Er, no evil guys, remember!
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Google has come out fighting against Erich Specht who sued the search giant over the Android name, launching a countersuit demanding damages and "disgorgement of ill-gotten gains". Google has filed suit against Specht asking the Illinois court to order a dismissal of the plaintiff's trademark registration of "Android", and …
Given that the word "android" dates back to the 1720s, I think we all can safely call Bull Shit on any of this nonsense and go about our lives again.
(android - "automaton resembling a human being," 1727, from Modified Latin "androides", from Greek andro- "human" + eides "form, shape." Listed as "rare" in Oxford English Dictionary (1879), popularized from circa1951 by science fiction writers. )
Google tried to steam-roller Giersch - the owner of the gmail trademark - too, but eventually German courts and the EU trademark body ruled against them.
Google has always argued the two names are not confusingly similar. The company even offered to buy the trademark rights from Giersch for $250,000, but the German entrepreneur declined. He called Google's behaviour "very threatening, very aggressive and very unfaithful".
"The case rests on whether Specht was still using the name "Android Data", a name he trademarked in 2002, by the time Google filed the term "Android" in 2007. Google's application was rejected by the US Patent & Trademark Office on the grounds that it was too similar to Specht's filing, prompting two unsuccessful appeals by Google who went ahead and used the name anyway."
Um, Google was denied the trademarked name "on the grounds that it was too similar to Specht's filing" but chose to use it anyway. Sounds pretty cut and dry to me.
If I tried to trademark the name "Microsoft Computer Stuff" and was obviously denied but used the name anyway, what do you think would happen to my company?
Not all lawsuits over names are frivolous, there is a big difference when someone registred lets say “MADONA” as a name just because the actual star that uses that name hasnt openned the web site yet and what happened here.
Dave 156 is right. This is very cut and dry. If they were denied before in court – twice – the right to use the name because it was already owned -5 years- before by another person or company, there is no case here, Google is clearly on the wrong here, and it would be very bad if this time the court failed in Google's side.
If today, I plan to make a company, a program, a show or whatever, and I decide I am going to call THINKPOD and I register it, who is to say that I have not the rights to that name just because I haven't used it yet? What it the time that must pass for it to be fair game? 20, 10, 5 years? 6 month? Is not that the freaking purpose for such registration to have expiration date if not renewed? What is my project is a long term one and right now I don't have the time or resources to do it?
Google knew he name was not legally open for their use, they could have just changed it and no harm done, but no, they went on with it and now they face a lawsuit, a lawsuit that they must clearly loose, and badly I hope. Big companies have to understand that just because they are big and cool they can't go away with anything they want. Heck if they win I going to make my own little application and I am going to call it “Me&droid”, and I will not even bother to register it, lets see if they will not react to that.
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