Wednesday, February 20, 2008

District Court finds money clip seller liable for Trademark Infringement based on Google AdWord Initial Interest Confusion

What is a blogger to do when there is nothing interesting to blog about? Simple -- link to somebody's else blog posting.

The E-Commerce and Tech Law Blog had a post today (link here) about a California district court decision last week finding trademark infringement based on "initial interest confusion" -- a topic of interest to many in trademark circles. The case is Storus Corporation v. Aroa Marketing Inc. et al, Case No. 06-cv-07376 (N.D. Cal. February 15, 2008). A copy of the decision can be downloaded here.

In this case, Storus Corporation, a money clip manufacturer and owner of the registered mark SMART MONEY CLIP, sued Aroa Marketing Inc., a company which sells money clips and which participated in Google's AdWord program so that a Google search for "smart money clip" would generate an advertisement for Aroa's website ( which prominently displayed the mark SMART MONEY CLIP.

While the court decided on summary judgment that Aroa was liable for trademark infringement, the court denied summary judgment with respect to the other defendant, Skymall, Inc., because Storus apparently had not shown sufficient evidence that Skymall's search results would be any different in response to a consumer search using the phrase "smart money clip" compared to the phrase "money clip."

No comments: