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A few misconceptions as to what Google's policies are on TMed terms, Eric.

1) You can buy trademarked terms in North America. The UK/Europe have different rules more in line with what you're referring to.
2) The restriction is on using competitors' TMs in adcopy. E.g. Coke ads mentioning 'Pepsi'.
3) "If you somehow sneak through when you turn on your competitor name buy you will eventually get caught and have it shut off." It's possible, but quite unlikely imho. First, because ads make the search engines money. Second because short of a complaint/PR issue, there's no incentive to take action.

On a related note, I'd love to chat with you more about political search marketing, and give you/the McCain campaign some data I have from ads I bought during the Feb' Super Tuesday primaries. You might also find interest in this post I did analyzing the last Quebec provincial election and their shabby search marketing: http://cityseo.blogspot.com/2007/03/political-campaigns-marketings-slacker.html


Thanks for your comments. I wasn't aware of the differences between the US and elsewhere. Regarding #3, my experience is that you get caught because I've personally had that happen :-)

My pleasure Eric. Actually, I just learned about those recently through a thread on the SEM 2.0 Google Group. It's got a high signal-to-noise ratio I think you'd enjoy :).

BTW, you interested in the campaign data? I racked up about 50,000 impressions in hardly any time. Would really love to help out the McCain campaign by sharing that :) .

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