Google and Rosetta Stone have been battling in court for several years. Both companies have had favorable rulings at one time or another. Rosetta Stone claimed that Google infringed upon its trademarks, but on Wednesday announced a settlement.
Rosetta Stone released the following statement:
Rosetta Stone Inc. (NYSE:RST) and Google have agreed to dismiss the three-year old trademark infringement lawsuit between them and to meaningfully collaborate to combat online ads for counterfeit goods and prevent the misuse and abuse of trademarks on the Internet. The companies will also work together to help law enforcement officials around the world go after counterfeiters at the source. 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 At the end of the day, both companies would rather cooperate than litigate, and we believe this agreement is an important step toward eliminating piracy and trademark abuse on the Internet.
Specific terms of the deal were not disclosed, but it sounds like a happy ending.
Rosetta Stone sued Google back in 2009, claiming that Google was allowing third parties (including individuals involved in software piracy) to purchase the right to use Rosetta Stone trademarks or other terms confusingly similar in AdWords. Google changed its policy a month earlier to state that “advertisers will be allowed to use trademark terms in their ad text even if they do not own that trademark or have explicit approval from the trademark owner to use it.”
In 2010, a federal judge dismissed the suit, but that was far from the end. Several months later, a judge ruled that AdWords did not infringe.
Earlier this year, the case was revived in federal appeals court, which overturned the decision. The court said that it found sufficient evidence to create a question of fact as to consumer sophistication that couldn’t be resolved by summary judgment.
Finally, the battle appears to be over.