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Our company name is trademark violation?



8:58 am on Sep 23, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

The company I work for is new to advertising on Adwords, the company name is 'Name Something Something'. It is a legitimate registered UK Ltd business - and has been registered under this name for 10 years. However it seems we can not use our company name in our Google ads as the word 'Name' is a trademark violation. We have asked Google for an exemption - but have been turned down.

I was wondering if others have been in this position, and if it is worth pursuing or would we just be wasting our time? I understand the need for trademark protection, but in this context it seems bizarre to me that we would never be able to include our legitimate registered company name in any of our adverts?

[edited by: engine at 11:36 am (utc) on Sep. 23, 2008]
[edit reason] No specific names, thanks [/edit]


12:38 am on Sep 25, 2008 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member quadrille is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

It seems a little bizarre to name your company after some-else's trademark!

They have legal proection; you'll come up against the same problem in many areas other than Adwords ...

Company names have certain protections; but in promotion, trademarks rule ... that's what they were created for!

(By the time I saw this, the actual name had been removed as per TOS, so sorry if I'm being unfairly harsh).


2:30 pm on Sep 25, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

The 'Name' is a very common surname - the surname of the company's founder and director - the company name breaks down as 'Surname - business area - business type' if that makes any sense, its not like its named 'apple enterprises' or 'macdonalds uk' or anything. As the idea of advertising is to promote the company - and the company is legally named - seems odd we can not use the company name.


2:57 pm on Sep 25, 2008 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member quadrille is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

You have my sympathy - but in any one field, there's only room for one company using a particular surname - looks like yours got beaten to it.

It's not Adwords or even Internet specific; an English comic actor called David Walliams couldn't use his real name (Williams), because someone got there first; similar rules apply in most areas of commercial activity.

Apple and (The Beatles') Apple Corps had similar issues, and fought million-dollar law suits in areas where their activities overlapped.

It may be frustrating, but you can see the logic behind it.

PPC Consultant

7:01 pm on Sep 25, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

nothing you can do. sorry.


7:05 pm on Sep 25, 2008 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

I'm not so sure...the OP mentioned that the name has been registered for 10 years. I'd be interested in knowing when the name was actually trademarked. Could there be a case for prior use?

Personally, I'd talk to a lawyer if it's important enough to you. It may not be worth taking that far, but then again, it may. I'd definitely get there input if this is something that could have an impact on your ability to properly promote/advertise your business.

[edited by: Philosopher at 7:05 pm (utc) on Sep. 25, 2008]


9:41 pm on Sep 25, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Is the owner of the 'Name' trademark in the same industry as your company? If not, then perhaps they wouldn't mind approving you for use of 'Name' within AdWords (and if so, then your specific AdWords account gets an exemption for the 'Name' trademark). Even if the agreement is in a written contract with conditions, it might be worth your while contacting them.

Without that approval from the trademark owner, Google is unlikely to do anything.

[edited by: Rehan at 9:42 pm (utc) on Sep. 25, 2008]


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