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Jason Fried
When Google puts 4 paid ads ahead of the first organic result for your own brand name, you’re forced to pay up if you want to be found. It’s a shakedown. It’s ransom. But at least we can have fun with it. Search for Basecamp and you may see this attached ad.
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Jason Fried Sep 6
Replying to @SquawkCNBC
Early birds, I’ll be on around 7:10am EST to talk about my issue with Google selling trademarked brand names to the highest bidder.
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Melissa Jones ✨ Lead With Excellence Sep 3
Replying to @jasonfried
This is exactly why I left Facebook. Placing competitor pages/groups as recommendations on your page/group. Because just in case the consumer isn’t sure what they are looking for....let’s give you additional options to slow down your decision making.
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Jason Fried Sep 3
Replying to @theCEOffice
Yup, it’s misleading at best. Nasty practice.
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Melissa Jones ✨ Lead With Excellence Sep 3
Replying to @jasonfried
Similar real life experience, but can easily be fixed. 🤣
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Jason Fried Sep 3
Replying to @theCEOffice
Yeah, that’s a fun take, but of course requires a ton more money, perfect placement, and vacant space. Totally different from online Google advertising.
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Melissa Jones ✨ Lead With Excellence Sep 3
Replying to @jasonfried
Agree 😄
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Bashar Abdullah Sep 3
Replying to @jasonfried
So true. And it’s a lot tougher when you’re just a rising startup with small budget
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Jason Fried Sep 3
Replying to @Bashar3A
Bingo. Deep pockets can literally stand in front of your door and prevent customers from getting in. Sad state of affairs.
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Bashar Abdullah Sep 3
Replying to @jasonfried
But wait I remember now you can use your trademark to disallow bidding on your brand name in specific, no? I did that once and it helped. Still other keywords around ny brand name slip through ofcourse.
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Jason Fried Sep 3
Replying to @Bashar3A
Oh you can try. But if ad advertiser is a big spender with Google, Google will look the other way. Further, Google allows you to say stuff like “Base Camp” which, we all know is “Basecamp”.
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Yuriy Sep 3
Replying to @jasonfried @Bashar3A
You can’t prevent bidding on a keyword via trademark at all, regardless of size. You can, however, prevent the use of the keyword in the ad copy itself.
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John Burger 🖤 Sep 3
But several of the ads I’m seeing do use the term “Basecamp”. And I’m pretty sure the trademark covers close variants like “base camp”. Anyway, I clicked I clicked and cost them all a few pennies.
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Yuriy Sep 3
It depends entirely whether Basecamp submitted their registered trademark certificate via You have to submit a registered trademark registration number per country in which you have the trademark registered.
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B R E N D A N Sep 3
Replying to @jasonfried
I thought being small and independent were things that you were proud of? Your ad makes it sound like those are negatives and should be pitied.
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Jason Fried Sep 3
Replying to @BrendanHufford
We’re very proud of it. What we’re saying is that a small independent company (us, others like us, others much smaller than us) are being forced to pay the piper to be found - even when people are searching for their own brand name.
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B R E N D A N Sep 3
Replying to @jasonfried
In a better world: how would you solve for this? There are a lot of options but I'm curious how you'd think about it.
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Jason Fried Sep 3
Replying to @BrendanHufford
I’d make it explicitly clear that brand names can not be bought unless you own the brand name. One violation allowed, then a one-year ban on advertising on the platform. Repeat offenders after that would be permanently banned.
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Adam Puddicombe Sep 3
Great in theory but nearly impossible to enforce considering there's so many brand names out there and advertisers using different keyword match types. For ex. Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Maple Leaf Foods. Who's in the right if someone searches "maple leaf"?
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