[consulting] Trademark policy [OT]

Evan Leibovitch evan at telly.org
Wed Aug 12 22:33:33 UTC 2009

George D. DeMet wrote:
> That's exactly correct, in order for the word Drupal to lose its
> trademark protection through becoming genericized, the word would need
> to become so widely used that people no longer recognized it as only
> referring to a specific product, but as a common term for any similar
> product.  Some examples of words that have become genericized in this
> way and lost their trademark protection include Aspirin (still a
> trademark in Canada and many European countries, but not the U.S.),
> escalator, pilates, yo-yo, and Zipper.
This actually makes its way to court from time to time. I think the most
famous case -- one that helped to define the concept -- was in 1958 when
a company called Aladdin started selling "thermos bottles". The Thermos
company wasn't too pleased, but the court ruled that the term had indeed
become generic enough to describe competitive products.

> So while I suppose one technically could try to use the word "Drupal"
> to refer to something completely unrelated to Web software or
> communications like, say, a brand of kitchen sink, I still wouldn't
> recommend it. ;-)
Stranger things have happened:

Tom Geller wrote:
>>  Or, more pointedly, "SharePoint is the best Drupal around!" ;)
Reading that made my eyes bleed.

- Evan

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