Realized in a round about way that was called last year.

'Hmm, I wonder why?"

2 seconds of research later...


@Ste1lar @trevdev for social media at least. It makes sense, Facebook is so iconic that any social platform with the word in it would be associated with it, and I don't think OpenBook would have chosen the word book it it weren't for Facebook.

@NekoSock @Ste1lar In any other trademark scenario, this would be absolutely unfounded. The word "Book" is at least 800 years older than Mark Zuckerberg. It's public domain!

@trevdev @NekoSock nobody should be able to trademark a word in the english dictionnary

@Ste1lar @NekoSock It's just another case where fighting them in court would be more damaging than having to completely rebrand after gaining their initial traction.

It's purely an attempt to crush them in a non-competitive way.

@trevdev @Ste1lar Oh definitely, but still, I would say Facebook were acting in their own right and this outcome isn't very outrageous.

@trevdev @Ste1lar Indeed, and facebook definitely does not own it in other fields.

When you hear of a social media called "OpenBook", you are 100% certain that they chose that name because of Facebook, so fb has a right here to me. It was incredibly irresponsible to name a competing project with such a similar name.

@NekoSock @Ste1lar It WAS made as an alternative to Facebook in mind...but that shouldn't matter. It's still a giant heap of _bullshit_

@trevdev @Ste1lar Mastodon didn't need to be called "Mastotweet" to be an alternative to twitter.

Trademarks are meant to protect brand names especially in the fields they act in. It makes total sense calling your competing project with a reference to your competitor is not legal.

Are we gonna give them a pass just because they're open source? That would be the real bias.

If I made a phone called the "1Phone", it would make total sense I would be sued by Apple. Or a gaming console called the "Funstation". Or a video platform called "TheTube".

If you call a competing product like your competitor, you are unfairly taking advantage of their brand recognition to get the concept of your platform across.

It was a dick move by Facebook to do this to an OSS project. But it's fair.

@NekoSock @Ste1lar I don't think "Tweet" falls into the same realm of bias as "Book", or "Phone" or even "Tube", and definitely not "station". My argument stands for all of those and I don't agree that it's fair.

We're just going to have to disagree on this one :) - A big corporation like Facebook doesn't even need to do this sort of shit and if anything, they should be learning from why OpenBook was conceived in the first place, instead of stabbing them with loopholes.

@trevdev @Ste1lar What if it wasn't an OSS project. What if it was another for profit project called like "ManyBook", and it was a social platform just like facebook.

The fact that it was an OSS project makes it a huge dick move, but you ahve to look past that. The name OpenBook implies a relation with Facebook. (The fact that they work similarly.) So they are making use of their brand. Without authorisation.

Like, really, you can't deny a social platform called "OpenBook" doesn't immediately rings a bell with "Facebook". And no matter if the project is great and ethical, that is problematic.

Also this reminds me "Peertube" is a fucking trash name.

@NekoSock @Ste1lar What we're forgetting here is that there's a lot more to trademarks than just an ambiguous word and what a service *does*. In order to actually violate the trademark, you'd have to copy Facebook in many more ways than just that. Colors, fonts, interface, messaging, etc.

@trevdev @Ste1lar Perhaps we should ask what this means for OSS projects too.

By itself the name "OpenBook" would just imply "Opensource Facebook", is that all the project is about? Are we just trying to emulate large platforms, or are we genuinely trying to build something better upon what they made?

This is why I think oss names based on larger projects are trash. Not only they are legal liability, but they have no innovation and imply there is no innovation from the project.

@NekoSock @trevdev @Ste1lar bottom line: Trademark law is there to protect the public from being misled more than it is to protect corporations. it’s not at all unreasonable to expect a social platform named “openbook” would be misleading. aside from that, trademark law *requires* companies to take action to protect their trademark, or they risk losing the trademark. for facebook, or apple, or disney, or anyone else, it’s not a “dick move”, it’s simply “not optional”, like doing taxes.

@zensaiyuki @trevdev @Ste1lar That's a great point actually. But I guess the end result is the same.

Why did Facebook sue OpenBook? To fuck over competition and also to create precedent on their ownership of their trademark. Why do they want to have so much control over it? To be able to fight competition.

Facebook could do an exception for OpenBook if they gave them permission specifically. So then, if they sue another social media for using the word "book" and they bring up the tolerated existence of OpenBook, Facebook could just say they gave them permission unlike this other company.

But really? Giving permission to use a trademark to a competitor just because they're "nice" or "ethical"? Even if Zuck was the nicest person in the world, it's understandable that that's too much to ask.

@NekoSock @trevdev @Ste1lar did they sue openbook? usually suing is the last resort. the first step is the scary letter.

@trevdev Disregarding the copyright shenanigans, it looks an awful lot like they're just making another ActivityPub.

@bespectacled_fuzz We're ever plagued with competing stands in FOSS, aren't we :/

@trevdev It consistently baffles me how so many people in FOSS are so hostile to the idea of collaboration instead of competition when that's literally the entire point of FOSS, the one and only reason that it exists. That's some impressive doublethink.

@bespectacled_fuzz Freedom is also a big part of FOSS too. Don't like ActivityPub? You don't have to use it. Don't like Okuna the way it is? You can fork it. Freedom does have its downsides.

@trevdev I still think that's the same thing though. If you make something substantially different, you aren't competing anymore because your audience becomes the people who wanted that change. If you're offering the same thing, the only difference is marketing. The competing software implementation is entirely artificial.

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