SEOBook Sued by Traffic Power Arsewipes, Considers Pulling Content

35 comments
Source Title:
NOTICE! YOU HAVE BEEN SUED
Story Text:

Well, Aaron finally got sued by TP/1p - the scum of the online world, and is now considering pulling content rather than fight a ridiculous battle.

As far back as June 4th, 2004 I removed a comment that I thought was offensive, and I thought generally I was keeping the content in bounds of any sort of legal limit. It is ok to have an opinion. It is ok for others to post their opinions. Since the initial time someone cold called me stating they were from Traffic Power the content has aged over a year and never once has Traffic Power attempted to contact me outside of blog comments, a cease and desist, and a lawsuit.

Could you imagine being a client for a company that communicates like that?

As Dave Taylor notes this sets some important precedents (even if aaron pulls the comments) for liability of user comments - (yes, i know it's not the first case ever, but it is important).

Personally, im not sure we, or anyone else should let TP get away with this - they're scum, and alledged scammers, but im not sure what the answer is...

Also, they're suing a bunch of other people, and we'll probably be on the list, though they can fuck right off as far as im concerned - they'd have a hard job doing anything here in Denmark.

Comments

Denmark goes Legal!

Ahhh, the Kingdom of Denmark... a long way from the clutches of the U.S. Justice system.
Do they TP/1p have a legal case if what Aaron was stating in his blog is true? What happened to the FOI doesn't this protect Aaron if what he stated was fact? When since has it been unlawful to report on the truth. After all TP/1p are not Apple.

Satellite blog?

It would be nice if someone accidentally scraped Seobook's TP comments and related info and put them on a non-US satellite blog somewhere. Before it all gets binned of course. US webmasters could then link to that in an innocent and informational way {grin}

Power authority and influence

I've already passed on my private comments for Aaron as we have some similar experiences and won out.

Anyone who wants a look at the framework I work from as a Social Worker taking on powerful shit heads to protect the homeless people I support - here is a basic run down on: power authority and influence.

If Aaron does decide to take them on I'm pretty sure if the hat got passed around for legal costs there would be a lot of support from the seo community.

nice post, Dominic

Thanks for the link, Dominic. I totally agree, and added some in a message to you.

$10k is very little for covering legal fees. Does this indicate they expect their letter to get the job done?

I am not a lawyer and I don't recall the exact trade secrets that Aaron is alleged to have disclosed, but I have been through legal battles and I can state they are very educational (and very expensive). It seems odd to me that a company would risk all the bad press for a settlement valued at $10k. Settle quietly for $10k sure, but sue for $10k?

Again it really depends on the letter of the law and the exact alleged infringement, because it will come down to an argument between legal teams and that argument costs money. Strong, careful arguments cost more, and win more often. Since most cases are settled, isn't it the argument (and the associated costs, real and other) that influence the outcome (as opposed to the facts)?

Since Aaron has been sued and not just threatened, the question is not really "Are you right" anymore, but "can you win?" and that is why Dominic's post is so important (if you want to try and win).

Hey, if someone passes the hat, I'll contribute

And I'd be happy to link to any pages that informatively detail what wankers TP are.

Solution

they're scum, and alledged scammers, but im not sure what the answer is...

Never ending DDOS by all webmasters together in retaliation?

DDos is illegal in some

DDos is illegal in some places, i'd like to see a wiki hosted and run from a less regulated country...

does TW

not have a man in China?

and a Russian?

*added - yes China and 'less regulated' are perhaps strange in the same discussion but we're talking about outside US control, nit anti Chinese*

I'd imagine TW has someone

I'd imagine TW has someone everwhere almost - im open to suggestion, though i think aaron is would be far more qualified to run such an operation.

You never know what will happen in court.

My last court case was 2 months ago - and I lost. Out of all the times I've been sued or have sued people - I thought for sure this one was an easy win. It was so obvious that I was in the right that my family and I planned a vacation around the court date (it was out of state).

I guess my point is you never know what will happen and *that* is why people settle or don't want to actually go to court. But, if you don't risk losing you can never win.

Traffic Power - Are They Bad Guys, Then?

Sorry, but I'm really confused here.

You always insult White Hats - usually in a fairly 'schoolyard' way, but I always put that down to youth and overindulgence ... now you are chastising TP?

Since when did they stop being Heroes Of The Dark Side?

Is there no honour and loyalty on this side of the fence? What have they done that other "ThreadWatchers" have not?

Or is it 'being caught' that's the issue? And wasn't it the White Hatters who Dared to Name Names, against protests from the Dark Side?

Sheesh, no wonder you don't like talikng ethics! ;-)

Blackhat heroes suing people for blogging about them?

Grin...

I guess the title of this topic still stands LOL

It's not about black or white

It's about the mass scamming of small business owners.

And at this point, i'd like to remind everyone to stay on topic, let's not let something this important devolve into something silly. I'd rather not remove posts, but you know i will if i feel i must.

Cheers

The one thing that is worth

The one thing that is worth underlining is that when served with a notice from a legal representative, you absolutely must take legal advise from an experienced legal authority.

No personal response, no asking friends - you go straight for a lawyer to receive appropriate legal counsel and make an appropriate legal response.

Will maybe cost a couple of hundred dollars, but could save far far more than that.

For example, it's worth finding out whether the actual notice has jurisdiction and isn't just another bluff tactic.

Let legal professionals deal with the legal process in the required manner.

Brian makes a good point,

Brian makes a good point, once the suit is filed it is a different ballgame. Hire a lawyer.

Does this call for a specialist?

And if it does, doesn anyone know a lawyer in the US who specializes in internet issues and/or libel?

?? Gertie - I'm 'our man

?? Gertie - I'm 'our man in Russia'. If anyone needs some help with outside-US-jurisdiction hosting then they can give me a call. Generally Russian ISPs will ignore US/UK legal papers; we're still smiling at the US court order which attempted to block the sale of Yukos ;)

Do Not Cave In!

I'll kick in some cash, and I'll also see what I can do to find you an attorney.

On top of that, I think there are several reporters who would love to cover your dilema. If TP really decides to push forward, then we'll make sure the entire web knows what little weak sister bitches they are.

seo2seo dont mix blackhats

seo2seo dont mix blackhats with business ethics brotha.
Blackhat seo is a technique and a tool not a business model for scamming.

Aaron if you are taking donations make it public so I can send some mulah :)

Yes, count me in for a

Yes, count me in for a donation for legal fees. Just tell me where.

>On top of that, I think

>On top of that, I think there are several reporters who would love to cover your dilema. <

I'll preface my statement by mentioning that I have no idea whatsoever of the resources of either party related to this topic but I would venture to guess that it is not about money. I doubt there are sufficient assets available to justify the expense of a lawsuit. I would think getting reporters too cover the "dilemma" is EXACTLY the point of the lawsuit.

By reporters covering the story, it gives both parties the opportunity to give their side of the story which also offers the opportunity to highlight feeatures and benefits of your service. Believe it or not, lawsuits, the ones that hit the press anyway, are actually an inexpensive way to get national and even international exposure.

Actually, were it up to me, what I would like to see happen is nothing. Except that I happen to like Aaron and hope he sees this as much of an opportunity as his opponent.

My advice to SEObook is to decide right now what he would really want if he had national exposure and then develop a strategy around that. If you can't afford a PR firm then at least decide what you want and what you would need to say to come the closest to getting that if you had a voice and then, STAY ON MESSAGE! Try to put together a few talking points and then every chance you get use them and STAY ON MESSAGE. Try not to say one thing one time and something different the next time. Also, don't fall into the trap of talking about THEM. Talk about YOU! Don't get emotional. Know what you want to say and STAY ON MESSAGE.

If you are not sure about how to go about taking advantage of what looks like a bad thing, you are welcome to call or email me. I'm no attorney or public relations expert but I happen to have some experience with this type of thing and I would be happy to discuss it with you.

Good luck

WSJ has an article on it today

Blogger faces lawsuit

Quote:
Mr. Wall, 25 years old, who runs an Internet marketing business from his home, said the suit "is so vague in nature that it's hard to know what I'm being sued for." He has posted the text of the lawsuit on his blog and speculated about which reader comments may have prompted it. Some visitors to Mr. Wall's blog had posted comments complaining about what they said were unprofessional business practices by Traffic-Power.com, while others said they didn't think the tools sold by Traffic-Power.com were effective in boosting search-engine rankings. Mr. Wall, of State College, Pa., had also criticized Traffic-Power.com on the blog before the lawsuit was filed.

Aaron's always talking about

Aaron's always talking about the social capital of the web. The WSJ coverage and resultant link explosion from the bloggers could very well be of greater business value than the cost of the litigation.

Count me in for a donation if you need help with these choads, Aaron.

For those too idle to read the WSJ article!

It really is worth reading the whole thing, but this in particular stands out

Quote:
"If the trade-secrets claim is genuine," Mr. Wall may not have protection, said Michael J. Madison, an associate professor of law at the University of Pittsburgh. "But it's an open question."

Daniel Perry, an Orlando, Fla., lawyer who has closely followed Mr. Wall's case online, said Mr. Wall may have taken on liability by posting negative comments about Traffic-Power.com himself. Another problem, he said: Mr. Wall could be viewed as a commercial competitor to Traffic-Power.com. Mr. Wall's blog is so named because he wrote a guide called SEO Book, about search engine marketing, and he promotes the book on his site.

"To be candid, he sort of moved into this moving propeller," said Mr. Perry, a former Orange County judge. He said courts would likely focus on how Mr. Wall responded to requests to remove material from his site, and Mr. Wall's criticism of Traffic-Power.com. "The Internet is not your personal stump to beat up people."

Go Aaron!!

Go Aaron!!

It's on Slashdot

now on Slashdot

mythoughts: This is much bigger than "does traffic power suck" or "Good/Bad SEO"...this is about future legalities in "Blogging" - hoping Aaron makes it to the text books!

Yep good luck to you Aaron,

Yep good luck to you Aaron, there is some major press coming your way. You have enough know-how to keep this on course.

yeah, it's way more

yeah, it's way more important than TP now - though i'll bet TP didnt anticipate this kind of exposure heh!

getting some considerable feedthrough traffic from the link aaron has in his post to here - slashdot must be hitting him hard i reckon...

Hard to believe

...that there aren't any precedents for this?

There's got to be other bloggers/forum owners who've refused to remove their opinions and/or those of their readers from their sites. No?

I believe there are

I believe there are precedents in specific areas, and at least one appears mentioned in the WSJ article.

What seems to be the issue is that there are so few specifics about applying various aspects of US law to internet situations, and it does seem that TP's wide attack on Aaron hits multiple areas.

Aaron Wall, getting links (from the WSJ) by being annoying

My goodness. What an interesting turn of events this has been.

BTW -- the title of my comment is in reference to something he posted on his blog about me. I have no intention or desire (at this time) to sue Mr. Wall over misinformation he (allegedly) posts on his site.

I'll vouch for AWall as NOT annoying

Umm, I don't really find AWall annoying at all... in fact he's one of the few honest guys in an industry full of bullsh#@*ers.

I second that

"in fact he's one of the few honest guys in an industry full of bullsh#@*ers."

Seconded.

You guys missed the point

Aaron obviously annoyed Traffic Power. I was just pointing out the irony in how his unwarranted criticism of me (where he accused me of trying to get links -- which never came, so far as I know -- by provoking people) now more accurately reflects back on him.

He is benefitting from being annoying (to Traffic Power). I'm no big fan of Aaron's rehashed "research", but I am aware of the popularity of his site and his eBook.

In the end, Aaron's popularity may be cemented by the sympathy that this lawsuit has generated for him. Traffic Power probably would have done better to shut down the doors and reincorporate under a new name.

Other companies do that sort of thing. Instead, I think they just did Aaron a massive promotional favor. The typical eBook author cannot buy that kind of publicity and exposure.

Aaron's story will, of course, be overshadowed by Katrina. But the irony just flows like the floodwaters in this particular situation.

Thread closed in favor of

Thread closed in favor of this one

Thanks everyone!

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