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Were you a victim ?

Were you a victim ?

Old Mar 23, 18, 2:16 am
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Tucson, AZ
Programs: Hilton Diamond, AA Platinum, Marriott Gold
Posts: 96
This is the silliest lawsuit I've ever read. They are alleging that because Hilton, Marriott, Hyatt, etc. all decided among themselves to NOT spend money buying targeted advertising keywords with Google and others, that consumers are somehow hurt because Google does not display competitive results? Uh no. This will never fly at all. This is a cheap gasp by a law office to get some easy money hoping they will pay them to go away rather than deal with the negative attention. The complaint claims people search for hotels by using Expedia/Priceline (online travel agents), Google/Bing/Yahoo or hotel websites directly. There is no obligation that I'm aware of for Google (a private company) to offer competitive results to a generic search for hotel prices. The hotel chains simply decided to save money by not buying branded keywords. That is not illegal at all last I knew.
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Old Mar 23, 18, 3:59 pm
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Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: MCI
Programs: AA Gold 1MM, AS MVP, UA Silver, WN A-List, Marriott LT Titanium, HH Diamond
Posts: 48,654
Do the plaintiffs claim to have proof that the chains all colluded/agreed to not spend money on targeted keywords?

If I own a hotel, it's certainly legal for me to *not* advertise it. But if I get together with all of my competitors cartel-style and agree to not do it, I suppose that could be a different story.

I still don't see how this causes consumers to pay higher prices. That would imply collusion within the yield-management systems, which seems really farfetched - even more so than all of the companies' online media buyers meeting for a beer somewhere and agreeing not to buy ads on Google or whatever.

At the end of the day, I tend to book using the various codes I know on Marriott, SPG, or HHonors.com. (Wyndham? Choice? Nope.) If I'm somehow determined to be part of the Class, I guess I'll just sit back and wait for my sweet booty in the form of a "5% off rack rate on your next stay" settlement postcard.
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