Apple Sues Online Grocery Store Over Its Logo

    September 11, 2012
    Zach Walton
    Comments are off for this post.

Apple is ridiculously protective of its trademarks and patents. That much should be clear by now. The company will drag you to court if you so much have a single element in common with its own devices. One could argue that Apple was within their right to sue other electronic companies like Samsung, but their latest legal assault might be going a tad bit too far.

Reuters is reporting that Apple is suing an online Polish grocery retailer named A.pl. The Web site’s name is an obvious pun on the word “apple.” Apples are a fruit and, as such, belong in a grocery store. Surely Apple wouldn’t be angry over a grocery store using a pun. They aren’t even in the same market.

Apple says that the lawsuit isn’t about the name, but rather the logo. The company’s main logo isn’t infringing in the least, but their offshoot company, fresh24, may be the cause of the suit.

Apple Suing Grocery Store

The logo does bear a resemblance to Apple’s iconic logo, but is it really worth a lawsuit? Apple says that A.pl is using its logo to attract customers. In essence, Apple says that a grocery store has copied its logo, which is associated with electronics, to sell fruits and vegetables.

I don’t even know what to say about this so I’ll just let A.pl’s CEO Radoslaw Celinski take over:

“The accusation is ludicrous”.

It’s so simple, yet gets the point across so well. Apple’s lawyers must have gone insane. Anything that even remotely resembles an apple (or a rectangle) is apparently fair game for the lawsuit happy lawyers over at Apple.

Once again, it’s perfectly fine for a company to defend its trademark. Nobody would care if Apple was going after an electronics supplier that was using an Apple-like branding to sell their products, but this is a grocery store. I guess they could just change their logo to that of an orange or a pear, but the apple is most commonly recognized as the king of all fruits.

Anyway, A.pl is currently reviewing the case being brought against them. It will probably reach the trial phase and A.pl will probably win. Apple’s legal escapades have not been met with the same kind of success that they have seen here in the U.S. If Apple does win, however, we can say goodbye to any kind of common sense that was left in the world.

  • Michael

    How can Apple sue soneone in another country? I would think they wouldn’t have standing in a foreign court. So any logo of a fruit with a leaf is fair game for Apple?

    • Josh

      Apple is a global company…

  • http://www.frogdice.com Michael Hartman

    Pathetic. They sued some mom and pop store in Germany in a similar action. Same deal – someone had a logo that used an apple.

    Sorry Apple, you chose a very generic term for your company name. You don’t get to lay claim to the entire fruit
    for the rest of the universe.

    God, I really, really hate and am disgusted by Apple. They are one of the few companies out there I truly despise and believe they are literally a force for evil. LITERALLY – the real meaning of that term, not hyperbole.

  • http://www.LAokay.com Steve G

    If somebody seriously confused the logo for Apple’s first of all the text is in German, second the color isn’t the same as Apple uses, and 3rd the apple looks nothing like the Apple that Apple uses on their logo. I mean where is the bite out of the Apple that Apple uses on their logo? I think Apple’s attorneys were bored and needed something to do so they sued an innocent grocery store.

    • http://Hah Hah

      German? You got to be fucking kidding. .pl – since when is .pl Germany? That has and always will be PL for Poland. Also, the text is also clearly not German, even if you don’t speak the language you can see tell it’s not German.

      It’s people like you that would confuse this logo for the Apple logo, just because it’s an Apple. You confuse another language for German, just because you don’t speak it.

      Apple will win this, because of you. /facepalm

      • Jo

        Also the article mentions that it’s a Polish grocery store. But who reads article text??? Everything we need to know is in the headline.

  • Ian

    Am I really the only person who knows what’s going on here?!

    It’s not about the logo, it’s not about the name, it’s not even about the type of business. It is quite simply lawyers making money for themselves. Apple won’t turn down free money, so they unleash the lawyers to sue whoever they think they can make money out of Apple. The only possible interest for Apple is getting the a.pl short domain name.

  • Another Me

    I understand Apple’s whole overall goal for suing but what is unique about this particular accusation is from “Apple says that a grocery store has copied its logo, which is associated with electronics, to sell fruits and vegetables.” So as let’s say a generalist, one could read this statement saying “Apple owns electronics.” Using “electronics” as singularity. It’s similar to saying “Apple owns the ipad.” It’s ludacris how they word their statements! That’s what makes Apple so trifling. First it was “round corners” now its “owns electronics (EVERY PIECE OF ELECTRONIC EQUIPMENT EVER MADE).” Call me crazy but so was round corners….

  • Ken

    The especially amusing irony here is that, when Apple Computers was sued by Apple Records (the Beatles’ vanity label), they negotiated an agreement that let them off the hook by promising that they would never try to use their “Apple” in any aspect of the music business. And we all saw how well they stuck to that agreement…

  • http://wizardprang.wordpress.com/ Wizard Prang

    Apple? I thought it was an unripe peach!