Re: Grammar and usage

Subject: Re: Grammar and usage
From: Barb Philbrick <barb -dot- philbrick -at- PCOHIO -dot- COM>
Date: Sun, 15 Jan 1995 16:54:00 -0500

JB>Seems logical, doesn't it? Free advertising.

JB>However, their stand is that when their name becomes a generic for a
JB>group of products, not only do they they lose their trademark, they
JB>lose all possibility of claiming the qualities a mgf claims in
JB>selling a specific product. Besides, when you call your broken-down,
JB>unreliable copier a "xerox," well, you get the picture.

When something becomes generic, other manufacturers can start using it
on their products. I'm not sure how the law determines when something
become generic. For instance, "Yellow Pages" could not be trademarked,
so other firms can use the same name - there's a firm here in Cleveland
that provides a business-to-business directory that doesn't require you
to have a business phone that calls itself the "Yellow Pages." I
personally don't think it's a great marketing idea, but they can use the
term freely.

Xerox had a great ad they used to run in _Writer's Digest_ that showed a
graveyard of previously trademarked terms that had become generic. Terms
they showed with grave markers included: escalator, trampoline, raisin
bran, lanolin, cube steak, high octane, nylon, mimeograph, kerosene, and
cornflakes. The text above the cartoon stated:

"They were once proud trademarks, now they're just names. They failed to
take precautions that would have helped them have a long and prosperous
life.

"We need your help to stay out of there. Whenever you use our name,
please use it as a proper adjective in conjunction with our products and
services: e.g., Xerox copiers or Xerox financial services. And never as
a verb: "To Xerox" in place of "copy," or as a noun: "Xeroxes" in place
of "copies."

"With your help and a precaution or two on our part, it's "Once the
Xerox trademark, always the Xerox trademark."

barb -dot- philbrick -at- pcohio -dot- com
---
* CMPQwk 1.4 #9107 * These cookies don't taste anything like girl scouts!

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