The Beatle’s holding company, Apple Corp., has lost its trial case against Apple Computer, makers of the widely popular iPod and computers. Several months ago, the Beatle’s music company ended up taking Apple Computer to court because it claimed that iTunes infringed on rights that the Beatle’s had owned for several decades.
When Steve Jobs’ company was still in its infancy, The Beatles sued his company for the use of the name and an apple logo. The Beatles’ parent music company, Apple Corp., won the case stating that Apple Computer was not to enter the music business. Unfortunately, the details of the case of some few decades ago failed to cover what’s now known as Internet commerce.
The judge overseeing the case between Apple Corp. and Apple Computer, decided that iTunes merely sells music, and does not create it, and Apple Computer’s use of its logo is for promotion of the popular service and not one particular artist, group or song.
“I think that the use of the apple logo is a fair and reasonable use of the mark in connection with the service, which does not go further and unfairly or unreasonably suggest an additional association with the creative works themselves,” said Justice Anthony Mann.
The Beatles’ Apple Corp. says that while it respects the decision of the judge, it feels that he reached “the wrong conclusion.” Interestingly, while over 3 million songs are purchased and downloaded from the iTunes online store everyday, none of The Beatles’ music is licensed for downloading. Steve Jobs says he hopes that The Beatles will be willing to work with his company to get their music online for sale.
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