• Colin Kealty

    There's clearly something very wrong with the legal system if people would even think to do this..

    • http://AndroidPolice.com/ Liam Spradlin

      I'd say if someone thinks to do this, the problem lies in their thought process, not the system that enables them to pursue totally frivolous suits.

      • Colin Kealty

        Let's settle for both, I definitely agree there's something wrong with even trying to pursue this but I think that's rather obvious haha

    • n0th1ng_r3al

      There is nothing wrong with the legal system. Being able to sue over this is what is right with the legal system. It's all in the person who decides to sue.

  • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

    John Legere to literally everyone: ╭∩╮(︶︿︶)╭∩╮

    I like the guy - he's fantastic at press events, but come on.

    • remister

      For that, everyone must follow his twitter, It is hilarious!

    • Jeffrey Singleton

      You owe me a new pair of pants. I laughed so hard I split the ones I am wearing.

      • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

        Bill them to John Legere.

  • http://AndroidPolice.com/ Liam Spradlin

    As far as I'm aware, most companies use the Pantone Matching System for brand colors and consistency across media. I'm sure that AT&T and T-Mobile use PMS colors.

    Even if these two colors were the exact same (they obviously aren't), there still wouldn't be a problem as far as I can tell. There are tons of brands that use the same PMS colors. The difference is the brand itself and any trademark-able elements that happen to be colored.

    Now that I think about it, I'm not sure why I'm even trying to reason this out. It's hilarious.

    • http://platypus.blox.pl/ najodleglejszy

      PMS, heuhuehuehuehuehueuheuheu #feellikea12yo

    • n0th1ng_r3al

      Are there a ton of phone companies that use the same colors? Because we are talking about cellular phones, not Margaret's Baked Pies. I usually don't agree with most lawsuits but I agree with this one. T-Mobile's color is Magenta and has been for years. I agree it isn't exactly the same but it's close enough. I hope T-Mobile wins.

  • http://www.ScienceProUSA.com SciencePro

    Suing the competition? Not very "UNCARRIER" of them

    • Justin Foster

      Oh, T-Mobile isn't a carrier anymore? When'd they stop selling mobile phones lol? They're a non - contractual carrier.

      • Matthew Fry

        Come on man. He's quoting T-Mobile. They said Uncarrier.

        • Justin Foster

          No mobile for you!!!

  • Matt

    I can't say I entirely blame them. It at least makes more sense than suing Engadget Mobile, though that was the German part of the company. Aio Wireless was pretty much created to directly compete with T-Mobile USA, and you usually don't see similar color schemes between competing carriers (It's not like Virgin Mobile really competes with Verizon).

    • http://AndroidPolice.com/ Liam Spradlin

      The fact that the two services compete with one another doesn't really create a valid problem with brand colors, though. If the two were the exact same color match, I'd be more inclined to see it as a jab, but still not really a pursuit that T-Mobile is likely to win.

      • Matt

        I agree that T-Mobile is likely to lose it, but that doesn't necessarily mean that it's not worth defending. The Magenta is a huge part of their branding, and paying money to defend intellectual property can add book value to a brand. Plus, a google images search for Aio Wireless shows a few logos that are a bit more similar to the T-Mobile Magenta. Does that justify the lawsuit? I don't know, but there are valid reasons that T-Mobile is going to the trouble for it.

        • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/eric-ravenscraft/ Eric Ravenscraft

          The fact that we're even talking about a single color (and, apparently, its close relatives) as "intellectual property" is one of the worst possible things we can be arguing about. And even by the standards that permit a company to have a trademark on a color, this lawsuit is a huge stretch. Why don't we save humanity the trouble and not throw our support behind the CEO that talks to dolls while he sues people because their colors look kind of like his?

          • Matt

            The real problem is that in accounting, any money you spend defending intellectual property (which, in this case, includes color as part of branding) can be counted towards the value of the brand. Let's say T-Mobile puts the company up for sale, or there was an investor looking into buying part of or all of the company (both of which have come up many times in the recent past). They can count the money spent on this lawsuit as part of the monetary value of the brand.

            Is it stupid? Yes. Should John be going nuts over Twitter about it? No. But it makes business sense. Not to mention, they have a slight chance of at least slowing Aio's spread, or causing additional hassle for at&t. Aio was arguably only ever created in the first place to compete with T-Mobile, as at&t's normal plans are outside of T-Mobile's price range.

          • RTWright

            Colors should never be a part of any sort of Intellectual Property, period, ever, at all! Colors universal and that's like a certain company suing the other over having a rectangular shape with rounded corners, it's stupid. I don't care about AT&T and T-Mobile pretty much sucks anyway as far as their quality of signal and service. Sprint ( which I'm on ) isn't much better either. But this color lawsuit is the biggest crock of crap to come along since all of these stupid lawsuits between Samsung and crApple!

          • Marcus

            True, but you would only capitalize the legal costs if T-Mobile won the suit. Otherwise, the legal costs are expensed, which would lower the value of the company.

          • PhillipCun

            If AT&T purposely picked this color to make a correlation to consumers with TMO's strategy, it IS an issue. A big one.

          • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/eric-ravenscraft/ Eric Ravenscraft

            It is CATASTROPHIC. How can T-Mobile survive if another regional carrier has a color that is vaguely similar to-I can't even continue to pretend to sarcastically care about this non-issue. The net effect is lawyers make money and no one gives a fuck.

          • Matthew Fry

            It's obviously not catastrophic, you're being hyperbolic to make his argument seem invalid. The problem is that there is hard to deny intent involved. These carriers have established color schemes and you don't choose your brand design willy nilly. Companies are excruciatingly detailed in how you must present things going to customers because they recognize that brand recognition is a big deal.

          • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/eric-ravenscraft/ Eric Ravenscraft

            No, I'm being hyperbolic do make his argument seem as dumb as it is. Absolutely no one is going to confuse Aio wireless with T-Mobile because of a color alone. Trademark laws are designed such that a company cannot create Moca-Cola in a bright red bottle with a cursive logo and make money off consumers who don't pay too close attention. It is not intended to give companies a monopoly on a *color*. Even if you were right, even if Aio evilly twiddled its fingers as it "excruciatingly" copied T-Mobile's trademark magenta (and failed), the company has lifted exactly zero else. Nothing. Not one bit. No logo, no designs, no brand names, nothing. This is not what Trademark law is for. If we start doling out monopolies based on which company used a family of colors, we'll be limited to a handful of companies in a given field before too long. This is not the point of trademark law.

            Even if you could prove intent to infringe (you can't—not because there is no proof, but because it didn't fucking happen, that's dumb), there will be no actual damage to T-Mobile. Nothing legally defensible anyway. Trademark infringement deals with whether or not a design resembles another closely enough that a reasonable person could assume they're related. No reasonable person could assume Aio and T-Mobile are related based purely on the color alone. If a friend asked you if they were the same company because they both kind of have the same color sort of, you'd give them a blank stare before walking away, shaking your head. There's no damage here. This is a non-issue.

          • Matthew Fry

            I'm sure you're right about the trademark law. I honestly have no knowledge on the subject. That was never my point. If T-Mobile loses the suit it doesn't change the fact that AT&T made a stupid choice; be it either complete and utter incompetence as you suggest or ill intent as I find much more likely.

          • Matt

            I don't think that this will be damaging to T-Mobile. But I do think that, despite the utter stupidity of the case, there are legal and monetary reasons to pursue it. If anything, they're doing it so that they can get a story published to make it appear that AT&T is knocking off their brand in order to unfairly compete. Whether that will work, I don't know. Such things tend to backfire. If I were CEO of T-Mobile right now, I would not pursue the case, and if I did, I wouldn't be so vocal about it on Twitter.

            As far as colors go, it just depends on the industry. Some of the biggest movie theater chains in America use red as their primary color (AMC and Cinemark come to mind). The mobile industry has always used color as a differentiator of brand, as I said earlier, no two competing carriers have used the same color as each other (there are a few collisions among very small MVNOs and whatnot, but pretty much any major carrier uses different colors).

        • Ishimaru

          Their logo looks like a twig and berries. I'll leave the actual phrase out, since it might be a little crude for some people. ;)

          • Cheeseball

            TESTICLES damn it.

  • PrDawg

    HaHaa. I'm not colorblind so 2 totally different colors. Defense rests it's case. Case dismissed due to lack of evidence. lol

    • Ixil

      I am colour blind and I can see the difference...

  • GhostRecon55

    Wait, what? So then, every time you buy a blue Chevy, Ford Motor Company can sue Chevrolet for color stealing?

    • Berto

      Not really the same logic. If Ford sued Chevy for using roughly the same color of blue for their logo, then you would have matching ideas.

      • GhostRecon55

        What? Confused.

        • Berto

          Your comparison seemingly fails because you are comparing color of logo to color of product. This is color of logo versus color of logo.

          • GhostRecon55

            What's the difference? If the colors are the same, then it's color vs color.

          • Berto

            Not quite. Your comparison would be equivalent to T-Mobile suing ATT for making a magenta-colored phone which would be even more absurd. T-Mobile is most likely arguing that ATT is trying to confuse customers and leverage T-Mobile's good press by taking their -- for lack of a better word -- iconic color. I feel like it's the same reasoning Apple sued Samsung for making a rectangular-shaped device where the the touchscreen consumes most of the front-end. Apple had a stronger case, sure, but I feel like T-Mobile thinks that's what is happening to them.

          • Matthew Fry

            I think it's the opposite. My windows mobile phone prior to the iphone was a rectangular shaped touchscreen and no matter what Apple says, it's the same logical conclusion of touchscreen devices many people made. On the other hand, you have so many options in choosing a color, especially a solid one. The Samsung/Apple thing may have been deliberate but I think intent is much easier to see in this case.

          • RTWright

            And I don't remember hearing if Apple ever won that suit. Because then they'd have to bring suit against ALL OEM's because everyone makes a rectangular shape with rounded corners. I'd like someone to bring a suit against Apple for using a Fruit as a logo, since they didn't design it, it's natures work ;p

          • RTWright

            Technically you're wrong, colors being trademarked is no different if it's a logo or a product. If we were to allow colors to be trademarked then it wouldn't matter what they're being used for, trademarked is trademarked and that's it. I do hope this lawsuit gets laughed right out of court and does not give either of these two goons the right to defend either of their reasons for this travesty, a waste of the courts time that could be used for more important means.

          • Berto

            Actually, technically, you're incorrect. As a trademark holder, you have to prove that there is damage being inflicted upon your brand. You can read more about it from Nilay's post: http://www.engadget.com/2007/11/09/know-your-rights-does-t-mobile-really-own-magenta/

          • RTWright

            Sorry but colors are not able to be Trademarked, as they are used in far more than just Branding. I don't care what you read on Endgadget, they're not lawyers, they're not legal representatives of any kind. I've worked in the Art industry too long to know that colors are in no way able to be copyrighted / trademarked unless they can come up with an Original Color created BY them for them and them only and it not match any of the standard colors already set out by PMS standards. Because if that were the case, we'd been seeing a lot of lawsuits over color matching in the past before this ever came up. The chances of someone creating a color that has not already been done, is the same chances of a musician writing a melody that doesn't have likeness to another....

          • Berto

            Please research the topic before commenting on it. The article even clearly points to precedence when including colors in a trademark registration.

          • RTWright

            No it's you that needs a lesson in Trademarks and Copyrights. You cannot take anything already exists for open use and claim it as yours. You HAVE to create an ORIGINAL, UNIQUE color if you wish to claim it yours! Where they would have an argument is if the LOGO itself was not only same in color but style, then the DESIGN would be able to brought into play. But the COLORS would not be a valid point because they're used too widespread by Companies everywhere. Like I said, I've been in the Print / Graphics industry for too many years, you can't claim Magenta as something you created.... You can claim DESIGN but not COLOR!

          • Berto

            I think you're not understanding why T-Mobile is actually suing or the basis of their case. You also clearly ignored the second sentence where I specifically pointed out that there is legal precedence mentioned in this article for what T-Mobile is attempting to do.

  • yodatom10

    and the stupidest lawsuit of the month goes to AT&T

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

      T-Mobile is suing, not AT&T.

    • kenjab

      *facepalm*

  • Tim Barreto

    this is becoming more stupid every single time
    copyright should be revised and transformed into something different

  • Ishimaru

    This is almost as bad as when they (TMo) sued Engadget Mobile for the use of magenta in their logo. lol

    http://www.engadget.com/2008/03/31/deutsche-telekom-t-mobile-demands-engadget-mobile-discontinue/

    • http://halljake.com Jake Hall

      I like how your link has a little chart in it that shows exactly why T-Mobile has a valid argument in this case:

      Is Aio a:
      Cellphone Carrier? yes
      Distributor of telecom equipment? yes
      Likely to be mistaken for T-Mobile? quite possibly (and that will be T-Mobile's argument)

      the rest were digs at Deutsche Telekom but those three points are very valid to this discussion...

  • yodatom10

    i deserve that

  • Jose Torres

    Looks as if T-Mo is getting back at AT&T for not buying them out. This is NOT the best way to do it.

  • Brian Menius

    You're doing good things for TMo, John- focus on that and lose the BS pet projects, such as this lawsuit.

  • j¤n Gårrëtt [5,000+]

    If apple can patent a rectangle I don't see why T-mo cant patent a color.

    • http://halljake.com Jake Hall

      it's not a patent, it's a trademark... very different

  • http://404err0r.com/ Henry Park

    Meh..... I don't care about the color being too same
    I hate At&t and love T-mobile.... SO GO WIN THIS FRACKING THING

    • derekmski

      My girlfriend has Tmobile and I have AT&T, same exact Galaxy S3 and we've been all over the country and overall I have better coverage with AT&T. You're paying more for the better coverage. I can't count the times that I had service and she didn't.

      • http://404err0r.com/ Henry Park

        Ya... if I travelled a lot I might consider paying more for it, but given that this broke college student isn't going anywhere I like the service I get from Tmo.

  • Matthew Fry

    I get that this is kind of ridiculous but let's be honest here. Whether or not T-Mobile can trademark a color, it seems like a monumentally stupid idea to use a color similar to a competitor. Especially considering each of the big 4 have well established color schemes. T-Mobile is magenta, Verizon is red, Sprint is yellow/black, and AT&T is orange/blue. I didn't even have to look it up, it's that easy to remember. How many AT&T employees did this have to go through before going out to the public? In fact, there's usually someone whose *entire* job is branding. Where were they?

    • PhillipCun

      AT&T would not just pick a color and go with it. A company that large will have gone through rounds and rounds of testing and strategy to pick the logo and color. Given that, it makes sense why they chose a color close to TMO. I honestly believe TMO has a valid argument here. AT&T is obviously trying to tap into TMO's market with AIO Wireless. It is NOT a coincidence; AT&T strategically picked this color for a reason and I'm not saying it was to copy TMO because that's something I cannot prove. But it is a big possibility. take my opinion with a grain of salt, but I'm in advertising.

  • AnnatarLotW

    I am not arguing that this is not a stupid, wasteful lawsuit. The colors are flat-out not the same. But, from what I remember of a class about trademark law back in college, T-Mobile is required by law to defend their trademark or they lose it. If they don't sue in this case, some other lawyer in another case where the shade of magenta is close enough to be visually the same but still not identical could argue that because they chose not to fight in this case, they lost their ability to fight in that one. It's a stupid law, but it is the law, as far as I know.

    • Freak4Dell

      It looks like you're right. A quick search revealed that a company can potentially lose the right to the trademark if they don't defend it, so it may not be that T-Mobile wants to do this lawsuit, but rather, that they have to. It would suck if they just sat on their hands, then 5 years down the line a true infringement comes and the other side argues that T-Mobile doesn't have the right to it anymore because they let this situation slide. Hopefully it will be a quick settlement, and we can forget about it.

      • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/eric-ravenscraft/ Eric Ravenscraft

        A company has to defend their trademark. A company's CEO doesn't have to make bad crayon jokes on Twitter. I couldn't say whether Legere knows it's a facade and is just being a dick to make headlines or if he genuinely believes Aio is ripping off their intellectual property, but either way still makes this whole thing dumb.

  • paxmos

    *What's bright orange and sounds like a parrot?
    -A carrot.

  • bL4Ck

    'murrika, where people sue each other over meaningless things. Try and do that in another country, you'll get your ass kicked out of the court office before they even look at the papers.

  • tallpaul02

    Yes, colors absolutely can be protected under trademark law and especially protected from direct competitors.

    Ever heard of Caterpillar? Their yellow is protected under trademark and fiercely.

  • Mirosław Jurdeczka

    in other news Ferrari(Fiat) sue Tomato producers for making their vegetables in a similar shade of red:)