According to Reuters, Google has settled a lawsuit brought by software maker Rosetta Stone over the search company allowing people to purchase keywords within its ad product using its trademarked name.
The lawsuit was filed in 2009 and has dragged on in Virginia since then. The language-teaching company says that competitors were getting a leg up by confusing people searching for them on Google . I've been through something similar, when someone purchased AdWords using my full name. It was pretty annoying.
The case was dismissed in 2010 but reopened.
The companies issued a joint statement today:
Rosetta Stone Inc and Google have agreed to dismiss the three-year old trademark infringement lawsuit between them and to meaningfully collaborate to combat online ads for counterfeit goods and prevent the misuse and abuse of trademarks on the Internet.
Google has a terms of service that advertisers must adhere to, allowing companies to cry foul when their marks are being used. This was a landmark case that clearly ramped up the enforcement of such activity. While no money is changing hands it seems, it does look like the case caused actual change in the process for everyone.
Here's a glimpse at the original motion, filed in 2009:
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