Intel joins the Dell “netbook” trademark party

3 Comments

endangered1The latest chapter in the “netbook” trademark saga that Psion kicked off late last year has Intel (s INTC) joining the party.  Dell recently filed for cancellation of the Psion “netbook” trademark and Intel has now also filed for the cancellation.

Intel’s filing is much like that of Dell’s (s DELL), asserting that the term “netbook” has become too generic to allow Psion’s trademark to stand.  They are also stating that Psion was committing fraud in 2006 when they claimed they were actively using the trademark.

This whole business is not unexpected; Intel has a lot riding on the netbook term and fighting it is just good business.  Psion definitely let the trademarked term sit for a few years, as they stopped selling their netBook in 2003.  I think it seems likely that the trademark will not survive these challenges, but time will tell.

3 Comments

Oliver

@Sumocat — it may be disgusting, but it’s also business as usual. Not defending Intel here (and I don’t see a need for the term netbook anyway), but it’s really not shocking to see them do what they do.

Sumocat

I would be inclined to agree with you, except this seems to be a unique case. In the past, terms became generic through popularity before other companies started using them. In this case, the name became generic after Intel made it popular. Thus far, I haven’t found a precedent for this, so it seems quite unusual to me.

Sumocat

You know what else appears to be good business? Genericizing someone else’s registered trademark. It is insulting that Intel would make the “genericness” argument without admitting that they genericized the term. Do they think we’ve all been asleep the past year since they (re)introduced the “netbook” category? And now they’re suing the trademark holder because they’re defending their trademark? It’s disgusting.

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