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Trademark and nominative use

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

   I've had my ads suspended for the use of the trademarked term 'SelectQuote'.  My site selectquotereview.com is using the trademarked term to refer to the actual company SelectQuote, in order to provide criticism.  I sell nothing, I'm trying to raise consumer awareness of an issue involving SelectQuote.  Legally this is allowed, the Ninth Circuit established this defense with New Kids on the Block v. News America Publishing.  (The kids sued when a magazine ran a poll on NKOTB, the court said well, the poll is about you, therefore they can use your name to refer to you.)  I'm not a lawyer, my synopsis is not legal advice, etc.

    As far as adwords go, I'm not being deceptive, and in no way do I try to pass myself off as SelectQuote.  As a temporary measure, I split the words into Select Quote Review in my ads so they can be reconsidered.  I would like to know if the original ads can still run, now that I have stated the established exception under which I use a trademarked term without the consent of the holder of said trademark.

3 Expert replyverified_user

Re: Trademark and nominative use

Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆
# 2
Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆

You can use the term as a search word to trigger an ad but you can't have the brand appear in your ads.

You will have to be creative in how to set up your ad text.

 

(As such not so much to do with the law , more with AdWords rules/guidelines)

Re: Trademark and nominative use

Top Contributor
# 3
Top Contributor
I'd concur with Marketsharer in that Google may set policies and preconditions which are in addition to State Law. Thereby the ad copy containing a trademarked term will be disapproved unless the trademark holder authorizes you via an online form. The primary reason is that Google, not being a law firm, does not wish to get engaged in disputes between advertisers and 3rd parties.

Re: Trademark and nominative use

Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆
# 4
Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆

Not complety right. Par Example ; In the Netherlands one can use an other ones brand name in a fair compairison, in AdWords you can't.

 

Google AdWords policy does not confirm to all local laws, It uses its guidelines to have a controlable system to stay within most of local law.  Notting wrong with that,  but Google policy is not exactly following local law. And one still could succesfully bring an advertiser to court, even he is complying to the AdWords Guidelines.

Re: Trademark and nominative use

Top Contributor
# 5
Top Contributor

Google policy on trademark is also different depending on the country where you are located and where you are advertising.

 

Pete

petebardo -- Deadhead doing AdWords

Re: Trademark and nominative use

Google Employee
# 6
Google Employee

Hi,

 

The answers above aren't quite right -- we've gotten a bit more permissive in the last few years.  But the general sentiment is correct -- in some areas our policies are more strict than what is required by law, either to make our systems more consistent across countries or to protect our users in various ways.

 

Our trademark policy in the US, Canada, the UK, and Ireland explicity allows

Informational sites: The primary purpose of the landing page of the ad must be to provide informative details about the goods or services corresponding to the trademark term. Additionally, the landing page may not sell or facilitate the sale of the goods or services of a competitor of the trademark owner.

(There's some additional information on this FAQ page.)

 

If you think your site qualifies under this exemption, please contact AdWords support (either by phone or by logging in to your account and clicking the Support link) and ask for a re-review.

 

Laura

AdWords engineer