Preventing unauthorized use of a trademark in online advertising services

Published onFebruary 2016

Under the influence of Community law, it has become difficult if not impossible for an operator to oppose to any use of its own trademark in keywords leading to commercial ads for competing web sites through a search engine (1).

Currently, a trademark owner may only prohibit the unauthorized use of its trademark as a keyword combined to the text of an ad if there exists a likelihood of confusion as to the origin of the advertised goods and services.

Some search engines have implemented policies in order to enforce certain restrictions on the use of registered trademarks by allowing their owners to submit a complaint and request that the trademarks be restricted in advertising campaigns (2).

The trademark policy does not apply worldwide uniformly, but depends on the countries targeted by the ads, to comply with national legal provision in this area.

INSCRIPTA helps you protect your trademark on the internet and initiate appropriate preventive procedures.

© INSCRIPTA

(1) See our special dossier Commercial hyperlinks.

(2) Online forms for Google Adwords and Bing Ads.