Law Firm Sues Google for Letting Others Buy Its Name to Sell Adwords

Ben Glass
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Ben is a nationally recognized expert in attorney marketing and the owner of Great Legal Marketing.
I read the complaint by Stratton Faxon. They claim that their reputation has been tarnished because of this shadow deceptive advertising campaign by their competitor. Importantly, they have no idea how much a competing firm paid to Google, nor how much Google has charged. Even more striking is this comment, repeated verbatim in their motion papers to the Court: "The firm does no direct advertisement to consumers as doing so would conflict with the interests of other lawyers who refer us their clients. Referred clients make up more than 95% of our clientele. As such, the firm does no yellow page or internet marketing to the consumer." That statement made absolutely no sense. Yet this firm has a website. A minor contradiction. In any event, what troubles me even more is that this firm apparently does very well for itself and allocates approximately 10% of its' fees ($400,000/yr) to "advertising" and charity causes. Despite this success, this aggrieved law firm only asked the Connecticut court to award $50,000 for damages. Why such a low amount? It doesn't make sense. This isn't the first time Google has been directly sued for allowing another law firm to purchase Google ad words. In fact, in the mid-West, a few years ago, one attorney in a small town brought a grievance against another lawyer in the same small town for doing exactly what this competitor did with Stratton-Faxon.
by Gerry Oginski June 22, 2009 at 08:54 AM
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