Breaking news: Google keyword policy change

The IPKat has learned from impeccable sources that internet search-and-advertise giant Google is to change its keyword policy for all of Europe, taking the opportunity to harmonise practice, aligning the United Kingdom and Ireland with the Continent. The gist of the matter is that Google will introduce a notice-and-take-down procedure in response to the ruling of the Court of Justice of the European Union this March in the Google AdWords case, Joined Cases C-236, 237 and 238/08 Google France, Google Inc. v Louis Vuitton Malletier; Google France v Viaticum Luteciel; Google France v CNRRH Pierre‑Alexis Thonet Bruno Raboin Tiger, a franchisee of Unicis, noted here by the IPKat (you can enjoy the video of the Kats' seminar on this decision here). Under the notice-and-take-down system all you have to do is complain to Google; if the company agrees that your complaint is valid, it will remove the offending ad.

Adtext complaints remain available, and Google's Adtext policy will also change for the UK, Ireland (and Canada), just as it has already been changed for the United States. In result of this, you will be able to use a third party trade mark even without the consent of the mark's proprietor if you use it legitimately (reseller, etc).

All changes come into effect on 14 September 2010.
Breaking news: Google keyword policy change Breaking news: Google keyword policy change Reviewed by Jeremy on Wednesday, August 04, 2010 Rating: 5


  1. Hi Jeremy,

    Just to see if I got that right:

    a: So the UK and Ireland will (re)enable the complaint procedure against the BOOKING of a TM* as a keyword?

    'Re-' because to my knowledge it removed this possibility for the UK & Ireland just after the British Mr. Spicy Ruling (Royal Court of Justice, 1 HC 710/07, My Spicy )in Feb 2008.

    b: As for the USE OF THE TM* IN THE TEXT OF THE ADS, TM owner could already complain against such a use in the past.

    So to sum up the whole policy change up:

    The UK & Ireland join the other European countries; for these countries TM owner can complain against the booking of their TM as a keyword for a third party ad & against the use of their TM in the text of a third party ad.


    Kind regards,


    * ... or a sign similar to the TM ...

  2. I think unfortunately it is a bit misleading to say UK joining the continent - I think it is the other way round.. EU wont be able to complain about Keywords.

  3. UPDATE: Looks like we got it wrong:

    It's the other way round. The level of protection will be lowered for the UK and Ireland, not raised back to the European level...

    Update to Canadian, UK and Ireland ad text trademark policy (Google Inside AdWords Blog)


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