Bing! Information Design sues Microsoft over Bing name

A company named Bing! Information Design in St. Louis is suing Microsoft for alleged trademark infringement of the name Bing.

The company, a privately held information graphics and multimedia design company, has been using the Bing! trademark since the year 2000. According to the St.Louis Business Journal Bing! Information Design claims that the new search engine's name causes confusion and dilutes the value of its trademark.

Microsoft spokesperson Kevin Kutz provided a statement regarding the issues: "we believe this suit to be without merit and we do not believe there is any confusion in the marketplace with regard to the complainant's offerings and Microsoft's Bing," he said in a statement. "We respect trademarks and other people's intellectual property, and look forward to the next steps in the judicial process."

In recent weeks Bing has launched a Silverlight version of its Maps, Bing Mobile for iPhone and Windows Mobile devices and suffered nearly an hour long Bing outage when the search engine was unavailable.

Thanks to The.Clinton for the news tip

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BigBoobLover said,
What does that have to do with Microsoft? Paint.Net (the software) is not affiliated with Microsoft.

I think maybe he was referring to the redirect page? Not sure.

Organizations sure are getting desperate for Microsoft cash these days, aren't they?

If the case actually had any merit they wouldn't have waited to so long to speak up. The EU is their best hope, they like to rob Microsoft without letting inconveniences like facts and fairness get in the way.

How do you know that they haven't been communicating with Microsoft for the last few months to try to get this resolved without going to court over it? Oh wait, you don't. As usual, you're just spouting nonsense. Preparing a lawsuit like this often takes months as well before it is filed.

how come they needed to wait all this time?? were they waiting for it to gain popularity so they could try for more money or something??

What makes you think they haven't been proceeding all this time? You JUST read it, so it must have JUST happened 5 minutes ago, huh?

Shadrack said,
What makes you think they haven't been proceeding all this time? You JUST read it, so it must have JUST happened 5 minutes ago, huh?

And how do you know that this is anything close to legitimate... Knowing how protecting copyrights, trademarks, etc. work, I can tell you that this just doesn't make any sense. As you must know this is category driven. Microsoft I'm sure protected "Bing" as they are pretty on top of that generally. In order to do this there could not have been another "Bing" in that category. Maybe this company protected the name in a different category, or maybe they didn't protect it at all. Who knows. But Microsoft would not have been granted the protection if it had existed in the same category, and as a result Microsoft wouldn't have then used it...

I don't know if it is legitimate. My comment was directed at exotoxic and I made them because:

1. Bing is still a relatively new service (at least the name is).
2. The article (at least the one posted here) doesn't have any information about the timeline that Bing! Information jumped on this. For all we know they may have filed something the day after MS Bing was released to the public. Do you know?

Shadrack said,
I don't know if it is legitimate. My comment was directed at exotoxic and I made them because:

1. Bing is still a relatively new service (at least the name is).
2. The article (at least the one posted here) doesn't have any information about the timeline that Bing! Information jumped on this. For all we know they may have filed something the day after MS Bing was released to the public. Do you know?

I don't know for certain, of course not. But having seen something similar many times before I can make an educated assumption. Who knows if this company contacted Microsoft prior to this or not. They very well may have, only for Microsoft to try to explain that they do not have the name protected, or that they protected the name in a different category. Having had this conversation myself, I can assure you that people that don't get it are not inclined to learn either. They are very adamant that they have that name and you can't use it, regardless of what you do. That's not how it works at all, and they don't understand that. They come away from the conversation believing that you're the bad guy and are trying to take advantage of them, so they'll just sue...

If "Bing! Information Design" had just started-up, would Microsoft be suing them for Trademark infringement? I think so. I'm actually hoping Microsoft has to change the name of their service for failing at market research.

Shadrack said,
If "Bing! Information Design" had just started-up, would Microsoft be suing them for Trademark infringement? I think so. I'm actually hoping Microsoft has to change the name of their service for failing at market research.

That's nonsense. They would have protected the name, which would mean that there was no registration for "Bing" in the appropriate category. You're comments are misinformed and come off as strangely hostile...

I'm not trying to be hostile. I'm just pointing out that if the roles were reversed Microsoft would try just as hard to protect their IP and trademarks. As they absolutely should. What I think is strange is that you assume that MS would go through the proper channels and therefore would be justified, but for some reason Bing! Information did not. Do you think it is possible that MS made a mistake?

Shadrack said,
I'm not trying to be hostile. I'm just pointing out that if the roles were reversed Microsoft would try just as hard to protect their IP and trademarks. As they absolutely should. What I think is strange is that you assume that MS would go through the proper channels and therefore would be justified, but for some reason Bing! Information did not. Do you think it is possible that MS made a mistake?

Anything's possible, but if you look at Microsoft's track record, they don't release products until they have protected their property. That includes the name. In fact they've even gone so far as to protect some of their code names... lol Though it's possible that Microsoft dropped the ball, it's unlikely. Far more likely would be this small design house not properly protecting their property. This I say because I've just seen it so many times. They don't protect their property correctly, or at all... Then they are shocked when they don't have any claim to it when someone else uses it. Or they argue that something is an infringement when it's in a different category from them because they don't understand how this works... The situation is just all too common.

LOL, this defense coming from a company that buys up every domain that even sounds remotely like its products and sues for the ones that are already taken?

Building a case against a massive corperation would take a while to ensure it contains no minor faults, errors and such

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