22 Feb 2011

Yellow Pages accused of dirty online tactics

9:08 pm on 22 February 2011

A new online directory service is taking legal action against the Yellow Pages Group, accusing it of cyber-squatting and brand-jacking.

The directory, localist.co.nz, says its competitor has purchased domain names similar to its own, so that if the address is misspelt, users will be automatically diverted to the Yellow Pages site.

In documents filed at the High Court in Auckland on Monday, Localist - which is owned by New Zealand Post - alleged breaches of the Fair Trading Act.

Its chairman, Sam Knowles, is accusing Yellow Pages of playing dirty. He says Localist has been trying to resolve the issue privately for some time.

Yellow Pages' chief executive, Bruce Cotterill, would not be interviewed, but has labelled Localist's court action a publicity stunt.