Brand Symbols, the Consumer, and the Internet
In: S. Frankel, D. Gervais (eds.), Intellectual Property and the Regulation of the Internet, Wellington, Victoria University Press, 2017, pp. 149-169
24 Pages Posted: 11 May 2016 Last revised: 7 Oct 2019
Date Written: January 5, 2016
The article gives an overview on the way in which trade marks – or rather: brand symbols – operate in the internet environment. Referring to interdisciplinary research in psychology and neuroscience it is shown how the soft coercive power of brands and the spell they tend to cast over the mind and actions of consumers is reinforced in the digital age where the exposure of consumers to commercial messages is massively enhanced due to the pervasiveness of the internet. Before that background, the article summarizes the legal issues that so far have been in the foreground of practice and scholarly discussions regarding trademarks and the internet. It is posited that those issues as well should be resolved in the light of the larger picture involving the psychological, sociological and cultural dimensions of the use of brands in the digital age.
Keywords: brands, consumer psychology, personal marketing, keyword advertising, trademarks and fundamental rights
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