-Search Decision

Earlier this year the Italian Communications Authority decided that YouTube was effectively a TV broadcaster and imposed the same rules and restrictions that apply to TV in Italy -- and potential penalties for their violation -- on Google. It said that Google is now legally responsible for any content appearing on YouTube. Now an Italian court has done something potentially much more sweeping with broad implications for search in Italy. Yahoo Guilty for Linking to Infringer Yahoo (in its capacity as a search engine) has been found liable for helping facilitate copyright infringement by index [...]

Paul Allen Refiles Patent Suit Against Google, Facebook, Yahoo & Others

As expected, Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen has re-filed his patent infringement lawsuit against some of the biggest companies on the web. The suit alleges that 11 companies have infringed on technology developed in the 1990s by Interval Licensing (AKA Interval Research Corporation), one of Allen's companies. The 11 companies named in the suit are Google, Yahoo, Facebook, Apple, AOL, eBay, YouTube, NetFlix, Office Depot, OfficeMax, and Staples. Allen first filed the lawsuit in late August, but it was dismissed earlier this month as being too vague. The district court judge gave Allen until [...]

Judge Grants Google’s & AOL’s Motion To Dismiss Paul Allen Lawsuit

A district court judge in Seattle has granted motions filed by Google and AOL to dismiss a Paul Allen patent infringement lawsuit against those two companies (and others). Judge Marsha Pechman agreed with both Google and AOL, who said that Allen's lawsuit was too vague. Allen's patent infringement complaint "failed to identify the infringing products or devices with any specificity," Pechman wrote in her ruling. You can read the full decision on Groklaw. Allen has until December 28th to refile the case. He first filed the lawsuit in late August, accusing 11 companies -- including Goo [...]

Paul Allen Sues Google, Yahoo, Facebook, Others Over Patents

Paul Allen, the Microsoft co-founder and one of the richest men on earth, has filed a patent infringement suit today against several Internet titans, the Wall Street Journal reports. The lawsuit centers on technology developed a decade ago by Interval Research Corp., a technology lab that Allen owned between 1992 and 2000. Eleven companies are named in the lawsuit: Google, Yahoo, Facebook, AOL, eBay, YouTube, NetFlix, Office Depot, OfficeMax, and Staples. The lawsuit claims four patent violations of technologies that are widely used by search engines and e-commerce sites, according to the [...]

Google’s Lobbying Spend Up 1,500% Since 2005

Among the major search engines, Microsoft is still the biggest spender when it comes to lobbying politicians, but none are spending lobbying dollars faster than Google. According to the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics, Google's spend on lobbying has gone from $260,000 in 2005 to more than $4 million in 2009, an increase of more than 1,500%. (chart via As Google has grown, its business interests have clearly led to wanting a stronger voice in Washington, DC. We've documented the Department of Jus [...]

Xerox Sues Google & Yahoo Over Search Patent. Copy That!

Google, Yahoo Sued by Xerox Over Search Query Patents Bloomberg reports Xerox has sued Google and Yahoo over search patents Xerox holds. Xerox says one patent automatically generate a query based on keyword searches, where Google's AdWords & AdSense and Yahoo's Search Marketing, YPN and other products allegedly infringe on. Another patent Xerox is suing the companies over is based on updating pages based on user reviews. Xerox sued Google and Yahoo on February 19th in federal court in Wilmington, Delaware. Xerox wants both compensation and to prevent Google and Yahoo from using the [...]

Microsoft Complies With EU Demand, First To Cut Data Retention To Six Months

Microsoft is the first of the major search engines to agree to the European Union's demand that data retention be cut to six months. The company will now completely delete IP addresses after six months. Here's what Microsoft said on the Bing community blog about the move: Today we sent a letter to the Article 29 Working Party notifying them of our intention to make a change to Bing’s data retention policy. Specifically, we are reducing the amount of time we store IP addresses from searchers to 6 months.  Currently we keep that information for 18 months before we delete it.  Generally, [...]

Yahoo & American Airlines Settle Search Ad Suit

MediaPost reports Yahoo has settled a search ad keyword lawsuit with American Airlines. The suit dates back to October 2008 in a federal court and both were expecting a judgement on the case sometime this year. The two companies reached a settlement prior to judgement, although the terms of the settlement were not disclosed. In August 2007, Google was sued by American Airlines over a similar issue. And in July 2008, Google & American Airlines settled the suit out of court. Some are speculating the Yahoo and American Airlines settlement was due to Yahoo paying luggage fees for Americ [...]

Yahoo Pay Per Click Settlement Details Goes Out To Advertisers

This morning, many Yahoo advertisers received an email from Rust Consulting letting them know, they are included in a legal settlement over Yahoo search ads. The settlement web site, which is at explains that the "lawsuit alleges that customers contracted for targeted ad placements through two products, "Sponsored Search" and "Content Match" (and predecessor products provided by Overture Services, Inc. and, Inc.) and that Yahoo! breached its contract with its customers by allowing Yahoo! ads to be displayed in spyware, domain name parking sites (bulk registrat [...]

Report: Most People Don’t Want Online Tracking Even If It Means Relevant Ads Or Savings

Get ready marketers: a credible new report with sweeping implications from the University of Pennsylvania and UC Berkeley is likely to be the nail in the coffin of self regulation of online advertising. Specifically I'm talking about behavioral targeting, which largely concerns online display advertising but does marginally touch search at Yahoo and Google. The NY Times discussed the report, released today: The study’s authors hired a survey company to conduct interviews with 1,000 adult Internet users. The interview, which lasted about 20 minutes, included questions like "Please tell me [...]

MicroHoo Search Deal Faces DOJ Scrutiny, CEO Bartz Would Have Let MSFT Buy All Of Yahoo

Bloomberg is reporting this morning that the US Department of Justice has decided to look more closely at the MicroHoo search deal. Microsoft and Yahoo are to provide more information on their "ad pricing and product plans, a person familiar with the matter said." This is not a surprise. The companies must convince regulators that the deal will not harm competition or adversely affect SEM pricing. They must also do a similar dance in Europe, where a parallel process will take place. In the end, however, it's likely the deal will be approved given broad US and EU concerns about Google's mark [...]

Yahoo Wins In Lawsuit Over Search Descriptions

Eric Goldman updated us on a case where Yahoo was sued for showing spam and porn pages for a search on a person's name. Beverly Stayart was upset that when you searched for her name on Yahoo, Yahoo returned some results that were not to her liking. So she sued Yahoo but the court wouldn't have it. Goldman explained that the court rejected her suit on three different levels. She sued Yahoo for Lanham Act false endorsement and it was denied by the court, as expected. The reason it was rejected? Goldman sums it up as follows: The court denies Various' 230 defense because its associatio [...]

Former Yahoo Engineer Charged As Alleged Terrorist In India

Barron's Online reports a former Yahoo engineer has been put in custody for allegedly being the "media chief" of the Indian Mujahideen, a terror group. Indian Mujahideen is charged with the September 2008 bombings in Delhi. The ex-Yahoo's name is Mohammed Peerbhoy and he was sending IM warning just before the bombings. It also says that he learned his hacking skills in a class Yahoo reportedly paid 70,000 Rupees for him to take. This is not the typical search news you hear from us daily. Yahoo somehow allegedly involved in terrorism may one up Google's Orkut being involved in pedop [...]

Yahoo Sued For Showing Spam Pages About Person’s Name

Eric Goldman uncovered another interesting lawsuit involving Yahoo. This one involves the organic search results showing spam results for a person's name, where this person is suing Yahoo and Overture for "Lanham Act false endorsement and false designation of origin and violation of Wisconsin's publicity rights statute and common law privacy rights." Let me take you through why this person is suing Yahoo. It is pretty humorous to me, and maybe you will get a kick out of it as well. Plaintiff searches for her name in Yahoo: Beverly Stayart Plaintiff sees a spam page in the search res [...]

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