Written by: Susan Neuberger Weller

The Wall Street Journal ran a print article on July 18, 2013 titled “What’s Behind Those Quirky Startup Names?” in which the author Lindsey Gellman discussed the derivation behind unique startup names such as Mibblio, Kaggle, Shodogg, and Zaarly. One of the reasons for these types of names and spellings, she says, is the need for short, recognizable .com web addresses in a space where more mainstream domain names are no longer available. She also quite correctly notes that choosing a new company name “that’s a made-up word also helps entrepreneurs steer clear of trademark entanglements.” This is not only true when choosing a new company name, but is also true when choosing new trademarks and service marks. Why is that?

Continue Reading The (Best) Method to the Madness Behind Choosing a Company Name or Mark

Written by Susan Weller

Do you “google?” That is the essence of the question before the Federal District Court in Arizona in a Complaint filed on May 21, 2012 by David Elliott against Internet search engine giant Google, Inc. In Elliot v Google, Inc., CV-12-1072-PHX-MHB, Elliot claims that Google’s once distinctive mark GOOGLE® has become generic and lacks trademark significance due to its common use as a transitive verb. After losing to Google in UDRP proceedings involving many “Google-related” domain name registrations that he owns, Elliott now seeks a declaratory judgment that his domain names are rightfully his, that they do not infringe any trademark rights Google may own, and that all Google’s registered GOOGLE® marks should be cancelled since “google” is now a common generic word worldwide that means “to search the Internet.” Continue Reading Is It Proper To Say You Google On GOOGLE®?