Search King suit dismissed


The Western District of Oklahoma Court has granted Google's Motion to Dismiss the suit brought by Bob Massa and Search King. Search King sought recourse from Google for artificially deflating its PageRank value, thus devaluing the service Search King marketed. Danny Sullivan provides some background. The Court held that the PageRank value is a constitutionally protected opinion and that PageRank does fall within the scope of protection afforded by the First Amendment (abridging the freedom of speech). "PageRanks are opinions - opinions of the significance of particular web sites as they correspond to a search query." Artificial manipulation of PageRanks (as constitutionally protected speech), whether motivated or not by hatred or ill will, cannot be considered wrongful and therefore "cannot give rise to a claim for tortious interference with contractual relations."

Posted by Paul at June 1, 2003 12:28 AM |
Visitor Feedback

That was interesting. What was most interesting to me was google using
the 1st amendment and saying page rank wasn't a system that they have
devised but their personal opinion. That was not a bright thing for them
to say and I can see Search King winning the suit. I also agree with
Search King that a public search engine on the internet is accountable
for their actions even though they may be privately owned the internet
is a public place and there's a certain nettiqete even that search
engines and other big sites need to follow.

Posted by: Sam at December 1, 2003 11:35 AM