ora owns web2.0 - and will sue your ass if you try to use it

Nik Clayton nik at ngo.org.uk
Mon May 29 22:26:04 BST 2006

Simon Cozens wrote:
> They aren't, and they haven't. The Register story is, like all Register
> stories, around 20% true and 80% an expression of bias and vitriol rather than
> actual journalism. (That said, nothing wrong with a bit of bias and vitriol
> from time to time.) 

Having read the letter that was sent to ITCork, two things stuck out.

First, Ora/CMP don't have a registration for the service mark yet -- 
it's pending.  That may be legalese for "it's as good as ours", but 
that's not clear from the document.

Second, it's not clear that it's been registered (pending, or otherwise) 
in .ie.

So this has all the hallmarks of a clueless US company setting the 
lawyers loose, hoping to scare a smaller organisation into backing down 
when, legally, they might not have a leg to stand on.

What's worse is that (if 1. and 2. are true) Ora's response so far seems 
to have been "We will graciously allow you to use our service mark this 
year" when permission may very well not be needed.

This is probably more cock-up than conspiracy.  But it makes Ora/CMP 
look incompetent, and suggests for all their 'community' friendliness 
they're just as willing to get lawyers involved as the faceless company 
next door that *doesn't* make overtures to the open source community.

I realise that that shouldn't be a surprise.


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