Flowboard is seeking a “declaratory judgment of non-infringement of trademark rights” after Flipboard accused it of trademark infringement, according to GeekWire. Shortly after Flowboard, a Seattle-based startup that makes an iPad storytelling app, launched in April, representatives for Flipboard, a popular San Francisco-based digital social magazine, began contacting Flowboard accusing it of trademark infringement.
“We tried getting dialogue going to see if there was anything we could do to resolve it, but there was nothing that would satisfy them,” Flowboard CEO Brent Brookler said. “We don’t want this weighing over our heads and we need to move on. They threatened to take legal action, so we had no choice but to hurry this up and bring it to court ourselves.”
When Cult of Mac reached out to Flipboard for comment on the case, Flipboard responded by emailing them a statement, “We let [Flowboard] know our concerns about the F logo and the Flowboard name that they recently started using and wanted to resolve the matter amicably. [Flowboard] decided instead to get the courts involved. What we are concerned about is the likelihood of confusion and are committed to protecting our trademark.”
This dispute may end up coming down to whether the court chooses to give more credence to the similarities of the logos and names or the differences in what the products actually do. If it is the former, then Flipboard would seem to have the edge, and if it is the latter, then Flowboard probably has the advantage.
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