TigerDirect Claims Apple Has Its Trademark By The Tail
from the not-the-PR-we-wanted dept
While Apple ratchets up the hype on tonight’s release of the new Mac OS X, aka Tiger, it looks like Steve Jobs and friends are getting a bit of unintended publicity in the form of a trademark infringement lawsuit filed yesterday by TigerDirect. The online computer retailer, which owns a trademark on “Tiger,” says that Apple is creating “confusion, mistake and deception among the general purchasing public” by using and widely promoting the name. Of course, the strategy to prove that claim — saying its search rankings have tumbled because of Apple’s marketing efforts — is a bit weak. First of all, TigerDirect still comes up second in Google results for the term “tiger,” while Apple is fourth. Also, it won’t be easy to demonstrate that Apple is actually pulling away customers and — this is the critical part — deceiving them into thinking the Mac product/site has something to do with TigerDirect. Unless they trot out numbers showing a massive decline in site traffic coinciding with Apple’s PR blitz, the claim seems sketchy. If anything, it seems likely that the number of people searching on “tiger” for computer products has gone way up since (and because of) the Mac OS campaign and, if anything, is driving more people to TigerDirect. A preliminary injunction hearing next week will undoubtedly reveal more. Still, considering Apple’s extensive experience with naming hassles, you’d think someone there would have foreseen the litigation potential a long time ago and avoided this mess in the first place. Maybe Apple was too busy with its own Tiger lawsuit to notice.
Comments on “TigerDirect Claims Apple Has Its Trademark By The Tail”
Any pub is good pub
Sounds like TigerDirect is taking a page from the Michael Robertson school of advertising and promotion…
Re: Any pub is good pub
TigerDirect, I haven’t heard that name in at least 8 to 10 years! I wonder if they still send out catalogs like AOL sends out CDROMS…
A little due diligence
Apple is not a tiny company. Checking for pre-existing trademarks is not difficult. Apple deserves what they get. They made this kind of mistake with an earlier upgrade’s name, but biggest of all they made this mistake with the company name Apple, and had to settle with the Beatles-related record company over a similar situation.
Apple: a mostly smart company that repeatedly makes the same stupid mistake.
Re: A little due diligence
Not a patent lawyer so I have no idea what this means, but Apple registered “Tiger” as a trademark: http://assignments.uspto.gov/assignments/q?db=tm&sno=78269988. So whats Tigerdirect’s beef? That Apple has better marketing?
Re: A little due diligence
Have they actually settled with Apple Music? I thought the original settlement was that they wouldn’t sell music, and now with iTunes they are in direct violation and are being sued again.
from the department of DUH
unless my brain is fried from viewing my empty blog screen for too long, but I am pretty sure that the two things are not competitor products.
I’ll bet that TigerDirect could sell the Tiger version of Apple’s OS if it tried hard enough, so like so many other phallacies, this too shall pass.
Apple knows what they are doing, just as the Sunbeam car owner’s club knows that suing Apple over using the Tiger name would be ludacris.