In another decision regarding trademark terms and keyword advertising, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals yesterday ruled against Advanced Systems Concepts, a company which sought an injunction to prevent a competitor, Network Automation from buying keywords under its brand name, ActiveBatch.
The ruling reversed a decision by a lower U.S. District Court that had banned Network Automation from buy ads under the ActiveBatch keyword.
The 9th Circuit court found that even if the text accompanying the pay per click link didn’t include the word “advertisement,” its appearance on the search result pages already alerted consumers that they were viewing an ad.
“Google and Bing have partitioned their search results pages so that the advertisements appear in separately labeled sections for “sponsored’ links”
Still no word from anyone why it is perfectly legal to by a keyword ad under someone’s trademark on Google or Bing but doing so with a domain name is its grounds for forfeiture of the domain.