Another Keyword Advertising Reference – Wintersteiger

It looks like keyword advertising “saga” is not over yet. Court of Justice just received another keyword advertising preliminary reference from a national court, namely C-523/10 Wintersteiger (not on the Curia’s website yet – see IPO). This time it concerns international private law, more specifically interpretation of the Brussels I. regulation which sets jurisdiction rules.

And the questions are as follows ..

1. In the case of an alleged infringement by a person established in another Member State of a trade mark granted in the State of the court seized through the use of a keyword (AdWord) identical to that trade mark in an internet search engine which offers its services under various country-specific top-level domains, is the phrase “the place where the harmful event occurred or may occur” in Article 5(3) of Regulation 44/2001 (“Brussels I”) is to be interpreted as meaning that;

1.1. jurisdiction is established only if the keyword is used on the search engine website the top-level domain of which is that of the State of the court seized;

1.2. jurisdiction is established only if the search engine website on which the keyword is used can be accessed in the State of the court seized;

1.3. jurisdiction is dependent on the satisfaction or other requirements additional to the accessibility of the website?

2. If Question1.3 is answered in the affirmative: Which criteria are to be used to determine whether jurisdiction under Article 5(3) of Brussels I is established where a trade mark granted in the State of the course seized is used as an AdWord on a search engine website with a country-specific top-level domain different from that of the State of the court seized?

Huťko guess that all keyword enthusiasts (especially Max Schubert and Birgit Clark :)) will immediately add this piece into their personal wiki, probably right next to L’Oreal v. eBay C-324/09 and Interflora C-323/09.

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