One of the biggest recent debates in the tech world has Apple suing Amazon over the name App Store. Apple claims that they own the name and Amazon claims that the name is too generic to be limited to just one company. We know of people who even trademark a color to themselves, so it seems there is no real limit in what people can claim as their own in these times.
In a recent interview with Bloomberg, Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff told everybody an interesting story of how they gave Apple both the trademark and the name. According to Benioff, his team met up with Steve Jobs back in 2003 and Jobs praised their product enough to persuade them to create what we now know as App Exchange. While buying that domain and trademark, Benioff thought the name App Store was another good option for the future, so he ended up buying and registering it also. When Jobs announced the launch of the iPhone 3G and the App Ecosystem five years later, Benioff was in the audience listening to Jobs. After the event was finished, he went directly to Jobs and said he was giving him the App Store trademark and domain as a gift for his great advice back in 2003.
It’s kind of a nice story in times when no companies choose to gift things between each other. It’s just too bad that Apple has forgotten how they got the name, and chooses to sue others over it.