Monday, November 29, 2010

Losing Face

Lord knows my relationship with Facebook is strained at the best of times (it’s a mere marriage of convenience; a sham, just for show, there is no intimacy or bedroom relations) but the recent news that Facebook is, to quote the BBC, “a few steps away from trademarking the word face” has left me grimacing with disgust.

They want to trademark Face in the same way that George Lucas has trademarked Star Wars.

Now the latter I can understand. Think what you like about the recent trilogy, George Lucas created a bestselling brand. He has a right to trademark it.

But Face?

How you can trademark Face for God’s sake?

The fallout from such an action with obviously adversely affect other social network sites and services, for e.g. Apple’s Facetime. If Facebook are successful Facetime with have to change to Visagetime or Mugtime or Interfacetime. I’m sure you can think of plenty of your own.

Now, while I can see that Facebook are bristling at the use of the word Face, thinking as they do, that it seeks to emulate or cash-in on their own brand, to trademark it exclusively as their own smacks of greed, unfairness and, yes I am going to say it, big brother style bullying. It also insults the target audience who all to an Emo scarred teen know the difference between Facebook and Facetime and know that one is not interchangeable with or the same as the other. So there is no harm done with other services being named Facepage, Facewad, Faceityou’realoser.

There is no need for Facebook to do this other than to flex its oversized muscles and stamp all over the rest of the social networking market.

Arseholes. Sorry, Faceholes.

But my big question is: where will this end?

Are Boots going to trademark Boots forcing millions of shoe retailers to rebrand all footwear that exceeds the height of the average human shin? Are Ann Summers going to lay claim to summer forcing us to rename the period between June and August as ‘that period of warmer weather where it rains less, the UK excepted’? Could Woolworth’s have saved itself by trademarking the word Wool and reaped millions of pounds in copyright payments from the knit craft industry?

And what about Adult Sex Shops? Are we going to have to come up with another name for human sexual intercourse (for example: human sexual intercourse) should they trademark the word sex? Or should I perhaps get in first (no innuendo intended) and trademark it myself? Force them to pay me to use the word? Force all of you in fact?

Hey, I could be onto a winner here (unless Michael Winner has trademarked that without me knowing about it).

Hmm.

You know, I may have to rename this blog.

Faceblog sounds kind of cool, doesn’t it?



Share

52 comments:

Annie said...

it's heading towards absolute stupidity, but gets even worse. A woman in spain has legally claimed ownersip of the Sun (yes the big yellow ball that occasionally appears in the sky. Honestly.. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1333776/Spanish-woman-Angeles-Duran-claims-owns-sun--plans-start-charging-ALL-users.html

Livi said...

Lol! That's ridiculous! *hangs head in despair*

Steve said...

Annie: unbelievable. Right. I bagsy the rest of the Universe, oh and God as well please. I was here first so the rest of you can sod off! ;-)

Livi: glad you said head and not face.

Gorilla Bananas said...

What about the term "Face-ache"? It seems to have gone out of fashion, but I'm sure it predated Facebook by several decades. Did anyone call you a Face-ache at school?

Steve said...

Gorilla Bananas: have you been speaking to my old headmaster?

What about Face-man aka The Face aka Templeton Peck from The A Team? Are we going to have to call him 'man' or "The" from now on?

Michelle Twin Mum said...

Our world is bonkers! I love the idea of Face Man being known as 'The'!

Mich x

Heather said...

and what, prey tell, are we going call face cream? 'the front of your head' cream? What a load of bollocks! but whilst we are claiming words, can I have The? Seems like quite a well used one, I could reap quite a fortune from coining that as my own.

Oh, and why don't they want the word book? Has someone already taken that one?

Steve said...

Michelle: I believe Bonkers is still up for grabs if you want to trademark it yourself? ;-)

Heather: you can have The with pleasure provided I can have I. I think I is quite marketable these days... I may have to start an iBlog...

the fly in the web said...

Sounds akin to the pharmaceutical companies 'patenting' rain forest plants for commercial use...
What are they going to do?
Send the cops in every time Don Armando brews up his bit of Sangre de Cristo bark for his hangover cure?

Steve said...

The fly in the web: it seems to me the entire world has ownership issues... I wonder how far I'd get with patenting the human race?

Sarah said...

I think I may patent deserts. Or sand.

Steve said...

Sarah: ah... going for a military bent? OK. I'll corner the leisure industry and bag beach and resort...

Modern Military Mother said...

I can't wait to see the outcome of this one - I think they should trademark Facebook but that's it - what about book? Are they after that too?

EmmaK said...

Mark Zuckerberg is bonkers. He 'donated' $100 million to Newark's troubled schools. Apart from the fact the 'donation' was in shares and oh yeah Facebook has yet to go public so as yet the shares are worthless. Nice thought though. As for copyrighting 'Face' he'll never get away with it ... what a twat

The Dotterel said...

Just to bring the discussion between yourself and Mr Bananas to a neat conclusion, we actually used to call our old Headmaster 'Le Mal Visage'.

He deserved it!

Very Bored in Catalunya said...

Ah now, this reminds me of the time Victoria Beckham was going to trademark the word 'posh'. I do believe she was trying to get Peterborough United to come up with another nick name other that 'the posh' incase they got muddled up.

London City Mum said...

Okay. That settles it.

I am going to patent the word 'fuck'.

That's it. Payment to usual account please.

LCM x

Steve said...

MMM: apparently "Book" is old technology and is about to be superceded by something called the "kindle".

Emma: twat. Now surely that's a word worthy of being trademarked? I wonder if Mark whatsisface would be interested?

TheDotterel: we just referred to our headmaster as "gay". We plainly had no imagination not to mention no French education.

Very Bored in Catalunya: Posh wanted to trademark the word "posh"? Isn't that like a pauper wanting to trademark the word "rich". If she'd gone for the word "chav" I would have supported her.

LCM: fuck. Wish I'd thought of that. Fuck fuck fuck. How much do I owe you?

Wanderlust said...

Facepalm.

Steve said...

Wanderlust: iFacepalmberrymacPCezine. Got to cover all the bases...

Crystal Jigsaw said...

It's absolute tosh isn't it. Someone obviously had bugger all to do recently and decided to put the idea forward after a particularly long visit to the shit-house. I swear, some of our most "intelligent", "intellectual" and "brainstorming" ideas are made by those who spend far too much time wiping their arses.

CJ xx

susie @newdaynewlesson said...

Steve, thank you once again for making me lol.

Steve said...

CJ: or having their arses wiped by other people, more to the point...

Suzanne: a pleasure.

misssy m said...

And of course this may severely scupper the plans behind this venture! bloody bastardos!

http://misssymartin.blogspot.com/2010/11/faces-by-lorelei.html

Nice wee court case could be good publicity though....

Steve said...

Misssy M: they haven't trademarked it yet... tell your boys to get their album out fast and pip Facebook to the post!

Mark said...

Could I patent the word patent please - or the idea of patent.

Patently ridiculous

Being Me said...

But.... I don't get it. (there's always one) They don't actually use the word Face anywhere outside of their own website. Elsewhere around the net, all you see is the 'f' logo. Why don't they register or trademark their 'f' logo??

Complete lunacy. .......(the moon isn't someone's yet is it? can I still say lunacy?)

Being Me said...

p.s. love the title of this post. Very cute!

Löst Jimmy said...

Bums!
They should trademark the word Bums. I like bums*


*ladies bums, not american street vagabonds that is.

bums™ is much better than face™ so there!

Alienne said...

MacDonalds tried to stop someone from calling their cafe MacDonalds once - but failed. The cafe was called MacDonalds because the bloke that ran it was called - yes, that's right, Mr MacDonald. They couldn't stop that!!

Steve said...

Mark: patent pending. Except I'm trademarking pending. So it's just patent for now.

Being Me: trademark f? I hope not. I like telling people to f off. I'd like to be able to continue to do so. Especially Facebook. ;-)

Löst Jimmy: Bums™book. Nice. Would be fun to poke people. I think you need to get that up and running fast before Mark Zuckerberg gets there first.

Alienne: my God. For the first time ever McDonalds is a source of hope. Now I know the world is truly upside down.

The Sagittarian said...

I dibs 'bollocks'.......and "brown is the new black", thanks in advance.

Clippy Mat said...

No, you were right the first time, Arseholes.
Let's ___________ it, that makes much more sense.
(I am never going to use that word again as a protest if this happens.)
So I will just have to ___________ up to reality.
__________less arseholes.
:-)

Steve said...

Amanda: you can dib my bollocks anytime. Good call.

The Poet Laura-eate said...

I think I will trademark all swear words then anyone who swears will have to pay me a licence fee. No more working for me, yippee!

Seriously, yes, they are not getting MY face!!! And you are totally right about them having a power trip. They have wiped the floor with the opposition and protected their property as much as they need to - what else do they want? People like me will never even use half their services like the dodgy Facebook marketplace etc.

Vicky said...

I bags all the swear words, I will be a millionaire within a couple of hours in our office LOL

Owen said...

Excuse my French, but if they go ahead with that patenting the word "Face" shit, I may just have to go ahead and go out to get shit-Faced; for that facetious farce would really take the cake of facile corporate fascism, or is that now faceism ?

Yikes, let me out of this place!

Oh, and don't forget the Grateful Dead album which foresaw all this lunacy : Steal Your Face ! The title being a line from the first verse of this song :

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yOTWLpSUBM8&feature=related

Steve said...

Clippy Mat: I'm going to trademark all the hyphens and dashes...

Laura: damn. Why didn't I think of that? Does damn count as a swear word? What about fart? They say that on CBBC these days so surely not...?

Vicky: you may have to slug it out with Laura above!

Owen: factually on the ball as normal. I'm thinking of starting my own network site called fascia-book... what do you reckon? Totally different word; they can't object.

Organic Motherhood with Cool Whip said...

I'm amazed at the greed of some corporations. It really is astounding.

Steve said...

Organic Motherhood with Cool Whip: I'm amazed they can face themselves in the mirror...

Wanderlust said...

I'd like to trademark the pregnant pause before a meaningful exchange.

Steve said...

Wanderlust: I am so jealous. I'd love to have a meaningful exchange.

Val said...

Quick! Trademark 'book'. That'll screw 'em!

And if you think trademarking 'face' is stupid, how about the Post Office here in Blighty who've trademarked the colour 'red'. I kid you not.

The film Face/Off springs to mind (boing!) Here's a prequel: Facebook goes back in time and sues John Woo.

Anyway, faced with all that... c'mon over to my blog and enjoy some Billy Connelly to take your mind off all this crapshite.
;)

Steve said...

Val: I'd love to see Facebook trying to sue John Woo! Will try and pop over to yours in my lunchbreak... I could do with a laugh today.

Anonymous said...

post Awesome. Vraiment apprécié la lecture de votre blog.

Steve said...

Anonymous: merci beaucoup!

Anonymous said...

Thanks a lot for writing this, it was unbelieveably informative and told me a ton

Steve said...

Anonymous: thank you tonnes for your very kind comment.

Anonymous said...

Straight to the point and well written! Why can’t everyone else be like this?

Steve said...

Anonymous: I wish I knew.

Anonymous said...

Vrlo lijepo doista da ću vjerojatno skinuti. Hvala

Steve said...

Anonymous: do what? Anyone know what language this is so I can paste it into Google Translate?