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  Latest News  
  December 10,  2004
 

ACS NEWS

  ACS Takes Legal Action Against Google
Google search service is said to infringe SciFinder Scholar trademark
 

AALOK MEHTA
   
 
  The American Chemical Society filed a complaint on Dec. 9 against Google Inc. in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. The complaint contends that Google’s use of the trademark “Scholar” for its Google Scholar literature-search engine constitutes trademark infringement and unfair competition.

A beta version of Google Scholar (http://scholar.google.com) debuted in mid-November. The search service allows users, at no cost, to “search specifically for scholarly literature, including peer-reviewed papers, theses, books, preprints, abstracts, and technical reports from all broad areas of research,” according to a Google website.

The ACS complaint contends that Google's use of the word scholar infringes on ACS’s SciFinder Scholar and Scholar trademarks and constitutes unfair competition. SciFinder Scholar, a desktop research tool designed for academic scientists, was launched six years ago. ACS’s Chemical Abstracts Service estimates that about 1,000 colleges and universities have bought the service, which provides access to all of CAS’s databases, including information on journal and patent references, substance information, regulated chemicals, chemical reactions, and chemical supplier information.

“The field of scientific research and related services is, of course, open to all,” said Flint Lewis, ACS’s secretary and general counsel, in a statement. “But when someone uses a trademark similar to ours, we have no choice but to take action—to protect the goodwill that we have built over the years and to prevent the likelihood of confusion in the marketplace.”
 
     
  Chemical & Engineering News
ISSN 0009-2347
Copyright © 2004
 


 
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