This is quite a shocking article about how the legal system could really throw a wrench into the whole concept of a free-marketplace on the internet.
According to the article in InternetRetailer.com’s May 1, 2007, IRNewsLink e-newsletter, the State of Utah has just passed a law that could limit the practice of a company from being able to have one of it’s ads show up on a search engine page when a user searches for a competing company.
The article gave a great example of how bookseller Borders could turn around and sue both Google, and Barnes & Noble, if a paid Barnes & Noble ad appeared in response to a search for Borders, as long as the search originated from Utah.
Read the full article at: http://www.internetretailer.com/dailyNews.asp?id=22229
What is most disturbing about this law passing is that it could end up being a starting point that leads to the opening of Pandora’s Box, creating a flood of lawyers, governmental agencies, and other legal entities all over the country to follow suit and try to stick their governing fingers into the free world of the internet.
If this were to build momentum, it could really change the current dynamics of search engine marketing, and make things more difficult for online marketers.
However, don’t freak out!!!…the online world is NOT coming to an end!
Most likely, the law will be challenged in court and possibly be thrown out by federal courts because the state would be interfering with interstate commerce.
Also, don’t forget that the big boys like Google, which looks to take most of the more than $8 billion dollars that is estimated to be spent this year on U.S. search engine marketing, won’t just sit quietly on the sidelines.
It should be very interesting to see how things progress in the ever-changing world of online marketing!
Marketing Potential, LLC