Blocking Adwords Activism Using Trademark Law
from the hardly-what-trademark-is-for dept
Unfortunately, that can make things tricky for activists trying to highlight activities by certain companies. Jim Harper points us to Chris Soghoian's detailed analysis of this situation, where AT&T has been able to block ads from AT&T critics, because they happen to use AT&T's name in their ads. That's pretty clearly an abuse of trademark law, as it was never intended for such things. Of course, Google, as a private company, is free to do whatever it wants, and in this case it's clearly trying to minimize lawsuits -- but it is a bit troubling that the end result of this policy is to allow trademark law to be misused to block activist speech.