Company: Microsoft's Windows campaign violates trademark

Small virtual-OS company G.ho.st says Microsoft's use of the phrase "no walls" in its Windows marketing campaign violates its trademark.

G.ho.st, a startup that offers a hosted operating system, has accused Microsoft of violating a company trademark with its prominent use of the phrase "no walls" in its recently unveiled US$300 million Windows marketing and advertising campaign.

A letter from G.ho.st CEO Zvi Schreiber sent to Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer last Tuesday asked the company to stop using the phrases "life without walls," "imagine without walls" and "imagine no walls" on its products, Web site, marketing materials, advertising and other promotions and agree in writing to stop using these phrases by the close of business last Thursday.

As of Monday, Microsoft was still using the phrases in its campaign. Microsoft spokesman Michael Marinello said via e-mail Monday that the company acknowledged it had received Schreiber's letter but "the allegation is without merit."

Schreiber said G.ho.st has been using the phrase "no walls" to describe its G.ho.st Virtual Computer product, which is a hosted OS that runs in a virtual environment and is what he calls a "conceptual alternative to Windows," since April 2007.

Microsoft's use of "life without walls," "imagine without walls" and "imagine no walls" and their prominence on the marketing campaign "are virtually identical ... to our trademark," he wrote.

However, according to a record with the US Patent and Trademark Office, G.ho.st has not yet officially trademarked the phrase and only filed an application to do so last Tuesday, the day it sent Microsoft the letter.

Schreiber also suggested in the letter that Microsoft's use of the phrase "is designed to scare off potential investors in G.ho.st or partners of G.ho.st and prevent us from giving our innovative Virtual Computer solution a fair chance in the market place."

In addition to no longer using the phrase, G.ho.st also has requested that Microsoft publish "in the same media where these marks were displayed or advertised" clarification that it has not licensed G.ho.st's technology or trademark and that it doesn't offer the same "features or benefits of the G.ho.st Virtual Computer. "

Additionally, G.ho.st is asking Microsoft negotiate a "good faith" license for the past use of what the company believes is its trademark.

G.ho.st did not respond to a request for comment Monday about whether it would take legal action against Microsoft to resolve the matter. The company was founded in 2006 and has about 40 employees in Israel and the West Bank.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Elizabeth Montalbano

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?