Apple sued for callings its mouse Mighty

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  • Reply 61 of 118
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,507member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    I will admit that I do only know one side of the story and judged based on that. Regardless of when Nissan registered the name in the US it is his name, he did register a computer company with that name before domain names could be had, he did buy the name before Nissan and the name can not be confused with the automotive company. I still say he is in the right to the domain.



    I assume the 1993 date is for Japan, not the US, and the the 1965 date is for the US. Is that correct?



    Most cases have had people like him losing their rights to the name. I don't remember the cases, but I do remember one that involved a resturant, where the owners lost the rights. There have been many more.



    The courts have ruled that merely having the name (as an individual) doesn't mean that you have the right to use it as a public vehicle over and above the rights owned for a well known brand.



    The internet has confused this issue, because before, territory was considered to be of importance. So regional companies could have the same names. But now it's changed. When a company can appeal to a worldwide customer base through the simple process of putting up a cheap website. Where before, a company might not have bothered to sue, now they must.
  • Reply 62 of 118
    jragostajragosta Posts: 10,473member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by melgross View Post


    II see no reason for them to give in on this. It's really a fight between M&M and CBS. CBS could protect Apple from needing to pay a settlement, the way IBM did with Linux customers in the SCO suit.



    That's going too far. IF M&M can show that CBS does not have the right to apply the trademark to computer peripherals AND IF M&M can show that they were first (this one should be easy), then M&M could collect from Apple. The fact that Apple had a license from CBS would possibly save them from punitive damages since they acted in good faith, but they could still lose (not likely, but possible).



    In that scenario, Apple might be able to sue CBS for licensing them a trademark which they did not have a legal right to license. I suspect they could get their license fees back, but probably not much else.



    The wild card is those two abandoned "Mighty Mouse" trademark applications. If they were abandoned because CBS asserted a right to the mark and the two applicants agreed (to the point of dropping their application), then it's about as close to a slam dunk as there is in trademark cases and M&M would lose big time.
  • Reply 63 of 118
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bsenka View Post


    Their argument is, when you search for Mighty Mouse, you can't find the M&M one, even if you know what you are looking for. (Unless you remember the company name of "Man & Machine")



    The first thing searched for was waterproof might mouse. It's the first listing. The next thing I did was remove mighty from the search term, assuming that not everyone has a brand in mind. It's the 5th listing.



    But what if you are thinking of medical instead of waterproof. Medical mighty mouse is the 1st choice and medical mouse is the 3rd choice.



    I don't see that being hard to find or confusing to the buyer.
  • Reply 64 of 118
    godriflegodrifle Posts: 266member
    I've looked through the Internet Archive Wayback Machine, and found no prior instance of TM after the name "Mighty Mouse" on the Man-Machine web site. Don't know what the legal implications are there, but it sure appears that they've just started to use TM designator.



    Source: http://web.archive.org/web/*/http://www.man-machine.com



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Chris_CA View Post


    http://www.man-machine.com/mightymouse.htm



    If you look here -> http://www.man-machine.com/products.htm

    the Mighty Mouse is the only product with TM after the name.

    Is it the only product name they have trademarked?

    Looks like they hurried and added the TM (for the lawsuit) but if all products are TM, they should have added it to those also.



  • Reply 65 of 118
    godriflegodrifle Posts: 266member
    But if you happen to remember that you're looking for a waterproof mouse, you can easily find them on Google. And, of course, Apple's mouse is nowhere to be found using that phrase.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bsenka View Post


    Their argument is, when you search for Mighty Mouse, you can't find the M&M one, even if you know what you are looking for. (Unless you remember the company name of "Man & Machine")



  • Reply 66 of 118
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,507member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


    That's going too far. IF M&M can show that CBS does not have the right to apply the trademark to computer peripherals AND IF M&M can show that they were first (this one should be easy), then M&M could collect from Apple. The fact that Apple had a license from CBS would possibly save them from punitive damages since they acted in good faith, but they could still lose (not likely, but possible).



    In that scenario, Apple might be able to sue CBS for licensing them a trademark which they did not have a legal right to license. I suspect they could get their license fees back, but probably not much else.



    The wild card is those two abandoned "Mighty Mouse" trademark applications. If they were abandoned because CBS asserted a right to the mark and the two applicants agreed (to the point of dropping their application), then it's about as close to a slam dunk as there is in trademark cases and M&M would lose big time.



    That's not true. If Apple can show that it aquired the trademark in good faith from the company that claimed to own it for that purpose, and that did in actual fact own it for many years, then Apple might very well be absolved from payments.



    The fact that M&M used this first for a mouse, when their application is still pending means, right now, that they have no more rights than does CBS, which would, usually, be the presumed owner in the case of an extension.



    One question is when CBS applied, and when M&M applied, though that in itself, means little.
  • Reply 67 of 118
    royboyroyboy Posts: 446member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by darthraige View Post


    If Apple were to lose this case, in spite, they should call it the Mitey Mouse or Mightier Mouse. People are such babies these days with branding. Why is this coming up 2 years later? This is like a stupid news story, for example, this is what I heard on the news: "Study showing bras most likely cause for breast cancer." Ok, and you're finally bringing this up 50+ years later? Mannnnnn. lol





    But the first 50 years was just feel research.
  • Reply 68 of 118
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post


    I don't think that statement is an accurate interpretation.



    BTW: is anyone else getting HIV google ads on this forum? I don't get it, it's not relevant to me, to the discussion, the general content of the site or any site I've been to.



    Don't know if its an improvement on the Mormon banner ads of the last few weeks or not.
  • Reply 69 of 118
    elrothelroth Posts: 1,201member
    The name "Mighty Mouse" should really be owned by the estate of Andy Kaufman. He made the best use of it.
  • Reply 70 of 118
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,946member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Walter Slocombe View Post


    Don't know if its an improvement on the Mormon banner ads of the last few weeks or not.



    I don't remember that, but now I get "Find a psychologist" along with two HIV related ads.
  • Reply 71 of 118
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


    Depends on the recognizability of the name and the type of product. If I released a 'Dove' mouse, there is little chance that P&G would be able to stop me (I think they're the owners of the Dove soap trademark). There is no risk of confusion and a person hearing the word 'Dove' is not likely to immediately think of the soap.



    OTOH, if I created a mouse called "Mercedes Benz", I'd be stopped.



    ...not so sure about that. "Mouse" (computer) is a homonym with "Mouse" (mammal). They describe two completely different things.



    Take, for example, the word "Bow." Say I'm a gift-wrap company and just developed a very unique bow design and I patent it and trademark the name "super bow." Then my cousin, a hunting equipment manufacturer develops a powerful long-range hunting bow, patents the design and trademarks the name "super bow."



    Is that an infringement? No, because my bow trademark pertains to gift wrap. My cousin's bow trademark pertains to hunting. Likewise, CBS's trademark pertains to an animated performance-enhancing drug-using mouse while M&M's pertains to a computer accessory.



    Now if Apple had called it "Mighty Morphin' Power Ranger," you're right, that's a different story.



    -Clive
  • Reply 72 of 118
    bloggerblogbloggerblog Posts: 1,834member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by melgross View Post


    Apple owns the name iPod. Therefore, anything used in conjunction with that, as a business, needs to be licensed. It's not a matter of "strongarming". It's the law. A company isn't allowed to use other's copyrights and trademarks without permission. Even in writing a book, permission is needed. You'll find that to be true everywhere.



    You may think it's unfair, but it's not. .you can say that your armband is compatible with some of the most popular players. That would work too. But if you want to use Apple's trademark, you should have to get permission. You're feeding off their success.



    The problem has to do with inappropriate use of the trademark which results in a negative opinion of it, or a dilution of it, which leads to the loss of the trademark entirely.



    A company is almost forced into defending it because of those reasons.



    If they don't defend it, it could fall into the public domain, as have so many other trademarks over the years.



    So it should be perfectly fine if someone manufactures a bra for a Honda Civic, and yet he cannot advertise on Google, Yahoo, or MSN that his product is compatible with a Honda Civic? I don't see how that might make a negative opinion out of Honda Civic.
  • Reply 73 of 118
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by melgross View Post


    Irrelevant.



    Objection overruled!
  • Reply 74 of 118
    citycity Posts: 522member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Abster2core View Post


    This is off topic. But there is normally a bunch of Canadians around here.*



    Heading up to Vancouver tomorrow. Just in time to check out the new Apple Store opening on the 24th.*



    If the dollar is right and I could get away from paying sales taxes (non-resident), this may become a bonanza.?



    *Apple Store, Pacific Centre

    701 West Georgia Street

    Vancouver, British Columbia V7Y 1G5



    ?Providing I can get away from the wife.



    If you have a DUI, Canada is not going to let you in the country.
  • Reply 75 of 118
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Clive At Five View Post


    ...not so sure about that. "Mouse" (computer) is a homonym with "Mouse" (mammal). They describe two completely different things.



    While it is a homonym, I always wonder if it can be more accurately described as a polyseme as the terms are related in that a computer mouse was named because of its similar size and shape to the rodent.
  • Reply 76 of 118
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    While it is a homonym, I always wonder if it can be more accurately described as a polyseme as the terms are related in that a computer mouse as named because of it's similar size and shape to the rodent.



    And I thought I was being too technical...



    In the end, it only depends on whether the court cares or not
  • Reply 77 of 118
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 31,012member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Johnny Mozzarella View Post


    Objection overruled!



    I call for a mistrial!
  • Reply 78 of 118
    wheelhotwheelhot Posts: 465member
    Apple MightyMouse has been introduced for a long time already, I wonder what's up with the sudden commotion?
  • Reply 79 of 118
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,213moderator
    I think it should have been dealt with sooner too. It's clearly infringing on a well-know trademarked name.



    Anyway, I vote that it be renamed Shighty Mouse.
  • Reply 80 of 118
    dshandshan Posts: 53member
    All this BS lawyer talk... Surely the important question no one has asked yet is whether the M & M Mighty Mouse is Mac compatible? Imagine, a mouse you can bleed on, one you can spit on, and it'll keep on mousing!



    As to the numerous people complaining how come M & M are only "now" complaining and suing, years after the Apple MM went on sale - normally in such cases you don't sue first. First your lawyers write letters to the offending party and get letters back from their lawyers. This can easily take months or even years, it's only when it's clear that this is not going to resolve your problem that you reach for the lever marked "sue the bastards", court papers are filed, and it gets written about in the press. Presumably this is what happened in this case.
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