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KinderStart Case Against Google Dismissed

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Almost a year after KinderStart sued Google for dropping it from the search engine’s index, the presiding judge has put an end to the case by siding with Google’s requests.

KinderStart Case Against Google Dismissed
KinderStart Case Against Google Dismissed

"Over? Did you say 'over'? Nothing is over until we decide it is!" -- Bluto Blutarsky gives his memorable speech in Animal House

Even though it wasn’t over for the Deltas, it is over for KinderStart. Unless KinderStart wants to press the issue by appealing the decision, their lawsuit against Google has reached the finish line.

Matt Cutts, who provided a declaration for the case, posted a brief note along with a couple of excerpts from the decision by US District Court Judge Jeremy Fogel:

The judge in the KinderStart case granted Google’s motion to dismiss without leave to amend…I believe the judge also granted Google’s motion for sanctions against the plaintiff and the plaintiff’s attorney

Santa Clara University School of Law professor Eric Goldman agreed with Matt’s assessment:

Not only did Judge Fogel dismiss the complaint without leave to amend (meaning that the case is over unless KinderStart appeals to the Ninth Circuit), but he issued Rule 11 sanctions against KinderStart’s counsel Gregory Yu–meaning that Yu will have to pay some of Google’s legal fees (the amount will be determined later). The substantive result isn’t surprising given the complete lack of merit in the lawsuit from day 1, but the Rule 11 sanctions show, once again, that Google plays hardball against plaintiffs when threatened (it also shows that Judge Fogel doesn’t tolerate nonsense in his courtroom–good for him!).

KinderStart had accused Google of infringing free speech, antitrust activity, defamation, and other claims based on its site being dropped by Google to a PageRank of zero. This wiped out search-related traffic coming to the site from Google.

As Goldman noted in an earlier post about the case, "it’s precarious to build a business on free search engine traffic. My advice is to enjoy the ride so long as it lasts, but don’t plan on the good times lasting forever, and definitely don’t expect a ton of sympathy when the gravy train ends."

It does look like KinderStart and Yu should expect some mail from Google, bearing the words "Please Remit" on it.

KinderStart Case Against Google Dismissed
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  • Your Local Silicon Valley Guy

    I have been following the case closely; the issues intrigued me as a large advocate for free speech and privacy.

    A Google Fan, but since the IPO, the company seems to have been moving to the Dark Side.

    The Big Jet, Gmail Scanning of Personal Mail, keeping records of searches for 35 years, Matt Cutts and the NSA, all of it started to smell, Click Fraud took the cake- come on if I took a pizza from Dino’s I would be in the slammer- this was millions of buckeroos.

    The constant complaints for website been trashed by Google for no apparent reason.

    So I followed the KinderStart Case, what was odd was the hate directed towards this site, the line from Jonathan Swift came to mind, something about, ” You can tell a Genius has arisen when the world is aligned against him like a confederacy of dunces.”

    So, I started to wonder, could these guys be on to something-
    Then I read, ” Is Google Evil?” google the article it is on Mother Jones online. And things started coming together-these guys are bad boys.. Just type ” Is Google Evil?” in Google and read the article in Mother Jones.

    I checked out KinderStart, and it was a simple search engine for parents, nothing offensive there. Why was it trashed to zero only on Google, not Yahoo, it had lots of inbound links.

    Was it taken down in an upgrade? Something is confusing.

    So I watched the case, here are a couple of key points not made above.

    As a matter of clarification in review of the case.

    1. The judge did not publish the result- in bold on the ruling
    (NOT FOR CITATION) now why would that be…. hum?

    2. Google wanted legal fees from KinderStart and filed Anti-Slapp- they Judge denied it

    3. Sanctions were not against a KinderStart’s Attorney, not the KinderStart.

    Google has an attorney Richard Kramer-he made one comment in the oral arguments that was hard to believe, that ” KinderStart was rife with porn.”

    Is that why they were banned? They are a porn site?

    I checked out KinderStart- could find no porn at all – and no porn adverts, but Google has alot. I dare say they are the largest collection of porn in the history of mankind, and likely make a good share of their profit from porn ads- they should ban themselves, if having porn is the standard, but again I could find nothing near porn on KinderStart, but a shit load on Google.

    This does not make sense.

    But whatever you can say about KinderStart, it is not a porn site, and what kind of “Don’t Be Evil” Guys would say that.

    Another interesting tidbit is that Eric Goldman (The Lawyer who is always commenting for Google) works for the High Tech Law Institute at University of Santa Clara, funded in a large part by Googles Law Firm, the famous/infamous in recent days
    Wilson Sonnni, oh yea, the home of Richard Kramer, Googles lead lawyer in this case.

    Now, Kramer has even quoted Goldman, in the case-

    hum.. Any connection there, lets see the Judge went to Stanford,
    the Google Boys went to Stanford, Stanford owns part of the Google Code- The President of Stanford just got 11Million for Google stock, he has more too:)

    I wonder if KinderStart will keep going and appeal, I hope they do and they can start by as deep throat of WaterGate Fame, ” Follow the Money.”

    • http://thezoid.co.uk allan

      I am writting an operating system called “TheZoid” at http://thezoid.co.uk

      I have no choice but to add this due to nasty search engine which will not advertise my busuiness called google addwords on www.google.co.uk which wishes to charge very high prices and as an excuse call my website very poor quality. If you manage to find this website as www.google.co.uk is trying its best to keep it out of its search engine that is unbelivable. I would like to know why google cannot recognize TheZoid as an operating system !!! Please send www.google.co.uk lots of emails and tell them that shitting on the small man is good business sense. If google wishes me to remove this from my website than advertise my business fairly, at resaonable rates !!!!

      Did you know google.co.uk wishes to charge upto five pounds for one Click for the word “Operating System” and many other words, I would like to know what is this Bullshit !!!!
      Please show your outrage by boycotting the google search engine !!!!

      This message was posted on 15/11/2007 just after I cancelled my google adwords account which will not advertise my business. I will not pay stupid prices for one click for one keyword !!

      If you work at www.google.co.uk and find this fucking offensive then I am fucking hope so and you can go fuck yourselfs. PS keep pissing of the small man, and I hope you go out of business !!!!