We in Britain have a particularly versatile slang phrase “taking the piss.” It can mean gently ribbing a friend, light mockery, or pushing your luck beyond the limits of reason. Apple’s latest legal action is a perfect example of the last definition.
The company is suing a Polish grocery website for basing its marketing around apples.
Yep, that’s the case. The technology company is suing on two claims and the first is based solely on the fact that the food seller chose its name by taking advantage ofPoland’s country-specific domain, meaning that the company name of “a.pl” matches its website address.
It’s baffling to try to imagine how the tech firm thinks it can seriously argue there’s any attempt by the grocer to rip off its goodwill or that anyone is going to be confused. Perhaps they might have a case if the Polish grocer had just added a listing for a “new” fruit that looked exactly like a banana but was a bit thinner and lighter.
All credit to Apple’s lawyers though: they’ve at least created a fun game in trying to work out which of their claims is less credible. The second accusation involves an online food retailer called fresh24 that is owned by a.pl. As you can see above, the logo involves an apple, which is absolutely identical to the tech firm’s logo.
Well, apart from having the writing. And being a different shape of apple. And not having a bite taken out of it. And being a much more appetizing color.
There’s no court date set yet, but A.pl is looking at the complaints. Its chief executive has already said “the accusations is ludicrous.”
Apple can’t seriously believe it is morally or legally in the right here, so it seems to be a choice whether it spotted an opportunity to bully somebody into a settlement, or whether it’s simply using an automated process to spew out legal letters at anything of a pomaceous nature.