Apple threatens lawsuit over B.C. school's logo
Published Sunday, October 5, 2008 6:18AM PDT
A small Vancouver Island computer school is battling for its identity after computing giant Apple threatened to sue, arguing the two companies' logos are too similar.
Victoria School of Business denies the logos -- both based on apples -- are related, and says it's going to fight to keep its logo.
"We were absolutely shocked," said Dieter Gerhard, the school's president. "Here's the bigger guy Goliath really coming down on little guy David."
The logo for Apple is recognizable worldwide -- its eponymous apple has a stylized bite out of its right side. The company has been using the symbol for about 30 years.
Victoria Business School's apple logo has been around for only three years. But Gerhard says its design incorporates a mountain and has three bumps on top instead of the two used by Apple.
"We're saying no one can use an apple for anything anymore?" Gerhard said. "An apple's an apple. It should be something that everybody gets to use, especially when our logo is by no means similar to the Apple trademark."
CTV News took the two logos to people on the street and asked them if they looked like one was copied from the other.
Most people said there wasn't that much similarity.
Corporations spend big bucks on logos and they'll go to great lengths to protect them.
In 2003, coffee giant Starbucks threatened to sue Haidabucks, a small caf� in the Queen Charlotte Islands. And in 2004, the Olympic rings and torches at a pizza restaurant drew the ire of the Vancouver Olympic Organizing Committee.
Gerhard is hoping public support will force Apple to back off. A poll on the school's website already has more than 1,000 responses, mostly in favour of the school.
With a report from CTV British Columbia's Jina You