Apple Hit with iBooks Trademark Lawsuit

iBooks trademark lawsuitApple was hit with a new lawsuit on Wednesday alleging the company’s use of the ‘iBooks” name infringes on a trademark owned by the New York-based publisher John T. Colby.

The lawsuit, according to Bloomberg, alleges that Apple’s use of the term “iBooks” crosses the line because John T. Colby already uses the name for a line of books that have been published since 1999.

“Apple’s use of the mark ‘iBooks’ to denote the electronic library that can be accessed via its iPad tablet computer and its iPhone is likely to overwhelm the good will of plaintiffs’ ‘ibooks’ and ‘ipicturebooks’ marks and render them virtually worthless,” the publisher’s lawsuit stated.

John T. Colby acquired the “ibooks” name when it purchased Byron Preiss, another New York-based publisher, in 2006 and 2007.

Apple uses the “iBooks” name for its ebook reader app for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. Customers can purchase ebooks for the reader app through the company’s iBookstore service.

The lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in Manhattan. Apple has not commented on the case.