Comparing Apples to Apples: Apple vs. Wooworths

Do these look similar to you?


According to Apple corp, th e one on the left may be too similar to the one on the right.

The other day Julia and I went to a coffee shop together to work on our stuff. When she opened her laptop I was shocked to see the Apple Logo on it! I thought she was still using the old hand me down laptop from grandpa on which I had installed Linux.

“Where did you get the Mac???” I said.

“What?” she looked at me quizically. Then a grin as she realized what I was talking about. “That apple thingie came with my iPod. I stuck it on this old clunker so I’d look cool in the coffee shop.”

So, that proves that at least some people recognize the Apple Logo and think it is cool

So, regarding the logo shown above:

WOOLWORTHS insists its new logo is a stylised W, …

Hahahahahaah!!!!! (oh, sorry, …. ok, back to the story)

…or a piece of fresh produce;

What? They don’t know? Produce? WTF?

Apple thinks it is an apple, and the California-based technology company wants to stop Australia’s largest retailer from using it.

Apple has mounted a legal challenge to prevent Woolworths from using the logo that now adorns its trucks, stores and products, arguing it is too close to its own.

That’s a big story for Australia, which is where this story comes from. The big story in the US, of course, is “why are there so many Woolworths in Australia? What’s up with that?”

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0 thoughts on “Comparing Apples to Apples: Apple vs. Wooworths

  1. again?

    didn’t apple do exactly the same shit last year with the “GreenNYC” logo?

    Why do I get the feeling they think they have some right to all remotely apple-shaped logos in the world…

  2. oh, and also, my boyfriend did the same thing as Julia: his acer netbook has a fat apple sticker on the back, just to confuse people.

  3. It’s not an apple, it’s a green tomato. Or a capsicum. Or a pumpkin.

    And of course everyone is going to walk into a supermarket when they really meant to walk into an Apple store.

    Although, seriously, AFAIK, the objection is to Woolworths trying to get a blanket trademark, including electronic products.

  4. The Woolworths stores in Australia (and NZ) are supermarkets operated by Woolworths Limited, which is totally unrelated to the F.W.Woolworth (five and dime) company that once operated stores in the US, UK, and some other European countries.

  5. That’s ridiculous. You can’t say that nobody can use an apple in their logo because your logo is an apple. For it to be an infringement, it should have to be a similar apple – have a bite out of it and have the stem tilted to the right, for instance. The Woolworths apple (or pumpkin, or persimmon) is way too different to be an copy of Apple’s apple.

  6. I am an American living in Queensland. A few months ago I took my girlfriend to the US. Upon returning to Australia she saw the new Woolworths logo and commented that it looks very similar to the ‘W’ in Walgreens. I must admit, it really does. At no point did I think it resembled the ‘apple’.

  7. As an Australian, I’m not convinced this is a big story at all 😛

    Amusing though.

    I would like to know what Apple thinks they are losing because of this logo? People go to Wollies thinking that they’re going to an Apple store? People start associating Apple with actual apples? People have tried to explain these kinds of things to me before, and I never get it.

  8. I agree with Jeremy. The only reason this is a story is a big international company is picking on a local company (one that everyone local hates in all local news stories).

    Can Apple show they are losing significant money from people going into their stores to buy groceries, meat, fruit and veges?

    How much money are Apple losing from people who go to Woolworths to buy a computer and leave with dinner for the night?

  9. I’m declaring prior art:

    You can’t trademark a fruit. Or a word of the English (or any other) language. Or a surname. Etc. Apple is all of the above.

    See Nissan Motor Company Vs. Uzi Nissan/Nissan Computers for obnoxious court battles that take a decade(and counting) and millions of dollars to drag to a close when any idiot on the street can answer it in 3 seconds. It’s the guy’s name. He has a right to it.

  10. “A corporation is required to actively protect this stuff, because failure to do so is a legitimate defense by potential infringers.”

    Nonsense. No corporation is required to assert a facially baselss claim, in order to defend a future legitimate claim. They do, for the reasons you suggest, but they don’t have to. Indeed, if they assert this, they should be required under the law to pay all the attorneys fees for the company they bother with this nonsense.

  11. Of course corporations have to defend themselves against the most trivial perceived infringements – they have to keep their lawyers busy!

    If I remember correctly (and I could well be wrong), Apple Computer paid off Apple Records.

    There had also been stinks when (ca. 15 years ago) an Apple product (computer) was internally named “Sagan” and later, a language was called “Dylan” (for “Dynamic Language”). Bob, of course, thought that a compact disc saying “Dylan” on it would confuse people or something, although I (in my personal opinion) would think that, played on a standard CD player, his CDs would sound a bit better.

    (That had apparently been a hinge-point on some of the legal issues, when software began to be distributed on CDs.)

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