Microsoft Sued for Trademark Infringement on 'Office Live'

Dennis Faas's picture

I wonder if Microsoft knew all of the roadblocks it would run into when it decided to pursue the "Live" moniker?

Recently, Microsoft came under some heat from emailers frustrated at the company's decision to change "Windows Live Mail" to "Windows Live Hotmail." The name game drama has not stopped for Microsoft, which has recently been slapped with a lawsuit claiming trademark infringement on the name "Office Live."

A company called Office Live filed the lawsuit last Friday, asking courts to grant an injunction against Microsoft using the name for its online office and web application suite. (Source:

Office Live has held the trademark to the name since 2002. Although the company had originally filed a suit in December, the suit was put on hold for negotiations. When talks recently broke down, the company decided to refile the lawsuit. (Source:

"Microsoft seems to think that it can do whatever it wants just because we are a much smaller company," said Office Live's CEO Lenny Targon. "It is shocking that Microsoft would have so little regard for another company's intellectual property rights that it would select a name belonging to another company. Online software may be the next big thing, but Microsoft has no right to use our trademark without permission." (Source:

Microsoft, on the other hand, maintains that it has the right to use the name. Spokesperson Jack Evans said that Microsoft doubts the legitimacy of the trademark and says that the company will "vigorously defend" its right to maintain the name for its service. (Source:

"Clearly, if anyone is seeking to gain from the name of another company's products, it's the plaintiffs in this case," he said. (Source:

Although this may seem like a David and Goliath match up, the fact that Office Live and Microsoft Office Live offer many of the same functions could help Office Live in their case. If so, Microsoft may have to rename one of its services yet again. (Source:

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