Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Facebook Asserts Trademark On "Book" In New User Agreement

timothy posted about 2 years ago | from the throw-the-face-at-them dept.

Facebook 197

jbrodkin writes "Facebook is trying to expand its trademark rights over the word 'book' by adding the claim to a newly revised version of its 'Statement of Rights and Responsibilities,' the agreement all users implicitly consent to by using or accessing Facebook. The company has registered trademarks over its name and many variations of it, but not on the word 'book.' By inserting the trademark claim into the Facebook user agreement, the company hopes to bolster its standing in lawsuits against sites that incorporate the word 'book.'"

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

First book (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460003)

First book

Re:First book (2)

Quartus486 (935104) | about 2 years ago | (#39460011)

Are you sure you were the first to book that one?

Re:First book (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460019)

First book

Book off!

I trademarked "first" first. (0)

ehack (115197) | about 2 years ago | (#39460013)

I trademarked "first" first.

Book this! (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460017)

Another fine attempt by corporate America to stretch the law using stupidity.

Re:Book this! (4, Insightful)

MrLint (519792) | about 2 years ago | (#39460395)

I think you may be onto something deeper than you may expect. I am becoming to believe that this behavior is really a side effect of our runaway copyright/trademark/patent system, but also the nature of statutes.

No reasonable person would accept 'book' as a copyright/mark. The word as it stands alone is indicative of anything specific. But since the bounds on in this ears seem to be keep getting stretched and morphed, as well as less than stellar protections for individual/fair use, this is what to expect.

However, the pitfall of statute is that if you leave the language too broad you catch things you didn't intend, if you iterate every possibility you can think of there are always loopholes. There is a reason why many statutes are 'vague', and why we have a judicial system, but its a mess either way.

That being said, I really would like to see tome tightening up of both law and legal action on unethical/illegal clauses in user agreements. Perhaps with some penalties. If a clause is generally known prohibit legal action, and that action is a right that cannot be waived, then putting it in an agreement should carry a penalty for attempt to defraud.

Re:Book this! (1)

sauge (930823) | about 2 years ago | (#39460455)

Guess I will just have to start facebuch.com in like, some Caribbean island or something. Damn those patent/copyright laws (shaking fist with furious look on face - oh sh!t - can I use "face" or did they patent/copyright that too?)

The way the US government is going broke at so many levels (NYC is considering tolls on bicycle riders) - I can certainly see some "fines" coming down the road for at least illegal clauses in contracts.

Re:Book this! (3, Interesting)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 years ago | (#39460559)

Someone needs to register both fuckbook.com and fuckfacebook.com. I suggest we stop calling it "facebook" and simply refer to both it and Mark Zuckerberg as "fuckface."

I'm glad I never signed up. Fuck facebook, and fuck Mark Fuckerberg.

Re:Book this! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460789)

fuckbook already exists as a would-be adult dating site, doesn't it?

Re:Book this! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460809)

Fuck Facebook in the face!

Re:Book this! (2)

omglolbah (731566) | about 2 years ago | (#39460695)

It is a .com so it is still under american law regardless of where it is hosted.

As seen by recent domain grabs by the american government.

Hell, a brit is is being put on a fucking plane to the US to stand trial even though his only connection to the case in the US seems to be that the domain he used was a .com... sigh.

Re:Book this! (2)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about 2 years ago | (#39460677)

If this ever came to court, most of Facebook's EUA would be thrown-out just as most of Paypal's EUA was thrown-out by the judge. (Who then ordered paypal to refund the money it had stolen from its customers.) You cannot sign-away your legally-protected rights.

Re:Book this! (2)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | about 2 years ago | (#39460525)

I kind of understand it though, but Facebook is probably carrying it too far. As I understand, they aren't taking complete ownership of the word book, but stopping other social media sites that would use parts of their name in their own sites, which is unimaginitive anyway. Imagine if Pinterest was Pinbook, it would have been a cheap cop-out that tries to ride on another business' name, and dilute the value of Facebook's trademark.

If Facebook is hunting down non-social media sites, then that would be bad, but I haven't seen that happen.

Re:Book this! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460753)

No, this is explicitly farting to the face of people!

Yeah well Facebook... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460027)

... you can just suck on my Headbook, if you catch my drift.

IMHO (1)

VMaN (164134) | about 2 years ago | (#39460033)

They should have ALL their trademarks invalidated by shenanigans like this. BOO!

Re:IMHO (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460393)

Careful... you almost spelled BOOK. ..Oh damn, now I'm gonna get sued cuz I did....

Sounds like... (2, Informative)

neo8750 (566137) | about 2 years ago | (#39460035)

When Microsoft tried to paten "windows"

Re:Sounds like... (5, Informative)

Gideon Wells (1412675) | about 2 years ago | (#39460243)

They had to settle for Microsoft Windows. Bethesda claims that Scrolls is effectively trademarked when Notch attempted to make a game called scrolls. Bethesda was afraid a digital card game might get confused for Elder Scrolls. Notch settled, however, and had to agree to not use Scroll for sequels and to respect the "Trademark". Look at the transformers. There are many named Autobot ____ and Decipticon _____ to get around being unable to trademark "Ratchet". While thinking about the Japanese, Godzilla vs Destroyah pronounced Destroyer. That is because they either couldn't or didn't want to bother trying to trademark Destroyer. Spelling change, same pronounciation. Boom, protected. Same with that 80s cartoon, Jem. They wanted to use just M, but wanted to protect the name.

Nothing new to this field. Nothing limited to computers. It has been going on for decades. Looking precedent, I expect this to get overturned.

Re:Sounds like... (2)

Bill Dimm (463823) | about 2 years ago | (#39460405)

They had to settle for Microsoft Windows.

That made me think of the Lindows case and them renaming it to Linspire, but you're right -- the renaming occurred because Microsoft paid them off, not because Microsoft won the suit (Microsoft lost [wikipedia.org] ).

Re:Sounds like... (4, Informative)

icebraining (1313345) | about 2 years ago | (#39460287)

s/paten/trademark/

Re:Sounds like... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460609)

Thx for fixing that. It was very early and well fuck its still early

Re:Sounds like... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460619)

iKnow, what company would stoop to such iLow level?

Re:Sounds like... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460641)

A bit worse even than that. It's like Microsoft inserted into the Windows EULA that you agreed that "Windows" was a trademark owned by them and that you would not use it without their permission. Suddenly it becomes a relevant question how many times whoever seeks to invalidate this has started Windows. A trademark lawyer who continues to use Facebook from this point may put his potential clients at risk.

Trademark trademark (2)

wvczombie (2552836) | about 2 years ago | (#39460039)

I would like to trademark the word trademark, please.

Attempted monopoly? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460057)

Is Facebook attempting to gain a monopoly on Faceplant?

woah (5, Interesting)

Tom (822) | about 2 years ago | (#39460067)

Now this is brash. Read what they actually say:

"You will not use our copyrights or trademarks (including Facebook, the Facebook and F Logos, FB, Face, Poke, Book and Wall), or any confusingly similar marks, except as expressly permitted by our Brand Usage Guidelines or with our prior written permission."

Notice something? Yes, this goes far beyond what the trademark laws actually cover. According to trademark law, a trademark is specific. Meaning I could very well name something entirely unrelated that they don't produce and that has no potential of confusion "facebook". Say, a sausage.

Their statement contains no limitations whatsoever. Legally speaking, if you're a builder and you have a FB account, you now need to get FB's permission for your work, because you agreed to not use the word "Wall" without their permission. Or, according to #6 of their Brand Usage Guidelines, if you have a business with the word "Book" in it, say "Freddie's Used Books", you have to rename.

I understand their intentions, they want to have an easier time fighting copycats like, say, Mugbook or Assbook or Pornbook - but like lawyers do, they cast the net as wide as possible. But this is ridiculous.

IANAL, but I do have business experience reading and interpreting legal texts.

Prior art. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460093)

It's cool guys.

My gf and I, back before Zuckerberg stopped pissing his bed and being excited about growing hair in new exciting places, often poked each other.

And I don't mean that in a sexual way.

I mean we'd like randomly hop on ICQ and be all, *poke*

Re:Prior art. (3, Funny)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about 2 years ago | (#39460187)

I'm pretty sure G'Kar demonstrated putting ones face in a book long before Facebook came along. The results were quite similar...

Re:Prior art. (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 2 years ago | (#39460389)

This is basically where FB's "poke" comes from.

I think it's rich when companies first copy well known concepts from common culture and then try to monopolize them.

Re:woah (4, Funny)

houstonbofh (602064) | about 2 years ago | (#39460145)

Now this is brash. Read what they actually say:

"You will not use our copyrights or trademarks (including Facebook, the Facebook and F Logos, FB, Face, Poke, Book and Wall), or any confusingly similar marks, except as expressly permitted by our Brand Usage Guidelines or with our prior written permission."

I guess Lady Gaga has to close her Facebook page, or re-record Poker Face.

Wall, Book, Face, Poke... (1)

AliasMarlowe (1042386) | about 2 years ago | (#39460199)

Now this is brash. Read what they actually say:

"You will not use our copyrights or trademarks (including Facebook, the Facebook and F Logos, FB, Face, Poke, Book and Wall), or any confusingly similar marks, except as expressly permitted by our Brand Usage Guidelines or with our prior written permission."

I guess Lady Gaga has to close her Facebook page, or re-record Poker Face.

Screw her (but don't "Poke" her, for legal reasons).

I have more than one "Wall" lined with "Books" at home, have my own "Face" which I even show in public places, and "Poke" my wife regularly. Do I need a lawyer for these things now?

Re:Wall, Book, Face, Poke... (1)

will_die (586523) | about 2 years ago | (#39460229)

I would be more scared of poking her for medical reasons.

Re:Wall, Book, Face, Poke... (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 2 years ago | (#39460391)

Hey, hey, hey, we don't judge your kinks, do we?

Re:Wall, Book, Face, Poke... (1)

Holi (250190) | about 2 years ago | (#39460407)

Who, Lady Gaga or his wife?

Re:woah (3, Interesting)

Dogtanian (588974) | about 2 years ago | (#39460147)

Now this is brash. Read what they actually say:

"You will not use our copyrights or trademarks (including Facebook, the Facebook and F Logos, FB, Face, Poke, Book and Wall)

IANAL either, but I note that they're not claiming that "by accepting this agreement you agree that Book (etc.) is our trademark and yadda yadda....", i.e. they're not actively requiring the user to accept or directly agree with the assertion that they own those trademarks.

It may be argued that by implication the user is accepting this anyway, but I'm not convinced. If that isn't the case, then does including the assertion in the user agreement give it any more strength than claiming elsewhere that they own those trademarks?

What the implication is of this would be though, I don't know.

Re:woah (3, Insightful)

boarder8925 (714555) | about 2 years ago | (#39460247)

[T]hey're not actively requiring the user to accept or directly agree with the assertion that they own those trademarks.

Let's have another look at the quote in question:

You will not use our copyrights or trademarks (including Facebook, the Facebook and F Logos, FB, Face, Poke, Book and Wall), or any confusingly similar marks, except as expressly permitted by our Brand Usage Guidelines or with our prior written permission.

They use the phrase "our copyrights or trademarks," and immediately after that phrase, they have a list of terms. They are saying that they own the "copyrights or trademarks" for or to those terms. They say that "You will not use" said terms unless your use of said terms agrees with them, either by way of their guidelines or their written permission. When you sign an agreement, you are agreeing to what that agreement says. By signing Facebook's new agreement, you are agreeing that "book" and "wall" are two of their "copyrights or trademarks."

Now for my disclaimer: I am also not a lawyer. But (to me) the way Facebook has worded the paragraph or section in question makes it clear that they're doing what the headline says they're doing.

Re:woah (5, Informative)

Fieryphoenix (1161565) | about 2 years ago | (#39460313)

That carries no legal weight. The fact of a copyright is something determined by law, not by "agreement". You are not bound to obey copyright on the force of having "agreed" something is under copyright, you are bound by whether a work actually fulfills the requirements set forth by whatever applicable copyright law is in effect.

Re:woah (2)

Dogtanian (588974) | about 2 years ago | (#39460315)

They use the phrase "our copyrights or trademarks," and immediately after that phrase, they have a list of terms. They are saying that they own the "copyrights or trademarks" for or to those terms. They say that "You will not use" said terms unless your use of said terms agrees with them, either by way of their guidelines or their written permission. When you sign an agreement, you are agreeing to what that agreement says. By signing Facebook's new agreement, you are agreeing that "book" and "wall" are two of their "copyrights or trademarks."

I'm not convinced by this. They say that "you will not use our copyrights or trademarks", which is quite clear- for things that *are* clearly their copyrights and trademarks.

Let's assume for a second that the list included the word "Atari". It's clear-cut that they don't own that trademark. Therefore, the clause when applied to "Atari" would clearly be predicated on false information and (I doubt) applicable. (*)

It may be argued that "book" is or isn't their trademark, but if it clearly is, then the clause probably applies and if it clearly isn't, then it almost certainly won't(?) If it's not clear either way, and the case is to be established by use, then because the user is not being required to actively agree that Facebook owns the trademark, I'm not convinced that it bolsters their use claim (to "book") in itself.

They probably want to strengthen their claim by making it in as many places as possible, but I'm not sure that the user is actually agreeing to this.

Of course, neither of us are lawyers, and the law doesn't necessarily work in the way that we might think it would (or should), so this discussion is really just intellectual masturbation(!)

(*) Might be different if it was used in an agreement relating to use of competitor's trademarks on their site or elsewhere- I don't know. But that would have nothing to do with bolstering their ownership of it. .

This reminds me (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460203)

When ComputerLand sued SoftwareLand over use of "land". As I recall. It was the early 80s.

Re:woah (2)

geekmux (1040042) | about 2 years ago | (#39460223)

Now this is brash. Read what they actually say:

"You will not use our copyrights or trademarks (including Facebook, the Facebook and F Logos, FB, Face, Poke, Book and Wall), or any confusingly similar marks, except as expressly permitted by our Brand Usage Guidelines or with our prior written permission."

Notice something? Yes, this goes far beyond what the trademark laws actually cover. According to trademark law, a trademark is specific. Meaning I could very well name something entirely unrelated that they don't produce and that has no potential of confusion "facebook". Say, a sausage.

Their statement contains no limitations whatsoever. Legally speaking, if you're a builder and you have a FB account, you now need to get FB's permission for your work, because you agreed to not use the word "Wall" without their permission. Or, according to #6 of their Brand Usage Guidelines, if you have a business with the word "Book" in it, say "Freddie's Used Books", you have to rename.

I understand their intentions, they want to have an easier time fighting copycats like, say, Mugbook or Assbook or Pornbook - but like lawyers do, they cast the net as wide as possible. But this is ridiculous.

IANAL, but I do have business experience reading and interpreting legal texts.

Lawyers may try and cast that net far and wide, but there's something else to really look for. If they are allowed to proceed into the courtroom with this type of legal verbiage over ridiculously common terms in use all over society today. It'll be interesting to see the first "Wall" lawsuit from the people who brought you The Wall (Pink Floyd), or perhaps going back even farther, the Great Wall. China vs. Facebook. There's an interesting court battle. "Poke"? C'mon. I was using the "POKE" Applesoft BASIC command over 25 years ago.

Then again, if their verbiage used above goes "far beyond" current trademark law, then what real threat is it? Anything written up in a contract or EULA that is basically either illegal or unenforceable I would think becomes rather null and void (IANAL either, grain of salt issued). Again, if they are allowed to proceed with such written arrogance that extends beyond current law, it says volumes about our legal system and just how corrupt it really is.

Re:woah (1)

beaverdownunder (1822050) | about 2 years ago | (#39460657)

There's been a poke command on IRC bots forever too (and I think maybe even in MajorBBS chat even earlier).

Anyhow, the threat here is they can ban you from Facebook. Sadly, for many Facebook users, this is a weighty incentive to comply.

Not just copycats (3, Interesting)

Arker (91948) | about 2 years ago | (#39460281)

Teachbook and placebook were not copycats, and that's just two I can think of off the top of my head.

Having been invited to FB and passed, all the way back when enrollment was only open with an ivy league .edu or an invite, and resisted all pressure to sign up and join the herd since, I cant help but gloat a little every time I am proven correct, yet again. /me gloats.

I believe it's a useful service, and I will be happy to give it a try when it's provided in a manner consist with my basic values, but as long as it amounts to voluntarily handing over all information to a company like facebook it cannot be worth the price.

Re:woah (1)

Barbara, not Barbie (721478) | about 2 years ago | (#39460343)

The user agreement doesn't trump local law. Facebook can go do a Faceplant in a pile of FaceCrap.

Why don't facebook users walk away? Because they are too insecure to: [theglobeandmail.com]

Facebook a big hit with narcissists: study

A new study of Canadian university students suggests Facebook is a magnet for narcissists and people with low self-esteem.

Participants who were deemed narcissistic, and others shown to have low self-esteem, spent more time on the massively popular social-networking website, the York University research found.

Researcher Soraya Mehdizadeh also found that these people use Facebook as a means of self-promotion.

Just get the email addresses of the people you really want to stay in contact with, then disable your account.

Re:woah (1)

jez9999 (618189) | about 2 years ago | (#39460361)

I understand their intentions, they want to have an easier time fighting copycats like, say, Mugbook or Assbook or Pornbook

But isn't the point that they shouldn't be able to fight them on the basis of trademark? Owing to their DIFFERENT NAMES, I know they're not fucking Facebook.

Re:woah (1)

msobkow (48369) | about 2 years ago | (#39460675)

As general law and contracts don't get to dictate to the controlling segments of the government which terms are acceptable as trademarks or patents, I don't really understand what they're trying to accomplish.

To me it sounds like writing into a building sales contract that the facility is to be sold on the understanding that it's sale is with the intent of operation as a bar. While that in itself might seem a reasonable conditional clause on a property sale, what Zuckerberg and his minions are trying to do is to use the sales contract itself to grant the liquor license.

This kind of legal shystering should result in some sort of charges for attempting to subvert US, Canadian, and international law regarding trademarks and patents. As a penalty, the trademark over "Facebook" itself should be rescinded just to teach the bastards a lesson on how not to manipulate the legal system.

Re:woah (1)

msobkow (48369) | about 2 years ago | (#39460689)

Or maybe there's some sort of "author's guild" that can sue them for attempting to subvert THEIR "trademark". :P

Re:woah (1)

runningduck (810975) | about 2 years ago | (#39460725)

Does this meant that if I never had a Facebook account that I retain the right to use *book as a trademark?

Damn, too late (-1, Offtopic)

Cederic (9623) | about 2 years ago | (#39460069)

cuntbook.com resolves to 174.122.148.34

Gimme an "A" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460075)

I'll take all your royalties on the use of the word 'a' please.

Re:Gimme an "A" (1)

dredwerker (757816) | about 2 years ago | (#39460153)

I'll take all your royalties on the use of the word 'a' please.

I would rather an 'e'. The most common letter in English. Or in Chinese 'de'

Crazybook (2)

pubwvj (1045960) | about 2 years ago | (#39460077)

Well, that is just plumb Crzybook.

Apparently Facebook is not aware of the prior art of several centuries...

Book

Book

Book

Book

Book

Book

Book

Book

Book

Book

Re:Crazybook (4, Interesting)

sosume (680416) | about 2 years ago | (#39460191)

More books:
Audiobook, Bankbook, Bluebook, Casebook, Cashbook, Chapbook, Checkbook, Codebook, Cookbook, Datebook, ,Daybook, Fakebook, Guidebook,
Handbook, Hornbook, Hymnbook, iBook, Lawbook, Logbook, Matchbook, Netbook, Notebook, Overbook, Passbook, Playbook, Pocketbook,
Powerbook, Prebook, Promptbook, Psalmbook, Rebook, Schoolbook, Scrapbook, Sketchbook, Songbook, Sourcebook, Storybook, Studybook,
Stylebook, Textbook, Wordbook, Workbook, Yearbook
What were they thinking? As this kind of legal assertion is not allowed in many countries where actual people are in charge, It seems it may invalidate other
parts of the agreement as well.

Re:Crazybook (1)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | about 2 years ago | (#39460373)

I think you forgot Phonebook & Guestbook.

Re:Crazybook (5, Interesting)

pz (113803) | about 2 years ago | (#39460385)

And, you forgot Facebook.

Huh?

The word "facebook" was in use for decades before Zuckerman came along and ... copied it from then-common usage among colleges for a book that contains the photos of the freshman class. I have a handful of copies of my undergraduate school's facebooks still, which state "facebook" on the cover from when Zuckerberg was a come-hither look in his mother's eyes. I never understood how the company got their initial trademark given the widespread existing usage when it was issued.

Please read this (0)

aaaaaaargh! (1150173) | about 2 years ago | (#39460083)

As I've just written in another thread, we should really start thinking about whether there is a need for company with shady business models such as FB. In any case they get far too media attention---not the least because of their viral marketing campaigns.

Perhaps /. should open a Facebook page for these stories? Most of them seem to be slashvertisements anyway.

Perhaps some teenagers use FB as their primary communication means and think the Internet is the same as Google, but that's really not news for nerds.

Amazon (1)

backwardMechanic (959818) | about 2 years ago | (#39460097)

Wait 'til Amazon hear about this...

Does that mean.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460099)

As I've never had a FB account and don't ever intend to, I can use the 'book' name all I want, unlike the rest of you herd following suckers?

Re:Does that mean.. (4, Funny)

VMaN (164134) | about 2 years ago | (#39460125)

Q: How do you tell if someone isn't on facebook?

A: Don't worry, they'll tell you.

Re:Does that mean.. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460193)

Cute. Except... nobody I know uses facebook so the joke is reversed in my social circle. Non-trading individuals with personal facebook accounts are the very people with whom I'd like to avoid social interaction.

Re:Does that mean.. (0)

VMaN (164134) | about 2 years ago | (#39460217)

So that basically boils down to:
1) "My friends don't use facebook"
and
2) "I don't befriend people who use facebook"

all joking aside, my point still stands

Re:Does that mean.. (1)

inflex (123318) | about 2 years ago | (#39460137)

"They great games, like online scrabble..."

"I'm in!"

*facepalm* (2)

ausrob (864993) | about 2 years ago | (#39460101)

Do you need any more ammunition for patent and trademark reform??

Re:*facepalm* (1)

kanweg (771128) | about 2 years ago | (#39460121)

What does patents have to do with it?

http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=2644149&cid=38859291 [slashdot.org]

Bert

Re:*facepalm* (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460179)

What does patents have to do with it?

http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=2644149&cid=38859291 [slashdot.org]

Bert

I took the GP to mean intelectual property laws in general need to be reformed: copyrights, tradmarks and patents.

As we have seen over the years, all three have been grossly abused by corporate America to the point of stifling innovation, inhibiting trade, and increasing costs to the consumer.

Re:*facepalm* (1)

gratuitous_arp (1650741) | about 2 years ago | (#39460141)

*facepalm*

*REDACTEDpalm*

Re:*facepalm* (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460151)

Sorry, but you can't say that - they've trademarked 'face' too

Ridiculous hyperbole (2)

tgibbs (83782) | about 2 years ago | (#39460317)

Do you need any more ammunition for patent and trademark reform??

Actually, yes. Companies are allowed to say whatever they want in a license agreement, whether or not it has any actual legal force. What kind of reform are you looking for? A "license agreement police" that reads every license agreement in the world and levies fines for overly broad license agreements? Do you really think the benefits would justify the cost of all of that extra bureaucracy?

After all, the only thing that actually matters is what the courts will enforce. I'll start worrying if any court, anywhere, enforces such an agreement or trademark against somebody using "book" in a generic manner or similar terms like "phonebook". But they won't. And Facebook wouldn't bring such a suit anyway, because they know they'd lose, and that would undermine their ability to bring the trademark suits that they really care about--the ones against social networking websites that are trying to ride on their coattails by calling themselves "visagebook" or something.

Thats not even funny (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460113)

"Book" .. I think perhaps there are a great many people and organizations ahead of Fad-Book in the queue of those with a claim to the word.

Book you, bookhole! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460115)

I think when companies intentionally over reach, put BS into EULAs and so forth, they should be fined and smacked down.

I suggest.. (1)

jmb1990 (1979110) | about 2 years ago | (#39460117)

If facebook trademark the work Book, we start calling books PageGroups to piss off Mark Zuckerberg.

How is this supposed to work (4, Insightful)

mvar (1386987) | about 2 years ago | (#39460123)

By inserting the trademark claim into the Facebook user agreement, the company hopes to bolster its standing in lawsuits against sites that incorporate the word 'book.'


What next? Are they going to force these sites owners to make a Facebook account and sign the new user agreement?

oh really? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460213)

So who will the first to register pokebookwallface.com ?

Just to be safe ... (4, Funny)

MacTO (1161105) | about 2 years ago | (#39460221)

Just to be safe: I've cancelled my library card and accounts on any website where there is a high probability of discussing, erm, literary devices. I have also destroyed all of the ereading devices and software in my home, and will be burning paper literary devices in the wood stove when things cool down tonight.

I also notice that they have the number 32665 trademarked. I have stopped doing any form of mathematics to avoid being sued. Does the trademark cover binary representations as well? If so, does anyone know of any computers that cannot use this number. (Cripes, even 8 bit computers have 16 bit addresses.)

In a panic!

Re:Just to be safe ... (1)

jgrahn (181062) | about 2 years ago | (#39460631)

I also notice that they have the number 32665 trademarked. I have stopped doing any form of mathematics to avoid being sued. Does the trademark cover binary representations as well? If so, does anyone know of any computers that cannot use this number. (Cripes, even 8 bit computers have 16 bit addresses.)

In a panic!

No worries. It takes 17 bits to represent 32665.

Re:Just to be safe ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460773)

Not when unsigned; (32768 - 1) > 32665.

Re:Just to be safe ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460783)

No worries. It takes 17 bits to represent 32665.

Someone doesn't know about unsigned integers ...

Why care? (2)

cdrnet (1582149) | about 2 years ago | (#39460225)

As far as I know, almost every single section of any legal text by Facebook violates one or more laws in the EU and other European countries and are thus completely irrelevant (ignorig the fact that at least in my country, sections like this would most certainly also be considered as unexpected and therefore abusive, making them legally irrelevant).

Hence, why care?
Unless you're American, that is.

Re:Why care? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460285)

We want our businesses to operate on the north american market without facing frivolous lawsuits.

Collateral damage (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460231)

RIM first loses the BBX trademark, now Playbook will have to be changed...

Me first! (2)

cvtan (752695) | about 2 years ago | (#39460267)

I would like to trademark iBook. No wait...

Face off, Mr.Zuckerberg! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460295)

I challenge you to a duel. Twelve paces, and may I suggest we should use cookbooks as weapons? (Of course, the choice is yours by etiquette)

Wow, really. (1)

sensationull (889870) | about 2 years ago | (#39460325)

Wow, somethingBook, even Apple has valid prior art on that

F*ckbook (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460331)

Does this mean the end for F*ckbook.com? It might. To preserve their name they may need to switch to a less profitable model of parody instead of adult dating. Or perhaps, an adult dating site can be considered a parody? Honestly, I'd never heard of it before but for some reason this topic wanted me to see if the domain was available.

A solution! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460367)

Dont worry, we can just go back to writing in scrolls... Crap.

So What's The Penalty? (1)

Fieryphoenix (1161565) | about 2 years ago | (#39460445)

They just cancel your account?

Simple answer (1)

reboot246 (623534) | about 2 years ago | (#39460465)

Somebody needs to take Zuckerberg behind the barn and beat some sense into him. Or beat the crap out of him, whichever comes first.

Oh, and keep it private. You know how the little shit loves *his* privacy.

Easy solution (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460499)

Just don't log in.

Redbook (1)

DERoss (1919496) | about 2 years ago | (#39460507)

The women's magazine "Redbook" was published long before Zuckerberg was born. It is now available online. Many businesses and government agencies -- including my local schools -- public handbooks. The trademark on "book" as incorporated into a word with some other leading phrase is invalid because of prior use by others.

Re:Redbook (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460663)

IBM also publishes things called 'RedBooks'. I should know as I'm a co-author of one.

FaceTwat (I refuse to use the their proper name as they might imply that I agree with their Trademark) are just trying this on.

I hope that they get taken down a few pegs in legal cases on this one.

It would be nice if someone organized a 'Book Fair' and then issued a legal challenge to them to sue. That would get a lot of lawyers interested in making a load of money from Zuckerberg and his buddies.
 

Re:Redbook (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460807)

The women's magazine "Redbook" was published long before Zuckerberg was born.

Interesting. A search for "redbook" on FaceBook turns up 10 hits on the first page; including RedBook magazine and IBM Redbooks.

I wonder if they're going to have to change their names.

And if they don't, could that be used as an estoppel defense if FaceBook sues someone else for the use of "book" in their name.

What about Apple? (1)

mfraz74 (1151215) | about 2 years ago | (#39460517)

Does this mean that Apple will get sued for their iBook?

Fuckbook look out. (1)

Quick Reply (688867) | about 2 years ago | (#39460561)

This means you.

You're upset about "book"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460637)

You'll note they also TM'd "face"!

I don't have a facebook account (1)

bytesex (112972) | about 2 years ago | (#39460639)

It's quaint, I know. But if it means I can now start a website called fecesbook, I'm all for it.

Ok now my facebook acount is gone (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460683)

I hope their delete option works properly (which I doubt), but these continued violations of privacy and their callous way to treat their users is unbearable.
I can connect with my real friends in other ways and don't need BIG BROTHER watching me.

Stupidity to the nth degree (1)

beep54 (1844432) | about 2 years ago | (#39460733)

I sorta thought maybe God held the trademark on 'book' seeing that that is what The Bible translates as.....

New trademark (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39460759)

I'd like to trademark the term Faceboot. It means "The action of putting a boot in someone's face, more or less forcefully". Next, Faceboot Facebook.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?