Iconic names like Mac, iPhone, and iPod may be off limits for company names, the Steve Jobs isn’t. Two brothers in Italy put that to the test and won a legal battle with Apple to name their company Steve Jobs.
Vincenzo and Giacomo Barbato started using the name a few years ago after discovering Apple never trademarked it. They put the name on their clothing line and quickly found themselves in the middle of a lawsuit with Apple.
la Repubblica Napoli says Apple just lost its battle to protect the Steve Jobs name because it focused on the logo, which is a stylized letter J with a bite out of it. The court ruled you can’t eat a J, unlike an apple, so no trademark infringement happened.
Now the brothers are free to sell their Steve Jobs jeans, shirts, and other clothes. Their plans go beyond clothing into electronics, so some day you may be able to buy a Steve Jobs media player, or even a Steve Jobs smart phone.
Maybe it’s time for Apple to trademark “Tim Cook,” and “Jony Ive.”
[Thanks to The Verge for the heads up]