Marketing
e-Newsletter
Intelligence Unit Special Reports Special Events Subscribe Sponsored Departments Follow Us

Twitter Facebook LinkedIn RSS

Search for 'Highmark' on Web and you'll get UPMC ads

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, November 15, 2011

The war between UPMC and Highmark has found a new battlefield -- Google. UPMC has purchased Google AdWords on variations of the trademarked word "Highmark," meaning that if you type "Highmark" into Google search, the top results might be paid ads for UPMC companies. Courts are split on whether, and under what circumstances, the practice ought to be legal, while Google's advertising team itself discourages the practice. But in the open range of Internet advertising, discouraging words are seldom heard, or heeded. "It's an emerging area of the law that courts are trying to get a handle around," said New Jersey intellectual property attorney Lionel Frank. "I think it comes down to whether or not the courts believe there is going to be consumer confusion."