Judge Skeptical of Apple's 'Appstore' Trademark Claims

Discussion in 'MacRumors.com News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jun 22, 2011.

  1. macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    A federal judge has hinted she will deny a motion from Apple asking the court to prevent Amazon.com from using the term "Appstore" for its Android app marketplace while a lawsuit over Amazon's use of the term continues. Apple initially sued Amazon this past March.

    Bloomberg quoted U.S. District Judge Phyllis Hamilton saying Apple had not demonstrated "real evidence of actual confusion" among customers trying to differentiate between Apple and Amazon's stores, and this was a "stumbling block for Apple." The judge continued, saying she was "troubled by the showing that you've made so far, but that's where you're likely not to prevail at this early juncture."

    There was no indication from the judge how quickly she intends to rule on the matter.

    Article Link: Judge Skeptical of Apple's 'Appstore' Trademark Claims
     
  2. macrumors regular

    LucasG

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    #2
    Sounds fair, I think. When I hear App Store it could be any online app store. When I here iTunes Store I think of Apple's App Store.
     
  3. macrumors 68000

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    #3
    Yup!

    I think Apple should give it up on that. Too generic man! :|
     
  4. macrumors regular

    smoge

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    #4
    trademarking the word appstore is like trademarking the little i in font of a word.
    It only a matter of time before i hat to pay for that.
     
  5. macrumors member

    itsthenewdc

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    #5
    Granted, it is a pretty generic term.. but you can't really tell me that when you hear App Store you don't think of Apple first? Android has for the most part been associated with the term marketplace. Apple pretty much made the term it is today, despite the generic aspect.
     
  6. macrumors G4

    *LTD*

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    #6
    Apple should have obtained rights to it back in 2008.

    Goof on Apple for making the attempt, but it might very well be that at this point, consumers won't get confused. Apple already differentiates themselves conspicuously enough, even in this area.
     
  7. macrumors member

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    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8J2 Safari/6533.18.5)

    I disagree. You have to think back to when Apple was the only App Store. It did mean Apple and another organisation using the term and trying to make it generic should not sway the judgement here.
     
  8. macrumors 601

    HiRez

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    #8
    Ouch, that's like being taken to the woodshed for lawyers I guess. I agree, just give it up. Some things are worth fighting for, this isn't one of them.
     
  9. macrumors 6502a

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    #9
    This is absolutely worth fighting for. App Store should rightly belong to Apple in the context they use it. It's as valuable to them as the generic term Windows is to Microsoft. So I'm outraged by this news.
     
  10. macrumors 601

    HiRez

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    #10
    Is this an argument that the term is so closely associated with Apple that they should own it, or is it an argument that because you think of Apple first, it's not hurting them at all to have others use it (and may actually be benefitting them)?
     
  11. macrumors 6502

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    #11
    Not this again.

    Microsoft calls their OS 'Windows'. 'Windows' is in no way a generic term for an operating system. Yes, within multiple OS's there are 'windows', but MS has no trademark on that. They are still called 'windows' in Mac OS.

    This is generic in the sense that it seems a bit like trying to trademark 'Laptop store' or something. App is a shortening of 'application'. Maybe Apple were the first to shorten it like that, but it's become too widely used for them to TM it now.
     
  12. macrumors newbie

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    #12
    I dearly hope we don't hear hear further cries of "but Word and Windows are really generic; how is it that these words were trademarked by Microsoft?"

    Because "Word" and "Windows" have never been used to describe a word processor or an operating system. Trademarking "Appstore" is like trademarking "Grocery Store". It's absurd.
     
  13. macrumors 68000

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    #13
    whaa

    i dont know, there was another company that managed to trademark "windows" and "office"
     
  14. macrumors newbie

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    #14
    How is "Windows" generic? When has the word "windows" ever been used to describe an operating system?
     
  15. macrumors 6502a

    HelveticaNeue

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    #15
    I believe that the rights to App Store should be granted to Apple, though I assumed that it wouldn't be so this is no real shock to me. Personally, I believe that if the iPhone never existed no one would be using the term app outside of the developing community. Apple popularized the term and ushered it into everyday lingo. To me Application Store would be the generic term.

    But whatever, it's just a name. Let 'em have it.
     
  16. macrumors 68040

    neiltc13

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    #16
    And again, people just don't get it.

    App Store sells apps. It is a store for applications, therefore it is a generic term. Just like hardware store couldn't be trademarked by a company that sold hardware.

    If "Windows" was the name of a business selling windows (like you put into houses) then that too would be generic. There is (and was) nothing generic about calling a piece of computer software "Windows".

    Likewise, Apple owns a trademark on the words "Mac" and "Macintosh" despite these being a common terms used for a raincoat. But because Apple isn't selling raincoats, the trademark is valid.

    "Office" is a trademark owned by Microsoft which it applies to a suite of software. The software itself is not an office, therefore the trademark stands.
     
  17. macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #17
    Actually, a "Macintosh" is a kind of apple.
     
  18. macrumors regular

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    #18
    Please provide an example where "App store" was used to describe a software store before Apple.
     
  19. macrumors 68040

    neiltc13

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    #19
    It doesn't have to have been used before. Both components of the trademark are generic terms, and together the term is generic. There were stores selling applications before Apple launched its "App Store" - heck, any retail store selling computer software could be described as an App Store.
     
  20. macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

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    #20
    Come on who did not see this one coming. Apple did not really have a case and it just took someone with enough guts to force Apples hand and prove it.

    Amazon did it and proved that Apple should not have the term "App Store" trademark.

    Apple App Store is fine.
    Oh and my personal favorite argument by Apple was saying App was short for Apple. That one does not even pass the straight face test. It showed the shear desperation if that was going to be the argument.
     
  21. ictiosapiens, Jun 22, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2011

    macrumors regular

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    #21
    This court case is so ridiculous, that I'm sure all of apple's legal costs are coming out of their marketing budget... Hell, that's probably the case with most of the latest court cases...
     
  22. macrumors 6502

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    #22
    Did anyone except die hard apple fans think they would win?
     
  23. macrumors 6502

    justinfreid

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    #23
    I didn't read the complaint, but did Apple really claim that "App" was short for or somehow signified "Apple"?

    And, I agree, "App Store" is too generic on its own and should require a modifier: iOS, Windows, Amazon, Android, Apple, etc.
     
  24. macrumors 68030

    Amazing Iceman

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    #24
    Precedence

    Lindows vs. Windows
     
  25. macrumors 6502

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    #25
    I will be very surprised if Apple gives up this easily. Amazon and Apple will be at this for a while.
     

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