back to article Google slapped in domain name spat

Google is Google, and Groovle is Groovle - and as Rudyard Kipling might have put it, never the twain shall meet. In a decision dated December 24 but released on Wednesday, an independent arbitration board rejected Google's claim that Groovle, a website that provides what it calls "Your Groovy Custom Search Homepage" as a front …


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  1. steward

    It doesn't matter anyway

    For some incomprehensible reason, the Websense page-blocking product thinks is a personal storage and backup site, banned from many places where a better search interface would be useful.

  2. Alastair 7


    When I first read it, I thought it was an example of Google getting out of control and trying to claim every domain that's even close... but then I looked at the site in question. Rather than being something related to music (groove?) or similar, it's little more than a shell for a search engine. IMO, the name Groovle isn't infringing, but they're definitely trying their best to.

  3. TheOtherMe

    Have they tried

    So has Mountain View had a go at <search engine for smut if you didn't know>

  4. Camilla Smythe


    The site is running Google Analytics...

    <script src="" type="text/javascript"></script>

    <script type="text/javascript">_uacct = "UA-2329285-1";urchinTracker();</script>


  5. Anonymous Coward

    This episode of Sesame Street ...

    ... has been brought to you by the letters 'G', 'R', and 'V', and the number '$2000/hour' (or whatever it is lawyers charge these days).

  6. charlie wallace

    google have done a Streisand

    Never heard of groovle til now. Thanks google!

  7. Pete 8

    But I copywritidged all

    words with 'oo' in, including 00 & OO, go google better get the chequebook out right now, and settle before the end of 2009.

    including the words, g00ber & n00b - too.

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  9. NovaStar

    Why don't they

    Why dont they just block groovle from useing their service? Would be pretty simple to block any users sent to google from groovle, or even redirect them to a page abusing groovle.

  10. ShaggyDoggy


    I recall another website out there with "OO" in its name.

    And it's a SEARCH ENGINE to boot !!

    Of course they predate Google.

    Perhaps should sue Google, after all the latter

    freely admits their name was "stolen" from Googol

  11. Anonymous Coward

    they've been bowled a googly

    I'll get me coat...

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    In these cases timing is everything. If Google had brought their action soon after had started to operate, then fair enough, but to leave it for over two years...

    You can be damn sure that Google have been aware of the site for a couple of years, so what's the problem? I can't see that it's confusing users, it's hardly a case of typo squatting, it's not harming Google's business in any way since it still uses Google to provide the search results.

    The real problem is probably that Google has recently thought of a use for the name Perhaps a music search engine, perhaps they have decided to move into music downloads, who knows. Either they saw the domain and liked the idea or they came up with the idea for the name and then found it was already registered. Either way they've fucked up badly. These bully boy tactics have almost certainly harmed Google. Firstly because it's more negative publicity for them; Secondly because taking this action has probably cost more than simply offering to buy the domain would have done and probably pushed the asking price up too; and finally because if the operators of groovle have any sense they will change over to another search back end, how about Bing guys?

    It's quite impressive how in the space of a few months Google have managed to make Microsoft look like the good guys.

  13. John 61

    you would need to a really bad typist

    on a QWERTY keyboard "trf" is what I get (gtrfoogle) pressing between the keys to get the R. A common problem on most PC keybaords is rollover, so you can't get groogle without using the extra finger and scoring a direct hit on it. When I type keyboard I usually get keybaord (see 2nd line). The same thing used to happen on my Acorn Electron. If it had been called goovle then they might have a stronger case.

  14. Peter Methven

    I think the real issue is Froogle and Groovle

    If you read the full history: Groovles objected to Google using Froogle for a "shopping comparison site" which is what Groovles claims to be. (Hence why its been rebranded to "Google Product Search."

    Google then started this case against Groovles, offering to drop the case if Groovles ceased their objection to Froogle being similar to Groovles. (Communications that Groovles produced in the hearing),

    Googles problem is that they cannot object to Groovles and Froogle being similar as Groovles has being using the site address since before Froogle was launched for the current purpose, and the owner can and has produced evidence of making an income from the site over that time (I.e. he isn't "just" domain sitting).

    So actually it could be argued Froogle is trading off of Groovles known name in shopping comparison... so Google have gone for Groovle being similar to Google, which it clearly isn't unless you are quite seriously dyslexic!

    1. Anonymous Coward


      What is the case reference for Groovle's complaint against Google/Froogle? I can't find any history for that case at all.

      All I can find is Google vs. Wolfe. Wolfe originally registered and Google took action against them. I think Google only used the name Froogle for a while after the case to demonstrate that they intended to use it. Actually it still works, but jusy redirects to Google Products.

  15. LotteMae

    Sue Gazoomy, Sue Good God

    I can see why Google would make the attempt but it really was far fetched. It's as daft as trying to sue any website that starts with G and contains a couple of O's. does the same thing for example, and I'm sure after a night on the tiles and a raging hangover your blurry vision could be used as an excuse for typing in Gazoomy instead of Google!?

    The irony is that both Groovle and Gazoomy accrue revenue for Google, so you could say that Google are suing their own right foot.

    It's a strange world we live in.

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