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Apple cult leader Steve Jobs has communicated with the outside world. As revealed by Crunchgear, Jobs recently sent an 11-word email to a longtime Mac developer who had come groveling to the cult leader after being threatened by a band of Apple lawyers. John Devor is the CEO of The Little App Factory, a tiny shareware outfit …

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Boffin

Confirmed

As if the world really needed confirmation that Jobs is a greedy heartless @sshole.

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what about 'iPo drip' with tight tracking?

Where is the 'Steve is a bit of a twat in RL' icon?

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Jobs Horns

What a twit

I still don't understand why you mac types put up with this guy.

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JWS
FAIL

Brief!

Classic. I say change the software to brick all the hardware thus creating a huge warranty push for Apple. Oh and yet another good reason to never use Apple tech.

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Jobs Horns

Reality check

Although little can be done to help the poor guy, "not much of a deal" tends to prove that Jobs lost contact with reality. A name change IS a huge deal even for mainstream products backed by deep-pocketed companies and top PR agencies. For a niche shareware vendor it merely means death.

But short of buying the company there's nothing Jobsie can do, presumably. He can't afford to lose the iPod trademark, which is what will happen if he doesn't defend it.

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Jobs Horns

If it's not that big a deal...

Then why are they suing?

Yes, it's an infringement but it's not that big a deal.

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Coat

Actually....

Apple just has a huge problem with their email systems, and this is the second mail of a few thousands that actually managed to reach its recipient.

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FAIL

There's your glorious leader

Assuming that that message really came from Steve Jobs :

Ouch. I wonder what Stevie would have said if he had that "change your name" reply during the whole thing with Apple Corps... I love my Macs, but Jobs can go hang if that is really the line Apple decides to follow.

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Silver badge

@What a twit

He's no more or less of a twit than Ballmer. And both are fantastic people compared to wider tech types like Jimmy Wales, so I don't really see that it's an issue.

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Jobs Halo

What he should have said...

"from iPods and iPhones in the event of a serious hardware failure on their Mac"

I thought that all apple product were immune from such peecee things as hardware failure, thus this software is completely useless and he should give up being in the software industry and forking bell gob ack 2 skool.

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Bronze badge
Jobs Horns

Very disprepectful

This is very unacceptable behavior for a CEO. First he used an informal style in a business reply, Second he didn't even put forth an argument or any reasoning AT ALL (just like his followers), and he sent it from his PHONE, something that should only be done when an urgent message needs to be sent and are away from a computer, and should never be done to a customer.

Doesn't he have an assistant to send these things anyway? And doesn't he realized the cost in changing the name of a well-established product? John states in his letter that his product depends on word-of-mouth for advertising, of course Steve only cares about himself and his pocketbook.

Any other business or even politics, and this would be suicide

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Silver badge

Not necessarily an infringement

>Yes, it's an infringement but it's not that big a deal.

That's upto a court to decide.

Apple would have to prove that customers were confused between the Apple music hardware and this software.

If I want to write an app called "SQLServerBackup" then as long as I don't claim that it is a MSFT product (passing off) then I'm safe. The usual way to do this is a bit of small print saying "all trademarks are the property of their owners".

That MSFT goes ape on anybody using the name of their products in another app (like wxWindows) shows how shaky they believe their position is.

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Oh for crying out loud!

Everyone knows that you can't use Apple product names for your products. It's simple. You can call you app "MyApp for Mac" but not "MyMacApp", essentially in the former your app is called "MyApp" and it's OK to tag "for Mac" on the end. The same is true of iPhone app's and iPod app's.

Seriously, why is this a surprise? Apple doesn't want it's trademarks diluted - this makes sense. So what's the problem? Don't put Apple product names in the name of your product, then you won't need to change the name.

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Gold badge

And that's why...

And that's why I would not write software for Apple products.

Apple gives an impression of being carefree and nice, while in fact being quite litigous compared to any other computer vendor I know of. I mean, it doesn't usually come to an actual lawsuit, but C&Ds and such are par for the course for them. It's hard to get frank information on certain model's repeat failures (and in some cases where it's repairable, how to fix it short of complete system or motherboard replacement), any discussion of this type in forums is either blocked by legal pressure or devolves into a "just buy a new one" type of argument.

IPhone specific, of course, but I also wouldn't want to deal with the byzantine app process either, or even worse have an app accepted then find out the followup is rejected.

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Unhappy

Thankful for being poor

am now pretty glad that currently I cant afford a macbook pro so have paid 50% less for a dell with 85% of the spec of the mac i was looking at. CEOs may often be c*nts but that doesnt mean they deserve a let-off for proving it in public.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Not necessarily an infringement

"If I want to write an app called "SQLServerBackup""

Although it wouldn't surprise me if "SQL Server" were trademarked - a bit like the abomination that is the Windows trademark - such a name, derived from the generic terms "SQL", "server" and "backup" would be safer to defend from predatory Microsoft behaviour. What about something like OracleBackup, though?

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JDB
Jobs Horns

jerk

I understand Apple's side, and actually agree with it - but if Jobs is notorious for almost *never* answering email, and *this* is the one he decides to respond to, and *that's* what he tells a loyal Apple customer and developer - jerk.

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Jobs Halo

So what ?

Sometimes it's time to learn the mechanics of how this all works together.

Assuming that 'iPod' is a registered Trademark - :-) - it's not (even) anywhere near rocket science to also assume that any product name coupled with it will have to be very, very carefully checked out by legal folks for appropriateness .

In case of doubt what I mean here, develope an app, say a spreadsheed, and

call it 'Like Microsoft - but better' and than wait for the hammer to hit you.

Kinda find it nice from Steve to reply, even the content I like. You know how it is, If you want to play with the big boys, you're better wide awake.

Writing this from an Apple Macbook & wishing you a lively discussion, enjoy.

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Jobs Halo

So what ?

Sometimes it's time to learn the mechanics of how this all works together.

Assuming that 'iPod' is a registered Trademark - :-) - it's not (even) anywhere near rocket science to also assume that any product name coupled with it will have to be very, very carefully checked out by legal folks for appropriateness .

In case of doubt what I mean here, develope an app, and

call it ' Microsoft - Data saver' and than wait for the hammer to hit you.

Kinda find it nice from Steve to reply, even the content I like. You know how it is, If you want to play with the big boys, you're better wide awake.

Writing this from an Apple Macbook & wishing you a lively discussion, enjoy.

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Response

"So if it's not that big of (sic) a deal, you do it, Jobsie."

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Paris Hilton

law is law dood

And I'd guess that the legal bill for setting precedent in undermining Apple copyright stuff is not going to sit well with shareholders.

No matter how sweet an app, how neat and treat an app are ...

But there again I guess all previous posters know that too?

(Was not there some discussion about El Reg's vulture icon?)

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FAIL

Apple Corps vs Apple Computer

If it's not that big a deal...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apple_Corps_v._Apple_Computer

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call it iPoodcleanup

for when you Pod Poo's ...

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Coat

Change your apps name to...

iRip

or

ripiPod

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Pretty basic stuff, really

If you don't defend your trademark and allow it to be used in generic terms, you run a very real risk of losing your exclusive rights to the trademark That's how companies lost their exclusive use of names like nylon and why Xerox does everything they can to not let photocopying become "xeroxed". If you don't send the legal letters, you ultimately lose.

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Pint

He's not that bad...

If you want rude, try reading the linux kernel mailing list sometime and read Linus's replies to people - anyone remember the Alan Cox issue a few months back?

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Bronze badge

Getting too familiar now

How about Apple changes its name to Numbskull Control Freaks Inc? Not that big a deal.

It amazes me just how quickly Apple have managed to destroy their credibility and reputation by the simple step of wanting to retain ownership of devices after they have sold them.

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Bronze badge

Apostrophes?

There's an app for that.

Grammar, not so much.

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Apple had to do the same...

Remember Rendezvous, which is now Bonjour.

I recall there were a couple of other instances where Apple had to change names on shipping products.

So, the response seems to come from past experience.

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Anonymous Coward

Not exactly the same, but...

Changing product names is a little bit of a deal:

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/01/11/cisco_sues_iphone/

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Gates Halo

If Steve Jobs wasn't an @sshole...

...he would have at least offered to help out with a link page or so for people googling the 'previously known as ipodrip' app.

It IS a big deal for a small biz which might be low on cashflow.

For someone big on marketing, Jobs sure is smearing the shit over his brand. Never thought Bill Gates would me made to look the one with the bigger heart.

I feel better now about my blackberry clone at least having a proper keyboard.

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@ SimpleUser

that's the problem with those silly mice - never know whether you've hit send once or twice eh?

> Kinda find it nice from Steve to reply, even the content I like

my god you ARE gullible aren't you?

twunt

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Jobs Horns

Steve Jobs = Monty Burns

It's like that scene in the Simpsons Movie where Apu, Wiggum and another character ask Monty Burns to keep providing electricity to Springfield and Apu says "just look into your heart."

Jobs is a ruthless businessman, so appealing for leniency from him was never going to happen!

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Pirate

Apple iPod ??

http://wiki.answers.com/Q/Where_did_Apple_get_the_name_for_the_iPod

To quote:

Even though the person who came up with the name lives on an aged

Pension. yet Steve Jobs going by Forbes has a net worth of $5.8 Billion

US Dollars. What is it they say about karma. And remember Steve you cant

take it with you. At least talk to the Author personally Do the right thing.

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Jobs Halo

"Flight" of the Navigator??

Compliant..........

http://thelittleappfactory.com/irip/

Not a big deal!

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I feel for the guy

Lets say you run a Mac company and want to run a google adword advertising your services, you can't use the word Mac or Apple in your ad!

Its worth noting that Apple recently had to change the name of its mighty mouse because of trademark infringement.

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Coat

Fresh aire.

I love it. This is exactly how I would respond if I wouldn't fear getting fired. Screw customers. Love their money. Go go Jobbo.

Mine's the one with the handmedownmacbookpro in the extra wide pockets.

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Huh..

that is a bit harsh!

Being a Mac fan I usually avoid these threads, but I have to say, what a cock!

'It's not what you say, it's how you say it.' - My mum

Really, would it have been that tough to reply in a professional way?

As a developer and Apple user, this had really tainted my view on Apple as whole.

So yea, they are probably in wrong (legally) for using iPod, but stil, a polite reply stating why..

Meh, might skip that Airport after all...

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h 6
Thumb Up

Same in the Auto industry

Hi. I'm a small manufacturer of windshild wipers for the Honda Accord. We have been making them

since 2003, and our customers tell us they are the tops. However, we received a letter from a law firm representing your company, Honda, saying we were violating your trademark because our wipers are called Accord Wipers.

Etc., etc.

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Jobs Horns

The morale of the story is...

you shouldn't have dropped out of school to pin your future on iCrap.

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FAIL

Perhaps I'm cynical, but...

...I seriously doubt Jobs actually sent this email. I'm sure the LittleApp guy sent his message, didn't get any response and then made up this story so he could buckle to Apple's legal demands whilst getting free publicity from El Reg for the name change.

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Paris Hilton

@ Dale Richards

"I'm sure the LittleApp guy sent his message, didn't get any response and then made up this story so he could buckle to Apple's legal demands whilst getting free publicity from El Reg for the name change."

Naaah. Actually Apple died right after the AppleII but the LittleApp guy spen his time convincing people that the company was still alive. He released a couple computers and portable electronic devices, and has been impersonating S. Jobs for the last 15 years. Now his evil plan is complete: he might be able to include the sequence * i p o d * in his product name!. The world is his! Nyarrrh Nyarrrh Nyarrh!

Seriously, you first name is really Paris, right?

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Jobs Horns

Silly Laws and Bad Attitude

I think part of the problem is that in the US, if you don't actively protect your trademark (i.e. sue everyone in sight), you can lose it.

Apple could have come to agreement where they licensed the trademark to The Little App Factory for a nominal fee, thus protecting the trademark and without f**king them over.

I suspect Apple doesn't like the software as it's basis is that hardware failure happens, something Apple "Designed in California made in China" don't like to admit to.

Apple, with it's institutional control freakery as instilled by Steve Jobs from the beginning (the other Steve being the reverse), really doesn't like 3rd party developers.

As for the idea that changing the name is no big deal, it's plainly ridiculous.

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If this response is genuine...

...and regardless of the legalities of the case then I despair for Mr Job's displaying such poor attitude.

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Boffin

"we have approximately 6 million customers"

... of an app to recover from catastrophic Jobsian HW failure.

Glad I have a £20 MP3 player upon which I only have copies of files that are rips from my CD collection. If it dies, it'll be hit with an FBH* to save my data falling into the wrong hands, I'll buy a new one and move right along.

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Re: Perhaps I'm cynical, but...

I'm with Dale on this, if it had really been sent from Steve Jobs iPhone (see what I did there ;->), the sig. wouldn't have been "Sent from my iPhone". More likely it would have been a 100,000 word copyright notice and disclaimer.

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Paris Hilton

@ Sanctamonious @?*$%

"that's why I would never buy / develop for whatever platform *"

Funny, when I hear talk of a hardware / software purchase, it's generally in terms of performance per £.

From the tone of the comments I guess I must have found the home of an exclusive group of open source developers, who'd quickly show a middle finger when Darth Ellision comes knocking with his billions to buy you out, or Random Corp. comes asking for a support contract.

Perhaps you build your own computers. What processors are you using? If your attitude was genuine, you wouldn't own a calculator, let alone a pc.

Wake up and smell the shit you're knee deep in.

Paris, because with her hardware, you can claim any opinion and still deserve a free service contract.

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Anonymous Coward

Erm no big deal.

Erm, so they have in fact not litigated against this app for over 5 years? Would anybody be surprised that in the next iteration of apple (with a little a) there will be some sort of data recovery tool?

I the whole Jobs is a twat (and he is), we are missint the fact that while mac hardware is no more magical then anybody elses the reason we choose (and yes i am a mac user) is because they work in way that is right for us, and the reason this happens is because Jobs is a twat and a control freak.

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He should change it to...

... iP0dRip (with zero instead of O) or xPodRip

but that doesn't change the fact he'll use the search engine optimizations and users won't recognize the brand when a update appears...

He should just email all users letting them know in advance about everything.

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