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August 18, 2005

Google: Geico was a win

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Today, Google used their blog to discuss exactly why they thought the court decision yesterday in the suit over keywords was a victory for them rather than the defeat that has been widely reported. The court upheld that there was not a likelihood of confusion for a consumer when the trademark was used to trigger an ad–that is, it is legal for competitors to bid on a trademarked term.

What has generated the confusion is another part of the ruling, of little significance to Google, that relates to the use of “GEICO” in ad text. Google already has a policy that prohibits advertisers from using someone else’s trademark in their ad text when the trademark owner objects.

Google’s policy on ad text is stated on their Trademark Complaint Procedure page. That page also covers the proper way to file a complaint with Google if you feel your trademark is being infringed.

(By the way, Google blog used ‘here’ as their anchor text for the link I just gave you. Where did these guys learn SEO anyway?)

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