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Mac show gets Macworld moniker back

Macworld Expo -> Create -> Macworld Creative Pro

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First it was Macworld Expo. Then it was Create. Now, less than a month after organiser IDG renamed its summer show for Mac users, it has restyled the event again. Now it's Macworld Creative Pro.

Clearly Create didn't cut the mustard with the Mac user base who make up the vast majority, if not all, of the show's attendees.

You don't change the name of a show as big as Macworld Expo without seriously pondering the strength of the alternatives. But it looks like whoever decided that Create was the way to go got it wrong.

IDG hasn't explained exactly why it changed the name a second time, but did say in a statement: "The name change further defines the event's focus on the needs of creative professionals, as well as consumers who want to develop more advanced skills in the creative arts."

In short, it's narrowing the focus back on the Mac market and again leveraging the strong Macworld brand. Perhaps IDG also recalled the fate of eMedia Weekly, the rebranded MacWeek newspaper. Published by... er... IDG, eMedia Weekly was christened to appeal to the growing number of creative types using PCs not Macs. Alas Mac users were not amused, and the once mighty organ soon folded.

It's tempting to see Create suffering a similar backlash in the weeks since IDG announced the show's new direction. Like Spinal Tap's ill-fated excursion into freeform jazz, IDG's move to drop the Mac branding can't have played well with the fans.

It certainly can't have been a result of objections from Apple. While the Mac maker has made its disapproval of the show's planned shift from New York to Boston, and canned CEO Steve Jobs traditional Macworld Expo New York keynote, it nevertheless gave its official blessing for the Create name-change.

There's another possibility. Stone Software has long held a trademark for its 14-year-old NeXT-now-Mac OS X graphics app, Create. Of course, a show and a piece of software are two very different beasts, but the potential for a clash is there. Certainly Stone's blog entry dated 22 April 2003 claimes that "IDG 'gracefully' backed down from trying to hijack the name for their expo in NYC" and refers to "large lawyers". An earlier post mentions Stone's access to "the best patent attorneys in DC". Unfortunately, however, neither side would comment further. ®

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Macworld Expo renamed Create as Apple touts WWDC

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