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The Legal Battle Over The Use Of The Word 'pod'

 1:06 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

The Legal Battle Over The Use of the Word 'pod' [bbc.co.uk]
Apple has embarked on a legal battle over the right to use the word "pod".

The row has come about because of a projector called Video Pod currently being developed by start-up Sector Labs.

When the dispute first began, Apple said Sector Labs' use of the word might cause confusion among customers.

The legal claim to the name will be played out via documents the two companies will file in a US court over the next month.



 2:29 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

I'm a bit surprised the whale community has not sued apple for use of "pod". :)
Info [enchantedlearning.com...]


 2:41 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

I don't think the whale community has lawyers. Maybe PETA needs to be informed.

These are ridiculous lawsuits over common every day words. These companies are really calling their customers stupid because they can't tell the difference.


 3:02 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

Theres also the HP pod as well!



 3:05 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

And don't forget, triPod... :)


 3:18 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

I think a podcast is in order.


 3:27 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

pot calling the kettle black, methinks. apple (the beatles' apple) made a deal with apple in the 70s saying they could use the name as long as they didnt start selling music, because that would confuse the public.
when they started selling music later with itunes they argued that it wasn't actually music they were selling, it was just electronic computer code, which apparently is a completly different thing.

so they reckon that itunes isn't music. but the public will be confused about the word pod.


 4:53 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

Don't forget the Pod People from Invasion of the Body Snatchers. They are indistinguishable from normal people except their blind following of all things Apple.

Then there's PODS, that storage and moving company that hauls around all that old Apple iJunk people have piled all over the place.


 5:01 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

Great they didn't use the word "widget" on i-widget and such..


 5:03 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

There are also pod hotels. (Personally, I think some of them look like something from "The Matrix," but that's a different issue.)


 5:37 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

don't forget the dolphins !


 6:27 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

I'm happy they shelved the plan to call it the iThe


 8:15 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

What would we have done if they Trademarked example.com?


 8:26 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

Use iexample dot com :)


 9:12 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

Escape pod!

What you need when a company like "Apple" forgets it doesn't own the dictionary.


 9:35 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

What about all the pea growers, would they kick back ?


 9:46 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

LMAO. Escape Pod. I love it.

I have concerns about iexample.com because I foresee us paying royalties to a browser developer for a non standards-compliant trademark. ;-)


 10:03 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

Always the same. When companies want to have a protected name they should think of a name and not simply take a word out of the dictionary and put a letter like e- or i- or t- in front of it. And a few years later they think the word did not existe before they used it and they own it.


 10:22 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

What about "Open the pod bay doors Hal - I'm sorry Dave, I can't do that." which is how Apple got the idea anyhow.


 10:26 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

Apple has filed an 873-page briefing paper to the court laying out its claim to exclusive use of the name.

Lawyers, the guaranteed winners. IMO, it's not as simple as "pod is generic thus..." Apple is very generic too but try to selling Apple Tvs

On the other hand [google.com...]


 10:33 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

"Open the pod bay doors Hal"
"There's an app for that."


 11:18 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

It's time to mention the Mac "Wheel"... [theonion.com...] [humour].


 11:31 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

Don't forget that Google has (or had) "sleep pods" in their offices which could easily be confused with Sleep iPods.

Then there is the SkyShed POD Dome Observatory called the SkyPOD (sounds like SK-iPod!)

The Pods plugin for WordPress

There's the Physical Oceanography Dissertation Symposium (PODS)

Also, there are Coffee Pods!

Apple hardly has a lock on POD...


 11:54 pm on Sep 27, 2010 (gmt 0)

one word for all the Apple lawyers: sosumi [en.wikipedia.org]


 12:30 am on Sep 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

Apple doesn't have a lock on the word "pod", just its use in contexts that would be confusingly similar to its trademarked usage. The same word can be trademarked by more than one company but the uses have to be completely different.

The point of contention here is a video projector that includes "pod" in its name. That's close enough to both what the iPod does and the name Apple has trademarked that there is definitely potential for consumer confusion about the source of the product.

There's no way a consumer would confuse pea pods or the Physical Oceanography Dissertation Symposium with an iPod, so that's a straw man argument ... fun, perhaps, but not germane to the original article.


 5:38 pm on Sep 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

  1. Will their be a legal battle against last.fm? - [last.fm...]
  2. What about [pods.com...] ?
  3. What are the kids going to do when they get sued? - [podnetwork.org...]

All of that aside I understand the rational behind it but come on. Just a cursory look at [en.wikipedia.org...] might help them understand.

But, I admit I haven't read the brief. Which I still won't. But it's fun to play with the idea isn't it.


 10:33 am on Sep 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

I've heard that facebook is trying to get trademarked the word face...
I think it's just insane


 10:39 am on Sep 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

the company behind easyjet tried to protect 'easy' as well when it was followed by another word. i just read up on it, and they managed to take the domain name 'easyRealestate', even though they had no real estate business. how could the public be confused with a non-existant business?
so maybe apple will win


 12:24 pm on Sep 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

Apple will next target companies for using the word "i".


 11:20 pm on Oct 6, 2010 (gmt 0)

I just started a web app which has the word "think" in its name, and I actually wondered about getting sued by the current "thinkpad" TM owner.

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