First they came for 'face' and I did not speak out because I... have no face? Then they came for 'book'

Don't panic: Off and f*ck still free from Zuckerberg, for now

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Facebook has applied to trademark the word "book" in Europe.

The application is being considered by the European Union Intellectual Property Office. The slurp-happy social network has already been granted rights over the word "face" in the United States. In Europe it has registered variations on its current name for various classifications as well as the original "thefacebook".

To be fair to the world's favourite ad-targeting platform, Facebook is probably not looking to extract a royalty every time you fancy reading something paper-based or try to reserve a table at a restaurant.

Registering a bunch of different trademarks makes it easier for Zuckerberg's legal eagles to go after and stop companies trying to mimic its site or services. Although given Facebook's recent travails, and payment of a $5bn fine which most observers thought was too small, we're not sure too many people would want to be associated with the brand.

In cheerier intellectual property news from the United States, last week the Ohio State University lost its attempt to trademark the word "The". The university is considering whether or not to appeal (the) decision.

Trademarks are no longer restricted to words – they can be sounds, animations, a motion, hologram or even a single colour. ®


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