Policy

Google Pledges To Fight Online Advertising of Pirated Products

Rosetta Stone Agrees To Drop Trademark Infringement Suit 11/01/2012 7:09 AM Eastern
Google and language learning company Rosetta Stone announced that Rosetta has dismissed its three-year-old trademark infringement lawsuit and agreed to collaborate to "combat online advertising" for counterfeit goods.

That comes as good news to critics of Google, who have argued the company has not done enough to police tis AdWords for online ads for illegal products.

"The companies will also work together to help law enforcement officials around the world go after counterfeiters at the source," Google and Rosetta said in a joint announcement. Saying they would rather join forces to combat online counterfeiting than sqare off in court, they added: "By working together, Google and Rosetta Stone hope to improve detection methods, and better protect from abuse brands like Rosetta Stone, advertising platforms like Google AdWords, and ultimately consumers on the Internet."

One of those Google critics had been Rosetta, which sued Google in July 2009 for patent infringement for selling key word searches via Google AdWords that used trademarked terms that led Google users to copycat Rosetta software.

The suit had been dismissed in 2010 by a Virginia U.S. District Court, but was reinstated by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the fourth Circuit in April.

Google helped lead the fight against the SOPA/PIPA legislation -- which was defeated -- that would have given the government more power to close down Web sites allegedly trafficking in counterfeit goods. The bills' critics argued they opposed the bills because they were overbroad and gave the government too much power without sufficient checks and balances. Content providers countered that their opponents were defending a system that tacitly condoned and profited from illegal sharing and counterfeiting of their valuable intellectual property.

The dropping of the Rosetta suit follows the Oct. 4 announcement by Google that it had settled a copyright infringement suit with the Association of American Publishers over books and journals Google was digitizing for its Google Library Project.

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