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  • Microsoft Goes Linguistic on Apple in Trademark Case


    Try as they might, Apple will not have an easy time securing the trademark for "App Store." The people at Microsoft simply won't let that happen. And to better ensure that it doesn't, they've hired a linguistic expert to help illustrate why Apple is wrongfully laying claim to a phrase that should continue to exist as generic fair game for all.

    In yet another complaint filed with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, Microsoft has brought in linguistic expert Ronald R. Butters to counter the pro-Apple assertions made by Apple's linguistic expert Robert A. Leonard. According to Microsoft's wordsmith: "the compound noun 'app store' means simply 'store at which apps are offered for sale,' which is merely a definition of the thing itself--a generic characterization."

    "The undisputed facts establish that 'app store' means exactly what it says, a store offering apps, and is generic for the retail store services for which Apple seeks registration," Microsoft claims. "Apple does not contest that its other services are ancillary and incidental to its retail store services. Summary judgment should be entered denying Apple's application in its entirety."

    Butters also blasted Apple for using "online dictionaries" that were meant to lend credence to Apple's unique affiliation with and connection to the "App Store" designation. Butters alleges that "the online 'dictionary' sources Leonard cites were not written by established lexicographers and are without scientific authority. Even so, he included an online source that does, in fact, define app store as a generic term."

    It isn't clear what will ultimately come of Apple's efforts to trademark "App Store." But what is unmistakably apparent is that Apple isn't going to limit its fight to Microsoft. Last week, Apple filed a lawsuit against Amazon for referring to its new mobile software distribution marketplace as an "Appstore."

    Source: CNET
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Microsoft Goes Linguistic on Apple in Trademark Case started by Michael Essany View original post
    Comments 63 Comments
    1. sane's Avatar
      sane -
      Quote Originally Posted by feidhlim1986 View Post
      In the case with Amazon Appstore =/= App Store

      Appstore is one made up word

      App Store is two words, one of which is made up.

      Does Apple think that if someone with a Windows 7 phone sees an "App Store" on the device that they'll think they have an iPhone?
      Just build a shiny expensive magic bridge and get over it Apple
      I which case, my new software company is called MicroZoft, no need for anyone to sue.
    1. silent revolt's Avatar
      silent revolt -
      Quote Originally Posted by tsatryan View Post
      Apple fighting over "App Store" is no more ridiculous than Apple pressing this very web site about its previous name, ModMyiPhone.com Like it or not, they are merely protecting what they consider their creative right.
      i remember that LOL and honestly the "app store" was just hijacked from installer WAY back when...who remebers when the iphone had NOTHING but a black background , NO GAMES, NO VOICE DIAL..it was really kind of a lame cell phone with a touch screen <the only cool part....alas i still paid 800 for one or whatever the hell it cost
    1. Co1d Night's Avatar
      Co1d Night -
      Ah the good ol' days of 1.0

      I think Microsoft is wrong in this. Apple made the app store. Microsoft can come up with something else


      Sent from my iPod touch using ModMyi
    1. Nickaroni22's Avatar
      Nickaroni22 -
      I think this goes back to Microsoft losing ground to Apple. Microsoft trying anything they can to spoil Apple's success.
    1. Jahooba's Avatar
      Jahooba -
      There's no way that Apple should own App Store. That blows. As a consumer I want to call every app store an App Store. It's just easier to say. I'll be damned if I have to use the word "Marketplace" to describe an app store.

      It's cute and all that app is the first three letters in Apple, but I seriously hope Apple is beat down like they were in that jailbreak case (where jailbreaking was deemed not-illegal). Go gitt'em, Microsoft!
    1. Kinkme93's Avatar
      Kinkme93 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Jahooba View Post
      There's no way that Apple should own App Store. That blows. As a consumer I want to call every app store an App Store. It's just easier to say. I'll be damned if I have to use the word "Marketplace" to describe an app store.

      It's cute and all that app is the first three letters in Apple, but I seriously hope Apple is beat down like they were in that jailbreak case (where jailbreaking was deemed not-illegal). Go gitt'em, Microsoft!
      I 100% agree! Damn crapple ^_^
    1. ShredNasty's Avatar
      ShredNasty -
      Henry Ford soooo shoulda TM'd "car". Chevy woulda been pwned.
    1. fatherq's Avatar
      fatherq -
      Maybe one day we will have to call an "apple" orange, if not Apple will file a lawsuit against us!!LOL
    1. Mrteacup's Avatar
      Mrteacup -
      Quote Originally Posted by sane View Post
      I which case, my new software company is called MicroZoft, no need for anyone to sue.
      or micro soft
    1. khaoticsquirrel's Avatar
      khaoticsquirrel -
      That's Hot(TM)!

      Don't worry guys... I got Paris Hilton's personal approval to use that phrase, so I won't have to worry about any upcoming lawsuits.
    1. feidhlim1986's Avatar
      feidhlim1986 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Mrteacup View Post
      or micro soft
      Microsoft sued a kid a few years back call Mike Rowe because he registered the domain mikerowesoft.com
    1. loco_dos's Avatar
      loco_dos -
      Smirked everytime I read Butters, reminded me of Southpark
    1. RICO_'s Avatar
      RICO_ -
      I've been criticized lately for my distaste for Apple. CrAPP like THIS is exactly why Apple upsets me.
    1. iPhoneAndrew's Avatar
      iPhoneAndrew -
      this is ridiculous, it's like the word Podcast, sure everybody knows apple started it, but thats it. Why trademark it, or sue people over it.

      It's like apple banning apps on the iphone that has pinch to zoom... it's stupid.
    1. Tworok's Avatar
      Tworok -
      I'm not here to argue but it seems they want it just like Microsoft wanted windows.

      Quote Originally Posted by blwallace5 View Post
      It refers to Application not Apple. Apple already has an app called Apple Store.
      ? So if u had an app called blwallace5 would u like sombody using your name????
    1. QWood13's Avatar
      QWood13 -
      them trademarking a generic name like "App Store" (TM), is no different than Microsoft trademarking these following names, "Windows, Office, Powerpoint, Word, Excel, etc." so Microsoft needs to chill and realize that they can't be hypocrites and have all these generic names, and let Apple have this one... go Apple, I'm with you on this one. Whenever ihear App Store, I think Apple, and when i hear Market, I think Android (because I have an Android phone), so uhh Microsoft should just make up their own name and stop trying to take a free ride on Apple's Soul Plane

      This is QWood13 signing out
    1. mmaboi21's Avatar
      mmaboi21 -
      Play nicely rivals
    1. NBAKingzFan10's Avatar
      NBAKingzFan10 -
      Quote Originally Posted by QWood13 View Post
      them trademarking a generic name like "App Store" (TM), is no different than Microsoft trademarking these following names, "Windows, Office, Powerpoint, Word, Excel, etc." so Microsoft needs to chill and realize that they can't be hypocrites and have all these generic names, and let Apple have this one... go Apple, I'm with you on this one. Whenever ihear App Store, I think Apple, and when i hear Market, I think Android (because I have an Android phone), so uhh Microsoft should just make up their own name and stop trying to take a free ride on Apple's Soul Plane

      This is QWood13 signing out
      You're missing the point. Windows refers to an OS not an actual window, Excel a spreadsheet program and not the act of excelling, PowerPoint isn't pointing at an electric generator, and Office isn't an actual office. However, App Store is just that, an app store.

      In other words, you should not be able to trademark a self-explanatory word, especially when no underlying meaning is present. The post office doesnt TM mailbox (a box for mail), Jansport doesnt TM backpack (a pack for your back) so why should Apple get App Store?

      Could you imagine how terrible the world would be if we let any company take any self-explanitory word and make it their own under the threat of lawsuit? We would have 50 different names for the same exact product for almost every product. I'll be damned if I have to call my Eastpak backpack a " Dorsel Carrier" because another company TM'd The word Backpack (as per an earlier example).
    1. coolguy742's Avatar
      coolguy742 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Kolder View Post
      Are you available for the position?
      hahahaha no i's like colonial Angus (say it with southern accent)
    1. Tworok's Avatar
      Tworok -
      Quote Originally Posted by NBAKingzFan10 View Post
      In other words, you should not be able to trademark a self-explanatory word, especially when no underlying meaning is present. The post office doesnt TM mailbox (a box for mail), Jansport doesnt TM backpack (a pack for your back) so why should Apple get App Store? (as per an earlier example).
      you do have a valuable point! They should just be specific on name calling