A year later some upstart showed up on the scene using our name, and he just had a BASIC interpreter, sooo lame! We were college kids in NZ, pre-internet we had no real access to the rest of the world so our project, and our name died .... I so wish we'd incorporated, or at least registered the trademark
BTW it's not "squatting" if you've come to the name for a genuine purpose, and as I said it was a pretty obvious name at the time
"If you don't hire enough lawyers to defend your trademark, you'll lose it!"
It hurts small actors in both directions; how many Mom/Pop shops can afford to "aggressively defend" their intellectual property, and how many can afford to actually defend it if a large incumbent comes after them with a frivolous suit motivated by these sorts of ridiculous fears?
I'm not saying the legal system doesn't work that way, it just sounds like a scuzzy argument.
> Following the case it was suggested by Struan Robertson – editor of Out-Law.com – that Microsoft had little choice but to pursue the issue once it had come to light or they would have risked weakening their trademark. This view was also espoused by ZDNet, who noted that had Microsoft knowingly ignored Rowe's site, the company would have risked losing the right to fight future trademark infringements. Robertson opined that – had legal proceedings ensued – Rowe would have made a strong argument for keeping his domain, as he was using his real name and was not claiming to be affiliated with Microsoft.
All that said, this was clearly a case of bad PR management by Microsoft. It can't be that hard for Microsoft to buy off a 12th grader.