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Google, Inc. v. American Blind & Wallpaper Factory, Inc.

Google, Inc. v. American Blind & Wallpaper Factory, Inc. United States District Court for the Northern District of California Date decided Apr. 18, 2007 Citations Case No. 03-cv-05340 JF (RS), Not for citation. Judge sitting Jeremy Fogel Case holding Google's request for summary judgment that AdWords does not infringe American Blind's trademarks was in part denied because of insufficient facts to establish that Google's use of those marks did not cause consumer confusion. Keywords AdWords, Trademark Google, Inc. v. American Blind and Wallpaper Factory, Inc., No. 03-cv-05340 JF (RS) (N.D. Cal. Apr. 18, 2007), was a decision of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California that challenged the legality of Google's AdWords program. The court concluded that, pending the outcome of a jury trial, Google AdWords may be in violation of trademark law (see federal Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1114(1)) because it (1) allowed arbitrary advertisers to key their ads (see keyword advertising) to American Blind's trademarks and (2) may confuse search-engine users initially interested in visiting American Blind's website into visiting its competitors' websites (see Initial Interest Confusion doctrine).Google v. American Blind was not the first case to address trademark infringement in the context of online keyword advertising (see Playboy Enterprises, Inc. v. Netscape Communications Corp., 1-800-CONTACTS v. WhenU Inc.). Nevertheless, it generated interest in the trademark-law community because it came on the heels of PEI v. Netscape—a case that failed to resolve the legality of keyword advertising in which the origins of ads are clearly designated. Despite a four-year battle, American Blind settled with Google soon after this decision, hence leaving much of this legal territory unexplored. Cite error: There are tags on this page, but the references will not show without a {{reflist}} template (see the help page).
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