US-based Google is removing restrictions on the use of trademarked terms in the US online advertising system that would increase friction between the Internet giant and brand owners.
According to Google, the new policy is expected to allow businesses to place trademarked terms directly in the copy of text ads that runs in the US starting next month. The move is expected to improve the quality of advertisements.
The new policy will allow resellers and informational web sites to use trademarked terms in their copy in certain situations without seeking permission from the trademark owners. Earlier, Google said it would allow companies in 190 countries outside the US to bid on trademarked keywords that act as the triggers for their own advertisements.
Eric Goldman, Associate Professor of Law at Santa Clara University School of Law, said: “Brand owners have historically had serious concerns about Google’s policy with regards to trademarks. The change may help consumers better understand sponsored search results, by allowing the advertiser to reference trademarks in their marketing pitches, Goldman said. But he predicted that the change could spark more legal challenges.”
Recently Firepond, a Texas software company, filed a trademark infringement suit against Google seeking class action status for Texas trademark owners, as quoted by Reuters.