Google Agrees to Pay $8 Million to Settle Claims Against Deceptive Ads
Google has agreed to pay $8 million to settle claims against deceptive ads that appeared on the search engine and various different websites, according to a report by The Verge.
Deceptive Pixel 4 Ads
The case arises from deceptive ads for the Pixel 4 smartphone that Google ran between October and December 2019. The ads indicated that the Pixel 4 was water-resistant, although it was not, and this led to multiple complaints from customers who unwittingly damaged their phones. Google has paid $612 in refunds to each affected customer.
Settlement of Claims
The settlement resolves the claims brought against Google in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California. In addition to the payment of $8 million, Google has agreed that all similar ads must be reviewed by lawyers before they are run in the future. Google has declined to comment on the settlement.
Fines on Big Tech Companies
This settlement comes amid significant scrutiny of big tech companies and the way they operate. Many critics argue that big tech companies like Google, Apple, and Facebook are too powerful and have far too much influence over society. In recent years, governments around the world have taken steps to regulate these companies and impose fines when necessary. In 2020, Google paid $170 million to the Federal Trade Commission and the New York Attorney General’s Office over allegations of violating children’s privacy on YouTube.
This settlement is a reminder that deceptive advertising has consequences and that companies must be held accountable for their actions. Hopefully, this will lead to changes in the way that ads are reviewed and approved for release, and it will prevent similar incidents from happening in the future.