Whichever way you look at it – its a mystery shrouded in enigma and wrapped in a liberal dose of PR hype. Well this morning the big news was that Vonage had settled its trademark infringement suit against AT&T. Vonage said, Ma Bell, no way you can use CallVantage because it would confuse Vonage customers. According to the news reports, AT&T agreed to call it “AT&T CallVantage.” Now all this was based on a story in Internet News.
“It has been settled,” Vonage spokeswoman Brooke Schulz told internetnews.com. “Each party came to an agreement on terms.”
This tweaked the officials at AT&T who shot me a note saying,
“The Vonage lawsuit against AT&T for use of AT&T’s registered mark, “AT&T CallVantage®” Service, was withdrawn by Vonage several months ago prior to any court hearing pursuant to a settlement. The lawsuit settled on the basis that AT&T would use the mark as registered and Vonage, the plaintiff in the case, would transfer to AT&T certain improperly registered domain names. Vonage disclosed to the media a partial version of the terms of the settlement in breach of the confidentiality provision in the settlement. AT&T is simply correcting the record. ”
Ouch, all this battling over a name. I am guessing
a] someone did not make the call to Ma Bell to check on Vonage’s version of events.
b] It was a nasty slow news day!
c] Skype was hogging all the headlines.
Or all three!