Looks like Apple is starting to flex their muscle and working hard to protect their trademarked image/brand name iPod®. They recently sent a nasty letter to the makers of an arcade-game money-tracker broadcaster-thing — of obvious little or no correlation to their product. I know that they did ask a few folks to change the name of their sites/services when those sites/services used the actual series of letters I-P-O-D in their name. This marks the first time I’ve heard of them getting nasty over P-O-D without the I.
I’m not surprised by this action, as I recently heard that Google wasn’t allowing AdWords (their self-service keyword advertising system) clients to use the word “pod” in the ad text. I’ve got a call into my rep at Google (day job stuff) to see if she can give me more details.
So it begs the question — will Apple have an issue with us? We’re not using the trademarked term, but we certainly do make prominent use of the sequential letters P-O-D in our domain name and service name. When I coined the term “podiobook”, I deliberately did not trademark the name as I wanted it to be a well-accepted term for any type of book presented in audio form using the sequential delivery nature of podcasting. Yeah, I made it up, but someone came up with the word “automobile” and didn’t ask for money every time someone used it.
Thoughts and opinions. If there are any IP attorneys who are members of Podiobooks.com, I would really love to chat with you further on this and a few other related topics.