Tiff over Deceptive Search Keywords May Spark Web Crisis
Opinion: Office Depot's lawsuit against Staples could force a discussion of Web advertising tactics that many in the industry would rather not have. (CIOInsight.com)When Office Depot sued Staples last week over search engine keyword purchases, it touched on more than marketing strategies. The suit could force the discussion of the ethics of Web advertising tactics, a discussion that many in the industry would rather not have. The particulars of the lawsuit are not that exciting. Office Depot accused Staples of deceptive advertising practices for having bought search terms that include the name of an Office Depot subsidiary.
Actually, both sides of the lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court in West Palm Beach, Fla., involve subsidiaries. Office Depots subsidiary, Viking Office Products Inc., accuses Staples subsidiary, Quill Corp., of trying to lure away Viking customers.