Google Should Apply For Trademark On “Spy”

Published on

Perhaps you've heard of Google's latest outrageous gambit. The Internet giant is fighting to trademark the word "Glass."  

Google Glass is the company's wearable and privacy-invasive computing device.  It's in beta mode, being tested by so-called explorers, who forked over $1,500 to become Glassholes.  Google isn't saying, but there is speculation that the device might be generally available to consumers by year's end.

Google did win a trademark for "Google Glass," but that apparently wasn't good enough for the Internet Giant.  They want to grab "Glass" as well.

An examiner for the US. Patent and Trademark office denied the request for two reasons, according to The Wall Street Journal. First, the trademark would be similar to other existing or pending computer trademarks that contain the word "glass." Second, the word is "merely descriptive" and "absent of acquired distinctiveness."  As The Wall Street Journal put it, "For example, a company that makes salsa couldn’t trademark the term 'spicy sauce.' ”

Google isn't taking no for an answer and had its hired-gun trademark attorneys Anne Peck and Katie Krajeck from Cooley LLP fire off a response.  Believe it or not, it's a 1,928 page letter.

There really ought to penalties for filing this sort or outrageous trademark claim on a a generic word and wasting the USPTO's time and money reviewing such specious claims.

If Google does insist on proceeding, I've got a modest proposal for them.  Google should trademark the word "Spy."  It would apply not only to the geeky wearable device sported by Glassholes, but to virtually every product and service the Internet giant offers.

John M. Simpson
John M. Simpson
John M. Simpson is an American consumer rights advocate and former journalist. Since 2005, he has worked for Consumer Watchdog, a nonpartisan nonprofit public interest group, as the lead researcher on Inside Google, the group's effort to educate the public about Google's dominance over the internet and the need for greater online privacy.

Latest Videos

Latest Releases

In The News

Latest Report

Support Consumer Watchdog

Subscribe to our newsletter

To be updated with all the latest news, press releases and special reports.

More Releases