New York-based publisher John T. Colby has smacked Apple with a lawsuit claiming the term “iBooks” infringes on his copyright.
The lawsuit was filed yesterday in Manhattan District Court and alleges that Apple’s trademark on iBooks stands to consume the smaller brand, which has been selling under the names ‘ibooks’ and ‘picturebooks’ since 1999:
“Apple’s use of the mark ‘iBooks’ to denote the electronic library that can be accessed via its iPad tablet computer and its iPhone is likely to overwhelm the good will of plaintiffs’ ‘ibooks’ and ‘ipicturebooks’ marks and render them virtually worthless,” the lawsuit says.
John T. Colby purchased Byron Preiss in 2006 and 2007, acquiring the ‘ibooks’ name during the sale. The iBooks name is currently in use on the Apple iPhone, iPad and iPod, and managed through the iBookstore. Apple has yet to comment on the case- although it should be noted the company also once sold a personal computer called the iBook.