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Facebook apology in Merck dispute

Written by James Delahunty (Google+) @ 29 Nov 2011 9:49 User comments (3)

Facebook apology in Merck dispute Facebook apologizes for its part in mix-up.
The social networking site admitted to making a mistake when it allowed American drugmaker Merck & Co take control of a page on Facebook of its German rival, Merck KGaA. The German drugmaker went to court in New York over the issue.

After World War I, Merck & Co was setup as an independent company in the United States, sharing the Merck trademark with Merck KGaA in different geographical areas. The change was part of Germany's reparations under the Treaty of Versailles.

Merck KGaA asked the court to force Facebook to explain why it lost administrative control over www.facebook.com/merck, and why the American Merck & Co was now using it. The German Merck said that Facebook had not been helpful, and even evasive, when approached for an explanation.

"The transfer of the vanity URL Facebook.com/Merck from Merck KGaA to Merck & Co was due to an administrative error," Facebook said in a statement. "We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused."

Facebook said it will make the URL unavailable until both drug companies could come to arrangement over its use.

Tags: Facebook
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3 user comments

129.11.2011 10:27

What a crock. If it was obviously an error on facebook's part they need to give back control to the German company. They had control first and did not authorize their American counterparts to have it.

229.11.2011 10:45

Wow. Merk vs. Merk... Why not change the company name instead to avoid anymore confusions... *facepalm*



329.11.2011 11:05

Obviously the Merck brand is widely known in both of their respective areas. It would not make sense to change it. It should not be up to facebook to play devil's advocate. What they did was wrong and all it takes is a few clicks to fix it. The German company had administrative control over it and it was removed in error through no fault of their own. Control should be restored to them plain and simple.

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