Friday, May 11, 2007

Google to Face First Jury Trial Over its 'Adwords' Keywords Search Program: Financial News - Yahoo! Finance

"Google will face a jury for the first time over its 'Adwords' program, after a federal judge today set November 9, 2007 for jury selection in a historic trademark infringement lawsuit brought on behalf of American Blind & Wallpaper Factory, Inc. (ABWF)."

"The trial will focus on ABWF's contention that Google violates trademark laws by allowing competitors of ABWF to buy advertisements, tied to keyword web searches, using ABWF's trademarks. In an April 18, 2007 decision denying Google's motion to dismiss the case, the court wrote that "the evidence suggests that Google used [ABWF's] mark with the intent to maximize its own profit ... [and] ABWF has produced sufficient evidence of likelihood of [consumer] confusion [to allow the case to be decided by a jury]."
The closely watched case could have a significant impact on Google. According to Google's filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the "Adwords" advertising program accounts for more than 98% of Google's $11 billion annual revenue. "Adwords" is Google's proprietary program that enables its paying customers to use search terms, such as ABWF's trademarks, which trigger displays of advertisements of ABWF's competitors."

1 comment:

Tom Crandall said...

Google loses this or an upcoming trademark lawsuit, they will be impacted, but still very profitable. The majority of Adwords revenue comes from advertising on generic phrases like “used cars” versus trademarks like “used Ford F150.”

Incidentally, some companies decide not to implement the current trademark policy because they may not have a vested interest in a reseller market, this choice should continue to be left to the trademark holder. The auto industry is a good example, and Ford does not implement the trademark policy on the trademarked phrase “used Ford F150″ because they encourage dealerships and aggregators to handle the used vehicle market.

...frequently asked questions about the Google Lawsuit