Archive for May, 2006

The “Web 2.0″ trademark affair

Posted on May 25, 2006, under general.

So, as tom Raftery has reported, IT@Cork have been sent a cease and desist order in relation to their use of the term “Web 2.0″ in relation to a conference. You can read the actual letter here; page 1, page 2.

I’m very conflicted about this. “Web 2.0″ is already a generic term, in my opinion at least, and despite the strong wording of the letter I don’t think the IT@Cork organisers were genuinely trying to pass off their conference as an O’Reilly Web 2.0 conference. However, on the other hand, trademarks do have to be vigourously and pro-actively defended if they are to be of any use, and O’Reilly (or TCM in this case) and its lawyers have a duty to protect any value they have invested in the reputation of their Web 2.0 conferences.

I don’t see how it would be unfair of them to use a trademark in that, limited, respect. Curiously, the legal letter does not supply much detail. It does not say where the trademark is pending an application. It may be the case that their isn’t even a trademark application pending in Ireland in the first place (either directly or through Madrid protocol or Community Trademark scheme).

Either way, personally I think that IT@Cork really are steering a little close to a passing-off offence, I mean they are saying “Web 2.0 conference”, that does seem potentially confusing. A lot of people are predicting very pad PR for Tim O’Reilly because of this, and that might indeed follow, but it would be a pity, I can see their side to this easily enough.

What makes me most conflicted though, is that both IT@Cork and the O’Reilly Web 2.0 conferences seem more or less equally full of crap in general. These are some of the most buzzword-compliant back-patting timesinks going. The Irish one looks to me like a sales gig for slow-learners, and the O’Reilly one like another mock high-level strategic osmosis pool slash networking event so that some people can feel the excitement of being on the radar, yawn.

Part of me hopes that O’Reilly goes on a total blitz with the Web 2.0 trademark, that we cease to see any use of the term and that in the process those O’Reilly conferences go away too, with maybe the exception of OSCon.

Change is Possible

Posted on May 23, 2006, under general, meta, music, photography.

If you’re ever in Dundrum’s massive shopping centre, pay close attention as you pay for your parking (if you happen to have driven there). It doesn’t tell you that change is available, but rather the far more optimistic message, that change is possible.

It’s nice to see, it brought a smile ot my face, and clearly it’s intentional. Maybe it’s part of a car parks against conservatism movement, or maybe it’s religious subliminal messaging, or maybe just a fun meme to lighten the day but whatever it is, it’s good fun.

Papal Cross in Phoenix Park

So, Nóirín helped me change this blog – to WordPress 2 – which is going very well so far. I’ve made it easier to post comments too, which was always a bit too hard for my liking (but I like comment spam even less).

On another note of change; on my travels I got a new Camera, which I’m having some fun with. My shots from San Francisco were taken with it, along with the two shots in this post (The papal cross in the Phoenix Park, and our good friend Conall O’Brien).

Conall O'Brien

And yet again in the spirit of change, I went on my first successful geocaching expedition on Saturday, and it was great fun, I’d highly recommend to anyone. As it was my birthday over the weekend, we went to see two great Gigs in Airfield House. The first was Kevin Burke and Ged Foley and the second was Liz Carroll and John Doyle. Both were excellent, it was great to hear some master fiddlers playing and John Doyle’s guitar playing is truly amazing.

And I think the last note of change, is that yesterday, I finally got IP connectivity into the datacentre we’ve been building for the last few months, which means we are now officially in the migration phase. I might even have free time soon!