American Airlines has decided to sue Google because they don't like it when other people use their trademarks in advertisements. Instead of going after the people actually abusing their trademark, they want Google to pay the price for letting it happen in the first place.
The same complaint has come up several times in the past, without any rulings against the company on American soil. This leads me to wonder why American Airlines is even trying? I'm not a lawyer, and don't profess to know the ins and outs of the legal system, but doesn't precedence mean anything these days?
New York Times says that it's unlikely there will be a ruling against Google -- but even so, the lawsuit is not being taken lightly. Eric Goldman says American Airlines has deep pockets and many tradmarks that could help differentiate this suit from some of the others in the past.
"A plaintiff with a lot of trademarks, deep pockets and the seeming willingness to fight. As Mr. Goldman noted in his blog, American Airlines said it was not bringing this lawsuit lightly." - Eric Goldman
Google says they are not afraid of this lawsuit. They explain their system strikes a balance between trademark owners and consumer choice.