Twitpic Resurrected Following Twitter Trademark Dispute
Orange County – Twitpic, the image-sharing service on Twitter, announced that it would be shutting down earlier this month due partly to a trademark dispute with Twitter. However, this week Twitpic was acquired and now it will continue to stay in business. Twitpic made the announcement about its closure following a trademark battle with Twitter, which had threatened to cut off the image-hosting site’s access to its application programming interface (API). The Twitpic site was utilized by many to upload photos to Twitter.
The company, which was founded by Noah Everett in 2008, had made the decision to shut down as it was reluctant to engage in a trademark battle with social networking giant Twitter. Twitpic filed a trademark application for Twitpic in 2009. Twitter not only objected to Twitpic’s filing, but also threatened to cut ties with the company if it did not give up its quest for the trademark.
Everett announced that Twitter’s threat came as a shock to him since Twitpic has been in existence for the last six years at least. He told reporters that his company did not have the resources to fight a large company like Twitter despite his belief that Twitpic is the rightful owner of the trademark. A Twitter spokesperson said the objection to Twitpic’s trademark filing was made in order to protect its own brand and trademarks tied to the Twitter brand. Twitter itself has expanded significantly into photo upload tools and features recently, eroding Twitpic’s utility.
The new development occurred over the last few days when Twitpic announced it has a buyer and will remain in business. Twitpic has not identified the buyer or other details of the purchase. Twitpic was the best-established third-party service that helped Twitter users share images by allowing them to link to photos in their tweets. Twitpic also evolved as a citizen journalism tool when tweeters began to spot and share newsworthy events such as the Hudson River plane crash. Users were able to capture the event on their phone, upload the images to Twitpic and easily share the link via Twitter.
Posted in: Trademark Infringement