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The Courts Australia Your Rights Online Apple

Apple Loses Aussie Trademark Complaint Over "i" Name 177

CuteSteveJobs writes "Apple has been dealt a severe blow having been told that it no longer has a monopoly on the letter 'i' for product naming. IP Australia, the government body that oversees trademark applications, rejected Apple's complaint against a company selling 'DOPi' laptop bags. Last year Australian computer company Macpro Computers claimed that after 26 years of flying its own Macpro brand that Apple was 'trying to burn us out' with legal fees. This was after Apple released its own Macpro line 3½ years ago. Apple lost that complaint, but is appealing. Last year Apple went after supermarket Woolworths complaining their new logo which featured a 'W' fashioned into the shape of an apple. (Woolworths sells real apples.)"
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Apple Loses Aussie Trademark Complaint Over "i" Name

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  • by hellop2 ( 1271166 ) on Saturday March 13, 2010 @02:26AM (#31462060)
    Or "inet" or even more common, "Inet" which some BBSers insisted upon, because the word "Internet" was considered a proper noun.

    Here is an article from 1995 from the ACM: []

    It's an article on Internet History. Notice the filename contains the word "inet" meaning "Internet".

    Was Apple's first use of the "i" trademark before 1995?
  • by erroneus ( 253617 ) on Saturday March 13, 2010 @04:03AM (#31462420) Homepage

    On that I have to disagree. The approach is short-sighted as there is at least one other cost you are not considering -- "good will." Apple is burning its public image with these sorts of abusive legal actions.

  • Oh the irony (Score:5, Interesting)

    by plusser ( 685253 ) on Saturday March 13, 2010 @05:42AM (#31462740)

    When talking of trademarks, the Australian Woothworths company actually had absolutely nothing to do with the FW Woolworth company and its famous US and UK stores (and apparently stores in other countries that are still trading under the Woolworths brand). One of the founders of the Australian company, Ernest Robert Williams, called the company Woolworths as part of a dare, only to find that FW Woolworth had not trademarked the name in Australia, therefore the trademark was deemed valid.

    This highlight the issue of trademarks. Even in a globalised society, a company cannot expect by implication that its trademark will automatically be protected across the world, without registering the trademark correctly. If it were, could Volkswagen sue Apple for the use of the "i" letter since the company first used the designation on the Golf GTi in 1975?

    Perhaps somebody could trademark the word iDIOT, to prevent situations like this from occurring.

  • by Mephistro ( 1248898 ) on Saturday March 13, 2010 @09:38AM (#31463524)

    Microsoft has for years burned good will, buried it, danced on it's grave and then salted the earth where it used to grow and they are still the biggest software company around.

    I totally agree with your statement, but IMHO the most important word here is STILL. One of these days, M$ will slip, and then they'll need all the good will they dilapidated. In the future, people will be making lists like this "Ashton Tate, WordPerfect, SCO... Microsoft...". They have been stretching the rubber band for 40 years, You don't need to be Nostradamus to see what's coming.

    As for Apple, Google and the rest, yes, they'll probably end also being part of that list.

  • Re:Evil Empire (Score:3, Interesting)

    by ScrewMaster ( 602015 ) on Saturday March 13, 2010 @12:01PM (#31464326)

    Whatever happened to Apple being the goodguys? They had this image of being friendly and having a great product, but ever since they released the iPod its like it was the catalyst that turned them to the darkside.

    Trust me on this one, it was just image. I knew Apple from back in the Apple I days, and Jobs was a dick even then, a hopped up salesman at best. Wozniak I respected ... to have designed and prototyped the Apple ][, Monitor ROM and floppy disk controller at his age was remarkable. Close to genius-level work, I'd say.

    For all its flaws and warts (and it has many) Microsoft has put forth more effort to support its customers over the years than Apple ever has. I agree with you, they've seemed like bigger dicks since the iPod came out, but probably having to deal with the music industry has just amplified their existing negative vibes.

Loose bits sink chips.