"Microsoft is disputing Apple’s move to trademark the name “App Store”, arguing that it would be unfair to allow just one company to use a phrase that is now used by lots of technology groups. Apple applied to have the term trademarked in 2008, shortly after it launched its App Store for the iPhone. However, in a motion filed with the US Patent and Trademark Office this week, Microsoft points out that the term “app store” is used as a generic term by lots of companies to describe the online retail outlet used to sell mobile phone applications to consumers."
What a bunch of BS! -- I bet they're p.oed because a lot of people think the 'app' stands for 'Apple'!
How lame must it be to know that the anagram for one of your company's many failures is now part of the everyday vocabulary? While we're at it, I wonder if Vegas is takin' odds on how soon Ballmer will be toast. Eh, probably not. He already is.
_________________________ I always deserve it. Really.
Kinda reminds of when Beatles sued Apple over trademark - Apple Records -vs- Apple computer <-- keep in mind that was after Apple Computer opened iTunes. Stating that they are both in the music business.
Common household names should not be even thought of being a trademark exclusive to anyone.
“The combined term ‘app store’ is commonly used in the trade, by the general press, by consumers, by Apple’s competitors and even by Apple’s founder and CEO Steve Jobs, as the generic name for online stores featuring apps.…In a recent interview, Jobs criticized the proliferation of app stores for Google’s competing Android platform as follows: In addition to Google’s own app Marketplace, Amazon (NSDQ: AMZN), Verizon and Vodafone (NYSE: VOD) have all announced that they are creating their own app stores for Android. There will be at least four app stores on Android which customers must search through to find the app they want and developers will need to work to distribute their apps and get paid.”
IMHO, MSFT is just darn late with that argument. By now, everyone and their grandma knows that the 'App Store' is the place where you buy your 'apps' for your iPhone, iPad, Touch, etc.etc. I think even Google accepted that and named theirs 'Marketplace'. But we'll see how far this BS goes...
The tech slang “app” was voted the 2010 “Word of the Year” Friday by the American Dialect Society, beating out Cookie Monster’s “nom, nom, nom, nom.”
The shortened slang term for a computer or smart phone application was picked by the linguists group as the word that best sums up the country’s preoccupation last year.
I don’t think there can be any argument that Apple pioneered this usage, but it’s still just a word. That’s what we call computer applications now: apps. “Apps”, no matter who coined it, are not specific to Apple platforms.
But: Apple’s trademark application isn’t for just plain “app”. They’re asking for a trademark on “app store”. There’s a department store chain with a registered trademark for “Christmas Tree Shops”. “The Container Store” is a registered trademark. Given those, could Apple get “The App Store”?
But: I would think that I could open a store called “The Gruber Container Store”, or “The Daring Fireball Christmas Tree Shop”. I suspect that what Apple wants to block with this trademark application is something like “WebOS App Store” or “Windows Phone App Store”. So the more I think about it, the more I think Microsoft is right, that Apple shouldn’t be granted a trademark on just plain “app store”. It’s true that Microsoft has a trademark for “Windows”, but they aren’t selling actual windows. Whereas Apple’s App Store is a literal store for apps.
Six-Year Google Trends Chart for ‘App’ ★ There’s a decided spike in mid-2008, and a steady climb ever since. And if you check the trend for “app store”, it doesn’t even exist as a common search term until mid-2008.
I don’t know whether “app store” should be trademarkable. I’m leaning toward no, that it is too generic, and that they should only be granted trademarks for Something App Store — Mac App Store, iOS App Store, iTunes App Store, etc. But a lot of companies have gotten trademarks for pretty generic words when they’re used in a specific context. Steve Jobs has been using the word “app” for as long as I remember, easily back to the NeXT years. I remember thinking it always sounded awkward, too cutesy, whenever he said it, because it wasn’t in common usage.
Microsoft Seeks to Block Apple ‘App Store’ Trademark ★ BBC News:
The company says the term is too generic and competitors should be able to use it.
“An ‘app store’ is an ‘app store’,” said Russell Pangborn, Microsoft’s associate general counsel. “Like ‘shoe store’ or ‘toy store’, it is a generic term that is commonly used by companies, governments and individuals that offer apps.”
“The term ‘app store’ should continue to be available for use by all without fear of reprisal by Apple.”
I agree. Just like the generic term “Windows”. Or “Office”. UPDATE: See this piece for further, better-reasoned thoughts on this.
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