Posted January 7, 2009 1:53 am by with 13 comments

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By Carrie Hill

In a somewhat confusing set of events Google has been awarded the use of their country-specific brand, Gu Ge, by Chinese courts.  Bejing GuGe Science & Technology Corp was ordered to pay Google 100,000 yuan or about $14,624 in the suit and to relinquish the brand to Google.

According to a Reuters report from 2007, Bejing GuGe initially filed suit against Google for alleged trademark infringement.  It’s unclear when the turnaround came and Google filed the countersuit against Bejing GuGe. 

Articles I found offered conflicting information. It seems the trademark timeline in question was pretty rocky.  One source indicates Google filed their initial trademark paperwork in January of ’06 while Bejing GuGe filed for their trademark in March 2006.  Another article indicates Google filed for the trademark in November of 2006

Luckily it was up to the Chinese courts (and not me) to sort this all out—awarding Google the right to be Gu Ge in China. 

via Search Engine Land

Carrie Hill is the SEO Team leader for Blizzard Internet Marketing where she specializes in optimizing travel, tourism and accommodations websites.

  • Google’s problems in China appear to be constant. Looks like they won this one, at least. :)

  • The potential of the chineses market is massive, and it would’ve been quite a blow to Google if this court action was unsuccessful. It seems to me that these people were trying to hold Google to ransom and their plan backfired on then. $14,000 is hardly a big fine though, so they couldn’t have suffered too much damage in the process.

  • That sucks that Beijing Guge has to pay Google when they were the initial ones to set up the lawsuit. Not a huge amount of money for Google, but I guess it will make companies think hard before trying to sue them.

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  • It is heartening to know that the Chinese Legal System works.

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  • The Chinese Legal System works for sure, but the Chinese Industry works much more productive.

  • btw, what does Gu Ge mean?

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  • This is a big deal for Google. China is huge and is every day becoming more of an important player… I do find it interesting, however, that the companies both filed suit against each other.

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  • God help anybody who takes Google to court

  • What on earth were they thinking? Suing Google? My God!! Not the best idea…
    Hmm.. it does seem though that Googel and China are just not destined to get along

  • I wonder if this could signal a change in attitude towards Google from China? There was a lot of bad press about what happened with the press and other comments about freedom of speech during the Olympics. Maybe they’ve taken some of that on board and decided to slowly change? Or maybe it was just the might of Google winning again…

  • Google won as always did, does and will do and it really deserves the victory.

  • ah, domination as a giant, poor chinese company.

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  • Google is a monster! Now whenever I refer to Google I am going to call them Gu Ge!