Feeds

Apple slapped with lawsuit over 'iAds' monicker

'Trampling the rights of others.' Again

SANS - Survey on application security programs

Another day, another lawsuit for Apple. This time Jobs & Company are being taken to task for naming the iPhone's new mobile-advertising platform "iAds" when that service mark is already owned by a Southern California media company.

Online ad firm Innovate Media Group of Costa Mesa, California, has filed suit in the US District Court of the Central District of California, charging that Apple has knowingly usurped their rights to the term iAds.

"It appears that Apple's strategy with respect to Innovate Media and the 'iAds' mark is just another sequence in a pattern of conduct by Apple, of ignoring and trampling the intellectual property rights of others," the suit reads.

It appears that Innovate Media may have a point. The US Patent and Trademak Office has five live listings for the term "iAds"; three are related to vehicle-test software and the other two — owned by the Innovate Media Group — are 3,515,183, for "Production of video and creation of visual effects and graphics for others for use on websites," and 3,515,184, for "Transmission of sound, video and information over the internet using video flash overlay technology". Both were filed on October 25, 2007 and registered on October 14, 2008, and both note a "first use in commerce" date of August 1, 2006.

Court documents claim that after Steve Jobs announced Apple's iAds program at the iPhone iOS 4's April 8 coming out party, Innovate Media contacted him and "informed him that Innovate Media had trademarked 'iAds' in 2008". The company also claims to have contacted Quattro Wireless, the mobile-ad group that Apple acquired this January. Neither, the suit says, have responded.

"As a result of Apple's refusal to acknowledge Innovate Media's 'iAds' marks, and blatant and willful infringement of those marks," the suit reads, "Innovate Media has been left with little choice but to file this lawsuit seeking injuntive relief, damages and other relief."

The suit also notes that such "blatant and willful infringment" is nothing new for Apple: "'iPhone,' 'iPad,' and even 'Apple' were all marks held by third parties, which Apple used without the owners' permission, and ultimately took over," the suit notes.

As The Reg reported last week, Apple entered into agreements with Cisco to use its "IOS" name for Cupertino's newly renamed mobile operating system, and with instant messaging outfit Facetime to transfer its rights to Cupertino so that Apple can dub its iPhone4–to–iPhone 4 videoconferencing system.

But Cisco had to take Apple to court over the iPhone name, which it owned, and Fujitsu and Apple reached a settlement over the name iPad, which Fujitsu owned, after announcing but before releasing the "magical and revolutionary" device.

Apparently Jobs didn't think that the Southern California internet ad firm, Innovate Media, was worth dealing with before he announced Apple's iAds program. Or maybe he thinks he's exempt due to that service-mark language about "video flash overlay technology". ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Did a date calculation bug just cost hard-up Co-op Bank £110m?
And just when Brit banking org needs £400m to stay afloat
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Don't let no-hire pact suit witnesses call Steve Jobs a bullyboy, plead Apple and Google
'Irrelevant' character evidence should be excluded – lawyers
EFF: Feds plan to put 52 MILLION FACES into recognition database
System would identify faces as part of biometrics collection
Lavabit loses contempt of court appeal over protecting Snowden, customers
Judges rule complaints about government power are too little, too late
Whoever you vote for, Google gets in
Report uncovers giant octopus squid of lobbying influence
Ex-Tony Blair adviser is new top boss at UK spy-hive GCHQ
Robert Hannigan to replace Sir Iain Lobban in the autumn
Alphadex fires back at British Gas with overcharging allegation
Brit colo outfit says it paid for 347KVA, has been charged for 1940KVA
Jack the RIPA: Blighty cops ignore law, retain innocents' comms data
Prime minister: Nothing to see here, go about your business
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a defence for mobile apps
In this whitepaper learn the various considerations for defending mobile applications; from the mobile application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies needed to properly assess mobile applications risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.