Why did Facebook trademark the word “book”? Is that legal?

Facebook’s newest user agreement set off some red flags. When you logged onto your Facebook account today, you agreed that: “You will not use our copyrights or trademarks (including Facebook, the Facebook and F Logos, FB, Face, Poke, Book and Wall), or any confusingly similar marks, except as expressly permitted by our Brand Usage Guidelines or with our prior written permission.” What does that legalese mean? If you log into Facebook, you are no longer allowed to use the word “book” without checking with the lawyers at Facebook first. Read the full agreement here.

This is a very aggressive move. By inserting a general word like “book” into their list of trademarked words, what is Facebook trying to do?

Here is some history about trademarks. There are two ways that trademarks arise. If you ever see the letters TM after a name, this stands for trademark. However, it specifically refers an unregistered trademark, which is honored because of its ubiquitous use. Unregistered trademarks are typically limited to their geographic area. If you open a restaurant in Chicago and call it Sally’s Diner(TM), you cannot sue a restaurant in Dallas that is also called Sally’s Diner. This is tricky because Facebook is a global business, so their geographic area is unlimited.

If you see the symbol that is an r in a circle, ®, that means it is a registered trademark. Registered trademarks are more likely to stand up in court than unregistered ones. Facebook has registered trademarks for the word “like,” “wall,” and “face,” but it is unlikely that the US Patent and Trademark Office would grant a registered trademark to a common word like “book.” In fact, earlier this year an education company attempted to register an official trademark for the word “book”, but they withdrew their application after a hearing with the Trademark and Trial Appeal Board.

So, it appears that Facebook is trying to wiggle around an official trademark registration of the word “book”. The company has not filed an application to officially register the word “book” in the US, though they have an application pending in the EU. Rather, by slyly inserting this new line into their user agreement, Facebook is trying to establish an unregistered trademark of the word “book” over time.

This is a big deal because Facebook aggressively pursues infringement of its copyright. In 2010, Facebook sued and successfully shut down a startup travel website called Placebook. Read the founder’s response to Facebook’s aggressive litigation here. Then, in 2011, Facebook sued a teacher-and-student site called Teachbook. The case has not been settled yet, but a judge last September declined to throw it out of court.

Beyoncé and Jay-Z recently trademarked their daughter’s name. Learn about why they did it.

What do you think of Facebook’s attempt to trademark the word “book”?


  1. RedLeafRenegade -  October 20, 2015 - 7:14 am

    This is one of the stupidest thinks I have ever heard.
    Facebook what have you done!!!!!!! :( :)

  2. Donald Faulknor -  April 6, 2015 - 9:02 am

    I have to wonder what the Terms of Use say when you connect your website through Facebook (permitted by Facebook). Does it release the rights to use Facebook anywhere on the site or just for the connection to Facebook.

    • RedLeafRenegade -  October 20, 2015 - 7:18 am

      It only applies to your use in Facebook
      Conpanys make Terms of Use to avoid copyright issues, suing,& stuff like that to prevent the users from doing something stupid that costs them money.

      Oh, and It is also a list of very long, boring, and specific rules :)

    • RedLeafRenegade -  October 20, 2015 - 7:20 am

      IT is basicly a long list of rules, very boring and specific rules, to prevent users from derping around and doing something stupid that causes the company money. :)

  3. ThatCoolGuy -  September 24, 2013 - 8:33 am

    Facebook needs to get a POKE in the right direction, FACE the WALL, sit down, and think about what they’ve done. One COMMENT will lead to another before we could fill a whole BOOK with slurs against them. They wouldn’t LIKE having to SHARE out their money because they go out of business.

    Oops, I’m going to get sued, LIKE, eight times for that. Trademarking words that are so common, that they weren’t even the first ones to use? It’s insane.

    • Donna -  February 23, 2015 - 1:47 pm

      So I wonder if I can register trademark the name, “Zuckerberg”, or, “Mark”?

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  5. Binarystep -  May 26, 2013 - 2:22 pm

    This is incredibly stupid. Facebook is starting to irk me, what with their overuse of trademarks. Though I must point out that they did not trademark the word book; they trademarked the usage of “book” in a website name.

    Sincerely, an 8th grader.

  6. Robert -  February 8, 2013 - 7:48 pm

    Book Book Book Book Book Book Book Book Book

  7. Grace -  December 8, 2012 - 12:08 am

    Oh. So now I gotta introduce myself like that:

    Hi, I’m Grace. I’m a b*** editor.

    That’s just great.

  8. lovin.it.gingerly:) -  November 6, 2012 - 4:44 pm

    exactly what “missing the point” said

  9. lovin.it.gingerly:) -  November 6, 2012 - 4:40 pm

    …just as “al March 29th” said above
    …they’re keeping dibs on the “book-bank”

  10. lovin.it.gingerly:) -  November 6, 2012 - 4:37 pm

    id say they did this to protect their amazing idea that has become viral
    kudos to them-again!

  11. ginger.one. -  November 5, 2012 - 11:10 am

    all that they are doing is protecting their amazing idea…..
    no one likes it when someone copies your absolutely brilliant ideas
    I’d say it’s a smart idea and again kudos to them!

  12. Lilac -  September 18, 2012 - 5:43 am

    I can’t believe they did that! O_O Well, that was very stupid of them. We use the word book all the time! I even made a website that was called ‘The Book of My Life’.

    Well, they might’ve been curious on what would happened…

    But I don’t blame you guys for being… enraged.

  13. Michael Doyle -  September 5, 2012 - 11:24 am

    Could the fact be that Facebook is trying to possibly in a sense control the web / internet in generality around it but to the fact of ensuring that they can tell you what you cant do there taking there time on the fact of the book thing of trademarking it i don’t know the whole idea behind it but it does seem fishy
    if you understand what i mean

    c. Doyle

  14. Mike -  July 15, 2012 - 8:19 pm

    Ok. Facebook cannot sue someone for simply using the word “book”, whether they have trademarked it or not. The trademark is intended to protect similar products (see: social networking websites) from piggybacking off of the familiarity of the word “facebook”.

    It’s similar to how UPS has trademarked the color brown (yes, go look it up). Does this mean that they can sue people for planting trees or taking the browns to the super bowl? No. It DOES mean that if a delivery company suddenly sprang up and used the color brown as its main scheme, UPS could have a potential trademark infringement case against that company.

    Facebook is not some stupid company that’s trying to trademark everything. They’re trying to protect their brand, and they’re not the first company to do so. Learn what trademarks mean before you go ranting about how evil Facebook is.

  15. David S -  June 19, 2012 - 6:13 am

    Facebook is crazy and some of it’s functions are vague and ambiguous. It does seem nuts and selfish to trademark the word “book” because that single word has been used long before Facebook ever came along. Recently I opened up a FB account again after closing it a year ago. Thought I’d give it another chance. Even though so far I’ve got about 50 friends (some of which I used to go to school with). None of them really seem to care about me at all. I know I don’t see these people in my every day life but I was sad to see when I posted about my broken foot NO ONE replied to it with any condolences what so ever. Also if you post about anything actually deep or meaningful people hint at you being a “Drama Queen”. It’s not like I was whining about running out of Oreo Cookies or dropping my sandwich on the floor. But if you post anything about how you’re feeling people seem to really hate that. All they want to do is press “Like” for Wallyworld or Target, post pictures of cats, and post pictures of political satire to hide their real opinions behind some funny cartoon image. Heaven forbid one of them would post a well thought out update about their political views. But NO they instead hide behind image posts with short captions. I have few real friends in my life and my family has been mean to me and pretty much ignores me. Joining Facebook only made me feel even more alone than I was before. People take the time to click “Like” on someones wall post about their favorite beer and even make a comment but I post about my broken foot and I get no reply what so ever. It’s not like I was looking for a shower of kisses and hugs, all I wanted was someone out of those 50 people to say “Get well soon” or “Sorry you hurt your foot”. But no I get crickets. The only time anything I really posted got attention was when I was complementing someone more popular or I posted a picture I took of some flowers. Facebook is the prime example of American Shallowness. People want to collect more and more friends who aren’t friends so much as acquaintances (and a lot of them very distant). Even the most popular person only really has a small group of real friends and those other 200+/- are just people they friend frantically all day long. Man I could have a heart attack and post about it and no one would say anything nice to me but most likely hint about how I’m being a drama queen for having a heart attack. ha ha Besides you know Facebook is shallow when the company trademarks the single word: “BOOK”. A word that belongs to everybody.

  16. Naysia Cortes -  June 4, 2012 - 8:02 am

    i got facebook search my name and lastname

    Naysia Cortes

  17. mary torres $ca$hin out$ -  May 7, 2012 - 6:49 am

    mala que loca thats ma name on fb

  18. ANON -  May 6, 2012 - 9:57 pm

    OH GOD NO MORE USING THE WORD FACEPALM? sooo… I can’t say “my room has four red painted walls” I have to say “my room has four sides which are painted red”

  19. David A.K.A Facebook Hater -  April 23, 2012 - 5:32 pm


  20. Tracy -  April 22, 2012 - 10:10 pm

    Most of you seem to be confused. It is not an article about not being able to say the word ‘book’ or to type it without getting into trouble. It is about not being able to start your own website and have the name ‘book’ in it, or possibly create a button of your own that implies people to click ‘like’ if they like something. I would like to make a “inyourface-book” , but probably can’t.

  21. Lori -  April 18, 2012 - 2:47 pm

    I stopped my account when i heard that Facebook automatically opened your account to anyone who cared
    seriously oops i said book !

  22. No Name -  April 10, 2012 - 2:15 pm

    i got no name

  23. Mackenzie -  April 10, 2012 - 2:14 pm

    We use the word book in FUNBOOK some weird workbook my school ordered for us to do so what’s wrong with FACEBOOK? You can see people’s faces or their favorite background, etc. And it technically is a book, flipping pages/computer screens and reading what the posts say!!!!

  24. whatevs -  April 10, 2012 - 2:11 pm

    so face is trademarked too, right?

  25. Who am I again? -  April 7, 2012 - 3:04 pm

    I agree! How IS that legal? I thought it was called “Facebook” not book. I mean what about nook and kindle commercials. Next thing you know there would be no commercials in the world because there wont be any words for them to use! What the heck Facebook or book or whatever your called!

  26. name -  April 6, 2012 - 9:31 am

    Oh.. maybe “board” can be trademarked too.

  27. name -  April 6, 2012 - 9:27 am

    I am not a lawyer, and in my opinion “book” is definitely generic and clearly has developed numerous secondary meaning in this Digital Age. A “book” can be defined as a directory for people, faces, business, organizations, etc.. eg. Phonebook.

    Facebook is claiming any word associated with the word “book” in an online social networking is trademark infringement. They are tying to monopolize the word “book” and if granted would handicap all people, groups, organizations, and companies that want to have an online presence.

    Emails, chats, blogging, tweets, help desk, contact forms, reviews, links, forums, logins, online videogames, bulletin boards, etc.. are all interactions between people and is defined as online social networking and in use by many public and private websites before Facebook, eg. Yellowbook, thebluebook.com, worldbook, christianbook.com, hotelbook, etc.. (http://gripreleased.hubpages.com/hub/Can-All-Companies-with-Face-or-Book-in-Name-Sue-Facebook-for-Name-Infringement)

    Why cannot we have an online directory for teachers or anything else eg. Phonebook, Blackbook, or Moviebook that are socially enabled? Can Facebook be considered generic too? It is just a phonebook with faces attached to them.

    This also reminds me of how Twitter is also making claims owning “Tweet” while it is obviously “Tweet” derive from the public domain and is generic. Was it not Twitter making “Twits”? But since Tweeting is a popular form of communication, Twitter want exclusive claims on it. Tweet is just a shorter version of blog. Is “blog” trademarked?

    I want to trademark the word “web”. Is this possible? Nah.. I did not start the web, its for every Netizen.

  28. ME -  April 5, 2012 - 8:48 pm


  29. mary torres 4tlom -  April 5, 2012 - 7:22 pm

    @swag like Ohio lol yah :)

  30. yayRay Shell :) -  April 5, 2012 - 11:31 am

    I think they made a mistake. They should have trademarked the whole word of Facebook instead of book because then since Face is not trademarked, people can start mocking them with Facenews or something.

  31. Anonymous -  April 4, 2012 - 3:42 pm

    You rock, @Disgusted. XD

  32. mary torres R.P. 4 life -  April 4, 2012 - 6:49 am

    i love you lol

  33. a person -  April 3, 2012 - 1:25 pm

    Who do they think they are? If I want to do a book report, oh, oops, I have to check with facebook before I post this comment…

    It’s insane! Book, book, book, they can’t sue me.

  34. me -  April 3, 2012 - 12:50 pm

    I guess we’re going to use the word “novel” a lot more

  35. DJ RGT -  April 3, 2012 - 8:53 am


  36. Abhijit -  April 3, 2012 - 5:30 am

    It’s absolutely ludicrous! I mean, words like face, book and wall, not to mention like, are generic words that are used frequently by everyone all the freaking time.

    What the hell do they think they’ll achieve with this?! facebook like wall?

  37. mh -  April 3, 2012 - 4:44 am

    challenge accepted

  38. mary torres ~lots of love ~ -  April 2, 2012 - 12:09 pm

    i loove fb more then tritter lol

  39. ScrewYouFacebook -  April 2, 2012 - 10:13 am

    I’m deleting my account.

  40. Ana -  April 2, 2012 - 9:53 am

    I am reading this BOOK. I have a hole in my WALL. I LIKE that sweatshirt. Oops, sorry. I didn’t mean to use your trademark, Facebook. Please don’t sue me!

    Yep, sarcasm. Who doesn’t love it.

    Actually, I love books and walls and liking things more.

  41. lil miss somethin' -  April 2, 2012 - 8:53 am

    Would someone other than me have the sense to actually read the article and realize that this is a legal matter ONLY FOR OTHER SOCIAL NETWORKS to worry about? Seriously it’s not such a big deal. Thank you ‘Bob Johnson’, ‘Kipp’, and ‘Ben Curtis’!

  42. Otis Smith -  April 2, 2012 - 12:52 am

    Why are social networks so big across the world?

  43. Noah Mascall -  April 2, 2012 - 12:11 am

    Why would Anybody try to trademark everyday worlds LIKE BOOK , POKE or FACE ?

  44. Rustgold -  April 1, 2012 - 10:31 pm

    How about 1000000 people keep harassing Facebook with requests to use their so-called ‘trademarks’. If Facebook doesn’t reply and people use these words, then Facebook risks losing any right to its trademarks (see polo shirt history for example of trademark loss).

  45. Maddie -  April 1, 2012 - 4:31 pm

    To trademark the word book is just plain stupid.

  46. Sean Briffett -  April 1, 2012 - 9:19 am

    I just went to my Facebook account and read the terms and conditions. Section 5 line 6 says nothing about trademarking the word book. Has anyone else looked at the Terms and Conditions or are making an issue out of nothing?

  47. Dan -  April 1, 2012 - 8:50 am

    Facebook Beware! The word textbook has been used by people forever ! Maybe Facebook is wrong!!

  48. User -  April 1, 2012 - 7:56 am


  49. 2nd -  April 1, 2012 - 7:06 am

    I agree with Abi.

  50. 2nd -  April 1, 2012 - 7:02 am

    WHAAAAAAAAAAAAT!?!?!??!?!!? I, the bookworm, am offended.

  51. Anonymous -  April 1, 2012 - 5:18 am

    So what will the teacher say now?

    “Students, please take out your textb00ks and turn to page 297.”

  52. Henrietta Washington -  April 1, 2012 - 4:29 am

    Listen the way I see is they invented face book but did not invent the word book or face those two words were used to access the invention. but with out these words or any other words that have already been in use for thousands of years what could they possibly call the web site? will they be trade marking the letters FB also that’s absurd and being real cocky ok they got a great web site but your getting real greedy trying to claim whats not theirs but in the same breath aganist anyone trying to use the word book!!
    I won’t be able to say I’m writing a book “TBS” in the highest order OK FB needs to be sued.

  53. Vinny -  April 1, 2012 - 3:13 am

    You can use those words to describe anything on your Staus on facebook or while chatting with your friends. They will not sue for using those words while using facebook. Only thing is that you can’t open a business name with having “face” or “Book” as words in it. So, just chilll and keep using FaceBook and enjoy the great work done by them.

  54. Vinny -  April 1, 2012 - 3:07 am

    Please read the above topic once (carefully) and then put your comment…..They will Trademark those words to secure their business name and prevent duplicate websites.

  55. Nicole -  April 1, 2012 - 2:54 am

    The word “book” was around waaaaay longer than Facebook.

  56. ME IS ANGRY -  April 1, 2012 - 12:39 am

    FACE BOOK: why are you doing this to me? Don’t make me have to spam you with a BOOK on your WALL and spam you with POKES.



  57. Katherine -  March 31, 2012 - 11:02 pm

    I don’t see how ‘TeachBook’ and ‘FaceBook’ could be confused with each other, unless Zuckerberg sees the entire population as profoundly retarded.

  58. Mair Llewellyn -  March 31, 2012 - 4:45 pm

    Jim Parker on March 29, 2012 at 7:51 am:

    “My understanding is that trademarks are also only protected within an industry. They didn’t seek a copyright on these words, just a trademark, meaning that they are protected from others commercial enterprises using these words in a way that is likely to be confused with FaceBook’s use, or to confuse consumers.”

    Thanks for that explanation. It makes sense. And in light of that I’d like to see what Facebook thinks of the working title of my new social networking site: Pokemyfaceonthiswallandi’llbookyou.

  59. Cess -  March 31, 2012 - 4:11 pm

    really, trademarking the word book? this is as stupid as those scientists saying that pink isn’t a “color”. Pfft, I used the word book, facebook is going to sue me now.

  60. Luck_in_W -  March 31, 2012 - 4:05 pm

    Does this mean only in print or in speech as well? Any way you look at it, I’d get huge fines. I think every second word I use is “book.” I suppose we’ll have to start using Buch, libro, livre, etc. just to get around these such silly “lawful” restrictions.

    And then what’s next? You, I, it, is…the end of truly interpersonal communication?

  61. no_name (this name is anonymous) -  March 31, 2012 - 3:24 pm


  62. Kiara Zuri -  March 31, 2012 - 2:15 pm

    Never going to happen.

  63. Katherine L -  March 31, 2012 - 10:11 am

    This reminds me of a news story I once saw about a man who was sued by Victoria’s Secret for naming his own store (I forget what it sold) Victor’s Little Secret, on account of the similarities in name. Likewise, there was a lawsuit between Giant and Giant Eagle (both grocery chains) for the same reason.

    I think this is meant to (as some have mentioned above) be relevant to other social media websites, not everyday use of the words wall, like, face, and book, because really, are they going to try to sue Wonder Book and Video (a used book & movie retailer), when there is no way you could confuse the store for the website? It’s still silly in general, but I think that’s due to poorly chosen wording.

  64. Nrf -  March 31, 2012 - 9:26 am

    The large corporations are always trying to chip away at our freedoms Ie(
    Patenting of gene-ones).

  65. Rhyme -  March 31, 2012 - 9:05 am

    Words are for everyone, language belongs to everyone who uses it and is an inherent right of being a member of a society.
    Attempting to claim ownership of something that belongs to all is greedy, selfish and egotistical. Why don’t they trademark the air, or the sky why there’re at it?

    I have never had a facebook account, nor will I ever do so. Corporate greed is becoming more and more a part of people’s daily lives, and they are allowing it to happen.

  66. Bibliophile -  March 31, 2012 - 8:10 am

    It is utterly ridiculous. I do not have a Facebook account and will never get it. It is a gossiping tool for gossipers, nothing else.
    Pink Floyd should sue them. All the publishing companies should sue them, and everybody who has an account should delete it.
    I probably should not be telling everybody what to do, but it is absurdity taken to a new level. What kind of judge ruled in their favor? Corrupted one? Placebook seems like a good, reasonable name that fits the business!
    What on Earth does Facebook mean?

    I do not LIKE the WALL sly lawyers with ugly FACES are trying to BOOK for all of us!!!

  67. mh -  March 31, 2012 - 6:53 am

    I’m boycotting facebook. Let’s turn to the wall and face our books.I’d like to poke them in the face!

  68. Lawrence -  March 31, 2012 - 5:23 am

    What The BOOK?

  69. Sue Zanker -  March 31, 2012 - 3:46 am

    What IS this world coming to ! Not allowed to use the word “book”…….oK what about cup or saucer or dictionary or any other word. Beurocracy gone made ! Books are real, they are ‘read’ by _real people. A Book is for everyone, and for anyone who wants to read it. NO ONE has the right to copyright the word “Book” !!!!!!
    I have instantly signed OFF Facebook and I wil never use it again ! Everyone reading this, CAN do without Facebook, but _no one can do without Books, so cancel Facebook !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  70. Jim -  March 31, 2012 - 12:07 am

    Next thing you know, they’ll try to trademark “a” and “the”
    and the numbers 0 through 9…

  71. RobbS -  March 30, 2012 - 9:54 pm

    It isn’t a big deal folks. I compare it to Microsoft suing a small software company in British Columbia a few years back, because of its name. At first, I thought, “There goes the bully, knocking down the little guy!” But, with a bit of afterthought, I realized that Microsoft was correct in its actions.

    btw, the software company was called “Mike Rowe Soft”…

  72. Anin -  March 30, 2012 - 8:48 pm

    Ok, Facebook might be a bit douchey in that it is so aggressive in pursuing its trademarks, but there are a few factors which I think mitigate this article.
    – The trademarks only apply to potential competition to facebook, usually only companies in the same field. NOT individuals using it in their speech and NOT companies that have nothing to do with the social media industry. Many people above have already explained this.
    - Facebook has had a lot of time, money and effort put into it, the point of trademark laws is to protect the value of the company and stop other companies from piggybacking on the successs. If you had a company which you had spent years building up and someone created a company with a similar name and service which began competing with you I imagine you’d be pretty pissed.
    Please think of these things from both sides of the story before you judge them, especially if you do not clearly understand the concepts. Are there actually any examples of Facebook aggressivley litigating against someone using any of the trademarked words in a way which wouldn’t interfere with Facebook’s business? There probably are, but the other points still stand.

  73. logicalness -  March 30, 2012 - 8:14 pm

    honestly, how does this improve facebook? making you use permission to use a commen word like book would not improve sales or whatever, like really, it is commen sense

  74. no_name -  March 30, 2012 - 6:13 pm

    like ya

  75. no_name -  March 30, 2012 - 6:12 pm


  76. Adam -  March 30, 2012 - 5:41 pm

    People, please, use some common sense. Facebook is not going to go after anyone for simply using the word “book” – or face, or wall, or poke, or like. There’s a lot more involved in trademark infringement than simply using a trademarked word. It has to do with context.

    You can bet they will – as well they should – go after adult “dating” sites like f**kbook, and others touting themselves as “the facebook of porn.” Those are just blatantly taking the Facebook name, and using it for their own ends. That is the kind of usage Facebook wants to stop.

    So if you want to start a dating site and call it “Little Black Book,” don’t worry, they won’t come after you for using “book.” That phrase has been around for decades, and everyone associates it as being a person’s personal list of dates and their contact information. But you better be careful – if another dating service has a tagline referring to themselves as something like “your own personal little black book,” they could give you some trouble. Just remember the old saying, “when in doubt, don’t.”

    So face the wall with a good book you like, and make sure someone pokes you once in a while to be sure you stay awake.

  77. Kim -  March 30, 2012 - 5:04 pm

    What many people here don’t seem to realize is that trademarks are only valid protection in areas where a confusion could happen. Facebook has a fair shot when it comes to pursuing websites who use a similar name, but using a book with “Book” in its title is not going to work, because there is no possibility of confusing that book with Facebook.

    Think of it like the store, Staples. I can’t open a stationary store named Staples, as it would cause confusion. But I can sell my stapler using the word “staples”, as there is no confusion possible with the store.

  78. Anonymous -  March 30, 2012 - 4:32 pm

    Will they sue me if I say….
    My face is on the book FACEBOOK!!! I like Twitter better than FACEBOOK

  79. BeastBoyLover(Abi) -  March 30, 2012 - 4:23 pm

    Facebook, the Facebook, FB, Face, Poke, Book, Wall!!! There I said them all and the police are not at my door!…………..or are they?! O.O

  80. BeastBoyLover(Abi) -  March 30, 2012 - 4:20 pm

    If this is true then I violated the rules, because I used the word ‘book’ and ‘wall’ many times on FaceBook! But, this is America people, if I want to use those words on FaceBook, then I’m gonna use them! It’s not like I’m advertising it or anything. This truly is messed!

  81. Ann lee -  March 30, 2012 - 2:39 pm

    That was a good one, “agravatated”.

  82. Ann lee -  March 30, 2012 - 2:31 pm

    You go “Disgusted”! Haha

  83. Matt B -  March 30, 2012 - 2:24 pm


  84. killa-king1 -  March 30, 2012 - 1:33 pm

    F.B. Facebook wonder why? seems that people trying to hack information’s but dont put no infooo why? because there’s stranger’s out there that god know’s what happens. If you feel really bully, or threatin or anything. Aways save the conversation dont delete it save it. Also call the copes dont be afraid speak up the truth. You will actaully win. I’m telling you this because I did it before a bunch of times!

  85. A person -  March 30, 2012 - 11:56 am

    Instead of trademarking the word’s “face” or “Book” try trademarking them BOTH TOGETHER “Facebook”. that’s what I would do. then I wouldent get people pissed at me because I said thinkings like “Like” “Face” “Book” and Wall”. I mean really? What use is it to trademark such things anyway? More money? lolz some peoples retarded user agreements…

  86. That other angry guy -  March 30, 2012 - 9:33 am

    Why not sue the Mac company for using the word Macbook… I’m going to go poke some walls in a books and then shove the book into some guys’ s face.

  87. Grammer never -  March 30, 2012 - 9:12 am


  88. ........ -  March 30, 2012 - 8:48 am


  89. Ben Curtis -  March 30, 2012 - 8:22 am

    Jim Parker, bholland, Kipp, and even Sierra “Rawr ?!” the sixth grade student put all of you to shame.

    Those of you claiming that this is ridiculous should spend a moment learning about trademarks. The Hot Word article is wrong. You’re angry about something that doesn’t exist. That IS ridiculous.

    Those of you calling Facebook idiots for doing this, every single one of you would do the same if you worked for years and years to build something great and then found people trying to cheat and steal what you’ve built. You must realize that if Facebook goes to trial, it doesn’t matter how much money they have, they need to convince twelve people just like you that the “little guy” is stealing from them. Since Facebook is winning, they are convincing people like you that they are being harmed.

    Being rich or successful or big does not mean the law doesn’t protect you from thieves.

  90. S -  March 30, 2012 - 8:08 am

    I think I’m gonna get off FB and go read a BOOK

  91. Joe -  March 30, 2012 - 7:02 am

    Whoa! They’ve already trademarked “like”, “wall” and “face”? Really?

  92. Assassin Tim -  March 30, 2012 - 5:22 am

    You guys commenting “So I can’t use the word book, like, face, and poke” are so retarded… Get a dictionary and look up what Trademark means and what copyright means, then compare and contrast the two words.

  93. Marguerite -  March 30, 2012 - 5:13 am

    Individuals have been making “books” LONG before the site and company were even established. To even present this issue makes me doubt their significance. I just use it as an artist’s tool…

  94. agravatated -  March 30, 2012 - 5:03 am

    Or some one should make a website called “FacialNovel”. Then have a place to leave a “note” on their “panel”, and have buttons to say “cool” and add a “notcool” button!

  95. Bob's yours Uncle -  March 30, 2012 - 4:33 am

    It is good to be the king.

  96. arvindgsb -  March 30, 2012 - 3:38 am

    .. Rather ‘face’ a (good) ‘book’ .. that will change the life for better.. FB is just another instrument to keep people mediocre.. so that they waste their time.. Did that Z invent the word ‘book’..?

  97. fredgarvin -  March 30, 2012 - 2:55 am

    This web-site should consider re-naming their ‘Feedback’ link. It could infringe upon ‘Facebook’. You know it begins and ends with the same letters as well as having the same number of letters in the word.

  98. Tom Milner -  March 30, 2012 - 1:33 am

    this is absurd! i didn’t think it was even possible to trademark a word until now. facebook are just making themselves out to be self important berks. and to serve what purpose anyway? it seems completly pointless.

  99. MEB -  March 29, 2012 - 11:42 pm

    Hey, I’m old enough that was using these words long before Zuckerburg was pooping his diapers, before he was a fetus that could be aborted or was a funny feeling in his daddy’s groin. What gives him the right to trademark words that were being used long before any of us were any of these things?

  100. Bob Johnson -  March 29, 2012 - 10:54 pm

    Everyone calm down. This article is a little exaggerated. Trademark laws only extend to very particular fields, which the article did not explicate. This means no other social networking site can use the words “like,” “wall,” and “face,” and using the others, such as “book,” are risky as well. However, calling your pizza shop the Face Wall Like Book isn’t going to get you sued, nor will common usage.
    For example, look at the bottom of this webpage. Dictionary.com is copyrighted, but every dictionary doesn’t have to pay royalties to use the word.
    In a sentence, everyone STOP FREAKING OUT. That is all.

  101. Hoodaloo -  March 29, 2012 - 10:38 pm

    That’d be funny if Donald Trump patented the phrase, “Your fired,” because most people use the phrase, “You’re fired.” Hehe, he’d get so rich.

  102. IQ -  March 29, 2012 - 10:01 pm

    This is RIDICULOUS!!!! FACE BOOK LIKE WALL POKE BOOK BOOK BOOK BOOK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    MY FACEBOOK!!!!!!!! Come on and sue me!!!!!!

  103. Abi -  March 29, 2012 - 9:43 pm

    I think this is insanity…I don’t use Facebook, and I have no intent on making an account.

    Trademarking normal, everyday words like ‘book’? ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME?

    So what, I guess every single word should be banned, and nobody should say anything at all, if every single company/social networking site decides to trademark random things like that.

    Dictionaries would be obsolete, because so many words would be trademarked AND WE CAN’T USE THEM IF WE DON’T ASK LAWYERS FIRST…!

    That’s just my opinion, but I think many of you would agree with me, no?

  104. eh -  March 29, 2012 - 9:40 pm

    F! F! F!
    FB! FB! FB!
    EAT THAT FFFAAACCCEEEBBBOOOKKK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  105. eh -  March 29, 2012 - 9:34 pm


  106. eh -  March 29, 2012 - 9:31 pm

    AT LEAST BOYCOTT FACEBOOK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  107. john Brickman -  March 29, 2012 - 9:20 pm

    btw Jake Hates Facebook, that was a sick comment. keep it up

  108. Your Face (book) -  March 29, 2012 - 9:20 pm

    Seriously. If they wanted to be more effective the could just trademark silence. Then whenever you wanted to stop talking you’d have to ask facebook.

    • Donald Faulknor -  April 6, 2015 - 8:58 am

      lol. I guess you have a good point. If common words used for centuries can be trademarked, why not silence?

      But anyways, I came to this forum researching legalities behind creating my own social networking site, next-factor.com – I hope to be better than Facebook.

      P.S. I apologize to Facebook for using Facebook 3 times in this post. Don’t sue me, I have kids – but I know you don’t care!

  109. john Brickman -  March 29, 2012 - 9:17 pm

    wooooow. i also suggest that we start to boycott (stop using) Facebook until they withdrawal their trademarks on such common words. I think we all know its stupid anyway…

  110. Kathleen -  March 29, 2012 - 9:00 pm

    This is doggone stupid.

  111. Name -  March 29, 2012 - 8:48 pm

    book book book book book book book book book book book book book book book book book (gonna stop be facebook? ;D) book book book book book book *goes on forever*

  112. Lily -  March 29, 2012 - 8:46 pm

    by the way i

  113. Stop them! -  March 29, 2012 - 7:52 pm

    If everyone is so unhappy with FB trying such ridiculous things then maybe they should stop using FB! Go to change.org, create a petition and ask facebook or maybe the trademark office to stop such crap like trademarking simple words. I don’t use FB. Most of my friends do. I just won’t. Why would anyone support such behavior?

  114. Cameron Macdonald -  March 29, 2012 - 7:34 pm

    Guys. The usage of the word “book” in a normal sentence is not illegal. Its the usage of the word in a website name. Say you wanted to name your site Picbook. That would be against the law. If you read what he said, it said that it was classified to only websites, like beyonce’s baby’s name was only to baby food and child product. It would be ridiculous if someone could literally own a word.

  115. Why?????? -  March 29, 2012 - 5:38 pm

    This is why I refuse to join Facebook. I’ve had friends try to pressure me into it countless times, but stuff like this makes it so much easier to refuse. Has anyone else seen that car commercial where the girl is veging out on Facebook whie her parents are out cycling with REAL friends? That is completely true of this generation. And then this whole ridiculous “book” trademark thing comes up (whoops, I said it! I wonder if they’ll track me down? Will they sue me??), and I wonder how we let this happen to us. You know what? This is stuipd. Bookbookbookbookbook. Bite me.

  116. Lily -  March 29, 2012 - 4:51 pm

    say i if u have a facebook

  117. Grammar Forever -  March 29, 2012 - 4:11 pm


  118. Grammar Forever -  March 29, 2012 - 4:11 pm

    Look at the se industrial fat cats, trying to put a trademark on my words…. I was using them words before their mother had her first litter, and they can’t tell me what I can and/or cannot say. I propose that we make a BookFace site and see how they like that. Or My Book, or Face Space, or My Face, or Space Book. Better yet, we should use another body part, like ArmBook, or LegBook, or BodyBook, or BookSpine…. Too much? :)

  119. Boywonderslover -  March 29, 2012 - 4:03 pm

    Doesn’t Youtube use a Like/Dislike system now? Could Facebook sue them?? D=

    [I'm sorry, I don't keep up with which companies are linked with which. Youtube IS with Google, right? I have no idea all I know is...]


  120. ^^ -  March 29, 2012 - 3:36 pm


    Are scared yet?

  121. Nameless -  March 29, 2012 - 3:22 pm

    Quick! someone make a business called “FaceLike BookWall”. That’ll show them!!!

  122. artee11 -  March 29, 2012 - 3:12 pm

    Seems kinda messed up. is YouTube a registered trademark name also?? I found tons of websites like teachertube, and Godtube, and stuff like that related. It could just be a coincidence that other websites that have the word book, ‘cuz that word may be tons more relative to its purpose than the original Facebook.

  123. I said "book," bite me -  March 29, 2012 - 3:02 pm

    In my life “poke”and “book” are some of my most used words along with “wall” and “like”.
    If I said that putting a trademark on these limits our freedom of speech/press, would I just be over-reacting?
    How did they come up with the name facebook anyways?…

  124. naomi zacsh -  March 29, 2012 - 1:51 pm

    I think that facebook should also own the words “like” and “friend”. Google should own the the letter G and the word mail. and Bill Gates should own the word SOFT and Micro, and on,,,,,,,,,,

  125. Rawr ?! -  March 29, 2012 - 1:40 pm

    Wow. This is comepletely insane. I actually enjoy using FaceBook, as I can chat with my friends that I can’t see anymore, post status updates so my friends and family know how I am doing (though I don’t go as far as notifying everyone when I have to feed my cat, ect.), and play games. But when a website decides to trademark the word “book,” well, that’s just taking it a little too far. I can understand sueing PlaceBook, though, because it sounds almost exactly like FaceBook. This is because if I spent my time trying to make a good social networking site with an appealing name, I wouldn’t want someone to, after my website becomes popular, to basically copy my name so people think it is almost as good as mine. That is simply wrong. But My YearBook is fine, aren’t they? This is because though they have “book” in their name, they don’t sound like FaceBook, nor are they trying to copy FaceBook (well, I don’t think so anyways). Basically, people are becoming sick with greed these days, and really need to think, “Is this really such a big deal? Do I have to take it this far?” and stop trying to crush everything smaller than them.
    Thanks for reading,
    Sierra, Sixth Grade Student (:

  126. Gabiya -  March 29, 2012 - 1:21 pm


  127. Jade -  March 29, 2012 - 1:12 pm

    This is just as ridiculous as Donald Trump wanting to trademark the words “Your Fired!” These people are idiots and just using this as another way to make money. Can sue and get tons of money from people who are doing no wrong. Complete BS! I don’t use facebook and with this piece of news I never will now! Watch them a loose a good percentage of users and cause a major uproar!

  128. Nate Hodson -  March 29, 2012 - 1:03 pm

    Oh, well. I once got fined $500.00 for using the word “Poke”, as in “Pokemon” on my wall.

    BTW: Nice one, Disgusted!

  129. Anonymous -  March 29, 2012 - 12:50 pm

    Oh and nice comment. Lol. That was to Disgusted

  130. jake hates fackbook -  March 29, 2012 - 12:49 pm

    so what can i no longer say the word book? well facebook sue me for this …

  131. Anonymous -  March 29, 2012 - 12:49 pm

    This is moronic. I am a Facebook user myself but this is stupid.
    Visit my website.

  132. Hoodaloo -  March 29, 2012 - 12:41 pm

    I’m pretty sure they do this just to keep themselves entertained. I imagine they get pretty high and laugh about it.

  133. Syd -  March 29, 2012 - 12:38 pm

    “Facebook has registered trademarks for the word ‘like,’ ‘wall,’ and ‘face,’ but it is unlikely that the US Patent and Trademark Office would grant a registered trademark to a common word like ‘book’.”

    Is it just me, or are the words “like”, “wall”, and “face” just about as common as the word “book”… Just something to think about.

  134. ed -  March 29, 2012 - 12:15 pm

    …but it is unlikely that the US Patent and Trademark Office would grant a registered trademark to a common word like “book.” So wall, face and like are not common words?

  135. Liesl -  March 29, 2012 - 12:15 pm

    Having “like” and “wall” as registered TMs is stupid. They’re as commonly used. But I understand why they TMed “face” and want to TM “book”, they don’t want different businnesses to be confused with their own.
    Personally though, I don’t think the EU will accept “book” as a TMed word.

  136. FACEBOOKTRADEMARK | BLOGCHI@mayopia.com -  March 29, 2012 - 11:45 am

    [...] ‘FACEBOOKTRADEMARK’ Monster Mash — Creativity hoping to Smash. — Pure Greed willing, — One more ‘Job Creator’: — Ain’t it Thrilling? — Fight the Good Fight — Sit Down no killing. — But somes gotta stick it in your Face. — Google this and Yahoo that. — Bing the Bongers, –  What good is Phat? — The Reason we need a better Place, –  Guvment and Regulation Wit Balls — or maybe just some different Space. — Who is there when Duty Calls? –>>L.T.Rhyme [...]

  137. Erika -  March 29, 2012 - 11:33 am

    I aree. This is STUPID!!!! i am going 2 say FB or facebook whether those retards like it or not

  138. joshie -  March 29, 2012 - 11:30 am

    ilooooooove facebook!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  139. joshie -  March 29, 2012 - 11:29 am

    hay facebooks great so who cares?

  140. Dicky -  March 29, 2012 - 11:11 am

    Just more stuff that keeps lawyers in business.

  141. awayne cino -  March 29, 2012 - 10:54 am

    who cares any more i get that copyright stuff but this is annoying

  142. Kipp -  March 29, 2012 - 10:15 am

    I could be wrong, but from what little I understand about trademark law, I think the restrictions pertain only to other social websites or companies. An individual can’t be fined or sued for using the words “like,” “wall,” “book,” “face,” etc. in a song, an article, or a status update or whatever, or even as a restaurant name or book title. It just means that if you start a social networking site and try to call it “Face blah blah” or try to put a like button on it, you can expect to be promptly shutdown.

  143. princess23 -  March 29, 2012 - 10:14 am

    i cant believe it….. we should block FB (0.o)

  144. Disgusted -  March 29, 2012 - 9:49 am

    I “like” the idea of a big old “book” applied to the “face” of the jerks at FB that would plant them up against the “wall”, and then a nice “poke” to the ribs for good measure!

  145. Anonymouse -  March 29, 2012 - 9:41 am

    insane !!!

  146. BBbandlor -  March 29, 2012 - 9:40 am

    a face whent to a wall threw a book at it and the poked the book.

    U MAD

  147. Renata Birkenbuel -  March 29, 2012 - 9:37 am

    Insidious BS/unethical biz tactics! Book ‘em, Danno!

  148. Engaged -  March 29, 2012 - 9:21 am

    <– Wondering why FaceBook hasn't sued FaceTime..

  149. Miss Singh LaPointe -  March 29, 2012 - 9:18 am

    They just want to discourage imitators who might invent names like: YouBook, MeBook, FunBook, ChatBook, etc. for other Social Networks. However, I think this is persnickety, overly sensitive as well as moderately paranoid and akin to the teenage girl who resents her rivals wearing the same designer sweaters as she does. Immature.

  150. Henry Hippo -  March 29, 2012 - 9:10 am

    That is absolutely ridiculous. I cannot believe they’re allowed to do that. Also, shutting down innocent companies is wrong. Also, book is such as a common word, as well as like, wall and face. If they trademarked the word “Facebook” or wall in the context of social networking it would be fine. There is no way that any decent human being would sue someone writing a book called “The Book Of Faces”. An normal human being would leave them alone, but the vicious savages that are Facebook Inc. would. What idiots. They’d be at it like stray dogs on a piece of meat.

  151. TJ -  March 29, 2012 - 9:01 am

    “aggressively pursues infringement of its copyright.”

    You mean trademark. Trademark and copyright are not the same thing.

  152. TJ -  March 29, 2012 - 8:59 am

    Unfortunately, the way trademark law generally works, the burden is on the challenger to prove the trademark is invalid. So if Facebook tries to trademark the words “water” or “dog,” it’s often considered valid as a matter of law until someone challenges it. Even if the law is not on Facebook’s side, the sheer costs of litigation means they can win by aggressive belligerence. Facebook keeps suing until the other side, exhausted of funds, backs down.

  153. Concerned Reader -  March 29, 2012 - 8:55 am

    This is criminal. Book ‘em, Dan-O!

  154. Phil -  March 29, 2012 - 8:50 am

    Could someone with money copyright the word ‘Face’ and shut this idiot down?

  155. Ben Curtis -  March 29, 2012 - 8:44 am

    Sorry, Hot Word — you’ve got your legalese wrong. You should read the “trademark” definition that you linked to more closely. A trademark is a use of a word (in this case; symbols, sounds, etc., in other cases) to identify a product or service. No one who logs into Facebook and agrees to those terms is agreeing to forego the use of the words “book” or “like” or “poke.” What Facebook is asserting is that those terms are associated with with their product, and if someone uses those words in their product in order to create confusion or imply a relationship or trade off of Facebook’s reputation (and potentially harm it), then Facebook will act to stop that use. If you make a product, and you name that product (or features of it) similarly to the Facebook trademarks specifically to get people to think about the Facebook term but now it’s your version, then you are deliberately infringing on their trademark. If you create a game called “Poke the Bunny,” or a virtual makeup applicator called “FacePlace,” or a personal travel log service called “MyLogBook,” all of those are fine. “Placebook” and “TeachBook” have features that directly compete with Facebook and so they benefit from the name confusion.

  156. LKH -  March 29, 2012 - 8:43 am

    Wow, can we all unfriend Facebook?

  157. Tai -  March 29, 2012 - 8:32 am

    That’s quite unreal

  158. MightyJAK -  March 29, 2012 - 8:26 am

    I’m going to have to switch to ‘nudging’ people now, because if I ever ‘poke’ someone FB is gonna sue.

    This is going to put a damper on construction work, having to get FB’s permission every time we put up a ‘wall’.

  159. Ann lee -  March 29, 2012 - 8:25 am

    It’s shameful, a mega company using their power to establish an exclusive kingdom and crush the little guys. Just because they can. All of the companies who attempted to use the word “book” were in no way related to Facebook. Incredible!

  160. Phlondar -  March 29, 2012 - 8:23 am

    Whoops! i just wrote down “Notebook” hopefully they won’t track me down… Oops i just said it again !!!

  161. Sam McFisher -  March 29, 2012 - 8:13 am

    ” Me ” is very peculiar … FactBook ..CIA’s … it’s only a letter different…but then again … internet is CIA’s invention… so they let Facebook, Twitter, google, YouTube .. do their thing … they are all AMERICAN corporations … and … CIA.. is also AMERICAN ..and .. PlaceBook is not like facebook .. these guys are mean … well you have to book your travels …

  162. SFDex -  March 29, 2012 - 8:10 am

    I agree. It’s ridiculous. Trademarking “book,” “face,” “poke,” and other words that are already in common usage would not stand up to a hearing, so they’re trying to get around the law (or go “above the law,” it might be argued) by getting everyone who uses Facebook at all to agree that Facebook owns these words. Absurd.

    And when I see “FB,” the first thing that pops into my mind is not Facebook.

  163. sugarlandmom -  March 29, 2012 - 8:08 am

    Please, someone, invent an alternative to Facebook and let it go the way of MySpace. They are evil and only getting worse.

  164. Phlondar -  March 29, 2012 - 7:59 am

    So are they going to sue MAC and Microsoft for using terms like “Notebook”? They are so stupid and so are we even more for using their Webage giving them more power to do sh!7 like that.

  165. bholland -  March 29, 2012 - 7:57 am

    Reserving the word as a trademark does not mean it cannot be used; it just means it can’t be used as a reference (name, logo, etc.) for another business. It’s primarily used to prevent confusion: if you had to diners next to each other, one named Sally’s Place and the other named Sally’s Plate, you can see where there might be reason for confusion.

    Don’t confuse it with copyright. That’s a whole different concept.

    Having said that, it still seems a bit of over-compensation to be able to trademark such a common word as “book.”

  166. Jim Parker -  March 29, 2012 - 7:51 am

    Oh, that wacky Zuckerberg! If you can patent genes and software, why not trademark common words? This is actually a natural progression of the ridiculous state that intellectual property law has come to. Really, we all should have seen it coming.

    But, in truth, my understanding is that trademarks are not only protected geographically (not a practical limitation in the case of FaceBook. Or it it now Face®Book®® ?) My understanding is that trademarks are also only protected within an industry. They didn’t seek a copyright on these words, just a trademark, meaning that they are protected from others commercial enterprises using these words in a way that is likely to be confused with FaceBook’s use, or to confuse consumers. For example, those guys with the website called “placebook” were clearly trying to capitalize on FaceBook’s “good” name. So, people who sell books can still call them books, but anyone with a social website will have a hard time using the word ‘book’ in their name. Google didn’t call their social disaster “GoogleBook,” and this actually helps them distinguish themselves and it helps consumers distinguish the two services.

    What will be interesting is how this will affect Apple’s FaceTime application. This app’s name is arguably infringing on FaceBook’s trademark in a legitimately confusing way.

  167. Doris M. -  March 29, 2012 - 7:41 am

    Power corrupts; absolute power corrupts absolutely. These folks have an entirely too high opinion of themselves. We can do without Facebook and I suggest we start a trend in that direction. After all, aren’t we tired of being a commodity and bored with the unrelenting advertising that stalks us at every turn, compliments of Facebook?

    Meantime, I will continue to use the word book as I have always used it, whether as a noun or a verb.

  168. mary torres ~lots of love ~ -  March 29, 2012 - 6:53 am

    i love my fb i have 365,265,336 people on my friend list we are like family lol i grew up with most of them but i started to unfriend most. so i only have 200 people today. lol most of the one i unfriend were cyberbullys. and we dont want those kind of people on there now do we? so do start what you cant finsh. and be nice to one another .
    stop bully stand up for yourself:)
    love :Mary Torres 10th grader

  169. al -  March 29, 2012 - 6:21 am

    the very rich just want to be richer

  170. Anonymous -  March 29, 2012 - 6:20 am

    The words “like” and “wall” are just as common. How can those be trademarked also??

  171. Chris Thach -  March 29, 2012 - 6:05 am

    And how is this any different than “Windows” ?

  172. Donna Edwards -  March 29, 2012 - 5:59 am

    The women’s magazine, “Redbook” (if they’re still around), should sue Facebook.

  173. Cyberquill -  March 29, 2012 - 5:43 am

    PS: I think it would be most efficient for Facebook to simply trademark all 26 letters of the alphabet.

  174. Donna Edwards -  March 29, 2012 - 5:28 am

    So, in other words, one cannot write a story about a guy’s “little black book,” or about “booking” a flight, or a cop saying “book ‘em”? What about “book worms” who love their “Book of the Month Club”? Makes me dislike Facebook more and more!

  175. Cyberquill -  March 29, 2012 - 2:10 am

    If Facebook has indeed managed to register trademarks for the words “like”, “wall,” and “face,” why would it be so unlikely that the US Patent and Trademark Office would refuse to grant a registered trademark to “book”? And how about trademarking “share” and “comment” while they’re at it?

  176. Caveman Lawyer -  March 28, 2012 - 8:44 pm

    I can see protecting word combinations using the word “book.” But that’s even stretching it. (Re: the Placebook suit, did the court order it shut down, or did Placebook simply choose not to fight it?) Starbucks for example: is “star” registered, or “bucks”? Probably not. Can I name my payday loan biz “Starmoney”? Also, i’m not familiar with trademark law, but there might be usage limitations on a trademark, too. So, a company can use the word “like” in most instances, but not as a button on a website that users click to indicate they like something.

  177. Matthew -  March 28, 2012 - 5:16 pm

    This article says that Facebook already has registered trademarks for ‘like’, ‘wall’, and ‘face’. Then it goes on to say that Facebook will have difficulty securing a registered trademark for the word ‘book’ because of its common usage…

    Is there something about like wall and face that I am missing?

  178. THE Caitlyn -  March 28, 2012 - 5:05 pm

    This is officially stupid!

  179. Me -  March 28, 2012 - 4:19 pm

    So what about the CIA’s The World Factbook?

    • Donald Faulknor -  April 6, 2015 - 9:04 am

      Maybe the CIA should shut down Facebook before they get sued.

  180. Silver Fang -  March 28, 2012 - 3:07 pm

    Trademarks and copyrights are just more ways to create monopolies.

  181. safetyjack -  March 28, 2012 - 2:58 pm

    It’s totally ridiculous! It’s self-importance of the highest order. I don’t think that one can successfully trademark a word that has been in use since before writing [face] or one that has been in use since shortly after writing [book].

  182. Jo Ann Schlicker -  March 28, 2012 - 2:49 pm

    Does that mean we can never use the word again unless we ask FB? WTH?


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