The Fight Over the Word “Spam”

By Deane Barker on October 12, 2006

EU Rejects Spam Maker’s Trademark Bid: This phenomenon is interesting. The company that makes Spam has essentially lost their name — it was stolen by the rest of the world and there’s nothing they can do about it. Even if they claim a legal victory, it’s not going to help them. They’re never getting the word back in any meaningful sense.

The producer of the canned pork product Spam has lost a bid to claim the word as a trademark for unsolicited e-mails. EU trademark officials rejected Hormel Foods Corp.’s appeal, dealing the company another setback in its struggle to prevent software companies from using the word “spam” in their products, a practice it argued was diluting its brand name.