According to InformationWeek, and verified by Kimberly Kralowec, a class-action lawsuit was filed against Google in a U.S. District Court (N.D.Cal., San Jose, California), for the alleged sale of "low quality" ads on parked domains and error pages. (Thomas Claburn, Google Sued For Selling Ads On Parked Pages (July 15, 2008) www.informationweek.com.) The plaintiff is represented by attorneys from the San Francisco-based law firm of Schubert Jonckheer Kolbe & Kralowec. One of the plaintiff's attorneys, Kimberly Kralowec, is the author of the established and widely-read blog, The UCL Practitioner. Ms. Kralowec was quoted throughout the InformationWeek article:
“In seeking class certification for the lawsuit, Levitte's attorneys hope to represent other aggrieved Google advertisers. "We believe it's a problem that affects all [Google's] advertisers equally," said Kimberly Kralowec, partner at the law firm representing Levitte.
The matter is assigned to Judge Ware, who has some experience with the seedy underbelly of Internet-related litigation. Specifically, I refer to the sprawling sex.com domain ownership litigation that Judge Ware still has the pleasure of handling to this day. I actually had some limited part in that case, successfully dismissing an ancillary complaint associated with that litigation, as the case stretched out like an octopus in an effort to find sources for damages; the central defendant absented himself from the jurisdiction of the court to a safe, foreign residence.
Electonista, a blog predominantly about gadgets, has incorrectly identified the firm of Kabateck Brown Kellner as the filing firm in the Levitte v. Google case. In fact, Kabateck Brown Kellner filed a similar class action suit six days later, also in the Northern District of California, on behalf of plaintiff RK West, Inc. I would assume that the later-filed matter will be related to the case before Judge Ware.
Google, of course, has no comment. In light of the recent Viacom v. YouTube discovery ruling, one wonders what electronic databases related to the AdSense program will be fair game in this class action suit.
You can view the Levitte Complaint (filed by Ms. Kralowec, et al.) here.
You can view the RK West, Inc. Complaint (filed by Kabateck Brown Kellner) here.