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Morning Legal Briefs

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9. Re: Morning Legal Briefs Feb 7, 2013, 13:19 Orogogus
 
You can totally trademark things used in everyday speech, like Apple, as long as it's limited to a market, and not already a generic term within that field.

http://www.apple.com/legal/trademark/appletmlist.html -- there are a lot of common words like apple, aqua, carbon, cocoa and time machine in there with no modifier. Dell can't jump into the market and sell an "Apple" laptop by just not calling it an "Apple computer".

GW's bullying here is almost certainly because of the title of the book. They probably can't successfully argue that they own the idea of space marines or the term, but they have a fair chance at demonstrating that a book with "Space Marines" in the title confuses people, as the only other such non-GW books are from the 1930s and not available on Amazon. If they want to be aggressive jerks about they could claim that the author was intentionally trying to ride on their success.

At this point it's just an Amazon takedown, though, so someone would have to take it to court before any actual claims are made.
 
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