French hit Google in the purse for search results

February 7, 2005 at 6:00 pm Leave a comment

Those pesky French are at it again, except now they are fining our search engines instead of refusing to join us in “liberating” the Iraqi people. In an unsuprising ruling, a French court has fined Google 200,000 euros (U.S. $260,000) for producing sponsored results for competitors and counterfeiters when users search for “Louis Vuitton.” The Advertising Law Blog thinks users who search for “Louis Vuitton” should be fined for bad taste instead, but that may be why courts do not ask bloggers for amici briefs.

You may recall that Google won the first battle in a similar case brought by GEICO in the United States, but this most recent French decision indicates that the law of keyword advertising in the U.S. and Europe may end up worlds — or at least an ocean — apart.

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