The Use of Trade Marks as Meta Tags: Defining the Boundaries
International Journal of Law and Information Technology, Vol. 8, No. 3, Autumn 2000
Posted: 15 Jan 2001
Top ranked returns on popular search engines such as Yahoo and Lycos could become the virtual equivalent of a prime time television advert. The value of judicious meta tagging could therefore be substantial. This paper examines the emerging meta tag/trade mark jurisprudence. It suggests that following the decision of Playboy Enterprises v. Welles (SD Cal. Filed 1 December 1999) a 'fair use' loophole may have emerged allowing competitors to legally exploit their competitor's trade name or mark when meta tagging their web site. This paper examines this potential loophole and evaluates whether the practice of competitive meta tagging may emerge.
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