Ruling adds to confusion over legality of keywords

In ruling that counters findings in other cases, court says pharmacies didn’t infringe on Merck trademark through use of “Zocor” keyword. CNet Reports Merck sued a handful of online pharmacies last year, alleging trademark infringement based on the use of the Zocor trademark on Web sites and in keywords designed to turn up sponsored links on search results pages. The lawsuit also alleged trademark dilution and false advertising.

On Thursday, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York refused to dismiss the claims of trademark dilution and false advertising but dismissed the trademark infringement claim related to the keyword purchases.