My Life. My Card. My Intellectual Property Battle.

from the the-world-we-live-in dept

Barely a day goes by when we don't hear of yet another story about some sort of intellectual property claim being asserted where it doesn't belong. It's a function of a current culture where people are being incorrectly taught that every idea, every concept, every word and every sound should be protected and "owned" despite the fact that these things, by their very nature, are infinite and can be freely shared at no cost to anyone. The latest such case involves a guy who apparently pitched the slogan "My Card. My Life" to American Express a while back. Soon afterwards, entirely independently, AmEx's own ad agency pitched the same slogan, which is now being used. After discovering that the other guy was trying to trademark (we assume, even though the article claims "patent") the phrase, AmEx sued to get a declaratory judgment that its use of the phrase did not infringe. Thankfully, a judge has agreed that no infringement occurred. Yet, in this age, where we're being incorrectly bombarded with the message that ideas can be owned and protected, it's no surprise that American Express would worry about such a thing.

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  1. identicon
    Trevlac, 13 Feb 2008 @ 3:08am

    It can be an independent idea. I mean think about this, the think tanks that come up with marketing ideas are not the same execs that hear about them from individuals. Also think that with a hired staff of dozens or hundreds (depending on AmEx's devotion to ad campaigns) working around the clock and excersizing creative juices, someone was bound to come up with that slogan. I_would_have thought of it within the first day of my working for AmEx.

    It's also not surprising they used it. A while back slogans weren't supposed to be that simplistic, now all of them are. So re-pitch the same idea independently at a different time and it might be used.

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