Google AdSense Fraud: Fact or Fiction?

Google is under legal fire and is preparing to defend against a new lawsuit that paints AdSense in a criminal light. AdSense is the search engine giantEUs platform that allows Web site publishers large and small to earn money by displaying targeted ads.

Google got hit with the suit, which alleges that the technology giant is involved in massive fraud by closing AdSense accounts right before they are scheduled to pay commissions, on Tuesday.

Given that AdSense makes up about 25 percent of GoogleEUs annual revenue, this is no small accusation and could have large financial repercussions from a public relations front alone. In 2013 the online advertising network drove a whopping $57.86 billion to GoogleEUs top line.

Take the Money and Run?

According to the suit, GoogleEUs AdSense program translates annually to billions of dollars payable to Web site operators that host its ads. The complaint claims that the contracts and terms of service Google requires Web publishers to sign are EUunconscionably one-sidedEU and give Google free reign to embark on what the suit claims are EUactions devoid of good faith or fair dealing.EU

"Google's actions constitute breach of contract, breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, unjust enrichment, and violation of the California Unfair Competition Law," said the filing with the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California states. The law firm of Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro filed the suit on behalf of Free Range Content, which owns Repost.us.

Free Range Content claims it saw a $40,000 rise in AdSense earnings last February. The company reportedly contacted Google to discuss the spike and had an appointment with an AdSense agent on March 6. Suddenly, the company claims, its account was closed and Google would not respond to pleas for communication.

EUWe have heard from Web publishers who tell us...

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