Lawsuit Over Gambling
Yahoo, Google and
several other major websites and companies have been hit with a lawsuit last
summer saying they carry online gambling ads in violation of California law (see
Update 24; advertising
unregulated gambling in California to people in California for play in
California is illegal under California criminal law).
Mario Cisneros and Michael Voight filed the suit,
claiming that they lost money as a result of gambling in unlicensed online
casinos that were advertised alongside search results.$100,000 in the case of
Mr. Voight alone.
In June 2005, California state
Judge Richard Kramer in San Francisco ruled that the suit can proceed
with the evidence gathering process in the case.
Text of the
In 2004, the
German Federal Court of Justice
had to decide about an hyperlink to a gambling website that
had a licence in Austria, but not in Germany (Text
of the decision in German, for more information see
Update 18).The link
could be found at the end of a report about an ex-model that had become a
businesswoman and started a gambling company. A competitor in Germany filed a
complaint about the article, claiming the hyperlink was advertising in the
meaning of § 284 IV of the German Criminal Code (StGB). The court did not
follow this assessment, inter alia taking into account the freedom of expression
and of the press (Art. 5 I GG).
The defendants in the US case
should also have strong First Amendment defenses.