Harvard Professor Sues Google Alleging $50M Ad Fraud

Benjamin G. Edelman a Harvard Professors, nicknamed Web Sheriff, is suing Google on the grounds of typosquatting. Typosquatting is the act of hijacking a URL by capitalizing on user typo errors, usually in the form of Cyberbullying. Companies register deceptive domain names that are similar to exiting trademarks, or names that have extra letters or misspellings. Edelman was suing Google because he claimed that they were profiting off of receiving ad dollar from companies engaging in typosquatting.

Google’s attorney Maria Moran made a statement which said that these allegations were misguided because Google simply “distributes third-party advertisements,” and does not participate in typosquatting themselves. Google also removes any infringing domains at the request of the trademark owner. It is the responsibility of these trademark owners to protect their brand.

However Edelman says, “We believe class action adjudication is the most efficient way to resolve these companies’ complaints. It would be unreasonably complicated, costly, and time-consuming for all trademark holders to sue separately.”

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