Eric Goldman reports that a US District Judge in Florida ordered an advertiser using a trademark term to use the negative keyword option, to ensure that they would no longer bid on that term in the future.
The judge ordered the defendant to stop using the word “ORION” in their search ad campaigns, by adding that keyword to the negative keyword filter in AdWords. Here are the exact words of the court order, found in section D of Orion Bancorp Inc. v. Orion Residential Finance LLC:
from purchasing or using any form of advertising including keywords or â€œadwordsâ€ in internet advertising containing any mark incorporating Plaintiffâ€™s Mark, or any confusingly similar mark, and shall, when purchasing internet advertising using keywords, adwords or the like, require the activation of the term â€œORIONâ€ as negative keywords or negative adwords in any internet advertising purchased or used.
Courts and judges are indeed getting savvier on search engines and search engine marketing.
That’s what Eric said, too. I find it hard to believe, but then again they couldn’t get much less savvy, could they?