Apple Takes Legal Action Against This Small Company’s Pear Logo [Update]
Prepear is a meal planner and grocery list app that helps people discover recipes and more. It’s a spin off from the founders of Super Healthy Kids and right now they saying its logo is under legal attack from Apple.
It’s funny what Instagram accounts you follow as a parent at some point. Yesterday, we noticed Super Healthy Kids sharing a post detailing their new legal woes with Apple.
According to the founders, Apple “has opposed the trademark application for our small business, Prepear, demanding that we change our obviously pear shaped logo, used to represent our brand in the recipe management and meal planning business.”
In a petition on Change.org, Prepear goes on to say, “before attacking us, Apple has opposed dozens of other trademark applications filed by small businesses with fruit related logos. Many of those logos were changed or abandoned. Most small businesses cannot afford the tens of thousands of dollars it would cost to fight Apple.”
Prepear says they are a small company with only five staff and legal costs have already cost them “many thousands of dollars” plus laying off one team member, in their legal fight against the iPhone maker.
“It is a very terrifying experience to be legally attacked by one of the largest companies in the world, even when we have clearly done nothing wrong, and we understand why most companies just give in and change their logos,” adds Prepear in its plea for support.
Prepear says they “feel a moral obligation to take a stand against Apple’s aggressive legal action against small businesses and fight for the right to keep our logo. We are defending ourselves against Apple not only to keep our logo, but to send a message to big tech companies that bullying small businesses has consequences.”
So far, just over 8,200 signatures have been signed out of a goal of 10,000 on change.org.
Looking at the two logos above, I can’t say the Prepear logo resembles the Apple logo at all. But of course, Apple feels different about that.
Update: You can check out Apple’s trademark opposition filed above (via MacRumors).
Update August 9: Prepear’s COO, Russ Monson, told iPhone in Canada in an email more insight in regards to the company’s filing of their trademark for the ‘pear’ logo.
Monson says Prepear filed their trademark for the logo back in January 2017 and eventually was told by the U.S. Trademark office “that it was not in conflict with any other registered trademarks and that they would publish it for opposition.” Everything seemed good to go.
That was until on the “on the last day of the window to oppose the trademark we received notice that Apple had filed for an extension of the window to oppose, and they subsequently filed for additional extensions which put our trademark in legal limbo for an extended period of time.”
According to Monson, Apple filed their actual opposition on the final day they were legally allowed. Subsequent extensions filed result in more legal fees for a company like Prepear to take on, which they said “seemed designed by their legal team to be made as long, difficult, and expensive as possible for us.”
Monson goes on to explain Prepear was “naive enough” to think they could discuss the matter with Apple rationally, as both logos look different. But that wasn’t the case and the opposition has reached the ‘discovery phase’, which the COO says will “be the most expensive part of this case for us.”
After Apple filed to proceed to discovery phase, that’s what Prepear decided to start their petition. “We believe that this case is clearly frivolous, and that once the public is aware of Apple’s position on this that Apple will be more willing to drop the case rather than have the public see how they are clearly harming us for no apparent justifiable reason,” said Monson to iPhone in Canada.
Prepear says they aren’t asking for a boycott of Apple products, but they are asking the iPhone maker to “stop attacking small businesses like ours in frivolous cases that seem designed to cause us to spend as much money and time thinking about the case instead of focusing on how to grow our business and ensure we survive the current economic crisis.”
Monson shared with iPhone in Canada some other oppositions Apple had previously filed against, in a similar fashion to what is happening them right now. These companies below gave up when Apple reached out, but Prepear says they are lucky to garner enough media attention “to expose this practice by Apple.”
Prepear says it will be handing its petition of signatures–which currently stands at nearly 19,000 signatures–to Apple soon and will be sharing updates on what happens. The company explains to iPhone in Canada it hopes Apple will drop the case before it gets to more expensive discovery and trial phases.