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MoveOn Backs Down – Allows Trademark Bidding

I recently wrote on how MoveOn.org had ads by a Republican senator removed. The organization whose aim is to elect Democrats to office generated a lot of controversy for filing a complaint with Google. The ads, run by Senator Susan Collins, used the trademarked term MoveOn.org in the text. Google’s policy is to remove Google AdWords that use trademark terms in the copy, if the trademark owner complains.

Wired Magazine blogs that MoveOn.org decided to reverse their decision and let Collins run the ads. They say they want to promote free speech. According to Google’s Pablo Chavez of Google’s public policy counsel, the decision was not political. But conservative bloggers and an opinion piece in the San Francisco Examiner suggested otherwise.

So far nothing has changed. If you type “Susan Collins” in Google, one ad shows up that says:

Help Susan Collins Fight (links to Susan Collins home page)
A dot.org is polluting politics
Help us fight to make Maine right
www.moveon.org

They are using MoveOn.org in the display URL, which is allowed in Google’s policies. I’m sure all this contraversy is getting more attention to the issues than the ads will. As for MoveOn.org, they are celebrating Al Gore’s Nobel Prize so I guess they can concede on this issue.

  • http://blogs.commerce360.com Craig Danuloff

    The ad you quote is one I ran the other day, to prove that you can run with Trademark terms in the target URL even with a trademark ban in place. More details at http://blogs.commerce360.com.

  • http://www.AureliusTjin.com Aurelius Tjin

    I read about this news in another blog as well. :)

  • http://www.audiomecca.com/music-software/ Music Software

    This is amusing. The more one tries to ban things like this, the more the “victim” gains as this generates a lot of interest in quite what is going on!

  • http://controversialmarketing.blogspot.com Sam Freedom

    Who cares? They’re all a bunch of twits who hog up bandwidth and then we report on it as if it’s news when it’s really just another way to get people to the blog to click on ads. Bravo.