Lastminute.com chief executive Ian McCaig has threatened Google with legal action over the search engine’s decision to allow trademarked keyword bidding in the UK.
McCaig told Channel 4 News: “We are investigating with vigour the legal position, and if that investigation concludes positively we will absolutely pursue a legal case, no question.”
McCaig has been the most vocal of UK objectors to the change. He told delegates at the recent Travolution Summit that it would cost him “a seven figure Euro sum, in Euros, a year” to protect the Lastminute.com brand.
The four minute long report, broadcast on Friday evening, also included an interview with Professor Ian Walden from the Centre for Commercial Law Studies.
“The question is whether rights’ holders will be adequately able to protect themselves,” he said, “or whether the regulators will have to step in to control the market power of Google.”
The search engine’s response to McCaig came from Google UK’s Matt Brittan: “We are making this change because we believe it improves the service to users.
“It is not something we are doing because we think people will have to pay more for their trademark terms.”