As of 14th September, 2010, online advertisers residing in Ireland, Canada and the UK will be permitted to bid on and advertise using trademarked keywords. The policy, already applied last year in the US, comes as a massive boost for online marketing firms in the given territories who have previously been somewhat restricted by Google trademark policy.
Google’s explanation of the policy change was stated as follows:
“We believe the right approach is to give users more choices and access to as much information as is relevant to their search or interest. This policy change balances the needs of our users while ensuring that competitive, critical, or negative uses of the trademark in ad text continue to be reviewed and removed per our trademark policy”.
That said, there are to be a number of restrictions to avoid the abuse of trademarks and to ensure online marketing firms stay within the boundaries of trademark law.
“Ads using the term in a competitive, critical, or negative way will not be allowed to run with the term at issue in their ad. Additionally, we will not allow the following:
– Ads that do not lead to a landing page that clearly facilitates the sale of either the goods and services corresponding to the trademark or parts or components related to the goods and services corresponding to the trademark
– Competitive or critical information about the goods and services corresponding to a trademark
– Ads that do not lead to a landing page which provides substantive information about the goods and services corresponding to a trademark”
Full details of the policy roll out can be found at the following link: http://adwords.google.com/support/aw/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=186124