Trademarks can be tricky business. After all, there is nothing worse than having worked on a prototype for so long, only to be told by some trademark holder that the product’s name infringes on its trademark and must be dropped or face legal proceedings. Sounds harsh? That is precisely what Apple is doing with Sector Labs, a startup company based in America.
What does the word ‘pod’ mean to you? For some, it brings to mind the tough enclosure found on seeds, while others may probably think of the popular Apple iPod media player.
However, it this case, it seems that Apple clearly believes that the word exclusively refers to its line of portable media players. And to this end, it has filed complaints and oppositions against a startup company, Sector Labs’ use of the term in video projector, the Video Pod.
According to Wired.com, the initial complaints were filed way back in 2009, but what makes this particular case unique is that Sector Labs will be the first and only company to go head-to-head against Apple over the usage of the ‘pod’ word.
In addition, Ana Christian, the lawyer for Sector Labs’ founder Daniel Kokin, has claimed in an interview with Ars Technica that the trial is more than just a petty dispute over trademark rights.
“What I’m hoping to do with this case is to really reach a lot broader of an audience and make it so entrepreneurs and small businesses can use the English language as they see fit in branding their products,” she said.
The trial is set to take place “over the next month”.