Newsletters
News & Information for Technology Purchasers NewsFactor Sites:       NewsFactor.com     Enterprise Security Today     CRM Daily     Business Report     Sci-Tech Today  
   
This ad will display for the next 20 seconds. Click for more information, or
Home Enterprise I.T. Cloud Computing Applications Hardware More Topics...
APC Free White Paper
Optimize your network investment &
Enter to win a Samsung Galaxy Note

www.apc.com
Business Briefing
Register for a certification exam.
Average Rating:
Rate this article:  
Cisco Hit with Trademark Suit over Catchy Slogan
Cisco Hit with Trademark Suit over Catchy Slogan

By Jennifer LeClaire
January 11, 2013 1:53PM

    Bookmark and Share
A Google search for the slogan "Tomorrow Starts Here" displays it next to East Carolina University's name, and the mark appears on the home page of ECU's Web site. "I'm surprised they missed this. I would have thought Cisco might have gone to the university in advance and try to head this off," said analyst Zeus Kerravala.
 



Apple isn't the only one wrangling over names. Cisco just got hit with a federal lawsuit over one of its slogans.

East Carolina University filed a lawsuit in federal court against the networking giant. The university is seeking injunctive relief and damages for the unauthorized use of its federally registered trademark "Tomorrow Starts Here."

"ECU has used the mark 'Tomorrow Starts Here' for over a decade, including in national advertisements and publications such as Forbes and Wired," said ECU Chancellor Steve Ballard. "We feel it is essential to take action to protect that defining trademark of our identity and vision."

Cisco's December Campaign

ECU is taking exception to an advertising campaign Cisco launched in December. The slogan "Tomorrow Starts Here" was at the center of the campaign messaging. ECU's complaint alleges that Cisco's use of the identical mark infringes both ECU's federally registered and common law trademark rights.

ECU's trademark "Tomorrow Starts Here" is a university-wide brand that represents an overlapping field of goods and services when compared with that of Cisco.

For example, research initiatives through ECU's College of Technology and Computer Science have created products and intellectual property that are actively being commercialized. ECU is also a leader in the field of distance education technology that is heavily promoted through ECU's global online education program using the mark "Tomorrow Starts Here."

A Clear Conflict

It's obvious that ECU, a 105-year-old public university and research institution that is nationally recognized for its technological and software development, owns the trademark. A Google search displays the slogan right next to the university's name and the mark appears on the home page of its Web site.

"I'm surprised they missed this. I would have thought Cisco might have gone to the university in advance and try to head this off," Zeus Kerravala, principal analyst at ZK Research, told us. "But I think it will get settled in court."

Although it's rare to see Cisco in an intellectual property suit, this would not be the first time. In 2007, Cisco went after Apple for using the term iPhone. Cisco filed suit against the Mac-maker the day after then-Apple CEO Steve Jobs unveiled his interpretation of the mobile phone, which he called an iPhone -- in line with the company's string of popular products that begin with the dotted letter.

Cisco demonstrated a confident stance in the just-settled trademark dispute, having acquired legal rights to the iPhone name when it purchased InfoGear in 2000. The networking giant's suit claimed that Apple's use of the iPhone trademark would cause confusion among customers.

Apple disagreed and, as the outcome illustrates, was able to convince Cisco that consumers would know the difference between its mobile phone and Linksys' line of VoIP phones. Linksys has been selling its rendition of iPhones since last year. The company added new models to its lineup as recently as December.

Under the agreement, both companies are free to use the iPhone name on their products.
 

Tell Us What You Think
Comment:

Name:



APC has an established a reputation for solid products that virtually pay for themselves upon installation. Who has time to spend worrying about system downtime? APC makes it easy for you to focus on business growth instead of business downtime with reliable data center systems and IT solutions. Learn more here.


 Business Briefing
1.   Facebook 2Q Earnings, Revenue Soar
2.   Nokia's Post-Handset Future Is Bright
3.   Twitter Admits to Diversity Problems
4.   Texas Startup Fund Not All It Seems


advertisement
Backlash Stirs Against H-1B Visas
Debate over foreign workers continues.
Average Rating:
Apple Digital Book Settlement Set
But company still appealing decision.
Average Rating:
Radical.FM's Freemium Biz Model
Online radio startup asks for donations.
Average Rating:


advertisement
Product Information and Resources for Technology You Can Use To Boost Your Business

Network Security Spotlight
Researchers Working To Fix Tor Security Exploit
Developers for the Tor privacy browser are scrambling to fix a bug revealed Monday that researchers say could allow hackers, or government surveillance agencies, to track users online.
 
Wall Street Journal Hacked Again
Hacked again. That’s the story at the Wall Street Journal this week as the newspaper reports that the computer systems housing some of its news graphics were breached. Customers not affected -- yet.
 
Dropbox for Business Beefs Up Security
Dropbox is upping its game for business users. The cloud-based storage and sharing company has rolled out new security, search and other features to boost its appeal for businesses.
 

Enterprise Hardware Spotlight
Microsoft Makes Design Central to Its Future
Over the last four years, Microsoft has doubled the number of designers it employs, putting a priority on fashioning devices that work around people's lives -- and that are attractive and cool.
 
Contrary to Report, Lenovo's Staying in Small Windows Tablets
Device maker Lenovo has clarified a report that indicated it is getting out of the small Windows tablet business -- as in the ThinkPad 8 and the 8-inch Miix 2. But the firm said it is not exiting that market.
 
Seagate Unveils Networked Drives for Small Businesses
Seagate is out with five new networked attached storage products aimed at small businesses. The drives are for companies with up to 50 workers, and range in capacity from two to 20 terabytes.
 

Navigation
NewsFactor Network
Home/Top News | Enterprise I.T. | Cloud Computing | Applications | Hardware | Mobile Tech | Big Data | Communications
World Wide Web | Network Security | Data Storage | CRM Systems | Microsoft/Windows | Apple/Mac | Linux/Open Source | Personal Tech
Press Releases
NewsFactor Network Enterprise I.T. Sites
NewsFactor Technology News | Enterprise Security Today | CRM Daily

NewsFactor Business and Innovation Sites
Sci-Tech Today | NewsFactor Business Report

NewsFactor Services
FreeNewsFeed | Free Newsletters

About NewsFactor Network | How To Contact Us | Article Reprints | Careers @ NewsFactor | Services for PR Pros | Top Tech Wire | How To Advertise

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
© Copyright 2000-2014 NewsFactor Network. All rights reserved. Article rating technology by Blogowogo. Member of Accuserve Ad Network.