Yesterday, when I read this article, I checked out a location which I'm not willing to share here. On it was exactly this type of 'theft' of location, and street-view manipulation as explained in this article. In fact I had noticed the hack before in this location, but not realized it as such.
Yesterday, when I looked and saw the display via the new GMAPs interface, I was amazed at the *quality* of the hack. A dirty, mouse-infested hotel down the street 'occupied' a very desirable corner location and cafe. Using street-view, it appeared as if the cafe was the hotel's bar. Plus they had purchased an ad to book the hotel when you clicked the PIN, and the result looked IMHO better than a professional web-page for such a purpose (because of the new GMAPs interface and presentation). The final result was a stuning, quality, hack I thought, and everyone I showed it to agreed. But I give more credit to dumb luck plus the new GMAPs interface then cleverness by the thieving hotel owner.
I used the 'suggest an edit' tool to report the manipulation to Google, and also input new, accurate information for the cafe on the corner, and other neighborhood features.
Weird thing is, today when I look via various machines inthe office, I see various displays. Some showing the old GMAPs interface, some new. Some with the dirty hotel competely removed from the map, and the cafe added. Like DNS, it seems it takes a while for GMAPs to get updated, and probably the more people that offer input the better.